Portugal Photographic Tour

Tour Intro

PORTUGAL!!! The most beautiful, interesting and important areas of the country have been selected to visit and photograph. As travel photographers we tackle many challenges from people photography, landscape, waterscape, architecture, still life, and night photography, all blending together to tell a story. You will be inspired with what you will learn. You will return home with an acquired skill in photography as well as outstanding images to tell your own story.
This is a land of castles, wine, ships, farming, and of warm, friendly people. Rolling hills, vineyards, orchards, stone walls, castles on hilltops, a tradition of song and the home of "port" wine—this is Portugal.

The itinerary takes us through the extraordinarily diverse countryside of Portugal. Your photography opportunities will abound. You will visit a fantastic range of interesting attractions from magnificent valleys to medieval castles, and graceful olive groves, enjoy the flavorful cuisine and excellent wines and cheeses of each region. The local guide, Keron Psillas, is also a photography instructor. She provides access and personal relationships through out the tour. This adds just the right compliment to the visual excitement that Portugal offers.

Cultural gems are everywhere. They include Unesco World Heritage Sites, and of course, the lively pulse of Portugal’s delightful capital, Lisbon, tops off the tour.
Although we work with an itinerary, it is subject to change when a new photo opportunity or wonderful weather and lighting conditions present themselves. Our accommodations have been chosen for being centrally located, allowing us easy access to the local color and the captivating charm of Portugal.

Tour Highlights

• Eleven nights and twelve days in this forgotten corner of Europe.
• Charming and luxurious lodging in perfectly situated Pousadas and Hotels.
• An insider’s view of Portugal from the cities to the UNESCO sites, Knights of Templar, and quaint century-old villages.
• Photograph gorgeous Lusitano horses in the Ribatejo with their owners and trainers.
• Enjoy colorful and cosmopolitan Lisbon and Porto.
• Private transportation with short distances between stays.
• Sumptuous meals with the option of the best Portuguese wines.

Tour Itinerary

September 15: Depart Home

There are overnight flights from the U.S./Canada to Lisbon, Portugal (LIS).

September 16: Lisbon

Arrive this morning or early afternoon, you will be transferred upon arrival to your accommodations. Gather (time to be announced) for a meet and greet and then off for a walk around Lisbon to get your bearings. Enjoy your welcome dinner together while listening to the dramatic and melodic FADO in your local guide’s favorite little taverna. Overnight Heritage Hotel (D) 

September 17-18: Lisbon
Lisbon Portugal

Photo By: Keron Psillas

Photo Location: Portugal


Put on your walking shoes, as today you will explore several of Lisbon’s neighborhoods, with some downtime in the middle of the day. Morning will find us up in the Bairro Alto and Baixa neighborhoods, and after a lunch break, go to Belem to visit the Jeronimos Monastery and nosh on the best Pastel Nata you’ll ever taste. Take some time to enjoy the sunset along the water before heading back to the center of Lisbon.

The next day start up high above the Alfama and work your way down through the winding streets and alleys. There is color, streetlife, architecture, trolleys, and a discovery around every corner. After a lunch break, gather to take in the sunset from one of Lisbon’s many ‘Miradouros’. (B both days)
 

September 19-20: Ourem
Lusitano Horse Classical Dress

Photo By: Keron Psillas

Photo Location: Portugal

After breakfast board your private bus and head north into the Ribatejo Province. Photograph Keron’s beloved Lusitano horses and have lunch in a local restaurant. Later, visit the sacred site of Fatima and then arrive about sunset to your 14th Century Castle on the hill at Ourem. Enjoy two nights here at a lovely Pousada, from which you will explore Medieval Portugal.

