Study Abroad in Portugal

A Guide To

Studying Abroad in Portugal


18 Study Abroad Programs in Portugal


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Voyager Europe, offered by Voyager Study Abroad, is a unique study abroad program. Our students experience an intimate real-world learning experience that immerses them in the art, history and culture of some European countries. In summer 2017, we visit five countries – Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, and Germany as well as important European cities including Paris, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon, F...


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The Center for Study Abroad has been offering international students affordable study abroad programs in countries all over the world. Travel and study in Portugal and learn the native language by enrolling at one of the prestigious universities. This program includes courses such as Culinary Arts, Culture, Intensive Language, and more.


Spend a semester in one of the Europes's most historically important cities--Lisbon! Students will enjoy all the culture that the Portuguese capital has to offer, from delicious food, to amazing music, art, and nightlife, to impressive historic sites. This program, designed by the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth (UMass in Lisbon) offers a unique mixture of American and Portuguese unive...


Spend the summer gaining valuable knowledge through the Council on International Educational Exchange's study abroad program in Portugal. Take on language and culture related fields including literature, music, sociology, and other courses. Study at a local university and become familiar with Portuguese history, culture, and current events of the country. Experience city-based learning and soci...


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Seamester offers unique educational voyages where students learn some of the most important lessons beyond academics: teamwork, hard work, and personal responsibility. For more than 40 years, we have consistently delivered outstanding educational experiences for students. We design our programs to provide engaging learning experiences with real outcomes in ways that are impossible to replicate ...


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Study in Portugal and learn more about the country's culture, language, and traditions through programs offered by Languages Abroad. These well-rounded educational programs are available throughout the year. Students may choose between taking up Standard or Intensive lessons. Both of which include socio-cultural activities, language proficiency certificates, and undergraduate credits allotment


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Who We Are Sea Education Association (SEA) is an internationally recognized leader in undergraduate ocean education. For nearly 45 years and over one million nautical miles sailed, we have equipped students with the tools to become environmentally literate leaders who are prepared to address the defining issue of the twenty-first century: the human impact on the environment. Our fully accre...


Participants have the chance to learn Portuguese with AmeriSpan Study Abroad in Portugal. Located specifically in the dynamic city of Lisbon, students can take up courses on Culture and Portuguese, attend classes for three hours each day, and even live with a local family where they will witness the daily lives of an average Portuguese family.


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Cabo da Roca International English School (CIES) offers 3 years of British Degree in Business from University of Worcester, UK. Cabo da Roca International English School’s mission is to contribute to the needs of a diverse local & international learning community through excellence in teaching and support, enabling our students to achieve their individual aims. This is achieved through coll...

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Studying Abroad in Portugal

If you’re interested in studying somewhere in Europe but don’t want the over-popularity of France, Spain, or Italy…if incredible beaches and dramatic cliffs sound exciting to you … then studying abroad in Portugal is the answer. While less-talked-about than some of its other European neighbors, this country has so much to offer. You won’t be the only traveler, either – the secret about studying in Portugal is out!

Food & Culture

Ancient peoples in present-day Portugal were hunters, gatherers, and traders. The Roman Empire began to expand into the area around 210, but by the fifth century had reached its decline. Alfonso Henriques declared himself the first king of the independent nation of Portugal in 1140, and in 1386 the country established an alliance with England. Throughout the 15th and 16th centuries, Portugal focused on exploration, trade and colonization. After some political unrest and revolutions against the monarchy in the 1800s, the 1900s began with military rule until the Carnation Revolution in 1974. Portugal today is a democracy.

Portugal has a rich and diverse culture that is an indication of its long history, and you will find many references to the sea (for obvious reasons). You’ll want to check out fado music, which means “fate” and is very popular. If you are a foodie, there are a few areas you’ll want to visit, especially Vila Nova de Gaia just south of the city of Porto — here is where port wine was first developed back in 1600. It is a pretty drive through the Douro Valley, and the center of the city itself is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Seafood is a staple in Portugal, especially cod and a delectable stew called caldeirada.

Portugal today retains so many of its traditions mixed in with its present-day society. Pousadas are state-operated and owned hotels, priced to fit any budget. Steeped in history, these buildings used to be old palaces, convents, or monasteries and are now a cool place for travelers to stay. (Their charm and character more than make up for the sometimes-basic amenities!) For other historical sites, visit Guimarães, where Afonso Henriques and others fought in the Battle of  São Mamede. The town of Óbidos, was one of the places Henriques drove out the Moors in the 1140’s. If your fellow travelers aren’t history buffs, no worry — both locations are breathtaking in their own right.

Things to Do

glimpse at some medieval structures, ruins, churches and other buildings, plan a trip to Évora. There are a few festival celebrations in Portugal that are fun to attend, including Carnival, Saint Martin Day, and Santos Populares.

Portugal is known for its beaches, and they won’t disappoint. You may have to share the space with other travelers, but you can find amazing views and water in Algarve, Salema, Cascais, Estoril, and honestly most places along the coast.

If you’re looking for a unique activity that you’ll probably never see anywhere else, visit the Monte area of Fuchal, Madeira, where you can ride down steep hills in wicker toboggans. They have spots for two people, so you can ride with a friend, and the drivers stand behind you to make sure you don’t get off the track.

Studying in Portugal

Most study programs in Portugal are through universities and are led by faculty at that school. There are also a few courses led by independent organizations, such as CIEE’s Language and Culture program. Many options are in Lisbon, with others in Porto, Coimbra, or other smaller cities. One of the oldest universities in Europe is here — the University of Coimbra, which opened its doors in the year 1290.

You can find college study abroad programs in Portugal during the summer, semester, or even for the entire year. In general, the academic level of classes there will probably be easier than at your home university. Courses can be in English with other American or international students, unless you choose to directly enroll in a Portuguese university. In that case, the courses will be in Portuguese with other local students. When studying in Portugal, you’ll most likely be taking courses at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa or the Universidade Lusofona de Humanidades e Tecnologias.

You have a few options for housing – either a host family, a dorm with other international students, or an apartment. If you’re looking for cultural immersion and to practice your language skills, it’s best to live with a host family. Because you are constantly speaking and hearing Portuguese, you’re quickly pushed to the next level of language proficiency. Oftentimes, when rooming with other international students who speak English, you are not challenged to speak in Portuguese. 

Portugal is an amazing country and a great place to study abroad. Get off the beaten path — go to  what was once thought to be the end of the world, Cape Sagres, or be surrounded by the cosmopolitan action and stay in Lisbon. You’ll have an experience like none other when you study abroad in Portugal.

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