Portugal travel guide: best hotels and experiences

Places to stay and things to do in Lisbon, Porto and the Algarve

1. Rua Camara Pestana I

Rua Camara Pestana I

This luxury apartment to rent in Lisbon is located within one of two turn-of-the-century mansions which have been beautifully converted into an elegant apartment building and a small boutique hotel. The property is situated in central Lisbon, on the city’s most central hill with stunning views across the city and to the River Tagus below. Lisbon’s sophisticated high street, Avenida da Liberdade, runs beneath the property and is reached in just five minutes down steps, or guests can use the Lavra funicular which is the oldest funicular in Lisbon. Via The Luxury Travel Book, rates start from approximately £1,300 per week. Sleeps two.

2. Vista Douro

Vista Douro

From its position on a high plateau, Vista Douro benefits from outstanding views over the Douro River. Built in the 17th century, it retains its original charm and character, while adding modern comforts. The luxury villa rental in the Douro Valley offers plenty of space for a relaxing holiday for a large family, or a group of friends. Via The Luxury Travel Book, rates start from approximately £6,100 per week. Sleeps 18 in 12 bedrooms.

3. The Ritz-Carlton Penha Longa Resort and Spa

The Ritz-Carlton Penha Longa Resort and Spa

This breathtaking retreat is nestled in a 545-acre natural park in the Sintra Mountains, western Portugal. The serene resort is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts who can enjoy hiking among rolling green hills, a 27-hole golf course, a choice of three swimming pools as well as easy access to beaches in nearby Cascais and Estoril, just ten minutes away. Guests can relax in the 1,500sqm Thai-inspired spa, and dine-out in the property’s eight restaurants, two of which boast a Michelin star. Rates from £214 per room, per night.

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4. A ten-day vinicultural voyage with the World of Wine

World of Wine in Porto, Portugal

World of Wine (WOW) in Porto has curated a trip of a lifetime experience for wine and port enthusiasts. From Porto to the Douro Valley, this ten-day excursion that is filled with culture, history, and of course, wine, is the ultimate experience for connoisseurs, and undeniably one for the bucket list. Wine experiences include: six nights at The Yeatman Hotel in Porto on a B&B basis; private wine masterclass at The Yeatman Hotel; private tour of Taylor, Fladgate & Yeatman Port wine houses in Vila Nova de Gaia; plus access to each of WOW’s six experiences - The Wine Experience, Planet Cork, The Chocolate Story, The Bridge Collection, Porto Region Across The Ages, and The Fashion & Fabric Museum - for the duration of the visit. WOW offers the curated wine experience from £7,434 based on two people. Email marketing@wow.pt for details.

5. Herdade da Comporta

Herdade da Comporta

The Herdade da Comporta luxury villa in Comporta is situated on a five-acre estate in a secluded area nestled on the sand dunes. This charming holiday rental is just 100m from the beach and features six separate bungalows with seven bedrooms which can comfortably accommodate 12-14 guests in total. The six bungalows are linked by paths through beautifully designed gardens, with white sand and sand dune vegetation as well as lavender and rosemary. Guests staying at this luxury villa rental will enjoy utmost privacy and their own private beach. Via The Luxury Travel Book, rates start from £36,390 (€42,500) per week and includes housekeeping, villa manager, chef and assistant chef, welcome drinks and snacks.

6. Pine Cliffs Hotel, a Luxury Collection Resort, Algarve

Pine Cliffs Hotel, a Luxury Collection Resort, Algarve

The iconic, cliff-top retreat located in Albufeira, southern Portugal, is set above the country’s glistening beaches. Moorish-influenced décor features throughout, and guest rooms include private balconies with views of the Algarve’s red cliffs and Atlantic Ocean. The hotel’s amenities include a nine-hole golf course, tennis club, revitalising spa, eight swimming pools, and a host of fine-dining options. Perfect for families, children will love the hotel’s Porto Pirata, the biggest kids club in the region which includes two lifelike pirate ships, a bouncy castle, a basketball court and mini-golf course. Rates from £235 per room, per night.

