Did you know that, in terms of production and acreage, Bordeaux is the largest wine region in France? While those 300,000 acres of vineyard can keep any traveler occupied for days, the surrounding area boasts a number of sites you won’t want to miss. From elegant and grandiose chateaux’s to climbing Europe’s largest sand dune, there’s something for everyone in this beautiful part of France. After having your fill of some of the best wines the world has to offer, check out these 5 best day trips from Bordeaux. Whether you’re looking for adventure, history, or more wine tastings, we’ve found day trips to suit your needs. Learn more about the best day trips from Bordeaux below and start planning your unforgettable trip today. 1. Saint Émilion Located just 35 kilometers northeast of Bordeaux is the medieval village of Saint Émilion. Nestled between Castillon-la-Bataille and Libourne, the village takes its name from the 8th century travelling monk who settled in a hermitage here. While the monks who followed him were responsible for the beginnings of commercial wine production in the area, vineyards have been planted here as early as the 2nd century. Today, Saint Émilion is a UNESCO world heritage site and one of the best day trips from Bordeaux if you’re looking for history, beauty, and a little of what Bordeaux is famous for (aka wine). The streets are dotted with Romanesque churches, medieval ruins, and narrow, cobbled streets that will take you back in time. And with our guided tour of this historic town, you’ll get 8 hours-worth of exploration, food, and wine tasting. 2. Visit Châteaux’s in Bordeaux (Via Public Transport) The Bordeaux region houses no less than 6,000 different chateaux’s – any one of which makes for a great Bordeaux day trip. The best part? The…

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Planning your next Lisbon getaway? If you’re heading to the Portuguese capital, one place to have on your radar is the iconic Belém district. Located southwest of the city center on the Tagus River, Belém was once the heart of Lisbon’s bustling maritime trade. These days, the district is a must for visitors looking to explore Lisbon’s top sights and historic attractions. The top Belém tourist attractions are anything but boring. Pack your walking shoes and grab yourself a fresh pastéis de Belém to snack on. There’s a lot to see and do in Belém Lisbon! Source: uroburos via Pixabay 1. Mosteiro dos Jerónimos As soon as you arrive in Belém Lisbon, you can’t miss the Jerónimos Monastery. This stunning building casts an imposing figure over the district, with its impressive, Late Gothic architecture. The monastery was once the home of the monks of the Order of Saint Jerome—creators of the original pastéis de nata. 2. Fábrica dos Pastéis de Belém Speaking of, the famous flaky pastry pastéis de nata is synonymous with the city of Lisbon. But it is here in Belém that you can taste the most authentic version. Visit the bakery Pastéis de Belém to sample some of the secret recipe made famous by the monks of Jerónimos Monastery. You can find similar versions of this popular Portuguese custard tart at bakeries all over Lisbon, but it’s only here in Belém that you can taste the original. Source: Iantomferry at English Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0) 3. Centro Cultural de Belém Located next to the monastery is the Belém Cultural Center. Designed by architect Vittorio Gregotti, Centro Cultural de Belém was built to host the European Parliament in 1996. Belém Cultural Center is now Portugal’s largest cultural building and home to some of Lisbon’s best art exhibitions. View…

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By 2023, the global wine market is expected to generate over $423 billion USD in revenues. One of the oldest and most popular wines on that world market is Bordeaux wine. And if you’re a wine lover who didn’t know that, then you’re definitely going to need some help sounding like an expert on Bordeaux wine tours. If you want to sound like a connoisseur on your next vineyard tour, you should know important details about where it comes from, what makes it special, and what it costs. Throwing in some facts and figures about the region itself couldn’t hurt your case, either. Before heading out on your tour, arm yourself with those facts and more, with this guide to French Bordeaux wine. What is French Bordeaux Wine? French Bordeaux wine is the only kind of Bordeaux wine there is. That is, it’s only considered Bordeaux if it’s produced in this wine region in France. That goes for both the red and white varieties coming from Bordeaux, though the region is primarily associated with its unique red blends. In fact, 90% of the wine produced in the region is of the red variety. The blend is a combination of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, but the proportion of each varies according to the specific part of the Bordeaux wine region the wine is produced. Some winemakers blend additional wines into their final product, including Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, and/or Malbec, as well. All You Need to Know About the Bordeaux Wine Region Bordeaux has been a major port city in France for centuries. That strategic location allowed wine makers to get their wines into the glasses of people around the world for a very long time. But the ability to access different regions does not a great wine make. Bordeaux also…

