Coimbra
Private Experiences

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Our most recommended Coimbra Private Experiences

University of Coimbra Walking Tour

1. University of Coimbra Walking Tour

Visit one of the oldest universities in the world (and the oldest university in Portugal). Founded originally in 1290, the University of Coimbra has occupied its spot in the city of Coimbra since 1537. Accompany your knowledgeable guide to the Royal Palace, Chapel of St. Michael, Joanina Library, Academic Prison, and other highlights. Go deeper than the average tourist with stops at the university.

From Porto: Fátima and Coimbra Full-Day Private Tour

2. From Porto: Fátima and Coimbra Full-Day Private Tour

This trip begins in Porto and then onto Coimbra, the city of students and the oldest university in the country (from the 12th century) and also one of the oldest in the world. Take the time to visit the Joanina Library with its collection of over 300,000 books and some of the rarest manuscripts in the entire country. Visit the old Romanesque style cathedral (Sé Velha). Cross the river to visit the Santa Clara Convent and the Quinta das Lágrimas (Estate of Tears), where the love between Pedro and Inês blossomed. Then have lunch at one of the taverns downtown where you can find the most delicious snacks. Afterwards, head towards Fátima, where Our Lady of Fátima appeared to the three shepherd children in 1917. Here, you will visit the Basilica where Francisco, Jacinta Marto, and Lúcia are buried, the Igreja da Santíssima Trindade (Church of the Holy Trinity), and the largest Catholic sanctuary in Portugal. There will also be time to see the Capela das Aparições (Chapel of Apparitions), a small temple built at the request of Our Lady of Fátima when she appeared to the three shepherd children, and Azinheira Grande, the tree that Jacinta, Lúcia, and Francisco passed before seeing the saint. The tour can be adjusted to include the Candle Procession that takes place every day from April 17 to October 31 between 9:30 PM and 11:00 PM.

From Porto: Coimbra & Buçaco Full-Day Private Tour

3. From Porto: Coimbra & Buçaco Full-Day Private Tour

With your hotel as the starting point, your private driver will take you to Palácio do Buçaco. Considered the last legacy of the kings of Portugal, it is a charm of nature located in the Bussaco National Forest surrounded by beautiful gardens with Neo-Manueline features decorated by tile panels, frescoes, and paintings depicting the Age of Discovery. Next, head to Coimbra, the city of students, with the oldest university in the country (12th century), and one of the oldest in the world. Enjoy visiting the Baroque library with a collection of over 300,000 books and some of the rarest manuscripts from all over the country. A downtown tavern will be suggested for lunch where you can find some of the most delicious snacks in the city. In the afternoon, see the Romanesque architecture of the old cathedral. Across the river, visit the Convent of Santa Clara and the Quinta das Lágrimas, a place that witnessed the love of King Pedro and his beloved D.Inês. Make sure to explore Portugal for the Little Ones, a theme park featuring the major monuments and Portuguese houses in miniature. The Mondego River and the Choupal National Forest are both great spots for a relaxing evening. Return to Porto after an unforgettable day in the City of Love.

Porto to Lisbon Transfer with Tour Enroute

4. Porto to Lisbon Transfer with Tour Enroute

Begin by visiting Coimbra University, the oldest in Europe. The Joanine Library was built in the 18th century on the former prison. Its decoration was finished in the 18th century and the renovation included ceiling frescoes by Mestre António Ribeiro and Vicente Nunes. The portrait of Dom Joao V was done by the Italian Domenico Dupra. Visit other interesting places at the University including Saint Michel Chapel, Sala dos Capelos, and the cabra (bell) tower. Then, head downtown, between the Mondego river and the University, to a street where you can relax and get lost in the charming city. You will find countless cafes, pastry shops, and restaurants. Rich in culture and with unforgettable gastronomy, this area has been the commercial center of the city for hundreds, if not thousands of years, maintaining its genuine atmosphere and unique personality.  Choose to visit either Fatima or Obidos for your final stop before Lisbon. In Obidos, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, travel back in time as you walk through the beautiful narrow streets full of traditional shops. Admire the old white houses and imagine how the medieval period would have looked and felt. Obidos was a wedding gift from D. Dinis to his wife D. Isabel and the village became part of the Casa das Rainhas until 1834, leaving the orders of D. Catarina to build an aqueduct and fountains. At the Sanctuary of Fatima, visit three places of interest. Choose to attend a mass at the Chapel of the Apparitions, the first Chapel built following the apparitions. It occupies a prominent place practically in the center of the Sanctuary. Visit the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, built in 1928 in Neo-Baroque style. It houses the tomb of Sister Lucia who passed away in 2005. See the Basilica of Santissima Trindade, built in 2007 with more than 8,000 seats and an area of 40,000 meters squared. It was designed by the Greek architect Alexandros Tombazis and is a modern imposing church.