The next day the ancient Abbey of Batahla will be your first stop, then off to another UNESCO World Heritage Site, Alcobaca. You’ll be up early to see if there is fog in the valley. From our vantage point high atop our ‘mountain’, the landscapes in the morning are stunning. Overnight Pousada de Ourem (B each day)
 

September 21-23: Porto
Monastery in the Rocks, Sintra

Photo By: Keron Psillas

Photo Location: Portugal

Tomar is the third of your UNESCO sites in the center of Portugal and one that never disappoints. The history of the Knights Templar is offered in its full glory. This is the best-preserved site for the ancient order in all of Europe. After your visit, head north to Porto, arriving in time for sunset along the Douro in your Palace on the river.

Porto can be vibrant and cosmopolitan on one street with Old Portugal on the next street over. Visit the monuments, and have lots of time to wander as well. The pedestrian bridge provides a birds-eye view, and the train station is a feast for the eye with all the azulejos (distinctive blue tiles). Later, take some time at the Palacio Freixo. Then, it’s off to a very special dinner and private tour of the most important Port Cellar in Portugal. To top off your day, there will be some night shooting overlooking the entire city of Porto.

The next day, go out to the coast after some morning shooting in Porto. The seaside offers color and local fisherman, families along the piers, and a spectacular lunch spot! Afterward, for those who wish, there’ll be more time to photograph your favorite spots in Porto. Overnight Palacio Freixo (B; B, D; B)

September 24-26: Cascais - Obidos - Sintra
Ourem Queluz

Photo By: Keron Psillas

Photo Location: Portugal

Though it will be very difficult to leave our riverside Palace, head south today to discover another side of Portugal. Stop in Obidos on your way, a delightful walled village from the 12th Century. After lunch, check in to your hotel, explore the neighborhood a bit with your local guide and photograph along the way.
Stay close to home the next morning, with a two-minute walk over to the National Palace to photograph the marvelous interiors, the gardens, and the Falcons. This evening take in the charming seaside town of Cascais, after discovering a bit of coastline and Guincho beach. It’s world famous for windsurfing and kitesurfing. Enjoy dinner later at Keron’s favorite spot on the water.

The next day set out to explore Sintra with it’s fairytale castles and mysterious hidden spots. The Convento dos Capuchos, the Pena Palace, and the Regaleira are the highlights. Have lunch in the village and then afterward gather for your final dinner together in the Old Kitchen at the National Palace. It’s a stunning spot with fabulous food, the perfect ending to your Portugal adventure. Quinta da Marinha (B; B; B, D)
 

September 27: Cascais - Lisbon - Home
Cork Oaks Lusitano

Photo By: Keron Psillas

Photo Location: Portugal

Departure for home, all transfers to the Lisbon Airport (about 20 minutes away) are included. (B)

Photo Leader

Tom Bol
read more
Tom Bol

See how Tom Bol got his start at https://vimeo.com/120904640

The September 2011 Photo District News education issue, listed Tom as one of the best photo workshop instructors in the country!

Tom Bol is a freelance photographer specializing in adventure sports, nature, and travel photography. He has been photographing full time for twenty years, and teaching workshops for ten. Assignments have ranged from national ad campaigns for clothing companies to producing images for worldwide tourism clients. With a background in guiding adventure sports, Tom’s editorial assignments often result in interesting situations, including shooting from the bottom of a crevasse on Mt. McKinley, to running into a snow leopard at twenty thousand feet in the Himalayas.

Tom is a regular contributor to Digital Photo and Outdoor Photographer magazine, a contributing photographer at Canoe and Kayak magazine, and a regular speaker at tradeshows representing Nikon and Manfrotto. He was also on the list of National Geographic Adventure’s “50 of America’s Top Visionaries” for his photography.

Note from instructor:

I think workshops are a fantastic way to develop as a photographer, both technically and artistically, and have a lot of fun during the process. On these workshops I’m available at anytime to offer advice and critique of images. I will offer formal classes as well as field demonstrations on technique and creative choices in image making. For those that are interested, we will explore flash technique and light painting. I will also provide participants with “workshop notes”, excerpts from magazine articles I have written on a variety of topics.

