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Medieval Portugal

A passage through most pivotal civilisations, discovering medieval Portugal's history, culture, and tradition. Following the trail of the Knights Templar we'll visit some of its most fascinating monuments along the way.

From£1,649

  • Portugal

  • 7 nights
  • Half Board
  • Apr

    May

    Jun

    Oct

    Nov

  • Guided Adagio Holidays

Tour codes: 52900

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Guided Adagio Holidays

This holiday includes an active sightseeing programme with unchallenging walks, either city tours or strolls on relatively easy terrain in the surrounding countryside. If in a mountainous area, the walks will be amongst the hills rather than up and down them. Local guides, winery visits, traditional villages and time to pause and watch the locals going about their lives are likely to feature.

Overview

Holiday Highlights

  • Explore Tomar and its history with a local guide
  • Discover the Serra de Aires Natural Park and its magical limestone Santo António Caves
  • Take a ferry across the river Tejo to the beautiful castle of Almourol
  • Visit a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites
  • Delight in traditional Portuguese dishes and wine in local restaurants
  • Spend an afternoon enjoying delicious Ribatejo wines at a local winery

A one week unique walking tour based in the historical town of Tomar, located in the Ribatejo region of central Portugal. In the 13th century, Tomar was one of the most influential towns of the Iberian Peninsula and home to the Convento de Cristo or “Covent of Christ”, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and religious headquarters of the Knights Templar. This unique tour follows the trail of the Knights Templar, visiting some of the most pivotal monuments. This tour is in an area with captivating scenery, once seen, never forgotten and is designed for lovers of history, culture, and tradition. 

The Knights Templar are probably best known from the book and film “The Da Vinci Code”, but there is much more to discover about these fabled medieval warrior monks. The Templars were founded in Jerusalem in 1118. However, their heyday was connected with the founding of Portugal and the crusades against the Moors. This resulted in them being granted prime sites of castles and land primarily located around the Tomar region. Despite their fearsome, battle-hardened reputation, the Knights Templar were learned men, dedicated to protecting travellers and pilgrims of all religions, not just Christians. They were great statesmen, politically adept, economic traders and they were apparently allied with the great sailor-fraternity that had created a worldwide trading empire in Phoenician times.

It should be noted that many Portuguese explorers and royalty were Knights Templar and later Masons. Many believe that the Portuguese Knights Templar were instrumental in Portugal acquiring its transatlantic colony, Brazil. 

The Ribatejo region is a beautiful, green and tranquil area. We will give you an extraordinary experience in this magical region. Within a short distance of our hotel are wonderful abbeys, castles and other sites that link directly to the Knights Templar. The town of Tomar was the headquarters for the Order of the Knights Templar founded alongside Portugal itself. We will visit some of the most important and historical sites connected with the Knights Templar. But it will be much more than just visiting castles and abbeys. We will also show you the marvellous countryside and enjoy great food and wine. There is much to see but there will also be plenty of time to relax as well. 

  • Return flights from London Heathrow to Lisbon with TAP Portugal
  • Airport transfers
  • En suite acommodation
  • All local transport costs, entrance fees and tipping to local providers
  • Local guide in Tomar
  • Dinners in local restaurants with wine
  • Wine tasting at a local winery
  • Personal Expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary Tips
  • Optional Excursions
  • Travel Insurance (you can add this when you book)

Holiday Information

Click the button below for a detailed Holiday Information Sheet containing all the particulars about this trip.

NOTE: Itineraries and Holiday Information Sheets can vary by a specific date chosen

View Holiday Information Sheet

Itinerary & Travel

Itinerary Details

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice. All local transport costs, entrance fees and tipping to local providers are included in the cost of your holiday. 

Your Itinerary

Day 1

Tomar

Meals

Dinner

Accommodation

On arrival at Lisbon Airport we have a private transfer to Tomar to the Hotel dos Templarios. Depending on arrival time we may have a short introductory walk around Tomar.

Transfer Time = 1 hour

Day 2

Tomar

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    45 mins hours

  • Distance

    1.25 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    67m

A full day visit to Tomar with a morning introductory walk in the centre exploring the main monuments and points of interest. The day is partly guided to give a full background to the buildings and history of Tomar. After lunch we make our way to the impressive Convent of Christ and Pegões Aqueduct.

  • Time

    1 hours

  • Distance

    2 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    25/92m

For those who are feeling energetic, a walk descending back to the hotel is possible. During the day there will be free time to enjoy and soak up the atmosphere of this special town.

Day 3

Serra de Aires Natural Park

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    1.5 hours

  • Distance

    3 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    89/74m

Today we visit the Serra de Aires Natural Park. This range of limestone hills is home to fantastic Santo António Caves, a geological wonder discovered in the 1950’s. We get the chance to visit the caves and in the afternoon we follow a trail down to the valley below the caves taking us through quaint villages, shady paths and superb scenery as the valley opens out.

