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Canucking Abroad | A Guide for Canadians Living Abroad

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Published on January 14th, 2013


There’s More to Portugal than Beach Holidays

Portugal may be famous for its gorgeous, relaxing resorts and stretches of sand, but there’s far more to it than beach holidays. Don’t be tempted to dismiss Portugal as a one hit wonder, find out what lies beyond the beaches and broaden your horizons.

Taking photos in Porto

If there’s a city bound to change your perception of Portugal, book a cheap flight to Porto. Perched on hills at the mouth of the Rio Douro, you’ll find a wonderful hotchpotch of styles and colours ready to be discovered.  If you’re staying in Porto, you’ll see first-hand the city’s preservation efforts that pay homage to a lot of old traditions; making it a real eye-opener for the modern travelle, and the real epicentre can be found in the Ribeira district – a wonderful combination of multi-coloured buildings and unusual constructions.

Tour castles and quaint villages

Experience some of Portugal’s past on a relaxing exploration of some of its smaller villages and more out of the way churches and castles. Take a tour though the southern villages to get a taste of the Portugal of old, as well as witness some traditional customs and a whole host of gorgeous scenes. In the villages of Alentejo, make sure you stop to hear the choirs in Pias and pay a visit to the medieval castle of Évora Monte.

Seek adventures

Portugal is also a great place to find all kinds of adventurous activities, perfect if lazing on the beach doesn’t sound like your idea of fun. Try canyoning on the largest waterfall in the Iberian Peninsula if you have a head for heights and a thirst for excitement. If you prefer the thought of sticking to dry land, why not have a go at Quad Biking your way through the Algarve for some sightseeing with a difference?

Uncovering the capital

With a decidedly more laidback vibe than you find in most other European capitals, Lisbon is an excellent candidate for a city break or longer stay, with plenty of cheap flight options. Let yourself get lost in Lisbon’s attractive little back streets before sampling some of the city’s more conventional attractions. There are museums, cathedrals and monasteries aplenty, as well as lots of more up-to-date attractions to enjoy – including lots of shops and cute cafes. Dine on fresh bread and liberal doses of wine and be sure to take a ride on one of the yellow trams that twine throughout the city.

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