When it comes to wine tasting destinations, you might be tempted to overlook Portugal in favour of one of Europe’s wine giants – Italy, Spain and France are home to some of the most coveted wine regions in the world. But don’t let Portugal’s quiet reputation put you off – a multitude of premium wine varieties awaits you here.
In case you still need convincing that Portugal holidays can be wine holidays, we’ve put together a list of some of the best Portuguese wine regions. From the famed Duoro Valley to far off Madeira, you will definitely want to consider these spots in Portugal for your next wine tasting adventure.
The Algarve, which is the southernmost region of Portugal, is renowned mainly for its beaches. What you might not know is that the region has more recently started to produce some excellent white wines. The pleasant climate here is perfect for grape growing, and Lagos is one of the Algarve’s four wine regions.
Several vineyards around Lagos are open for tours and tastings. We’d recommend visiting Quinta de Lopes, a 25-year-old producer of organic wines, just a short drive from the town.
The coastal Lisboa region produces a number of different wines. In Bucelas, near Lisbon, you’ll find high quality whites as well as some sparkling wines. Go for a tasting at Quinta de Romeira – this 300-year-old winery has 75 hectares of vineyards and famously hosted Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington. You can also learn about the region’s wine production history at Bucelas Museu do Vinho, which opened in 2013.
Duoro Valley is the oldest and most famous Portuguese wine region, and the rugged landscape here will take your breath away. Traditionally, it has always been known for its port, but it now produces unfortified white and red wines as well. If you fancy a port tasting, try Quinto de la Rosa, a small family vineyard in an idyllic riverside setting.
Alentejo is rapidly catching up with Duoro Valley as one of Portugal’s finest wine producers. It is known for its remarkable reds — the hot weather makes producing white wine more difficult here. On your visit, you’ll be able to sample some of Portugal’s most popular strong red wines, including Alfrocheiro and Aragonez.
The island of Madeira grows the Tinta Negra grape for fortified wine, and it’s worth a visit just to learn about the production process, which is entirely different to other types of wine — when it is stored, the wine is purposely heated. As a result, Madeira’s fortified wine doesn’t go off quickly, and even an open bottle can last years. Head to Funchal for a tour and tasting at The Old Blandy Wine Lodge.
With all of these and many more wine regions waiting for you to discover, Portugal is a fantastic destination for a wine tasting trip, so why not give it a chance?
Tell us about your favourite Portuguese wine regions in the comments below!