Day 4

Tejo Valley

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    1 hours

  • Distance

    2.5 miles

Day 5

Batalha and Alcobaça

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

Today we take a trip to Batalha Abbey, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Europe’s greatest gothic masterpieces born out of a promise of gratitude for a battle that granted Portugal its independence. After lunch we visit the 12th century Abbey of Alcobaça, a UNESCO World Heritage Site originally given to St Bernard of Clairvaux the founder of the Knights Templar and the burial site of Portugal’s most famous royal lovers, Pedro I and Ines de Castro.

Day 6

North of Tomar

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    2 hours

  • Distance

    4 miles

The beautiful River Nabão is named after the ancient goddess of rivers and water. Our walk this morning follows the margins of the river north of Tomar and at times our route coincides with the Portuguese Caminho de Santiago. Later we refresh ourselves with a visit to a nearby winery to taste some of the delicious Ribatejo wines.

Day 7

Ourém

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

Today we visit Ourém. This remarkable hilltop village nestled within ancient walls is topped with a dramatic castle whose origins go back to Moorish times. We have a guided tour of the village and castle after which we have time to relax in the local café and enjoy the views over the immense landscapes below.

Day 8

Final day

Meals

Breakfast

We say our goodbyes and head to Lisbon airport for our return flight back to the UK.

From (GBP)£1,649

Departure dates for your selected tour

18th Apr 2021 - 25th Apr 2021 (7 Nights)

16th May 2021 - 23rd May 2021 (7 Nights)

6th Jun 2021 - 13th Jun 2021 (7 Nights)

17th Oct 2021 - 24th Oct 2021 (7 Nights)

14th Nov 2021 - 21st Nov 2021 (7 Nights)

Travel Details

We have return flights with TAP between London Heathrow to Lisbon. 

We include a private transfer to The Hotel dos Templarios, which will take approximately 1 hour. During the week we’ll travel by road, boat and on foot.

Accommodation

Accommodation information

Below is a summary of the accommodation featured on this holiday across all departure dates. Please refer to the Itinerary for more detail about each night's accommodation for each departure date.

Hotel dos Templarios

Tomar is a charming town located on the banks of the River Nabão. This quaint town has a pedestrian-friendly historic centre, quiet cobbled streets, a scenic riverside park, and is surrounded by the rural green landscapes of the Seven Hills National Forest. There are several grocery shops, a bank, post office and several ATM’s. Tomar’s local bars are enjoyable to visit in the evening, though the hotel is a lovely place to relax. 

We stay in the elegant four star Hotel dos Templarios sited in its own gardens with spa, swimming pool and fabulous views over the city of Tomar and the Rive Nabão. It is the ideal setting and is situated only a few minutes walk from the historic centre of the town and its amenities. The hotel is sophisticated with bright classical décor and marble flooring. Hotel facilities include lobby bar, restaurant, spa, and swimming pool. Free WiFi is available throughout the hotel. 

All of the en suite rooms are elegantly decorated with wooden furnishings and include:

  • Balcony or terrace
  • Air conditioning
  • Satellite TV
  • Mini-bar 
  • Telephone

Trip Information

All the details you need

Holiday Grade

All Adagio holidays are expertly designed to allow you to immerse yourself in the destination. Leisurely exploration of the must-see, as well as lesser known, highlights together with relaxed enjoyment of local food and wines is what we have in mind. 

There may be days of sightseeing on foot around a spectacular city or unchallenging strolls on easy terrain in open countryside interspersed with winery visits, guided tours, boat trips, cafe stops and traditional restaurants. 

Walks & Excursions

We use a mix of privately hired vehicles, taxis, and public transport which gives us some flexibility in our itinerary. We have a wonderful programme of walking, sightseeing and visits planned to let you fully experience the area along with opportunities to relax at our wonderful hotel and enjoy your surroundings.

Local Costs

Holiday Budgeting

Local transport costs, entrance fees and tips to local providers are included in your holiday price. You may wish to budget for any meals and drinks not included in the holiday arrangements, non-included entrance fees and any optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.

Local Transport Costs

All local transport costs in conjunction with the advertised activity programme are included in the holiday cost. There may be occasions where additional visits or excursions are added to enrich your experience, these will be paid for locally by you if you choose to participate. Local transport can be a mix of private hire coaches, taxis, local buses and ferries depending on the itinerary.

Country Currency

The currency in Portugal is the euro. You may wish to take some euro cash with you until you reach an ATM. Credit cards may not be accepted in smaller towns and rural areas.

