Narrowing down the selection of idyllic locations for romantic getaways in Portugal has been a tough job. There’s just so much choice!
To keep it simple, I’ve highlighted places for every region in Portugal where you and your sweetheart can feel the love and not just on Valentine’s Day.
Table of Contents
Click on these to take you to Romantic Getaways in….
Romantic getaways in the north of Portugal
The magnificent Douro Valley wine region is a perfect backdrop to romance, especially when you stay on a delightful wine estate. At the Quinta de S.Bernardo – Winery & Farmhouse you can stroll through the vineyards together or settle down for a gourmet picnic.
Ramp up the intimate atmosphere on a private sunset sailing trip along the River Douro followed by a gourmet meal on board for just the two of you. Spoil yourself with a room for you and your loved one.
If you prefer mountain scenery and want to truly escape for a while, head to the foothills of the Peneda Gerês National Park.
On walks or drives through jaw-dropping landscapes you’ll encounter crystal-clear waterfalls and plenty of spots that you can share with nothing but the local wildlife.
Ventozelo Hotel & Quinta is a beautiful quinta that boasts almost 30 rooms but the cherry on the cake is undoubtedly the Casa Romantica. It’s a charming house of wood, stone and steel set on a hillside with gorgeous views of nature all around. You can take time out to explore a range of activities from tastings to discovering the terrain. Don’t forget to relax in the gorgeous infinity pool. See these lovely photos.
You can celebrate love with a romantic getaway at the 5-star luxury Vidago Palace. Built for royalty (but that’s another story) you can enjoy the thermal spa, the gastronomy of the majestic Grand Ballroom or wander round the enchanted grounds. The ‘Love Celebration’ package includes wine, flowers, spa and romantic dinner. Choose a room to suit you.
Check out my experience of our lovely stay there.
Treat yourself to a romantic experience at Carmo’s Boutique Hotel. Situated close to Portugal’s oldest town, Ponte de Lima, you can relax in the outdoor swimming pool and the gardens, enjoy a picnic or pamper yourselves at the Nature Spa. Enjoy canopy beds along with the finest Portuguese cotton bed sheets. Which room would you choose?
Romantic getaways in central Portugal
Portugal’s most famous star-crossed lovers, Pedro and Inês, played out their ill-fated romance in the gardens and palace of Quinta das Lágrimas in Coimbra.
You can explore the romantic botanical gardens and try to simultaneously sip from the Pipe of Love to guarantee your own everlasting love for each other.
Better still, stay in Quinta das Lagrimas, a palace-turned-luxury-hotel and allow yourselves to be caught up in the intensity of their devotion. You can book your Romance Experience which includes free use of the indoor pool, fitness room and sauna or maybe try the luxury of the Palace Room or the views of the Garden Room. See your choices here.
Close to Óbidos the luxurious, eco-designed Rio do Prado features floor-to-ceiling windows with garden views, 2 outdoor pools, spa facilities, a sun terrace and 5 lakes! You can curl up in front of an indoor fire or experience a Turkish bath, sauna and massage if you have time. Take a look at these gorgeous options.
If swimming in mountain lakes and the sound of goat bells get your heart racing, you should aim for the Serra da Estrela.
In winter, expect snow on the highest peaks. There’s a ski station here and plenty of hotels cater for this with cosy log fires to snuggle up in front of and soothing sensual spa treatments.
In warmer weather, the snow disappears to reveal gorgeous greenery and granite boulders of all shapes and sizes plus mountain lakes to take a dip in.
The delightful Casa das Penhas Douradas ticks all boxes, all year round, and will supply picnics for you to take out into the countryside for an intimate lunch in the pure mountain air. Take in stunning views through the large picture windows featured in each room and relax in the heated indoor pool. Read reviews here.
Romantic getaways near Lisbon
Possibly the most romantic town in Portugal, Sintra is a magical place with fanciful palaces, ancient castles and 19th century mansions nestled in a forest.
