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Cornell University School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions

Study tours

Portugal: From Porto to Lisbon -- A Journey Through the Ages

March 28-April 6, 2020

There is still space available in this program.
Registration deadline: 12/11/2019
Register now!

Portugal, with its enviable location on the Atlantic coast, has attracted a wealth of cultures that have ebbed and flowed there for centuries. The result is a magical mix of stately palaces, medieval castles, tranquil monasteries, Roman ruins, and quaint fishing villages. Lively and knowledgable classics professor and oenologist Michael Fontaine will illuminate the historical periods and the viticulture of this gem of a country.

Our tour begins in Porto, capital of the port wine trade since the mid-eighteenth century. We'll cruise the Douro River for a day and learn about the sparkling Vinhos Verde wines in Guimarães during tastings at traditional country estates.

En route to Portugal's capital, Lisbon, we'll visit well-preserved Roman ruins after stops in the nearby fishing village of Nazaré and the historic university town of Coimbra.

In Lisbon, we'll stroll through the Alfama quarter and visit UNESCO World Heritage Site Jeronimos Monastery, a masterpiece of lavish Manueline architecture.

Lisbon will be our base as we explore two other World Heritage Sites. Evora, once a major trading and religious center, boasts an impressive Roman temple. Stunning Sintra, the former residence of Portuguese kings, rises from the surrounding plain, attracting its own microclimate. A walk to its highest point traverses more than a thousand years of history. Such bounty and beauty!

Michael Fontaine

Michael Fontaine is a professor in Cornell's Department of Classics and acting dean of the University Faculty. His scholarly specialization is Latin and Greek philology and the literature of the late Roman Republic. He regularly offers lively courses on Greek... > more


View the daily schedule (PDF).

Program notes

  • Double occupancy: $7,995
  • Single supplement: $1,180
  • See What's included?
  • See Travel links and resources.
  • Activity level: Slightly strenuous. May require extended walking over uneven ground as well as the ability to climb stairs and to stand for considerable periods of time.