Smarmy ceramic lion, Museu da Ceramica, Caldas da Rainha

There are several cute towns and villages in Central Portugal that have become known for something very specific, like their medieval style streets, an important monument or an old castle. Caldas da Rainha, however, has flourished mostly because of its history as a spa town and its hyperrealistic ceramics, whetherRead More →

Penha Garcia nestled in the rocks

The quiet village of Penha Garcia straddles a rocky cliff which commands sweeping views over the neighboring plains in the southeast part of Central Portugal. The surrounding rock formations are one of the geological highlights within the NaturTejo Geopark, notably the trilobite fossils that are scattered within them. Given itsRead More →

View of cityscape of Viseu, Portugal

Why should you visit Viseu in central Portugal? Well, perhaps because it’s such a lovely place that it’s been voted ‘Best city in Portugal to live in’. Twice. I won’t be moving up there any time soon but I am pleased to have got to know it a little better.Read More →

Santiago do Cacém, Portugal

Portugal’s most popular destinations, such as Lisbon, Porto, the Algarve beaches and Douro wine region have a tendency to hog the limelight and the covers of glossy magazines. However, you don’t have to venture far off the beaten track to discover some wonderful smaller towns and cities. These underrated placesRead More →

View along Sesimbra castle walls

The picturesque fishing port of Sesimbra is a mere 40 km south of Lisbon and still retains much of its fishing village atmosphere. It has the added bonus of being right next to the Arrabida Natural Park and its hidden coves and monastery, adding more to the potential things toRead More →

Piscina das Marés seawater swimming pools, Leça da Palmeira, Porto. Photography by Julie Dawn Fox

If you’re staying in Porto for more than a couple of days, you’ll find a variety of places you can visit as a day trip from Porto. As well as the amazing Douro Valley and Vinho Verde wine regions, you’ll find beaches, nature reserves, medieval cities, Celtic settlements, fishing villages andRead More →