A source of inspiration for literary figures such as Lord Byron, Sintra may well bring out the poet in you.
Monserrate gardens and palace receive less visitors than the other palaces so you can escape the crowds as you discover the follies and waterfalls amid exotic flora.
Hold hands on the cliffs at Cabo da Roca, the westernmost point in Europe and gaze out to the Atlantic Ocean and across the rocky coastline or go for a stroll on Praia Adraga’s sandy beach to admire the rock formations before tucking into a plate of fresh clams at the beach front restaurant.
Spoil yourselves amid the palatial luxury of Tivoli Palácio de Seteias where you can go for a ride around the grounds in a horse-drawn carriage or go out on a horseride. Try dining in one of the palace’s ballrooms for an unforgettable night. Take a look at the photos.
If that sounds too grand, take a look at Chalet Saudade. Enjoy elegant rooms with frescoes and romantic gardens with antique water fountains and ponds. Choose your ideal room.
The gorgeous Casa Holstein is another option for a little romance. Although close to the city center there’s an air of seclusion, a place to relax with your loved one. Enjoy a room with a terrace or even the Royal Suite. Check for prices.
Romantic getaways in the Alentejo
The eastern Alentejo has several attractive hilltop villages with whitewashed houses and cobbled streets. One of my favourites has to be Monsaraz. The moment you enter the walled citadel through a stone archway, you’ll understand why I fell in love with it immediately.
Among the many terraces and vantage points from which to admire the surrounding plains is the castle which overlooks the enormous Alqueva reservoir.
Hire a boat for a few hours to truly get away from it all and enjoy each other’s company and the nature around you. At night, gaze at the stars in an unpolluted sky.
If your budget permits, try the nearby luxurious country estate of São Lourenço do Barrocal. You can choose from a variety of rooms spread across the site; from the winery to a courtyard to a meadow cottage. All perfect for a romantic stay. Which would you choose?
If vineyards and farm animals appeal, you could stay on one of the many other wine estates in the Alentejo region.
Mike and I had the pleasure of staying in Herdade dos Grous where there is no need to leave the grounds for at least a couple of days unless you really want to.
Rooms have log fires and large baths, plenty of candles and a complimentary bottle of their award-winning wine.
Explore the estate by bike, horseback, hot air balloon or on foot and admire the lake from the infinity pool or on one of the free pedaloes. Choose your favorite room.
You can read more about our experience here.
Romantic getaways in the Algarve
Tavira‘s enchanting riverside setting, Islamic roots and proximity to the lagoons and islands of the beautiful Ria Formosa make it an ideal place to break free from routine and enjoy each other’s company.
If you’d rather be closer to the beach, you can still escape from other visitors and find your own private spot at the boutique Bela Vista Hotel in Portimão.
As the name suggests, the view of Praia da Rocha beach is wonderful and you can admire it from your private terrace or while dining al fresco. The building itself is romantic, a historical palace which has been tastefully renovated to accentuate the original decor with modern features and a luxurious spa with rooms for couples.
Tucked away in the Eastern corner of the Algarve and overlooking Spain is Grand House – Relais & Chateaux. This 5-star hotel offers romantic views of the harbour and the rooms and suites provide the finest of luxuries from elegantly designed furniture to crystal chandeliers. Enjoy the rooftop terrace overlooking the old town or relax beside the outdoor pool. Choose one of these lovely rooms.
Stay in the grounds of a beautiful 19th-century palace at Pousada Palacio de Estoi – Small Luxury Hotels of the World. You can gaze at the original wall paintings and antique furniture, stroll around the gardens or relax in one of the pools. Having the reception in the 15th century chapel is quite something! Take a look at these photos.
On a clifftop overlooking the Atlantic Ocean you’ll find Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa. Rooms have a balcony or terrace where you can gaze out at the sea or maybe enjoy one of the several pools in the landscaped gardens. With a number of restaurants and bars, plus a spa, this could be the place for you and your loved one. Choose your room, suite or apartment.
