It's fair to say that the cold weather has arrived. Even in Portugal the chill of winter has crept into the air, and while it is better known for its sunny beaches, Portugal is full of surprises and has plenty of beautiful sights to take in in the winter months. We might not be able to guarantee a white Christmas, but we do have some suggestions for other glorious winter sights across Portugal that you can search out to add a touch of magic to the end of your year. Keep on reading to discover 4 winter wonderland destinations in Portugal.
Serra da Estrela
When you think of winter, you will probably think of the cold. It might bite to the bone, but many of us even hope to see snow for Christmas. And if you want to see snow in Portugal, then Serra da Estrela is the place for you.
Portugal's most famous mountain range has the highest peak in the country and the presence of snow in winter is guaranteed. This area is great for winter sport enthusiasts, and if you you'd like to have a go at the season's typical sports, Serra da Estrela won't disappoint you during its snow season.
Among the various municipalities that belong to Serra da Estrela, we especially recommend visiting Manteigas, Covilhã or Seia, where you can establish your base and enjoy a cold holiday.
Peneda-Gerês National Park
The beauty of Gerês is an incomparable during thing, all year round. But of all the seasons, in winter you can enjoy the peace, quiet, and isolation of this Natural Park in the best possible way.
There is nothing better than being able to rest beside the fireplace after a day of walking through charming woods, surrounded by waterfalls and unbelievable landscapes in the crisp, cold weather. And if you're looking for something daring and even more exciting to do at the end of the day, pop over to neighbouring Spain and take a dip in the natural hot water pools of Baños and let your body relax under the stars.
This small city in the district of Porto is famous for its prehistoric sites, such as the Dolmens of Portela or the Menir de Luzim, but Penafiel is so much more than that and a truly special destination during the winter months.
Quinta da Aveleda is one of the great attractions of the city. Its parks and gardens are certainly worth a visit and wine lovers must make sure to taste some of the local wines on offer. Red wine is the star of the show, best enjoyed with traditional roasted chestnuts which are often sold on the street in the winter months.
Peso da Régua
Peso da Régua, better known as Régua, is situated in the heart of the Alto Douro and is the epicentre of Port wine production.
The landscape of the Douro region is world famous and the hills covered with vineyards contrast stunningly with the blue of the Douro River all through the year. In the winter months though this landscape takes on a whole new level of charm, and is a great destination for a winter holiday in Portugal.
Explore all the villages in the region and enjoy the landscapes that the winding roads have to offer. And don't worry about the cold: a glass of port will soon warm you up.