Walking and Cooking in Portugal

Experience history by traveling to the captivating northern region of Portugal that architecturally and gastronomically reflects its early rulings by the Celts, Romans, Visigoths, and Moors. On your Portuguese culinary vacation, you will visit some of the country’s 15 UNESCO World treasures, hike beautiful scenic trails, and learn about the birthplace of the world famous Port wine. With a combination of easy/moderate walking tours in the countryside and city tours, along with cooking courses delving into the gourmet foods of the region, this trip is the perfect balance of activity and leisure.

Walking and Cooking in Portugal Itinerary

Day One

Sample itinerary: order of activities subject to change depending on dates booked, the weather, and the condition of the walking paths.

  • Arrive at Porto Airport and private transfer to your accommodations.
  • Check in and take today to relax. Perhaps check out the nearby shops or stroll the beautiful public parks of Porto.
  • Dinner on your own and overnight.

Cooking classes in Portugal


Day Two

  • Breakfast.
  • Meet your guide for a tour of Porto’s historic city center. You will see the impressive 250 foot tall Torre dos Clérigos which can be seen from anywhere in Porto. Next, visit Livraria Lello e Irmåo, one of the oldest bookstores in Portugal with one of the most beautiful interior decors in the world. It is rumored that the bookstore’s Neo-Gothic style partly inspired J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series from when she was working and living in Porto. Continue to Porto’s bustling Avenida dos Aliados, a beautiful public gathering place surrounded by restaurants, cafes, and boutiques. Also visit the ornate Estacåo de S. Bento, the magnificent Ponte Luís I, Sé Catedral, Bairro da Sé and Ribeira.
  • Next, a brief lesson on the historic and continuously growing olive oil production of Portugal. Enjoy a tasting of three unique Portuguese olive oils along with local products such as ham, chorizo, and cheese.
  • Meet the chef for your first cooking class! Sample menu may include fresh Portuguese cod and toucinho do ceu, a traditional almond cake created by nuns dating back to the 18th century. Lunch to follow based on your efforts with a glass of wine or sangria.
  • Afternoon on your own.
  • Overnight.

Countryside of Portugal


Day Three

  • After breakfast, depart for Monte Sao Domingos da Serra, with its magnificent view of the Arda and Duoro rivers. After enjoying the view make your way to the “Fojo” shaft, connecting to the mining industry. Follow the coal mine line and see the Arda River and some wonderful landscapes, ending at the Pedorido bridge. (Walking distance: 9 kilometers).
  • Picnic lunch during or after your hike.
  • In the evening, begin your second cooking lesson. Sample menu may include Francesinha, a classic Portuguese meal consisting of fresh bread, cured ham, steak, and melted cheese covered with a unique flavorful sauce. Dessert may be a Port apple tart. Dinner based on your efforts with a glass of wine or sangria.
  • Overnight.

Fish dish in Portugal


Day Four

  • Following breakfast, depart for Areja and enjoy a beautiful walk of a train that is one of the best spots to see sweeping views of  the River Douro. Soak up the countryside of Portugal during your hike, and see the “lomba” beach, the village of “Lomba,” and Pé de Moura, where you will be able to see some of the typical boats used to fish. (Walking distance: 9.5 kilometers).
  • Picnic lunch during or after your hike.
  • Dinner on your own back in Porto.
  • Overnight.

The beautiful Douro River vineyards


Day Five

  • Breakfast.
  • Travel to the enchanting region of Douro, a World UNESCO site famous for its historic production of wine, particularly Port wine. Transfer by car (about 1 1/2 hours) to Samodães to start your walk. Hike among the beautiful mountains covered in vineyards, and experience wonderful seaside views. Descend (by car) to the town of Régua where you will have lunch. After, visit the paths of the region to Pinhão, and then to a wine estate for a tasting of port wine. Port wine is typically served as a dessert wine because of its sweet combination with brandy, another grape spirit, before it has finished fermenting. (Distance: 9 kilometers)
  • Dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Braga, Portugal


Day Six

  • Breakfast followed by check out.
  • Transfer to Braga, Portugal’s third largest city and considered to be the “Portuguese Rome” because of its rich religious presence and over 2,000 years of history, founded as it was in Roman times with the name Bracara Augusta.
  • After settling into your Braga hotel, meet your guide for a tour of the elegant city. On your tour, you will see some of Portugal’s most known sites, including the sanctuary of Bom Jesus with its stunning Baroque staircase.
  • Lunch on your own.
  • In the afternoon, continue your tour to Guimaråes, a historic town that innovatively integrates its medieval architecture into the modern era. (A visit to the museums and monuments here is optional and entrance tickets not included).
  • Dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Foodie tour in Portugal


Day Seven

  • Breakfast.
  • For your last full day head to the beach for a beautiful walk with less degree of difficulty. You will appreciate the landscape and sea air and will visit the fishing community of Póvoa de Varzim, part of the Portuguese Way of Santiago.
  • Lunch and dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Day Eight

  • Breakfast and return transfer to Porto airport. Boa viagem