I really enjoy working with participants one on one, being able to focus on specific areas with individual’s results in faster, more effective learning. What I enjoy most on workshops is seeing how participants can improve their skills in such a short time.

Having been to numerous workshops over the past 5 years, Tom has to be my favorite instructor. With Tom you are guaranteed 3 things - an in-depth knowledge of photography and lighting with an ability and desire to share this with participants, energy and lots of it, and FUN! Tom loves spending time with his students and getting to know each one, as to maximize the workshop for each person. A workshop with Tom is time well spent.

B. Peterson

Pricing and Details

US Dollars based upon minimum of 10 paying participants. There is a small group surcharge of $700 if 8-9 paying participants. All our program prices are based on double occupancy unless noted in exceptions.

Single rooms are subject to availability. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested, or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, you will be required to pay the supplement.

Testimonials

Having been to numerous workshops over the past 5 years, Tom has to be my favorite instructor. With Tom you are guaranteed 3 things - an in-depth knowledge of photography and lighting with an ability and desire to share this with participants, energy and lots of it, and FUN! Tom loves spending time with his students and getting to know each one, as to maximize the workshop for each person. A workshop with Tom is time well spent.

B. Peterson

Tom Bol is really inspiring and has great positive energy. As a teacher, he really wants you to learn and succeed. I really appreciate his selfless desire to help you improve. His enthusiasm is contagious.

L. Barcheck

Additional Notes

The September 2011 Photo District News education issue, listed Tom as one of the best photo workshop instructors in the country!
Tom Bol is a freelance photographer specializing in adventure sports, nature, and travel photography. He has been photographing full time for twenty years, and teaching workshops for ten. Assignments have ranged from national ad campaigns for clothing companies to producing images for worldwide tourism clients. With a background in guiding adventure sports, Tom’s editorial assignments often result in interesting situations, including shooting from the bottom of a crevasse on Mt. McKinley, to running into a snow leopard at twenty thousand feet in the Himalayas. Tom is a regular contributor to Digital Photo and Outdoor Photographer magazine, a contributing photographer at Canoe and Kayak magazine, and a regular speaker at tradeshows representing Nikon and Manfrotto. He was also on the list of National Geographic Adventure’s “50 of America’s Top Visionaries” for his photography.
Note from instructor:
I think tours are a fantastic way to develop as a photographer, both technically and artistically, and have a lot of fun during the process. I’m available at anytime to offer advice and critique of images. I will offer formal classes as well as field demonstrations on technique and creative choices in image making. For those that are interested, we will explore flash technique and light painting. I will also provide participants with “workshop notes”, excerpts from magazine articles I have written on a variety of topics.
I really enjoy working with participants one on one, being able to focus on specific areas with individual’s results in faster, more effective learning. What I enjoy most on workshops is seeing how participants can improve their skills in such a short time.

Please join tour leader Tom Bol for this incredible cultural and photographic opportunity. The emphasis of the trip is on photography, yet this is much more, one that non-photographic travelers can enjoy just as well. Days will be filled with unique photographic opportunities, in that there are so many wonderful hidden places to explore. Your leader will seek out obscure settings to visit and photograph, places you would not find on your own.
 

Terms and Conditions

Unless otherwise noted, this information applies to all tours.

Airfare

Contact Strabo Tours if you would like rates on International Airfare. Please note on your trip application form if you would like us to assist you with your airfare needs, a charge is added for this service. If making your own arrangements, it is important to discuss flight times with Strabo Tours before booking any airline tickets. This will avoid you having to pay airline cancellation penalties. Please contact Strabo Tours for destination airfare estimates, specific flight time arrivals, and departures.

