Visiting Portugal? You have found my personal notes and travel tips, such as the best time to visit Portugal and miscellaneous facts which I obtain from a variety of sources such as first hand observations, personal conversations, magazines, newspapers, websites, books and so forth.
Best Time to Visit Portugal
Short Answer: The best time to visit Portugal would be May to September
Longer Answer: The worst time to visit Portgual generally is mid-October to mid-January due to that being when it receives the most rain. So if you can choose, I’d steer away from these months.
If you are visiting Lisbon, note that rain doesn’t really taper off until sometime in May, but it is definitely decreased from the levels in November and December. That said, it doesn’t rain a ton in Lisbon even at its rainiest and thus, I’d say its great anytime from February to October with the best time to visit Lisbon being March through October. Do note though that July and August are usually when tourist numbers increase and the locals vacation. It is also hot. So for me, I’d prefer visiting in April, May, September and early October.
If you are visiting Porto, up in the north, you will find it to be rainer than Lisbon. Thus, it is more important if looking for dry dries, to visit in June to mid-September. October through January are definitely the wettest, with rain continuing into late May. These rains, like I say, are definitely moreso than Lisbon, figuring about double. So while April in Lisbon is a fine time, April in Porto is going to be like November and December in Lisbon.
If you are visiting Faro on the south coast, it is going to roughly follow Lisbon with an increase in rain in November and December. The water should be warmest sometime between August and September. Crowds surge in the July and August timeframe and it can get quite hot. September is a great month to visit as is May and June.
Miscellaneous Travel Tips for Portugal
Look into buying shoes in Portugal. A lot of great values can be found there.
Look into buying linens, towels, etc. in Portugal as their industry is very solid in such
Portugal is also a good place to buy pottery
Portugal is a great place to buy port wine as well as their other wines such as vinho verde. While the vindo verde isn’t maybe worth the trouble of buying and bringing home, it is a refreshing simple wine to enjoy while there. The food and wine in Portugal is very nice, with my favourite “go to” being the soup of the day at most places.
Lisbon is quite hilly so expect elevations, something akin to a bigger San Francisco is how I thought of it. Porto has a somewhat overly polished area on the river that attracts tourists. Slink away from there and it is much more my speed. The nightlife in Porto was quite fun if you go in with the right expectations.