The historic town of Guimarães is associated with the rise of the Portuguese national identity in the 12th century. It is called the birthplace of Portugal, and Guimarães is one of the country’s most historical cities. See the exceptionally well-preserved and authentic example of the evolution of a medieval settlement into a modern town. Its rich building typology exemplifies the specific development of Portuguese architecture from the 15th to 19th century through the consistent use of traditional building materials and techniques. This was where the first king of Portugal was born, and also where the re-conquest of Portugal from the Moors began. There are many historical monuments to see which is why it has been added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage sites.
A historic town and an old castle
After a short one-hour drive from the port you will arrive in the town and begin with a visit to the Dukes Palace. Inside this impressive 15th century building that was later occupied by the Portuguese dictator Salazar, you will be able to admire many beautifully furnished rooms filled with tapestries, paintings and furniture. We then take a stroll around the picturesque city centre along charming cobblestone streets, to Santa Maria and Oliveira Main Square where you can admire the city’s many beautiful medieval buildings. You will have some time at your own leisure before re-joining the coach and travelling back to the ship.