Tuesday, February 22 - Friday, March 12, 2022
Enjoy an 18-day winter escape in the Algarve, southern Portugal’s sunny seaside paradise. Golden beaches, unique coastline vistas and distinctive historical towns and villages offer the visitor a wealth of visual and cultural experiences. The charming apartment hotel of Praia do Vau, on the outskirts of Portimao, will be home for 11 days and nights. From here we tour exciting sites, lounge on the beach, or simply relax in comfort on our personal sea view balcony. The program includes four escorted tours in the Algarve: Faro with its distinctive Portuguese atmosphere, wine tasting/vineyard experience, and the exciting towns of Sagres and Lagos. In addition, golf may be an option of interest to some of us. Following our time in the Algarve, we leave for Lisbon, once one of the most influential cities in Europe's evolution, today Portugal's capital. En route we visit Evora, perhaps the finest tourist destinations of central Portugal. Its 5,000 year history offers us a delightful city that exudes Portuguese charm with its vast array of classic buildings, Roman antiquities and more. Then four more days to tour in Lisbon and area. Don Kasta will be tour leader.
There will be an option for those wishing to extend their stay in Portimao for a further two weeks. That extension may affect the price of the airfare.
Price: for the basic 18-day trip: $4,995.00 from Toronto based on double occupancy; single supplement available on request. Includes all taxes and gratuities. (Price is approximate; finalized post-COVID.)
Direct flight from Toronto to Faro, Portugal via Air Transat.
Morning arrival in Faro and airport transfer to our hotel in Praia do Vao near the city of Portimao. Check in to our apartment in the Jardin do Vau, all well equipped with many amenities including: one bedroom with two single beds; living and dining room with sofa bed; bathroom with bath tub; kitchenette equipped with fridge, microwave, coffee maker, electric kettle and toaster; balcony with sun lounges, table and chairs. Other features include air conditioning, digital TV, iron and ironing board, and daily housekeeping. Settle in and a brief orientation walk of the immediate area before dinner.
A relaxing day. Time to stock the larder for lunches and snacks, and walk on the beautiful Praia do Vau. Late afternoon gathering for an aperitif and brief information session before dinner. For the golfers, we will be recommending local courses and transfer arrangements.
Excursion to Lagos, a wonderful tour where you’ll have a chance to wander back in time to the era of the Portuguese primacy in the Age of Discoveries. We visit the Church of Saint Anthony, then on to the spectacular rock formations in Ponta da Piedade. Afternoon at leisure or a quick “18” on one of the region’s classic golf courses.
A morning walk to nearby Ferragudo, a lovely fishing village with Roman roots. Lined with cafes, this is the perfect spot for a breakfast coffee and pastry or a bite to eat at lunch while watching the daily catch being unloaded. Of note is the 16th century fort that protected the area from pirates. After, relax on the beach or your own balcony.
A day at leisure but with a possible optional excursion to Seville. Its historic centre is dominated by the colossal Gothic cathedral, is a superb mix of resplendent Mudéjar palaces, baroque churches and winding medieval lanes. There are many outstanding sites within this former Moorish capital.
After breakfast we tour the lovely countryside around Portimao with a visit to local winery with lunch. A stop in Alvor, a whitewashed settlement with Moorish roots, as you might tell from the Arabic name, and there’s a lattice of old streets laid out on a hillside rising up to the ruins of a Moorish fortress. Cameras anyone?
Today we travel to nearby Faro, the best-known city in Portugal’s deservedly famous Algarve region. Here we visit the exceptional archaeological museum and the “Bishops’ Palace,” once a Renaissance cathedral that was heavily bombed in World War II, but later restored. Then on to Estoi with its interesting Roman ruins and Albufeira, formerly a quaint fishing village subjected to Moorish influence in the 8th century. Opportunities to shop for the treasures of the area, including the famous "cataplana", a copper cooking pot, beach-inspired jewelry, local brandy, piri piri, ceramics and cork products.
We say "Adeus" to the Algarve and as we travel north to Evora, one of Portugal's most famous tourist cities. It was of significance when it was ruled by the Romans and is on the list of “1000 Places To See Before You Die.” A late lunch before continuing on to Cascais, a lovely resort town close to Lisbon and our home on the beach for the next five nights.
A day for personal choices. A morning excursion to Fatima with its shrine, returning to Lisbon for an afternoon of individual sightseeing. Or a full day in the city to explore sights of personal interest. Your guide will assist with your arrangements.
Day to relax in Cascais. Enjoy the amenities of our hotel or engage in some retail therapy at the nearby shops. Tonight is our farewell dinner.
• Direct return flight from Toronto via Air Transat to and from Portugal; • All airports taxes and fees; • 4-star accommodation in both the Algarve and Cascais; • Daily breakfast; all dinners in the Algarve and 2 dinners in Cascais; • Selected excursions in both the Algarve region and Lisbon area; • Services of Pauwels tour staff member and/or local tour escorts as required; • Lectures/presentations on selected topics of interest.
• Items of a personal nature; • Beverages with meals; • Travel insurance: available on request from the office.
August 17 - 30, 2021
$4,895 from Toronto, including air, based on double occupancy
September 05 - 14, 2021
$2,975 Land Only
September 12 - 16, 2021
Land only: $2,775.00 + 15% tax based on double occupancy