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A travel guide to wine-making regions in Portugal

Portugal is famous for its production of fortified wines, namely Port. But it is also home to a number of flourishing wine-making regions. Here's our guide to six beautiful wine-growing destinations to add to your Portugal travel itinerary.
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Duoro Valley

Balconies of fertile vineyards contour around neat terraces cut into the steep hillsides of the Douro Valley. Rising from the calm waters of the Douro River that snakes west towards the sea, this verdant oasis is the homeland of Portugal’s most famous fortified wine - Port. Visit a local vineyard in Peso da Regua on our Portuguese food and wine walking holiday to learn about how the grapes are grown, harvested and pressed, and cruise downstream to admire beautiful views of the valley from the water. The ornately decorated train station of Pochino is adorned with glazed blue and white tiles depicting the region’s most significant historical events, and from here you can retrace the journey of the wine grapes to the city of Porto.

Porto

Travel to Porto, Portugal’s second-largest city, on our Highlights of Portugal trip. Staggered rows of grand townhouses climb the steep river banks, and narrow cobbled streets, lined with cosy bars and quirky hole-in-the-wall cafes, sprawl in between the terraces. Porto is also home to longstanding port lodges where crushed grapes from the nearby Douro Valley are fortified with an aguardiente spirit, aged in barrels, and bottled. Join a tour to learn about the history and production of Portugal’s famed white, ruby and tawny ports and savour the different flavours in a delicious tasting session.

Alentejo

As you cycle along smooth undulating roads through lush green countryside dotted with twisting cork tree orchards as far as the eye can see, you might overlook the winemaking prowess of this southern region of Portugal. But a closer look across the rural district of Alentejo on our Portugal cycling trip reveals a small number of vineyards producing delicious Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Plenty of sunshine charges the grapes with energy that produces rich, full-bodied wines, best enjoyed with juicy grilled meats.

Madeira

Head to the island of Madeira to discover a variety of fortified wines that are typically served as an after-dinner aperitif. Terraces of earthy-red rock cut into the harsh volcanic landscape bear rows of lush green vines. Produced since the 17th-century, a visit to a wine cellar in the old town of Funchal on our Madeira Discovery tour will reveal the turbulent history of Madeira’s wine-making reputation and allow you to try the range of different strengths available.

Algarve

The sun-drenched coast of the Algarve is as good for sun worshippers as it is for grapes. Sheltered from the cold northern winds, the warm and fertile soils produce excellent wine harvesting conditions. Explore golden-sand beaches and crystal clear turquoise seas on our walking holiday in Portugal before stopping at a waterside taverna for a spot of lunch. Indulge in a generous helping traditional Cataplana seafood stew cooked in a copper clam-shaped pot and wash it down with a sweet red wine produced from one of the nearby vineyards.

Lisboa / Setubal

The countryside regions to the north and south of Lisbon are known as the Lisboa and Setubal wine districts. The lush-green rolling hills of the Serra da Arrabida glow brightly against a backdrop of deep-blue Atlantic ocean. The amber-coloured Moscatel de Setúbal desert wine derives from this fertile coastline where you can cycle past secluded bays and golden sand beaches and explore quaint market squares on our Lisbon to Algarve cycling holiday.

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