After breakfast our Andalucia Tour finished and then our Portugal Tour commenced with a private car transfer from Seville to Tavira. We really enjoyed the unique characteristics, history and fascinating features of all the principal towns and villages as well as the local guides’ knowledge and lively presentations when guided walking tours were included.

There was one day that was extremely special for us from the moment we set off in the early morning until we arrived back in our hotel at 6pm. We drove through undulating country from Porto to Amarante. Once in Amarante we were mesmerised by the wonderful reflections of trees and buildings in the Tamega River. After our coffee break we continued on the bus through autumn coloured vine covered hills until we saw the Douro River in the distance and arrived at Quinta Nova. A middle aged man explained the history of his family’s vineyard and then invited our group to partake in tasting a white wine, a red wine and a port wine with accompanying ‘nibbles.’ It was very enjoyable. Then we headed off to the Douro River to board a traditional rabelo boat for a 45-minute cruise to the village of Pinhao. Here we disembarked to be seated outside amongst palm trees with a stunning view over the River to indulge in delicious food and excellent wine provided by the Vintage House Hotel. Sadly it all came to an end and we had to hop on the bus to return to our special Porto Hotel located alongside the Douro River. A perfect day, we will never forget.

Our Tour Manager, Miguel, was very caring, considerate and competent. We really appreciated all the historical, cultural and social information he told us about either as we travelled on the bus as well as orientation and guided walks. Miguel’s passion for his country was very evident.

This was our third Amber Tour which we can add to the fond memories we have from our first and second Amber Tours.

 

There were many highlights on this tour but the group meals were special. Most memorable for me were those at A Ver Tavira in Tavira, our first taste of excellent Portuguese cuisine, and the wonderful Momentos in Evora. Here the host and chef came out to meet us and then appeared before every course to explain how he was about to cook it. The young staff were exceptional.

Portugal has a long and eventful history and our tour manager, Miguel Silva, was well versed and gave us detailed insight into both the history and culture. He even taught us some Portuguese. Miguel was a delightful young man who looked after us so very well, to the extent that he guided a friend and I to a special fish restaurant in Tavira and then ate with us on our free evening.  From Tavira, via Evora, Lisbon and Coimbra to Porto, from the stunning cathedral in Evora, the beautiful Jéronimos Monastery and Cloister in Lisbon to the Biblioteca Joanina at the Coimbra University, this well thought out itinerary gave us an interesting and very enjoyable experience. Our comfort was ensured in the care shown by the staff in the beautiful hotels in which we stayed.

Once upon a time, Portugal sailed forth and “discovered” much of the globe. Right now, that little jewel of a country with its gorgeous scenery is being discovered with a vengeance by tourists and investors, so one needs to rush to see it before it is overrun and changed. At the moment, with its unique, ancient history and complex cultural heritage Portugal remains largely unspoiled. On my FIFTH Amber Road Tour and with the genial assistance of our outstanding, well informed guide Miguel, I greatly enjoyed exploring the dramatically different towns and cities from the Andalusian-inflected far south up all the way up to Porto, which somewhat resembles Portland, OR (!) As always with Amber, our local guides were excellent, and all the elements that go into making a trip hassle-free, comfortable, and interesting had been thought through with each day arranged so that the experience was consistently stimulating and rewarding.

Your new Tour of Portugal is excellent.  Starting in the south in beautiful Tavira and nearing the end with a perfect day in the Douro Valley were great bookends. Experiencing the transition from south to north provided varied and always interesting experiences. The hotel locations, always close to city centers, provided easy walking access but just enough separation. Without restating what other reviews mentioned, we do want thank our Tour Leader. Miguel could not have been better. He was well organized, knowledgeable, flexible and always available. Also, your choices for local guides were quite good. In particular, the Lisbon guide and University guide in Coimbra stood out. Thanks for adding Portugal to your Tour options. And, please, don’t change hotels in Tavira . . .attractive, historic with a great staff. Glad we arrived a couple of days early.

We have just completed our second tour with Amber and we will be back. We had not realised when booking the tour that it was scheduled for only the second time but it worked beautifully. Nicely paced, varied and interesting. We felt we had a good overview of rural and urban of Portugal and balance of the two at the end. Miguel was an excellent guide. Knowledgeable, attentive, charming, thorough and with a great sense of humour. Amber’s formula works and we really enjoyed the company of our group.

We just completed our 4th trip with Amber Road & it was definitely another winner! From South to North, we enjoyed wandering along the coast & inland. We wish we had arrived in Tavira 2-3 days in advance rather than 1 day since the hotel was SUPERB & the area was interesting and relaxing. We have a preference for small towns, but also really liked Lisbon & Porto. The Douro River Valley was a wonderful day with great memories of scenery, wine & food. Our Tour Director, Miguel, was OUTSTANDING – really good at sharing his country’s history, culture & current events. He was also fun, engaging & attentive to all travelers’ needs. Even the “technical”/”comfort” stops were made interesting by choosing out-of-the way & unique locations. The group meals were perfect – top-notch, out-of-the-ordinary & delicious. Our favorite hotels were Pousada Convento de Tavira and Quinta das Lagrimas/Coimbra.
Thank you for offering the tour to Portugal and we are already dreaming of our next adventure with Amber Road Tours.

Wonderful tour! We packed so much into 12 days and learned a lot about all aspects of Portuguese life. Cities and villages, seaside and rivers, churches and palaces, cathedrals, universities and castles, ceramics, cork, songs and wine. Good mix of modern hotels and hotels in older buildings. And the food was equally varied, with the memorable highlight of Jorge’s (in equal parts chef and showman) superb meal at Momentos in Évora. All of this was beautifully orchestrated by Miguel, our indefatigable tour guide, who showed us his country with humour, charm and unfailing efficiency.

The Portugal tour was wonderful. Claudia da Costa our guide was exceptional. She made her country come alive for us especially in Lisbon her home city. She looked after the group members with care and sensitivity and always with a smile and a wry sense of humour. We learned so much about history, geography, cork, wine and port production, and how people live in this lovely country. What a great experience for us all.

Tour manager, Claudia, was wonderful. She worked tirelessly to insure that everyone enjoyed the tour.

This was my third Amber Roads tour in 3 years. Like the others, it was outstanding. The guide Claudia was knowledgeable and professional. Most importantly she was extremely kind and made sure every traveler’s needs were met. The Douro Valley was our favorite place. It is gorgeous. Hotels were good and included meals were wonderful. Trip does require a good bit of uphill walking so probably not for people with difficulty walking or balance.  Already planning another AR trip !