May 15, 2024 – May 26, 2024
11 days – $4,500.00

$900.00 deposit due upon booking
Final payment due by November 1, 2023

The Peninsular War Tour


Join author/military historian Gareth Glover and author/tour guide Kristine Hughes for a unique exploration of key sites of the Peninsular Wars. Your adventure begins in Lisbon and over the next ten days you’ll visit battlefields, museums, towns and cities in Portugal and Spain, whilst learning more about the individual battles and their context within the period as a whole.

There will also be plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in the culture of the country, with visits to several UNESCO World Heritage Sites, palaces and castles, historic churches and town centers. Your meals will feature local Portuguese flavours and, naturally, there will be stops for tastings at some of Portugal’s oldest and most prestigious wine and port estates.

Gareth and Kristine will both be on hand each day in order to act as your guides and to answer any questions our visits may raise. Whether you are a serious researcher, an armchair battlefield enthusiast or a military novice, this tour will give you the unique opportunity to discover more about an important era in British and European history.

Day 1

Check-in to our Lisbon hotel, where you’ll meet your fellow travelers before going on to a welcome dinner.

Day 2

Today we’ll explore the Lisbon sights, beginning with a tram ride to the Belem district to explore the 16th century Belem Tower, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, used by invading French forces 1808-14. We’ll also view the Padroa de Descobrimentos monument to Portuguese explorers, the National Coach Museum, one of the most prominent horse-drawn carriage collections in the world, and the Jerónimos Monastery, another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Back in Lisbon, we’ll visit Black Horse Square (Praca de Commercio), a museum dedicated to the 1755 Earthquake that destroyed most of Lisbon beyond the waterfront Alfama district, and the 10th century Castelo de Sao Jorge, where the soldiers taken at Badajoz were kept prisoners. This evening has been left free for you to dine and explore Lisbon on your own.

Day 3

Leaving Lisbon this morning by private coach, our first stop will be the 18th century Queluz Palace, where Junot signed the Convention of Sintra. Our tour of the state apartments will include a visit to the mirrored Hall of Ambassadors Hall, designed by Robillon in 1757. Afterwards, we’ll travel on to Sintra, with stops at Pena Palace, Monseratte Palace and the Palace of Sintra, and a photo stop at the Palacio de Seteais, where Beresford signed the Convention.

Day 4

This morning we begin with a photo op at the Duke of Wellington’s HQ at Pero Negro before traveling on to the museum at Fort of São Vicente in Torres Vedras. Afterwards, we visit the Vimiero battlefield museum, followed by a tour of the  battlefield. Continuing on, we arrive at the site of the battle of Rolica and the monument to Colonel Lake. Our day ends at the walled town of Obidos, where Wellington spent the night before the battle.

Day 5

Our day begins at Tomar, the last Templar town to be constructed and one of Portugal’s historical jewels. Tomar is yet another Portuguese town Wellington and his troops liberated from the French and where we’ll be visiting the Convent of Christ and the Acqueduct dos Pegoes before driving on to Coimbra, where we’ll see the ancient monestary and church at Igreja de Santa Cruz, University Square and the Biblioteca Joanina, one of the most beautiful libraries in the World. Our day ends at the Bishop’s Palace, where both Masena and Wellington stayed, now one of Portugal’s most important national museums.

Day 6

This morning we travel to Busacco to see the battlefield where the British and Portuguese armies held back the French, as well as Wellington’s quarters and the Serra do Busacco ridge. Afterwards, we’ll travel to Aviero, the ancient city known for its canals and stunning architecture. There will be time for a salt boat trip, sightseeing and shopping before dinner this evening.

Day 7

First on today’s agenda is a tour of the site of the battle of Fuentes de Onoro, followed by a stop at Wellington’s headquarters at Fuenteguinaldo before traveling on to Fort Concepcion, on the border between Portugal and Spain, for a photo stop. Now a luxury hotel, the Fort was once a key site, occupied by both the French and British before the final action in May 1811 and the withdrawal of the French. Driving on this afternoon, we reach Ciudad Rodrigo, where the Siege took place on 19 January 1812, during which Black Bob Craufurd fell whilst at the head of his Light Division. Afterwards, we’ll explore the City, both inside and without its 12th century walls.

Day 8

This morning we cross into Spain to visit the site of the battle of Salamanca, (22 July 1812) during which an Anglo-Portuguese Army led by Wellington decisively defeated the French army of Marmont. Afterwards we’ll visit the City of Salamanca, which has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site due in part to its rich architectural diversity. This afternoon we’ll arrive back in Portugal at Almeida to tour the Castle Fortress and explore its fortified, star-shaped walls.  It was here that the French army laid siege on July 25, 1810 and where a stray shell ignited a gunpowder explosion on August 26, resulting in hundreds of deaths and scores of casualties.

Day 9

Today we enter the beautiful Douro Valley and stop at the Bridge of Coa, where the British Light Division fought a fierce battle to escape Marshal Ney’s French corps on 24th July 1810. We’ll then drive on to Quinta da Roeda, Croft’s flagship vineyard estate, described as the jewel of Port wine estates. The wines of this magnificent property, which contains some of the oldest vineyards in the Douro Valley (1588), are at the heart of Croft’s Vintage Port blend.. After a tour of the estate, a port tasting and lunch, we’ll continue on to Oporto.

Day 10

Our day in Oporto begins with a visit to the Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar, located on the Douro River, across from Porto. The monastery sits on an outcrop overlooking the Dom Luís I Bridge and the historic centre of Porto. Together with these locations, the monastery was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it was used by Wellington to launch a surprise attack on the French across the Douro, and retake Porto. We’ll also visit Oporto’s Military Museum and Cathedral and the rest of the day will be free for you to explore the City as you wish. This evening, our Farewell Gala begins with a short drive to Vilanova da Gaia, the hub of Oporto’s wine industry, where we’ll tour the Taylor Fladgate port cellars.  Afterwards, we’ll enjoy the views from the rooftop Terrace Lounge, offering 360 degree views over the Douro River and the Porto and Gaia riverfronts. Finally, we’ll return to Oporto for a traditional tapas meal.

Day 11

Travel to Lisbon airport via private coach.

What’s included

10 nights in tour hotels
10 breakfasts
9 dinners
Guided battlefield tours with author and historian Gareth Glover
Private coach travel throughout
Entry/admission fees to all venues