9. From Lisbon: 3-Day Private Tour to the Algarve
Depart from Lisbon, heading to Evora in the Alentejo region by crossing the beautiful suspension bridge. Admire the city and the monument to Christ-King. Evora is a place where different civilizations have thrived and the evidence still remains. See the ancient "Temple of Diana" built in the Roman period, along with the magnificent aqueduct of "Agua da Prata."
Built further in the 11th and 12th centuries by the Arabs, Evora was the residence of Portuguese kings and a point of convergence for renowned artists that were supported by the patronage and dynasty reigning in Portugal. This period of discovery created a wealth in Evora that saw the construction of numerous aristocratic mansions of the city, such as the Jesuit university. The highlight, however, is the Church of San Francisco and the Bones Chapel, clothed with skulls and bones of 500 monks.
See next the medieval village of Monsaraz, its narrow stone streets and houses painted white adding special charm to this place and its inhabitants. Later, arrive in Albufeira where you will spend the night. This historic center has a traditional atmosphere, whitewashed houses and narrow cobbled streets filled with cafes, shops, bars, restaurants and nightclubs.
Depart to Lagos. In the middle of the 16th century, Lagos was the great base of support for the Discoveries, and the evidence of this is highly visible. See the Sagres Fortress where cannons, a 16th century tower and the Church of Our Lady of Grace and a beautiful sundial await your discovery. After, visit the nearby Fortress of “Cabo de Sao Vicente” which was built in the 16th century to protect the coast from the Moorish attacks. Return to Albufeira to spend the night.
On the return trip to Lisbon you will stop of a the town of Sesimbra to visit its Moorish Castle on the hillside north of the village. Classified as a national monument in 1910, it is now one of the most visited sites in the county. Down in the bay, you will visit the Maritime Museum of Sesimbra where you will learn the connection of this village to the sea and the history of its local fishermen. Enjoy here a 3D movie that will transport you back in time to medieval times and beyond.
Continue on to Setubal downtown where you can find stores for all tastes, whether global department stores or niche local antiquities. Most of the streets here converge to “Praça do Bocage,” Setubal´s local meeting point. Lined with esplanades and dedicated to one of the greatest figures of Portuguese poetry, this statue with its eyes fixed on the sea is the landmark of this busy square.
Return to Lisbon.