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From its sweet puff pastry to its spicy piri-piri sauce, Portuguese food is bursting with flavor! If you’re visiting Lisbon, you’re in luck. Here are the best Portuguese dishes worth trying. Where to eat in Lisbon Time Out Market If you’re looking for the best food and drink Lisbon has to offer, Time Out Market is a must. Head here while visiting Lisbon and sample as much Portuguese cuisine as you can! Time Out Market is a tourist-friendly hot spot, perfect for tasting the highlights of Lisbon’s best restaurants. In the morning, grab a few snacks and a seat at one of the long, family-style tables to watch the locals passing through for the day’s fresh produce. What to eat in Lisbon Pastéis de Nata Centuries ago, monks in Belém filled flaky, buttery pastries with creamy egg custard. These days, the delicious pasteis de nata is one of the most beloved treats in Portugal. You simply can’t visit Lisbon without getting your hands on one (or several) of these! The best pastel de nata in Lisbon is found near its source, at a cafe called Pastéis de Belém. If you’re not near Belém, you can pick up some of these traditional Portuguese custard tarts at most bakeries in Lisbon. Bacalhau Bacalhau, or salted cod, is a staple of Portuguese cuisine. Drying and salting the fish was a way to preserve the cod long before refrigeration. Salted cod became an essential part of the Portuguese diet for both ordinary and upper-class people. Now, you’ll find an endless variety of salt cod recipes to try while visiting Lisbon. Portuguese dishes with cod include crunchy pastéis de bacalhau, or fried codfish fritters reminiscent of a croquette. Bacalhau à brás is one of the most famous recipes in Portugal. It’s made from shredded cod,…

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Hey GoCar Readers, this is a guest post from our friends over at Trip101. We hope you enjoy their overview of Madrid points of interest! As the capital city of Spain, Madrid has a lot of hype to live up to when it comes to tourism. But while it has modernized in the past decades, this well-preserved city still retains its old-world charms. It has an abundance of historic sites that will surely keep travelers on their toes. The blend of culture and modernism has brought Madrid to new heights and any history buff who visits will be on an adventure that is unlike any other. With Renaissance architecture, majestic churches, grand city centers, the capital of Spain has a lot to offer than most. Let’s get to know some notable sites that should be included in everyone’s itinerary every time they come for a visit. The Royal Palace https://pixabay.com/photos/royal-palace-spain-madrid-3462249/ One would say that this is the most majestic place in Spain. The white Baroque-style exterior, extravagant interiors, and just an overall grand vibe, this is one of those sites that you should not miss during your visit to Madrid. This was the official residence of Spain’s royal family dating back to the 18th century. Although now, some of the rooms are mostly used for state dinners and official visits since the royal family has opted to stay in the much humbler Zarzuela Palace. Join a tour in this palace and you will get to see the famous Throne Room. It’s one of those experiences that will make you wonder how opulent monarch’s lifestyles were back in the day. Museo Nacional del Prado https://pixabay.com/photos/madrid-prado-museum-architecture-1758045/ This is the biggest national art museum in Spain and it features one of the best collections. Some artifacts can be dated back to the 12th…

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Barcelona nightlife is legendary, for good reason. Gritty dive bars are just as popular as glittering nightclubs. You can slowly sip some absinthe alongside Boho hipsters or watch the sunrise on the beach. Avoid the crowds with an after-hours tour or catch a traditional, live flamenco show. Who needs sleep, anyhow? Whether you’re a late-night party animal or a nocturnal culture vulture, there are plenty of things to do in Barcelona at night. Sip cocktails in a chic bar or speakeasy Barcelona’s vibrant bar scene comes alive as the sun goes down. In fact, many a Barcelona night begins with sunset drinks at Mirablau. Perched alongside the hillside Tibidabo park, Mirablau serves up elegant cocktails along with stunning panoramic views. For a sip of classic Barcelona, head to Boadas Cocktails near La Rambla. Boadas might be one of the oldest cocktail bars in the city, but this is no tourist trap. Expect a refined vibe and expertly-crafted cocktails. Don’t let the crumbling walls and dusty chandeliers fool you: Bar Marsella is legendary. Bohemians from Ernest Hemingway to Antoni Gaudí himself have come here since 1820. Hemingway’s old haunt is best known for its signature drink, absinthe. El Paradiso is a relative newcomer to the Barcelona nightlife scene, but it’s made a mark. This trendy, speakeasy-style cocktail bar is actually hidden within an unassuming sandwich shop in El Born. They do make a mean pastrami, but you’ll find the main attraction hidden behind a large, wooden fridge door. Fuel your Barcelona night out with tapas The Catalan capital also happens to be a buzzing foodie hotspot. An “early” dinner starts around 9:00 p.m. but most locals don’t head out until 10. You’ll need a big meal to fuel up for a late night. Try a little bit of everything with a…

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No visit to Portugal is complete without a trip to one of its famous Porto wineries. The best wineries in Porto specialize in its namesake varietal, vinho do Porto, or port wine. Port is a fortified red wine that pairs well with your favorite dessert. Typically sweet, some port wines come in dry, semi-dry, and even white varieties. Vinho do Porto is exclusively produced in Portugal’s northern Douro Valley region, where Porto wineries offer plenty of tempting cellar tours and tastings. Many of the best Porto wines are found on the southern shores of the Douro River, in Vila Nova de Gaia. We’ve selected the top vineyards and wineries near Porto for you below. Saúde! 1. Burmester Wine Cellars One of the best new Porto wineries is Caves Burmester. Stepping inside this Porto wine cellar and museum is like stepping back through time. Join a guided tour for a fascinating glimpse into the brand’s history and production process. Visit the wine shop and tasting room for a delicious port wine pairing, or relax on the terrace overlooking the Douro River. 2. Cálem Cálem might be the most famous place for port wine tours in Porto. It’s certainly the most popular! The House of Calém was founded in 1859. After four generations, it remains an award-winning, family-owned business. Visitors to Calém enjoy not only a rich variety of port wine tastings but can also catch a traditional Portuguese fado show in the evenings. 3. Churchill’s For a fashionable, more modern take on Porto wineries, look no further than Churchill’s. This stylish wine cellar in Porto’s Vila Nova de Gaia is rethinking traditional port wine. Churchill’s visitors center offers a beautiful backdrop for tailor-made tastings of their signature and vintage port wines. 4. Croft Croft cellars is one of the oldest port…

