Pierbusseti's Recommended Destination for 2016: Portugal
With so much to do and see, it’s no wonder that Portugal finds itself among the top 20 most visited countries in the world. An average of nearly 13 million tourists travel to this beautiful country to experience all it has to offer and in 2014 it was voted “Best European Country” by USA Today. For those who enjoy both the old and the new, learning about rich cultures through experience, and colorful night-life, this year-round destination is just the place.
A wide range of sightseeing options and activities make this destination easily accessible for travelers in every price range. Whether travelers want to relax on one of the many sunny beaches like Batata or Camilo Beach in Lagos or the many other well-known beaches up and down the Algarve Coast, or take in the breathtaking sites at Pena Palace in Sintra (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Portugal truly has something for everyone. For a little relaxation while taking in the sights, we recommend a Douro River Cruise, passing through picturesque villages, dramatic landscapes, wooded hills, and cultivated fields
For wine-lovers, it’s a safe bet that the first countries that come to mind when thinking of wine stops in Europe are either Italy or France. Yet, Portuguese wines are coveted worldwide. Regions like Torres Vedras are renowned for their wines and cities like Porto which is famous for—you guessed it: Port wine.
Portugal’s many historical sites are must-sees for their striking beauty and cultural significance. In Sintra, be sure to visit the ruins of Castelo do Mouros (Moors). Or stroll down the medieval streets of Obidos which are lined with intricately tiled churches. The Roman ruins of Conimbriga just south of Coimbra are built on the site of an Iron Age Celtic town and are noted as some of the most impressive found on the Iberian Peninsula.
And then of course, there’s Lisbon, Portugal’s capital. This sprawling city is home to more than a million people. Though many areas of the city are quite modern, such as Bull Ring and University City, it still manages to hold on to an old-fashioned charm seen in Avenida da Liberdade (Liberty Avenue), bustling Rossio Square, and Castelo de Sao Jorge (St. George’s Castle). One of our favorite properties? The Pestana Palace, located within a 19th century palace, conveniently located in the city center.
Regardless of the itinerary, Portugal is a destination that will please any visitor.