Tipping

We include tips in the holiday cost and your Adagio Leader will take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers.  If you feel that someone has gone out of their way to make your holiday enjoyable or help you in anyway, please feel free to give a personal tip to the person should you wish. If you are having an independent lunch or other service not included in the holiday arrangements, tipping is at your own discretion.

Your Group

Group Size

We believe that the best things come in small packages, and our Adagio holidays prove just that. We limit our groups to a maximum of 18 persons, plus the Adagio Leader, so that everyone has the opportunity to mix, share their love of travel and return home with new friendships. Small groups also have less detrimental local impact, allows us to use public transport on some days, eat at small local restaurants and, we believe, offers a better experience.

Your Leader

An Adagio Leader will accompany you throughout the holiday. They are all experienced travellers with a love for exploring and will help capture the true essence of the destination with their stories, knowledge and insights.  They are well-organised, pay great attention to detail and enjoy being with people.  They are there to help make your holiday as enjoyable and stress free as possible.

Leaders Evening Briefing

Your Adagio Leader will discuss the programme for the following day with the group at each evening briefing. This will be your opportunity to find out more details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. Also, if you have any questions or concerns on clothing or lunch arrangements, this can be discussed then. If you wish to opt out of the organised group programme, this is fine, just let your Leader know.

Local Guides

Visiting historical sites, churches or museums are much more rewarding with a local guide. They give an insight to the local culture, language and traditions and can bring a destination alive. Many of our Adagio holidays include a knowledgeable English speaking guide on at least one of the days. Please refer to your daily itinerary to see where a guide is included.

Travel Plans

Getting to your Holiday

We have return flights with TAP between London Heathrow to Lisbon. Details of your baggage allowance will be confirmed in your travel documents, sent to you approximately 10 days before departure. 

We include a private transfer to The Hotel dos Templarios, which will take approximately 1 hour. During the week we’ll travel by road, boat and on foot.

If you intend joining and leaving the party in Tomar, we assume, unless you have advised us otherwise, that you will meet and leave the party at our hotel. If this is not your intention, please let us know in writing at least 5 weeks before departure.

Booking Your Own Travel Arrangements

If you wish to organise your own flights from either a non-UK or UK regional airport, or travel by rail or car to your holiday destination, 'land only' reductions are often available. If you choose to do this, before finalising any independent travel arrangements, please check with us first - especially if doing so 12 weeks or more before your intended date of travel. If you do intend to join your holiday locally please do tell us at least 14 weeks in advance.

If you are joining and leaving your holiday overseas we assume, unless you advise us otherwise, that you will join and leave the holiday at the hotel. Although airport/train station transfers are not included for those making their own independent travel arrangements, if you wish to join the group at the overseas airport/train station, depending on your flight/train arrival time, you may be able to be included on the group's transfer. Please contact us at least 5 weeks before departure for more details. 

Please note that your flight/train must arrive within 30 minutes of the group flight/train to be able to join the group transfer. We also need your flight/train number, arrival time and departure point so that your Adagio Leader is able to meet up with you.

Luggage Allowance & Tickets

When booking a flight or rail inclusive holiday with us, details of your travel arrangements and baggage allowance will be confirmed in your travel documents, sent to you approximately 10 days prior to departure.

Personal Details Check

Please ensure that the personal details we have on file for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements. 

Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to accurately manage your holiday booking are correct at the time of booking (including health and dietry requirements). You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.adagio.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 386700. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.

Passport Information

General Passport Advice

It is a good idea to carry photocopies of the personal details pages of your passport page (with your photo on). Should you lose your passport, this may assist with the issue of replacement documents and your return to your home country. Passport and visa requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements. 

General travel and destination advice for UK nationals is available from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office at www.fco.gov.uk/travel and at www.gov.uk/travelaware.

Brexit Passport Advice

You should have at least 6 months validity left on your passport from your date of arrival.

If you renewed a 10 year passport before it expired, extra months may have been added to your passport’s expiry date. These extra months will not count, so you should ensure that your passport is not older than 9 years and 6 months from the date of issue at the time of travel.

You may wish to renew your passport sooner rather than later, in order to make sure you have it in time for your holiday or travel plans.

Please ensure to regularly check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website for updates on passport requirements leading up to and after Brexit or contact us for more assistance. 

UK Government Brexit Information for Passports can be found at www.gov.uk/guidance/passport-rules-for-travel-to-europe-after-Brexit.

The UK Government has published a website tool to check the validity of your passport under these rules  which can be found at www.passport.service.gov.uk/check-a-passport.

In the event the UK leaves the EU without a deal, UK citizens will be able to visit the EU for up to 90 days within a 180-day period without a visa. The UK Government also has information for travellers available at gov.uk/EUexit

Non British Passport holders should consult the host country’s embassy for applicable passport and visa entry requirements.

