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Old Mar 31st, 2019, 05:25 AM
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Portugal

We plan on spending 3 weeks in Portugal after our Spain holiday. The plan is to take a bus from Seville to Lagos for 3 nights. Train to Lisbon for 7 nights ( day trips to Sintra, Evora, Cascais, Obidos, Belem). Maybe add a couple of nights in Sintra? have read that driving in Portugal is relatively easy so I’m thinking of renting a car when we leave Lisbon and drive to Coimbra for 2 nights. We would like to visit the Douro valley area as well as Braga and Guimares before dropping off the car in Porto. Where should we stay for a few days before dropping off the car in Porto? We plan on staying in Porto for 4-5 days before flying out.
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Old Mar 31st, 2019, 06:18 AM
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I have been to Lisbon and Sintra. Your day trips from Lisbon seem like a lot of day trips, and will cut into your time in Lisbon. For comparison purposes, we spent 5 nights in Lisbon last April, and that included a day trip to Sintra and spending almost a day in Belem. Depending on what your interests are and if you want to see as much as possible in Lisbon, I think you need 4 nights just for Lisbon (including Belem). I think 1 or 2 nights in Sintra would be nice. We took a bus tour to Sintra for 3/4 of a day, and we visited Pena palace, had about 30 minutes to wander around Sintra's center (near the National Palace), and had a very short visit to Cascais. There is a lot more to see in Sintra, and since you have the time, I suggest spending 1 or 2 nights there.

Since you have 3 weeks, perhaps consider staying overnight in Evora. We didn't go to Evora, but when I thought we would have more time in Portugal, I considered Evora, and got the impression it would be a nice place to stay for a day or two and see the surrounding area.
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Old Mar 31st, 2019, 07:28 AM
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We drove around northern Portugal. I recommend the upper Douro valley with its Neolithic carvings, assuming that you will be there any time but in the summer. You might want to take a look at my trip report which includes Coimbra, Evora, Tomar, Batalha and other sights; click on my name to find it.

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Old Mar 31st, 2019, 09:05 AM
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For lots on trains check www.cp.pt -Portuguese railways site - www.seat61.com; BETS-European Rail Experts and www.ricksteves.com.

Try to hit Batalha Monastery - UNESCO World Heritage Site - between Coimbra and Lisbon.
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Old Apr 1st, 2019, 06:19 AM
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For the Douro . . . look for accommodation in the area where A24 crosses the river. This is the easiest access to the ‘meat’ of the river views with Pinhão a short ways away. Then the decision is to rent low (on the river) or high (view of the hills). The roads are narrow, twisty & busy so views are fleeting when you are driving.
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