Getting on/off motorcoach; driving about 6 miles (10 km) total, approximately 1/2 hour. Walking approximately 2 miles total throughout the day; varied terrain; cobblestone streets; steep slopes; staircases without railings.
At the hotel, the breakfast buffet will feature a variety of hot and cold items such as breads and pastries, cold cuts, cheese, jam, cereal, yogurt, and fruit, plus milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.
In the hotel meeting room, a local expert will provide an introduction to Portugal and its overseas empire. We’ll learn how the country’s history shaped its people and culture. We will set out via motorcoach to the charming city of Porto, exploring the neighborhood of Boavista and the harbor locale. Then, we will drive to the historic centre of Porto and with an expert, we’ll set out on a walking field trip to explore the downtown area. As we observe the medieval structures, we’ll learn about the history and traditions of the area. Later we will explore the São Bento Railway Station. Although the first train arrived here in 1896, the station was only officially inaugurated in 1915. Originally a convent, architect José Marques da Silva was hired in 1899 to transform the building into a train station. His design is influenced by the French Belle Époque. The atrium of the station features approximately 20,000 tiles — designed by artist Jorge Colaço — representing the history of Portugal. As we observe the magnificent tiles, we’ll learn about the construction and significance of this work of art. This site has been declared both a UNESCO designated World Heritage Site and a National Monument of Portugal.
At a local restaurant, we’ll have a plated meal with wine and water included; other beverages available for purchase.
In the afternoon enjoy a visit to the home of a Portuguese family and have a chat about family life in Portugal and taste their family estate-produced wine. We will continue our field trip of Porto at the Cais da Ribeira — a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With the local expert, we’ll explore one of the city’s most significant buildings: the Stock Exchange Palace — known as Palacio da Bolsa — and learn about the history of trade, architecture, and art in Porto.
This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like in Porto. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.
At leisure. Prepare for check-out and transfer in the morning.