Today in the Portuguese city of Porto, we immersed ourselves in the rich heritage of the world’s oldest wine region, famous for its port wine. We were offered three different tour options to begin our exploration.

The first was a visit to the nineteenth-century Stock Exchange Palace and the neighboring St. Francis Church, which is covered from floor to ceiling in gilded wood decoration, reflecting the wealth of Portugal’s maritime empire.

The second option was a tour of the Clerigos Tower, a Baroque bell tower which has been Portugal’s tallest since 1763, and the nearby Livraria Lello, a neo-Gothic bookstore that dazzled us with its ornately carved staircase, a must-visit for book and architecture lovers.

The final option was a guided walk through the Bolhao neighborhood, visiting its renowned market and City Hall before admiring the azulejo tiles at the Sao Bento Train Station. This tour concluded with a panoramic view from the Porto Cathedral’s terrace.

In the evening, we all reconvened to enjoy a multi-course dinner at the Porto Ferreira wine cellars, the only port wine company that has remained in Portuguese hands. We ended this gorgeous day with a wine tasting and a musical performance by the local band Retimbrar.