From Lisbon: Town-Hopping Transfer to Porto

5. From Lisbon: Town-Hopping Transfer to Porto

Portugal is a country rich in history and culture, and this is your chance to explore some of the most beautiful and intriguing places to grace its lands. Stop by the medieval village of Obidos for a trip back in time, where you can wander through the narrow streets full of traditional shops and white-painted houses. Discover the Sanctuary of Fatima and take an optional mass at the Chapel of the Apparitions, explore the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary built in a Neo Baroque style and see the grand, modern Basilica of Santissima Trindade. Continue on to Coimbra for a visit to the oldest university in Europe. Coimbra´s University is home to the 18th century Joanine library and is one of the most beautiful libraries in the world. Take a stroll to Coimbra´s charming downtown district where countless cafes, pastry shops and restaurants await your discovery. If you feel so inclined, choose to stop at the restaurant Mealhada where you can taste one of Portugal's most famous dishes, “Leitao da Bairrada," a slow-roasted suckling pork. Next, visit Aveiro where you can take a Moliceiro boat to see the 3 km of canals that flow through the city or take a stroll through the Aveiro market.  After a brief stop in the old fishing town of Costa Nova, your transfer will conclude in Porto.

Oporto, Braga, or Guimarães: Coimbra and Aveiro Private Tour

6. Oporto, Braga, or Guimarães: Coimbra and Aveiro Private Tour

This full-day premium tour onboard a comfortable minivan is escorted by a certified guide who will personalize your experience to the fullest. You will visit both Coimbra, the city of the students and ancient capital of Portugal, as well as Aveiro, the Venice of Portugal. You will start the day by visiting the oldest Portuguese University, the University of Coimbra. Here you will find the world-renowned Joanina Library and the Royal Palace. During this guided visit your knowledgeable and friendly tour guide will take you back in time to explain the important role of this city and Portuguese Independence. Learn about the history of the university and how students celebrate their 500-year-old traditions. Be enchanted by a Fado performance, played and sung by students Following your time at the university, you will go through the old Moorish town to discover the old cathedral’s facade, the narrow alleys, and stairways that will lead you to the commercial street of the city center. Enjoy the town at your own pace, absorb the local atmosphere, and listen as your guide informs you of all of your surroundings. After your walk have lunch in a local restaurant. In the afternoon, you will visit the unique city of Aveiro which is considered Portugal's Venice. Cruise along the canals in a traditional Moliceiro boat. Admire the Art Nouveau buildings and the interesting fishermen's architecture. Witness the place where the Ria and Ocean meet as your tour concludes.

Coimbra: Private Tour

7. Coimbra: Private Tour

During this private tour you can admire this atmospheric, beautiful historic town set in a lovely landscape on the east bank of the Rio Mondego. This city is a multicolored collage of buildings spanning nearly a millennium. You will have the opportunity to visit the city center, explore narrow streets that hide love stories of thousands of students, see gardens, convents, monasteries and listen to the haunting metallic notes of the guitarra (Portuguese guitar) and the full, deep voices of fado singers. Coimbra is also the site of a unique event in Portuguese history: the forbidden love story between Pedro (the King's son) and Ines de Castro (a commoner). This story is the frequent subject of art, music and drama. This private tour can be tailored according to your desires and time available.

