5 Books You Should Read, Before Visiting Portugal

When we put books and Portugal in the same sentence, beautiful things happen. Meet this beautiful country through literature, and dive into the details with a whole new perspective.

Welcome to Portugal!


Journey to Portugal: In Pursuit of Portugal’s History and Culture — José Saramago

Forfeiting sources of information such as tourist guides and road maps, he scours the country with the eyes and ears of an observer fascinated by the ancient myths and history of his people. Whether an inaccessible medieval fortress set on a cliff, a wayside chapel thick with cobwebs, or a grand mansion in the city, the extraordinary places of this land come alive with the kings, warriors, painters, explorers, writers, saints, and sinners who have fed its rich store of myth and history. Always meticulously attentive to those elements of ancient Portugal that persist today, he examines the country in its current period of rapid transition and growth.

Infused with the tenderness and intelligence that have become familiar to his readers, Saramago’s Journey to Portugal is an ode of love for a country and its rich traditions.






A Brief History of Portugal: Indispensable for Travelers — Jeremy Black

This book’s introduction provides an understanding of geographical and climatic issues, before an examination of Portugal’s prehistory and classical Portugal, from the Stone Age to the end of the Roman era. Portugal’s history from the fifth to the thirteenth century takes in the Suevi, Visigoths, and Moors. Then, a look at medieval Portugal covers the development of Christian Portugal culminating with the expulsion of the Moors, with a focus on key sites — and so on, until today.







The Wild Guide Portugal: Hidden Places, Great Adventures, And The Good Life — Edwina Pitcher

The best-selling, award-winning Wild Guide series travels to Portugal. Guiding you to over 800 wild swims, ancient forests, lost ruins, hidden beaches, local festivals, and more. Including traditional food eateries and wilder places to stay. Over 300 photos and 25 maps.







Night Train to Lisbon — Pascal Mercier

Originally published in German, Pascal Mercier’s Night Train to Lisbon is a philosophically intense mystery set in the Portuguese capital during the Estado Novo dictatorship from the early 1930s until 1974 mostly under the rule of António Salazar. The protagonist, a Swiss classicist called Raimund Gregorius (played by Jeremy Irons in the 2013 film adaptation), becomes intrigued by some notebooks he stumbles on by a Portuguese doctor called Amadeu de Prado. Amadeu has the misfortune of being obliged to treat the head of Salazar’s secret police. By saving the man’s life, the until-then popular doctor finds his own life upturned. Gregorius’ quest to stitch back the threads of Amadeu’s life provides Mercier with an opportunity to memorably depict Portugal pre- and post-democracy.





A New Life in the Algarve — Alyson Sheldrake

What makes a person decide to move abroad to start a new life? And why do so many people choose the Algarve in Portugal as their dream destination?

In this compilation of life stories, you can read about a whole range of different people that have made the Algarve their home. Funny moments, heartfelt journeys, and real-life modern adventures are all covered in this new and fascinating anthology.

Includes a foreword written by the British Ambassador to Portugal.





Hope you enjoyed it! xx


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