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Plan an Autism Friendly Vacation in Portugal

A vacation in Portugal is always filled with history, medieval sites, sandy beaches, and thrilling activities. As a parent of an autistic child, you may be wondering how all those things equal an autism friendly vacation. Well, any vacation can be autism friendly if you plan ahead and do some research. I thought I would share some of the information I have about planning an autism friendly vacation in Portugal. Reading this information will save you hours of research on your own. Of course, I am always here to chat when you are ready to plan any autism friendly vacation for your family.

Plan an Autism Friendly Vacation in Portugal

Portugal’s Size

Portugal may be a small country. However, you should still keep in mind that it does take time to go from destination to destination. So, you won’t be able to pack everything into one trip if you want your vacation in Portugal to be autism friendly.

Thankfully, you can stick to one city, town, or region for your autism friendly vacation. This will make it easier for you to drive a rental car or utilize the country’s public transportation.

Accommodations in Portugal

You will obviously need a place to sleep at night while on vacation in Portugal. There are plenty of B&Bs, guest houses, and rental apartments throughout this country. You can also choose to stay in one of the many hotels.

Keep your family’s needs in mind while choosing your accommodations in Portugal. If you are unsure of which type of accommodation will be best for your family, I can help as I am planning your vacation.

Autism Friendly Things to Do in Portugal

Visit Ria Formosa Nature Park

Do your kids love nature? If they do, a visit to the Ria Formosa Nature Park should be at the top of your list. This nature park is full of canals, lagoons, islands, and swamps. It is a great place to explore and check out the country’s wildlife.

You will also find a couple beaches in this nature park. Be prepared by having your swimsuits with you.

Check Out Marine Life at the Oceanário de Lisboa

This happens to be the largest aquarium in Europe. Four marine habitats are on display within the main aquarium. Lots of fish and other marine life can be seen swimming around.

During your visit, you will also want to check out the amphibians and other mammals that call this aquarium home.

Have Fun at the Beach

The best beaches in Portugal can be found in the Algarve region. This area is along the southern coast of the country. Most of the beaches in that area are perfect for swimming and sandcastle building.

If you are not down in southern Portugal, you can always head to Praia da Adraga. It is approximately forty-five minutes from Lisbon. Another closer option to Lisbon is Matosinhos Beach.

Drive Through the Douro Valley

Taking a hike through the Douro Valley isn’t the most autism friendly thing to do in Portugal. Yet, it is a region that should be appreciated if you have the time on your Portugal vacation. So, I recommend taking a drive to see the lush vineyards and the rest of the countryside.

Take a Ride on the Lisbon Tram 28

One of the best ways to explore the city of Lisbon is by taking a ride on the Lisbon Tram 28. The tram will take you past many of the sites you will want to see during your vacation.

Once your ride is complete, you can decide if any of the sites you saw are worthy of an up-close look. Then you can simply visit those and get some free time later in the day.

Visit Livraria Lello

Livraria Lello is an infamous bookstore that was used as inspiration for the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. If your kids love Harry Potter, or simply love books, you must spend some time here.

The twisting staircases and unique designs can keep everyone in your family busy. So can all the books that line the shelves.

Take a Walk in the Charming Buçaco National Forest