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There’s no shortage of fun, unique, and even free things to do in Porto when you visit! No matter what your budget, itinerary, or personal travel style, this list of 20 things to do in Porto has something for everyone. Free Things to Do in Porto If you’re traveling on a budget, add these eight free things to do in Porto to your itinerary! 1. Window Shop on Rua de Santa Catarina Rua de Santa Catarina runs through central Porto. The pedestrian street is lined with shops, restaurants, bars, and bakeries and is the perfect place to pick up some souvenirs before you leave the city. 2. Walk Along the Ribeira The Ribeira is one of Porto’s top tourist attractions, and for good reason. This waterfront walk boasts beautiful views of the Luis I bridge, the Douro River, and the historic, colorful houses that make Porto so special. 3. Cross Luis I Bridge on Foot The Luis I bridge spans 172 meters and was built in 1886. It has one of the best views of Porto, so history and photography lovers alike should add a quick walk across the bridge to their Porto to-do list. 4. Admire Porto’s Many Churches Like many old European cities, Porto is dotted with spectacular churches. Some of the most notable are the Porto Cathedral, the incredibly ornate Santa Clara Church, the blue and white tiled Capela das Almas, and the Clerigos Church. The Sao Francisco Church is also worth a stop, but entrance costs four euros per person. 5. Spend a Day at the Beach If you visit Porto in the summer, a day at the beach is a fantastic (and budget-friendly) outing from the city. There are plenty of beautiful beaches near Porto to choose from, and almost all of them are accessible…

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The Complete Guide to Neighborhoods and Accommodation in the City Deciding where to stay in Porto is tough, but our guide can help! This guide not only explores some of the most popular neighborhoods in Porto, but will also help you find the top hotels, apartments, budget-friendly hostels, and unique accommodation options in them as well. Discover where to stay in Porto and begin planning your trip to the city with this guide by your side! Popular Neighborhoods in Porto Before you choose your accommodation, you need to choose your neighborhood. Porto is full of diverse neighborhoods, but these five come out on top. Ribeira Neighborhood The Ribeira neighborhood is one of the best places to stay in Porto, Portugal because it’s right on the riverfront. Here you’ll be steps away from the sun-splashed cafes, seafood restaurants, and the famous Luis I Bridge. Ribeira is also a great home base because its conveniently located with the central historic districts of Baixa and Cedofeita on one side and the Vila Nova de Gaia neighborhood on the other, all of which are within walking distance. The only downside? This is the most famous district in Porto so it can get quite crowded with tourists during the day. Vila Nova de Gaia Neighborhood If you’re wondering where to stay in Porto for the best wine experience, Vila Nova de Gaia is your answer. The neighborhood spreads down the south bank of the Douro river, directly across from the Ribeira neighborhood. Most of the city’s Port wine cellars are located here so you can rest assured that the sweet drink is within reach at all times. The only downside? Vila Nova de Gaia is separated from the rest of the city by the Douro river, so sightseeing in Baixa and Cedofeita will require long…

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Use This Guide to Decide! If you’re planning a trip to Portugal you may find yourself with the pressing question: How many days in Porto do you really need? While the answer depends on the length of your trip and your own personal travel preferences, we can help you discover the best Porto itinerary for your stay. There is no one size fits all answer to this question. Instead, choose what you want to do and see in the city and then determine how many days in Porto you need to cross it all off your bucket list! How many days to spend in Porto depends on your travel preferences. Some travelers say only spend one or two in the city while others recommend a whole week! So, how many days in Porto do vacationers really need to see it? This breakdown may help. Spend 1 day in Porto if… You’re on a tight schedule. For a quick weekend trip to Portugal, one day and one night in Porto are really the bare minimum visitors need to experience this bustling city. The number one activity in Porto is wandering the winding streets of the town’s Historic Center and admiring the colorful architecture. Porto is a UNESCO World Heritage Site because the city has over 2,000 years of history! It can trace its history back to the first century BC so it’s seen thousands of years of change and growth. Simply reflecting on the past and while you walk through this ancient place can be a truly awe-inspiring experience. Before you finish your whirlwind day in Porto, make sure to climb the Clérigos Church tower for a bird’s eye view of the sprawling city and snap a picture of the charming blue and white facade of the Chapel of Souls. Walk…

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