Private 8-Day Tour of Portugal from Lisbon

8. Private 8-Day Tour of Portugal from Lisbon

Experience a fantastic 8-day tour of Portugal’s beautiful cities, and enjoy a week full of exciting and interesting activities. Day 1 (Wednesday): Arrival in Lisbon Transfer from the airport to your hotel in Lisbon. You have the rest of the day to spend as you wish, for example you can use this day to enjoy a stroll through the city. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 2 (Thursday): Lisbon Explore Lisbon on a scenic drive through the old town to Alfama, the oldest district of the city. Afterwards you will visit the Jerónimos Monastery, home to one of the most beautiful cloisters in the world. You will then continue on to Belém Tower and the Monument to the Discoveries before heading back to the hotel. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 3 (Friday): Lisbon – Coimbra Leave the capital city and drive to the picturesque village of Óbidos, where you can enjoy a relaxing stroll. Afterwards you will head to the traditional fishing village of Nazaré, where you will visit the famous Monastery of Batalha. Continue on to Fátima, the largest place of pilgrimage in Portugal which attracts 4 to 6 million pilgrims every year. From there you can take a trip to the traditional university city of Coimbra. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 4 (Saturday): Coimbra – Porto Enjoy a tour of the Baroque library and St. Michael’s Chapel of the oldest university in Portugal, which was founded in 1291. Afterwards you will drive to Porto, the second largest city in the country. Here you can enjoy an extensive panoramic tour of the city to the cathedral. You will then visit the old stock exchange of Porto – the Palácio da Bolsa – before sampling local wine at a famous port winery. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 5 (Sunday): Porto – Vila Real Today you will leave the capital of the north and head to the green province of Minho, where you will explore the region of Vinho Verde (green wine). Visit the old town of Braga, which is also known as the Rome of Portugal. You will then head to the sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Monte with a monumental stairway. Afterwards you will drive to the city of Guimarães, the cradle of Portugal. Explore the old town and the Palace of the Dukes of Braganza. You will then drive through Amarante to Vila Real. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 6 (Monday): Vila Real – Guarda After breakfast you will drive to the station of Vila Real. Travel by train through the Port wine region, and along the Corgo River to Régua. Enjoy a fantastic trip to Lamego, known for Presunto (dry-cured ham), where you can take a break. Continue on through Viseu to the city of Guarda at 1,000 meters above sea level. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 7 (Tuesday): Guarda – Lisbon Today you will head through the mountainous areas of Portugal to the city of Castelo Branco. Explore the gardens of the Bishop’s Palace before heading towards the city of Tomar. There you will visit the Templar Castle before driving back to Lisbon. Overnight stay with breakfast at a 3 or 4-star hotel. Day 8 (Wednesday): Depart Lisbon Transfer to the airport in Lisbon.

From Lisbon: Private Tour to Coimbra

9. From Lisbon: Private Tour to Coimbra

Coimbra was the first capital of the kingdom of Portugal for almost two centuries. It gained new status with the foundation of the University. Visiting Coimbra is like travelling back to the past, while admiring the joys of the present. You will begin by visiting the University of Coimbra, a World Heritage Site. Visit the Paço das Escolas, where you will find the Joanina Library, the São Miguel Chapel, the The Capelos Room, the Medieval and Academic Prison, the Arms Room, the Private Exam Room, and the University Tower. Leaving the University, you head to discover the Sé Velha, from its historic center with its medieval alleys and steps, up until the Santa Cruz Monastery, where the first two kings of Portugal, D. Afonso Henriques and his son, D. Sancho I, are buried. Known as 'City of Black Cloaks', Coimbra is known for an infamous legend of love and punishment, the tragic love story of King, D. Pedro I and the queens maid, D. Inês de Castro. There are many attractions in Coimbra, such as the Santa Clara-a-Velha Monastery, founded in 1283, by a lady of the nobility, D. Mor Dias, and delivered to the Poor Clares shortly afterwards. It was in the Palace of the Monastery that D. Inês de Castro lived and later, in 1355, was executed. On the left bank of the Mondego River, you will find the Portugal dos Pequenitos theme park, which is divided into three themed spaces.

Fátima and Coimbra

10. Fátima and Coimbra

Benefit from pickup in Porto city center, and then take a scenic drive to the Sanctuary of Fatima. The pickups are made between 8:00 AM and 8:30 AM, and after that your journey will begin. You will go directly to Fátima where the famous apparitions occurred. Along with this, you will learn about all the important historical events that occurred at this place. The guide will be with you, giving all the explanations you will need. When all the group agrees, you will have some free time so that you can eat lunch and enjoy the local gastronomy. After you leave this amazing place, with all that energy inside you still, you will go to Coimbra. The city of students, in which is the oldest university in Portugal. This area also has other monuments and historical treasures that you will also get to see.

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What people are saying about Coimbra

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 8 reviews

What a wonderful morning, spent with a knowledgeable guide (Joao). We loved how engaged he was in sharing his obvious love for this incredible university with all its history and import. He steered us into the sights at the exact right times to avoid crowding from other tours and made sure we didn't miss a thing, including a dramatic view of Coimbra. You could do a walking tour on your own, but we are super glad we booked this tour. Not cheap, but quite special.

The arrangement of the trip is not accorded to the description.

We are told that the European's oldest University is so crowd and we have only twenty minutes to look outside. So we change to the other site where we only had seventy minutes to walk and have lunch. The Obido village and Fatima are OK. The guide introduced us in the car and let us visiting by ourselves.

Excellent private tour with a professional and fun guide

We very much enjoyed our tour to Fatima and Coimbra, the tour guide, Eduardo, was knowledgeable in the venues and a lovely person to chat with. He also gave us some locals tips on places to check out in Porto. We loved our stay in Porto but we're also very glad we did this tour with Eduardo!

Great visit of the university with Renan fascinating and friendly guide I learned a lot of things beyond the descriptions in the books The service provider was just as efficient: responsive and attentive to the smooth running Again thank you for this service

As a family we have a very nice memory of it. Our guide Renan Souza, a PhD student at the university, showed us around with great enthusiasm! For him a real passion for us a very instructive wonderful experience. A must do if you are in the area!!