Day 1 – Arrival at Lisbon airport. Group meet and assisted by our guide. Proceed to the hotel in Lisbon. Afternoon and evening dedicated to discover Lisbon. Dinner and overnight at the hotel in Lisbon.

Day 2 – In the morning we will cross the bridge over the Tagus and have a superb view of Lisbon, arriving at Sesimbra village where you can admire the beautiful scenery of this fishing town. Arrábida mountain – a unique nature reserve giving a breathtaking panoramique view over Setúbal village with pedestrian streets, gardens and interesting shops. Stop at Pousada do Castelo in Palmela. Than we will proceed to Alcácer do Sal, where you will have free time for lunch. The ancient town of Alcácer do Sal overlooking the river Sado, is dominated by the hilltop castle (nowadays is Pousada) built on the site of a fortified construction dating from as early as the 6th century BC. The town’s name comes from the Moorish al-kasr meaning ‘the castle’, and the sal refers to the age-old production of salt in this area. Driving southbound you will arrive to Sines. The town is known as the birthplace of Vasco da Gama, the XV century sea-commander who discovered the sea route to India, a deed of civilisation fundamental to the Renaissance’s mental and cultural opening. Sines keeps its picturesque old center and sandy beach. Above the beach stands the simple medieval castle restored in the 16th century by king Manuel. Admire the parish church where Vasco da Gama was baptised and the chapel of Nossa Senhora das Salas, patron saint of fishermen, to whom the navigator was especially devoted. Afterwards Santiago de Cacém. This village has a majestic castle of Arab origin, it was completely rebuilt by the Christians in the 12th century. There is a superb view from the castle, whichever way you look. Beside the castle is the São Pedro Chapel, which dates from the 7th century, while the main church dates from the 8th century. Dinner and overnight in Beja.

Day 3 – On this day our tour will start by visiting Mértola village. With its narrow and twisting alleys Mértola is still rather Moorish in appearance. From the main square its narrow streets, lined with little white houses, lead uphill to the parish church and then on up to the castle. The town’s main attraction is its castle, built by the moors, with a guard tower from the 13th-century. Next stop it will be the village of Alcoutim lies on the west bank of the Guadiana river. This river forms the border between Portugal and Spain. The castle stands on an imposing site overlooking the river which archaeological digs suggest was inhabited during the Iron Age and at the beginning of the Roman occupation. Built in the 14th century to defend the border, it was altered in the 17th century to adapt it for artillery. Driving southbound we will pass bay Castro Marim and than to Tavira. Tavira along with Lagos is one of the most architecturally attractive towns in the Algarve and dates back to around 2,000 BC. During the occupation of the Algarve by the moors this town was considered of great importance due to its fishing industry. The castle offers great views of the town of Tavira and the mouth of the Gilão river. Around the old town you can find several parts of towers and walls of the medieval city walls. Loulé is a rural administrative and active market town with some remains of a castle dating back to the 12th century. The Arab castle has been virtually destroyed leaving some walls still standing that are now surrounded by modern buildings. Like most other towns in the Algarve, most of the older, potentially interesting buildings were destroyed in the earthquake that occurred in 1755. Driving north we will return to Beja – a city of historic and social importance, but it preserves the pleasant and unassuming aspect of an inland town. The narrow and cobbled streets of the old town stretch from the beautiful castle keep (late 13th century) to the Convent of St. Francis, now a magnificent “pousada” (state-run inn), also dating from the same period. Dinner and overnight in Beja.