7. W Algarve

W Algarve

Opening in August, the W Algarve will be the brand’s first property in Portugal. Located on the iconic Algarve coast, the 134-guestroom hotel boasts direct access to three beaches and iconic sea views from each room. The 23 lavishly appointed suites include duplex apartments with private plunge pools and an Extreme WOW suite with a hot tub. The Sea Sky rooftop bar provides unrivalled views of the Algarve coastline and when the sun sets, guests can make the most of W’s renowned Wet Deck parties. Rates from £200 per room, per night.

8. Four Seasons Fairways

Four Seasons Fairways

The Four Seasons Fairways resort in the Algarve has announced that the latest phase of its ongoing villa refurbishment programme is complete. This most recent round of work will bring the total number of refurbished villas at the resort to 98. Each elegant villa is set in beautifully landscaped gardens and features its own pool or Jacuzzi, terrace or garden and outdoor BBQ/cooking station. For 2021, Four Seasons Fairways offers seven nights in a two- or three-bed villa or apartment with swimming pool or Jacuzzi from £1,150 to £3,550 on a self-catering basis.

9. Outpost - Casa das Arribas

Outpost - Casa das Arribas

Outpost is a historic property perched atop cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and just a 40-minute drive from Lisbon. The house was built by Portuguese architect Raul Lino, who was responsible for rediscovering the romanticism of the Sintra castles. It’s now available as six separate holiday apartments. Children of all ages are welcome and the pool, garden and nearby beaches make it a perfect family getaway. Welcome Beyond offers nightly rates at Outpost from €165 (£141.89), based on two sharing, room only.

10. Ana Ana Artistic Habitat

Ana Ana Artistic Habitat

Ana Ana is a place that combines hospitality, style, comfort and art in its many forms. It is the house-atelier of the artist, creative director and interior designer Eric de Bruijn. The house is located in the heart of Portimão, only a few metres from the riverside, and a 15-minute walk from the nearest beaches. Welcome Beyond offers nightly rates at Ana Ana Artistic Habitat from €400 (£343.98), based on ten sharing.

11. Casa Arte

Casa Arte

This villa blends the privacy of a home with the comfort of a luxury hotel, in the wild part of the Algarve. The Moorish style building is a traditional Portuguese construction that follows the typical architecture of the Algarve. The decoration brings some contemporary, minimalist and modern features to create a very casual and cosy atmosphere - a perfect mix of aesthetics, elegance and comfort. There are four suites and one family room, comfortably sleeping up to 12 people in total. Welcome Beyond offers nightly rates at Casa Arte from €490 (£421.38).

12. Quinta Nova

Quinta Nova

Nestled in the vineyards of an 18th-century estate, Quinta Nova overlooks the rich vine-laden tapestry of the Douro Valley. With a combination of oenology, fine dining and attentive hospitality, this peaceful and spacious family property with 11 rooms offers breathtaking views within the UNESCO World Heritage Site wine region.

13. Craveiral Farmhouse

Craveiral Farmhouse

Craveiral Farmhouse is the passion project of the founder Pedro Franca Pinto, a Lisbon lawyer who had dreams of becoming a farmer. A life defining project, he bought the land more than ten years ago, taking an unloved field of carnations and transforming it into Craveiral Farmhouse. Located on nine acres of land, the collection of 38 whitewashed self-contained cottages with simple wooden terraces are surrounded by pine forest and fruit trees. There are four swimming pools, a well-being area, an educational farm with animals (donkeys, horses, pigs and goats to name a few), an orchard of indigenous trees, a permaculture garden, nature centre and small shop. Plenty of activities are on offer, guests are encouraged to ride the farm’s horses and donkeys, and there are also 4x4 and quad bike tours, picnics with homemade products and BBQs.

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