Centro de Portugal Tourism Promotion, FINE 2023
Wine tourism in Portugal has become one of the preferred options for travellers looking to enjoy the local culture and its wines. In particular, Centro de Portugal is a region that has made a strong commitment to wine tourism, offering visitors a wide variety of wineries and vineyards to visit, as well as a first-class offer of accommodation and wine tourism activities.
The Centro region of Portugal has five wine regions, including Dão, Bairrada, Beira Interior, Tejo and Lisbon. Each offers exceptional wines and a unique wine tourism experience. All five, individually and as a Portuguese reference, will be present at FINE 2023, where their wine tourism offer will be presented in much more detail.
The five regions in depth
The Demarcated Region of Dão is known for its red wines made from the Touriga Nacional grape, a variety indigenous to Portugal. This region is located in the centre-north of Portugal, between the mountains of Serra da Estrela and Serra do Caramulo, and has a continental climate that favours the cultivation of vines.
One of the most outstanding wineries in the region is Paço dos Cunhas, located in the town of Santar. This 17th century building was restored by Global Wines and has become one of the most prestigious wine tourism units in Portugal. The architect Pedro Mateus was in charge of designing this space, which combines tradition and modernity in an environment full of comfort. Wine workshops, show-cooking and visits to the Casa de Santar cellars are regularly organised at Paço dos Cunhas.
The Bairrada region is known for its red and sparkling wines, in particular the sparkling wine known as “espumante”. The indigenous grape variety of this region is Baga, a grape that produces wines with remarkable acidity and longevity. The Quinta do Encontro winery is one of the most outstanding wineries in this region. This design winery, a project of Global Wines, combines modern architecture with a passion for wine. Located 30 km from Coimbra, 40 km from Aveiro and 3.5 km from Curia, it has a gastronomic space, a shop, a leisure space, a wine cellar and a multipurpose space.
The Beira Interior region extends through the centre of Portugal, from the Serra da Estrela mountain range to the Spanish border. This region has an enormous variety of grape varieties, including the white varieties Síria, Arinto and Fonte Cal, and the red varieties Tinta Roriz, Rufete, Touriga Nacional, Trincadeira and Jaen. The Beira Interior Wine Route has recently launched its online shop, where more than 140 wines from the region can be purchased.
The Tejo region is located in the centre of Portugal, between Lisbon and the Spanish border. This region has a wide variety of grape varieties, among which Touriga Nacional and Trincadeira stand out. Quinta da Taboadella is a winery that stands out in this region. Located in Silvã de Cima, it has 40 hectares of vineyards between Vale do Pereiro and Vale do Sequeiro, and offers a breathtaking view of the Serra da Estrela. The modern winery was designed by Portuguese architect Carlos Castanheira and is an example of ecological sustainability through the use of materials such as wood and cork.
Finally, the Lisbon region stretches from the Atlantic beaches to the Alentejo region and has a wide variety of grape varieties, including the indigenous Arinto grape variety and the international Chardonnay grape variety. Quinta do Sanguinhal is one of the most outstanding wineries in this region. With its Quinta do Sanguinhal DOC Óbidos wines, as well as the IG Lisboa Sôttal branco Leve white wines and the Sanguinhal varietal wines, the winery receives thousands of visitors every year who want to get to know its unique heritage and taste its wines.
Wine tourism, a key element in the wine business
In addition to the offer of wineries and vineyards, Centro de Portugal has a wide range of accommodation and wine tourism activities. Casa da Ínsua is an old 18th century manor house located in the Beira Interior region that has been restored to offer a unique wine tourism experience.
In this house you can taste the wines produced in the house, follow the shepherd in the morning, see the artisanal production of Serra da Estrela cheese and jams, and collaborate in the farm’s activities, such as working in the orchard or picking fruit. You can also take walks in the wide green spaces around the house or enjoy the outdoor swimming pool in the warmer season.
Other accommodation options in Central Portugal include the Parador Casa da Ínsua and Quinta do Gradil, two former properties that have been restored to offer a first-class wine tourism experience.