Meals

We enjoy buffet breakfasts at the hotel and dine in local restaurants in the evening, a perfect way to discover the Ribatejo area. Local restaurants can be simple but allow us to enjoy an authentic experience and sometimes lively atmosphere in a traditional Portuguese restaurant along with local diners and the Portuguese hospitality. Portuguese dishes are usually created using locally sourced fresh ingredients, and usually consist of soup, meat or fish, vegetables and potatoes. Portugal is famous for its fresh fish and usually it is caught, cooked and eaten the same day! Lunches are not included but are usually taken as picnics.

Footwear & Kit List

Footwear

Comfortable, broken in, walking boots or shoes with a good sole are recommended for this holiday. Walking shoes or other comfortable footwear will be suitable for sightseeing days.

General Kit List

We recommend you bring the following items with you:

  • Walking boots or shoes with a good sole and waterproof uppers. 
  • Waterproof jacket and trousers. It does rain sometimes!
  • A sunhat, fleece hat and gloves… to cover all weather eventualities.
  • Sun cream. 
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Swimwear in case there is time for swimming if the hotel has a pool
  • A water bottle.  (see Water-to-Go below)
  • A picnic knife, fork and spoon, as required.
  • A simple basic first aid kit.
  • A daypack to hold all the above.
  • Trekking poles (if you usually walk with poles)

Water To Go

An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.

We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.

Travel Document Checklist

To ensure your holiday gets off to a good start, please make sure that you bring the following documents and information with you:

  • Passport (make sure it's yours and valid)
  • Your travel tickets or e-ticket itinerary
  • Any visa or electronic travel authorisation (if required)
  • Holiday currency
  • Credit or debit cards (and separate details of who to call if lost)
  • Car parking ticket and car park directions (if prebooked)
  • Coach or rail travel tickets (if prebooked)
  • Your holiday Booking Confirmation document
  • Your travel insurance details
  • Alternative form of identification (such as a driving licence)
  • Photocopy of the personal details pages of your passport
  • A valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if relevant
  • Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about

Electricity in Portugal

Electricity is supplied at 220 Volts. If you wish to use electrical equipment you will need a European two pin adaptor with round pins. More information can be found at https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/

Maps & Guidebooks

Ideal Maps & Guidebooks

The Rough Guide to Portugal has several pages on Tomar and Lisbon plus lots of other in-depth information about the country. 

The Portugal Centro Tourist Office’s website offers further information on Tomar and other towns in the area. 

For anyone particularly interested in maps, more details of these maps can be found at www.igeoe.pt.

The Map Shop

If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:

The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
WR8 0HJ
England

Tel: 01684 593 146
Website: www.themapshop.co.uk
E-mail: [email protected]

If you key many of the local places mentioned in this holiday fact sheet into YouTube, you will find a vast array of spectacular footage of the area.

Staying Healthy on Holiday

Health Advice for Portugal

No compulsory immunisations are required for visits to Portugal. 

You should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended in the UK. 

You may wish to consider immunisations against Tetanus. 

Dengue fever exists in Portugal; please take normal precautions against mosquito bites.

Further Health Advice

For further advice please visit:

You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

Please make sure you are insured for guided walking. It is important that you bring your travel insurance documents with you on holiday, including your policy number and 24-hour assistance telephone number.

EHIC Cards

Please take your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you; it will help you in the event of you needing medical assistance during your holiday. Please note that the EHIC has an expiry date, so please check that your card is valid for the duration of your holiday. Please note however the EHIC should not be considered a substitute for medical or travel insurance. 

For more information please visit ehic.org.uk.

Height

It is important to ensure while purchasing insurance that you are insured for guided walking upto 1000m.

Our Ethos

Responsible Travel

We're committed to operating responsible tours in all our destinations as best we can. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.

Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust

Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel Ltd’s (inc Adagio) profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public. 

In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.

Heart and Sole

We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way. 

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Portugal

  • Capital

    Lisbon

  • Currency

    Euro

  • Language

    Portuguese

  • Time Difference

    UTC, UTC +01:00

  • Flight duration

    3hrs from UK

Visas and Passports

No Visa Required

Average weather

  • January

    11°C

    Avg. Rain: 109mm

  • February

    12°C

    Avg. Rain: 93mm

  • March

    13°C

    Avg. Rain: 75mm

  • April

    14°C

    Avg. Rain: 66mm

  • May

    16°C

    Avg. Rain: 52mm

  • June

    19°C

    Avg. Rain: 26mm

  • July

    21°C

    Avg. Rain: 12mm

  • August

    22°C

    Avg. Rain: 16mm

  • September

    20°C

    Avg. Rain: 44mm

  • October

    17°C

    Avg. Rain: 91mm

  • November

    14°C

    Avg. Rain: 111mm

  • December

    12°C

    Avg. Rain: 120mm

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