Romantic getaways in Madeira
Madeira is such a beautiful island, especially if you enjoy flowers, greenery and spectacular landscapes.
If you want to combine the amenities of Funchal surrounded by tranquil gardens, Quinta da Casa Branca is just such a romantic spot. An onsite spa and two restaurants mean you don’t have to leave the premises unless you want to…
The north side of the island is even more lush and green. Stay in the foothills of magnificent mountains near the village of São Vicente at Solar da Bica, a restored 18th century manor house.
If exploring the nearby Laurisilva forest on foot isn’t romantic enough, book a private flight over the island for views that will make your hearts soar.
Romantic getaways in the Azores
São Miguel is the easiest Azorean island for most people to get to for a short romantic break and I’d be inclined to head straight for the blue and green lakes at Sete Cidades.
If the tops of the crater that surrounds the blue lake aren’t cloaked in fog and you fancy a hike with amazing views, you’re in the right place.
Even if walking isn’t on the cards, staying in a cosy, romantic lakeside bungalow should set the scene for a loved-up escape from daily life. Take a look at these photos.
For the warmer waters of thermal springs and truly magical tropical gardens go to Furnas. You can stay inside the beautiful gardens at the boutique Terra Nostra Gardens Hotel.
As well as enjoying the garden’s thermal pools, you could take advantage of the hotel’s romantic ‘moments’ and take a picnic to a hidden nook in the gardens or indulge in a couples spa treatment and gourmet meal.
If you can tear yourselves away from this idyllic setting, there are plenty of different ways to enjoy the magnificent scenery from a walk or cycle around the nearby lake to swimming with dolphins. Indulge yourselves and choose a room.
Not sure when to visit Portugal? Find the ideal month for you with this guide to the seasons.
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Disclosure: Some of the links in this article are to my hotel partners. If you book a stay using these links, at no extra cost to you, I may receive a small commission which goes towards running this blog. Thanks for your support.
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Hi Julie- Hope you are well. We have a 3.5 year old and we are planning to visit Portugal and Spain for 10 days. You have so many things to explore in this article and I am overwhelmed. Can you please suggest how/where we should spend 5 days in Portugal? and due to March- we are thinking next best bet would 5 days in Barcelona. Let us know if you have other suggestions. First time. Thank you.
Hi there, it depends on where you’re flying into. Lisbon has enough to keep you occupied for the entire time, especially if you add in a couple of day trips. Coimbra is a little quieter and also has plenty to offer in and around the city: https://juliedawnfox.com/day-trips-from-coimbra-thatll-make-you-want-to-stay-longer-in-central-portugal/
Loved reading your suggestions. As a regular visitor I think Porto a great place for a romantic break. Certainly inspired me when we went their last week as I now process the experience via painting about the memories in my shed. Latest blog post shows the progression of a painting of an old Porto door imbued with symbols of lives lived here.
Gorgeous paintings, Mary! And I agree, Porto has a romantic quality – just spent a weekend there myself as it happens!
Love these suggestions and, as always, will use a few of them. Planning a retreat to Oporto for Yuletide this December…suggestions for a lovely ‘christmas dinner’, anyone?
Thanks, Susan. Hope you have a lovely time.
Plenty of beautiful and romantic choices! Have a wonderful new year Jule.
Thanks, Sami. And a thoroughly fulfilling 2016 to you, too.
For a short weekend break, definitely Sintra. If you’ve slightly longer, the Douro as it takes longer to get there if you’re flying into Porto. If you like romantic walks along deserted beaches out of season, some of the beaches near Lisbon like Guincho or Macas are great around April/ early May.
Indeed, although that all depends on where you start from 😉 Both are delightful.
Where to start, Julie? I guess it’s bound to be Tavira 🙂 Back there on 1st Feb and looking forward to Carnaval. Still hankering after The Azores, though, or even Coimbra. 🙂 Happy 2016 to you!
I do adore Tavira, as did Mike so I totally understand why you spend so much time there. Have a brilliant 2016!