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Santiago de Compostela and Valença do Minho Day Trip from Porto with Lunch

star-4.5
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Porto, Portugal
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icon11 hours  (Approx.)
Hotel pickup offered
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iconOffered in: English and 3 more

Overview

Venture from Porto to Spain on this day trip to  Santiago de Compostela and the sacred pilgrimage route, St James Way. For centuries pilgrims have made their way along this historic path and on this tour you can glean a part of their experience with a knowledgeable guide. Visit the sacred sites of Santiago de Compostela, like the city’s famous cathedral, as well as the UNESCO World-Heritage-listed Old Town. On your way back to Porto, stop at the charming Valença do Minho, dominated with a fortress of two towers and a double great wall projected in the Vouban style, in Portugal.
  • Day trip from Porto to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, and Valença do Minho Day, Portugal
  • Visit the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, where the pilgrim route St James Way ends
  • See Compostela’s historic Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Enjoy free time in Santiago de Compostela to have lunch and explore more at your own leisure
  • Visit Valença do Minho city center and see its fortress
Your journey to Santiago de Compostela begins with by meeting your expert guide and driver in central Porto. From there, enjoy a leisurely and scenic drive by air-conditioned coach through northern Portugal’s bucolic countryside, then cross the border to northwest Spain. 

Follow in the footsteps of thousands of pilgrims on St James Way, one of the most famous pilgrimage routes in the world. Holy seekers have been traversing this path since the early Middle Ages, and the tradition continues on today. 

At the end of your walk along the trail, your reward is confronting the Gothic, housing the remains of the apostle St James. Listen to your guide illuminate this holy site with its history. Then, explore the cathedral, admiring its  majestic interior, stately bell towers, golden altar and Romanesque sculptures. Next, refuel with an authentic local lunch consisting of octopus or seafood in Santiago (own expense), then head to Santiago's UNESCO World-Heritage-listed old town district. 

When you’ve seen enough, hop back in your air-conditioned coach and begin your journey back to Porto. But first, stop at Valença do Minho, an historical village in the north of Portugal, located on the border between Portugal and Spain. Also known by its "Caminhos de Santiago" Valença do Minho is dominated with a fortress of two towers and a double great wall projected in the Vouban Style. An Engineer and an military architect from the XVII e XVIII centuries. 

Take time to explore this great city with its historical essence before returning to Porto, where your day trip concludes.

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Reviews

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star-4.5
111 Reviews
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Reviews by Viator travelers
star-4
Santiago de Compostela - a remote gem in northwest Spain
Alan C
, Nov 2019
This renowned pilgrimage site is worth a visit even for those not up to the rigors of a pilgrimage on foot. Viator offers a day trip by bus from Porto, Portugal. The stop in Valenca, a fortress town on the border with Spain, is basically a long restroom stop. Santiago is full of historic and awe-inspiring architecture, first and foremost the Cathedral. The cathedral is currently under renovation. The scaffolding and rebars substantially diminish the majesty and grandeur of the place. Other sites of interest include the Monasteries of Saint Martin and Saint Francis and the University of Santiago de Compostela. The Viator trip is not a guided tour. Once inside the city, you are free to explore on your own. But the guide provides a map and directions. The historic center is relatively compact and you can easily see the major sights on your own. A tapas lunch is included.
star-5
Relaxing trip
Dannilo V
, Oct 2019
We move to Santiago de compostela riding in a very fast car with Ricardo as our driver and tour guide. He was good in driving while narrating the history of Porto and the places we have to visit. He speaks fluent english. We will look for him the next time we visit again Portugal.
star-4
Good day trip
Fay S
, Oct 2019
Picked up on time,very informative guide with excellent English,a nice drive in the countryside,a short stop for coffee,arrived in Santiago with 1 hour free time to visit the cathedral before a very nice lunch,another hour to walk around the town before leaving for our trip back to Porto,another short stop before dropping off at our hotel. Very disappointed as cathedral inside is covered in scaffolding,unable to see much of the interior.Why wasn’t this done in stages.? A very enjoyable day,a good lunch with wine,the only disappointment was the interior of the cathedral in Santiago. Certainly not the drivers fault. .
star-5
Great Trip
Janice R
, Sep 2019
Our driver Ricardo was very knowledgeable and friendly. Our lunch was fantastic. This trip was well worth the price.
star-5
Santiago
Cviale49
, Sep 2019
My guide Paula was good on the history,explained everything very well, but will like interactive on her part.
star-5
Superior Experience. Try It You'll like it
Dave S
, Sep 2019
Paola was our guide/driver and she made the experience exceptional due to her deep knowledge and apparent love for the history of this area. Plus, her driving skills were admirable. The cafe we stopped for "lunch" was a real treat and the food was both delicious and plentiful. I cannot imagine a better way to visit this area and shrine than through our Viator day trip. P.S. It included a stop at the fortress on the Minho River and that was a delightful respite, too.
star-5
Visit
RalieghH
, May 2019
What a great trip, our guide was very helpful and the lunch was fantastic. Well worth the trip. I would recommend this.
star-5
Highly recommend
Belgium442
, May 2019
It was a tour in a small group (7 people + our guide) and I really enjoyed it! Ricardo was very knowledgeable in regard to everything in Portugal and very passionate about his country. I learned a lot and just had a great time!
star-4
I really appreciated this tour and our...
Gazelle M
, Sep 2018
I really appreciated this tour and our tour guide. There were 7 adults and a child in our van, we were comfortable. Our guide was very knowledgeable and courteous. We were picked up promptly at our hotel and travel was smooth. This tour was on a Sunday and there were a lot of people. Pilgrims are given priority to enter the church. It was very challenging to get in the church. We were advised to wait until the mass was over which would mean after lunch. We chose to skip the rest of the food planned for our meal so we could go inside the church. One of the guests chose to line up and was able to successfully enter the church and touch Sr. Santiago but arrived in the middle of the meal. This is an option but inform your tour guide that you are foregoing the meal to hear mass instead. I wish we have more time in the area but of course we have to consider travel time. All in all, a good tour to reach this special place in a day.
star-3
It was great to visit Santiago and...
Paul
, May 2018
It was great to visit Santiago and Valenca but the guide simply gave us a map and said see you back in an hour. No tour round the city and no explanation.

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