The land cost includes:
  • Group transportation for tour events in the tour van.
  • Accommodations based on two people sharing a room, singles are assigned on a first come, first served basis.
  • Services of driver, English speaking cultural guide (if applicable) and photographic leader, during the tour.
  • Meals as listed in itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner).
  • Park entrance fees, day tours and excursions as shown in the itinerary.
  • Extensive pre-departure information and services.
The land cost does not include:

Domestic or International air fare; other airfare if noted in exceptions; air fare tax; airport departure tax; airport transfers; additional transfers or accommodations that may be required by those not traveling with the group; excess baggage charges; meals not included in itinerary; activities taken on your own; passport/visa expenses; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature, such as room service, laundry, beverages not included with meals, medical expenses, photographic equipment, any activities not specified in tour itinerary or listed as optional, or any items not listed in what is included; fuel surcharges; exchange rate surcharges; upon the completion of your trip, modest gratuities to the local guides and the drivers are customary; tips for meals not included in itinerary.

Fitness and Health

The majority of trips are not strenuous (see exceptions below for particular destinations) and anyone who is reasonably fit should be able to take part in most of the activities. You may experience general fatigue due to the long flights and the change in time zones. You will need to be sufficiently agile to climb in and out of the tour van and be able to carry and manage your own equipment. We will frequently hike trails ranging from easy to moderate. Some hotels do not have elevators or air conditioners.

If you have any special needs or any physical condition that you feel might prevent you from fully participating, please contact Strabo Tours with your concerns (607-756-8676).

You should also be aware that medical services or facilities might not be readily available during all or part of your trip. This could include emergency medical care, presence of physicians, or adequate medication.

Exceptions:

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

Deposits, Cancellations AND Refunds

A deposit of $750 ($500 on domestic tours) per person is required. Specific tours may require an additional deposit due to accommodation bookings or transportation requirements. If applicable these will be noted on your invoice. Payment in full is required when bookings are made less than 120 days before the departure date. Space is subject to cancellation by Strabo if payment is not received when due.

If a passenger wishes to cancel they must send notification in writing to: Strabo International Tour, Co., P.O. Box 580, Dryden, NY 13053; fax 208-545-4119. At the time we receive your notification, the following per person charges apply:

  • 91 days or more before departure: $300 cancellation fee ($150 fee on domestic tours), plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation.
  • 61-90 days before departure: $500 ($250 on domestic tours) minimum cancellation fee, plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation. Fees may range from 25% to 100% of tour costs.
  • 60 days or less before departure or anytime after departure: NO REFUND.

Refunds for services that are voluntarily not used by you cannot be made.

Insurance

Each participant must be covered by medical insurance that is valid overseas.

We strongly urge you to evaluate your risk and to take out insurance on your trip. It is vital for you to realize that if you experience a delay or find it necessary to cancel or cut short your trip for any reason, you will lose part or the entire sum you’ve invested in it (see the section “Deposits, Cancellations and Refunds” in the trip brochure).

Travel insurance helps to minimize the risk of monetary losses you would incur in the event of a delay of your departure due to weather, airline strike, missed connection, etc., your inability to travel for reasons such as illness, injury, unforeseen financial complications and other personal circumstances, or if you were required to cut your trip short for medical or any other reasons.

There are restrictions and limitations on any insurance program. For this reason, please read carefully the enclosed pamphlet, which outlines their program of trip cancellation, baggage, and medical insurance. Trained agents are available to answer your questions, so don’t hesitate to call the toll free number in their brochure. It is to your advantage to apply for insurance at the earliest possible time, so don’t delay in making a decision.

Subject to Change

Itineraries have been carefully constructed to assure participants the best each destination has to offer; however, should events arise that are beyond our control, activities and hotel arrangements are subject to change without notice. The itineraries summarize typical areas you will explore. Since there is no possible way to visit all of them, your guides will plan each day considering the interests of the group and the weather at hand. Be assured that we will make substitutions that are as similar in quality and interest as possible.

Photo Release

Strabo International Tour Company, Inc. reserves the right and permission to use photographs of individuals on tour for use in promotional and publicity purposes. We also reserve the right to use clients photographs for promotional and publicity purposes, when submitted to Strabo International Tour Company, Inc.

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