Portugal is brimming with traditions and charming customs that you will love during your visit here. Portuguese are typically gentle, friendly and modest. Visitors who make the effort to learn even a few simple words or phrases such as hello (bom dia), thank you (obrigada) and goodbye (tchau) will be appreciated.

Portugal’s capital, Lisbon, is one of Europe’s genuinely undiscovered, and unspoilt, gems. The Castelo de São Jorge sits at the top of the historic Alfama district, looking down across the River Tagus, and the stunning Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge.

At the waterside, the historic Belém district is a tourist’s delight, and is home to the historic monastery, the Contemporary Arts Museum and the Torre de Belém, not to mention the Pasteis de Belém, the original pasteis de nata pastry that is beloved by the Portuguese and visitors alike.

Indulge in coffee and pastries at the world-famous Pastéis de Belem. Join the long lines of locals and visitors waiting to try the thin flaky crust and warm egg-custard center of a pastel de nata, Lisbon’s signature pastry.

Another popular destination in portugal, is Porto. Porto is historic, charming and a foodie lovers dream. The river side town is surrounded by its captivating miradouros (lookouts) and on-trend roof terrace bars. Port wine and specifically Tawny Port wine rules the region in which it’s famous for. But, here’s what you’ll remember most: the sound of the Douro River against the docks; the snap of laundry drying in river winds; the sound of port glasses clinking; the sight of young lovers discreetly tangled under a landmark bridge, on the rim of a park fountain, in the crumbling notch of a graffiti-blasted wall…

Did I say it was a foodie lovers paradise? Some of the most famous chef’s in town include; Pedro Lemos, Ricardo Costa, Rui Paula and José Avillez. Not many think of Portugal as a food mecca, but it’s continuing to grow and blossom into one of the very best. Locals will tell you that if you’re not a wine connoisseur, find a local craft beer pub instead!

Don’t miss the cities many cathedrals, such as the Porto Cathedral, Clérigos Tower, The Carmo Cathedral, and the Sao Francisco Cathedral.

Read More: Why Go To Portugal?


What to Expect

Language: The official language of Portugal is Portuguese.

Currency: The official currency of Portugal is the Euro (EUR).

Credit Cards & ATMs: Many Portuguese shops, restaurants, and hotels accept credit cards, especially in bigger cities that are often visited by tourists. Like many other destinations in Europe, it is wise to keep a little cash on you. An ATM in Portugal is commonly referred to as “multibanco” or “caixa automatica.” They can be found at most banks, airports, train stations, and shopping centers.

Safety: Portugal is one of the safer places to visit in Europe. Crime rates are low and are typically in isolated neighborhoods. The biggest issue is pickpocketing. Exercise caution with valuables, and you won’t run into any issues.

Plugs: The plugs in Portugal are type F, the standard voltage is 230 V, and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. I recommend buying a universal adapter and using a converter for hairdryers and beard trimmers.

Food and Drinks: Portugal has some superb gastronomy guaranteed to delight your taste buds. Among the customary specialities are the famous pastéis de nata (custard tarts), regional cheeses, bacalhau (salted cod) and a great variety of meat and seafood dishes, as well as great Port wines. 

The Arts: From literature to architecture, theatre to dance, Portugal has a thriving arts scene offering an insight into Portuguese culture. Whether you are looking for music, a vibrant nightlife scene, museums or exhibitions, you will find plenty of interesting places to visit, especially in the capital, Lisbon. Don’t forget all the graffiti, you will be sure to see lots of it!

Festivals: Romarias (pilgrimages) are local religious festivals that honour the patron saint of a particular area throughout Portugal. If you happen to be in an area during these celebrations, be sure to check them out! Watch a solemn procession, observe the local religious gowns and absorb the pious atmosphere before taking part in the festivities that follow.

Best Time of Year to Travel

Wet Season: December – April

Best For: Surfers and those who don’t mind walking around in jackets


Dry Season: July – September

Best for: Outdoor activities and wine stomping (September)


Mild Season: Oct/Nov & May/June

Best for: Those who like  comfortable temperatures but don’t mind rain and saving their budget


Traveler Tip: Save money by going in the shoulder seasons; April/May & September/October

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Book Your Trip Now!

Below are my favorite companies I use time and time again when I book my travel. 

  • Rakuten – Get the Best Coupons & Promo Codes at places like Hotels.com, Expedia, Travelocity, Priceline and many more. Sign Up for a Free Account with Rakuten to Save Today!
  • Chase Travel Portal – If you have a Chase account, this is by far the best way to book travel and earn miles/points while doing so. If you don’t have a Chase account, I highly suggest getting the best travel rewards credit card in the Chase Sapphire Prefered
  • CapitalOne Travel – In my opinion, the second best travel rewards credit card. Use the CapitalOne travel portal to book airfare, hotels and rental cars using your points & miles.
  • HomeStay – Homestay is a popular form of hospitality and lodging whereby visitors share a residence with a local of the city to which they are traveling.
  • SkyScanner – Skyscanner is a great flight search engine which searches a lot of different airlines, including many of the budget carriers that larger sites miss. While I always start with Momondo, I use this site too as a way to compare prices.
  • Booking.com – Booking probably has the widest selection of budget accommodation in the world. In our studies, they constantly found the cheapest rooms. I also like their easy-to-use interface and no-money-down policy.
  • RocketMiles – Book hotels on Rocketmiles and earn thousands of miles and points per night on every booking. Or, earn gift cards for your favorite purchases.
  • Selina Hostel – This is the best hostel accommodation in the world. Their unique CoLive stays, artwork and location are the best. Not to mention, they are a great value travel brand!

For companies, check out my favorite travel companies section that includes even more of my favorite travel companies that will help you value travel!

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