Portugal is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe alongside countries like Spain and Germany. Being in the envious crossover region of Mediterranean and Southern Europe certainly doesn’t hurt the situation at all.
There are a variety of cities throughout the country that have several unique experiences. A lot of them are on the beautiful coastline if that’s what you’re looking for. And if you’re heading for Portugal, there’s a damn good chance you are.
As part of the metropolitan region of Lisbon, Amadora is close to the action. It’s also reputedly the most densely populated region in the entirety of Portugal. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t a wonderful place to spend time.
Amadora is mostly residential but the city does have a lot to do. The Águas Livres Aqueduct is a particularly stunning sight, as is Belém Tower and Jerónimos Monastery. And if you’re there at the right time of year make sure to check out the Amadora International Comics Festival.
Out in the Atlantic Ocean is the island of Maderia. It’s part of Portugal but it’s actually closer to Morocco if that gives you an idea of roughly where it is. And on Maderia is the city of Funchal, one of the most popular destinations in the country.
It has become a massive cruise ship port with no shortage of ways to spend the day. Funchal Old Town is a marvelous place to grab a bite to eat. The Monte Palace Tropical Garden is quite relaxing. And the local farmers’ market gives you an interesting look at the island’s culture.
Back on the mainland is Coimbra. While it’s not right on the ocean, the Mondego River runs through the region. This offers visitors some interesting activities as well as more than a few remarkable views.
The city has several archaeological structures dating back to the period of the Roman Empire which have to be seen. Additionally, the University of Coimbra, which was established in 1290 AD, is a huge draw in what’s considered to be a major cultural center.
On the coast of northwest Portugal is the beautiful city of Porto. Located at the mouth of the Douro River, this is one of the most important ports in the region. As such, it has an amazing range of things for visitors to experience.
In particular, the Ribeira district cannot be missed. Its roots go back to medieval times, which are evidenced through the narrow cobbled streets. Bars and restaurants are everywhere. Serralves Museum, an exceptional modern art museum, should not be missed.
Continuing on from Porto is Braga, one of the northernmost cities in Portugal. It has long been viewed as one of, if not the, most religious cities in the country, a reputation that dates all the way back to the Roman Era. It is home to the oldest Portuguese archdiocese.
As one might expect, there are a lot of gorgeous cathedrals and historical religious sights. That includes the Bom Jesus do Monte complex and Braga Cathedral. But don’t miss out on the Garden of Santa Barbara or the Festa de São João.