Day 4 – Our first stop in the morning it will be Serpa village. The historic centre harmoniously displays the town’s past. Of the Moorish castle, rebuilt at the end of the 13th century and seriously damaged in 1707, only the ramparts remain. The footpaths which follow these walls provide uninterrupted views over the town and the surrounding countryside. To the north of Serpa is the ancient and once important fortified town of Moura. The present ruins of the castle originally date back to the 14th century. The castle and the later constructed town walls were both destroyed when occupied by the Spanish occupation in 1707. A stroll through the narrow, winding streets of the mouraria area, a sort of muslim ghetto, helps to better understand the tumultuous period of the expulsion of the moors from within the town walls. Next we will drive east to visit Barrancos town. Located on the left bank of the river Guadiana, the county of Barrancos lies so close to the Spanish border that it is no surprise the population’s cultural identity has been profoundly influenced by Spain. This town has gained notoriety in recent years as it is the first location in Portugal where the inhabitants have reverted to the killing the bull in the bullring as is practiced in neighbouring Spain. Further north there is another small town Mourão that has the impressive high walls of a 14th century castle overlooking the river Guadiana. Before we arrive at Évora, important town considered in its whole as World Patrimony, we will stop at Monsaraz town. Perched on the top of a hill, this little known small town called Monsaraz is a “jewel in the crown” of the Alentejo. It is small walled group of dwellings that carefully preserve most of their original charm by retaining the old exteriors and the original quaint slated streets. Dinner and overnight in Évora.

Day 5 – After breakfast we will continue the visiting to Évora city and then we will drive into direction of Redondo set in the heart of the wine district. Afterwards we will continue to the town of Vila Viçosa, mainly famous as a result of becoming in earlier times the favourite home of the House of the Duques de Bragança. There are a number of other interesting buildings in the town including the 14th century Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Conceição with a Gothic image of the Virgin Mary, the castle, the Convento das Chagas de Cristo which lies besides the Palace is now a comfortable and attractive Pousada. Borba it will be our next stop followed by Estremoz town with its 13th century castle that dominates the town has been greatly restored since its semi-destruction in 1689 when the stored gun-powder exploded. Reaching to the height of 27 metres and was initially constructed in 1258 and subsequently improved. Also, today within the walls is a fine Pousada built on the ruins of the old Palace named and named after the Queen Dona Isabel de Aragon. Our tour will continue to Elvas, located near the border between Portugal and Spain and is on the main highway between Lisbon and Madrid. The walled town of Elvas features an ancient castle, a 500-year-old aqueduct and some of the best-preserved military fortifications in Southern Europe. Situated close to the Spanish border, 18 km north of Elvas in the Alentejo, the pretty fortress town of Campo Maior withstood countless sieges over the centuries, particularly after the restoration of Portuguese independence in 1640. It past history is rather tragic as in 1732 the stored gunpowder in the castle was struck by lightning and it virtually destroyed most of the standing buildings and with it some 1,500 people. Campo Maior chief attraction is its Chapel of Bones, a smaller version of the Chapel of Bones in Évora. Built in 1766, its walls and vaults are completely covered in human bones, with two complete skeletons hanging from the walls. Dinner and overnight in Portalegre.

Day 6 – After visiting Portalegre you will drive north in direction to Marvão. Located on an escarpment only a few miles from Spain, this tranquil town is completely surrounded by walls dating from the 13th to the 17th century. Afterwards you will pass by the small town of Castelo de Vide with its medieval synagogue and the Gothic quarter. Afterwards we will drive to an old world little town of white houses and flower bedecked streets perched high above the north bank of the Tagus – Abrantes occupies an exposed situation which made it a key point in the defense of the old Beira provinces. Until now the town has been able to retain its original character. Five km/3mi southwest of Constância, on a rocky islet in the Tagus, stands the Templar castle of Almourol. Built on Roman and Moorish foundations, with 11 towers, it is undoubtedly one of Portugal’s finest 12th c. castles (restored in the 19th c. in the Romantic style). Set in the magnificent scenery of the Natural Park of Serra de Aire e Candeeiros, the town of Torres Novas is full of charm, with lively streets and many fine churches overlooked by its 12th-century castle with eleven towers. After the visit you will continue your journey to Lisbon. Overnight in Lisbon.

Day 7 – Spend some time visiting the capital of Portugal in the morning and after lunch departure to the Lisbon airport to take your plane back home.