Explore the historic streets, sip on port wine, and marvel at the beauty of Porto. Follow our travel tips for an unforgettable three-day trip to this stunning city.
What to See in Porto
Porto, Portugal’s second-largest city, is a city full of history, culture, and charm. The city’s narrow cobbled streets, colorful buildings, and stunning architecture make it a must-visit destination in Europe. Here are some of the most important places to visit during your trip:
- Ribeira: This is Porto’s oldest and most picturesque neighborhood. Stroll along the riverfront, admire the colorful buildings, and soak up the atmosphere of this historic district.
- Clerigos Tower: This baroque bell tower is one of the most iconic landmarks in Porto. Climb to the top for stunning views of the city.
- Livraria Lello: This beautiful bookstore is said to have inspired J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. Admire the stunning stained glass ceiling and the impressive book collection.
- São Bento Railway Station: This historic train station is known for its beautiful azulejo tiles. Take a few minutes to admire the intricate designs and learn about the station’s history.
- Port Wine Cellars: No trip to Porto is complete without trying the city’s famous port wine. Visit one of the many wine cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia for a tasting and to learn about the history of port wine production.
Routes in Porto
Exploring Porto on foot is the best way to soak up the city’s atmosphere and discover its hidden gems. Here are three suggested routes to help you make the most of your time in Porto:
- Ribeira and Historic Center: Start your day in Ribeira and stroll along the riverfront. Cross the Ponte de Dom Luis I bridge to Vila Nova de Gaia and visit a port wine cellar. In the afternoon, explore the historic center of Porto and visit the Clerigos Tower and Livraria Lello.
- Foz do Douro and Matosinhos: Head west to Foz do Douro, the city’s upscale beachfront neighborhood. Stroll along the promenade and enjoy the sea views. In the afternoon, take the metro to Matosinhos and enjoy some of the best seafood in Porto.
- Cedofeita and Boavista: Explore the trendy neighborhood of Cedofeita and discover its many boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. In the afternoon, head to Boavista and visit the Casa da Musica and the Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art.
Where to Sleep in Porto
Porto offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit all budgets and preferences. Here are some of the best places to stay:
- Hotel Infante Sagres: This historic hotel is located in the heart of Porto and offers luxurious rooms and excellent service.
- The Yeatman: This five-star hotel is located in Vila Nova de Gaia and offers stunning views of Porto and the Douro River. It also has an extensive wine cellar and offers wine tastings.
- Porto A.S. 1829 Hotel: This boutique hotel is located in Ribeira and offers beautifully decorated rooms and a rooftop terrace with panoramic views of the city.
- Tattva Design Hostel: This budget-friendly hostel is located in Cedofeita and offers stylish and comfortable dormitory and private rooms.
Where to Eat in Porto
Porto is a foodie’s paradise, with a wide range of restaurants serving traditional Portuguese dishes and international cuisine. Here are some of the best places to eat:
- PortoBello Rooftop Restaurant: This rooftop restaurant offers stunning views of Porto and serves delicious Portuguese cuisine with a modern twist.
- Bacalhau: This cozy restaurant in Cedofeita specializes in bacalhau, or salt cod, and serves it in a variety of delicious ways.
- Casa de Pasto da Palmeira: This traditional Portuguese restaurant is located in Foz do Douro and serves hearty, homestyle dishes.
- Cantina 32: This trendy restaurant in the historic center of Porto serves creative and innovative dishes using local ingredients.
Free Tours in Porto
Exploring Porto with a knowledgeable local guide is a great way to learn about the city’s history and culture. Here are some free walking tours to consider:
- Porto Free Walking Tour: This three-hour walking tour covers the historic center of Porto and includes stops at many of the city’s most important landmarks.
- Port Wine Free Walking Tour: This two-hour walking tour explores the wine cellars of Vila Nova de Gaia and includes a port wine tasting.
- Foz do Douro Free Walking Tour: This two-hour walking tour explores the beachfront neighborhood of Foz do Douro and includes stops at some of the city’s best seafood restaurants.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best time of year to visit Porto?
The best time to visit Porto is during the spring (April to June) or fall (September to November) when the weather is mild and the crowds are smaller.
Do I need a visa to visit Porto?
If you are a citizen of the European Union or the United States, you do not need a visa to visit Porto for up to 90 days.
Is it safe to visit Porto?
Porto is a safe city for travelers, but as with any destination, it’s important to take basic safety precautions, such as keeping an eye on your belongings and avoiding unlit areas at night.
What is the currency in Porto?
The currency in Porto is the euro.
How do I get around Porto?
The best way to get around Porto is on foot or by public transportation. The city has an extensive network of buses, trams, and metro lines, and taxis are also readily available.
Can I visit port wine cellars with children?
Most port wine cellars do not allow children under the age of 18 on the tours, but some offer non-alcoholic options for children.
Is tipping expected in Porto?
Tipping is not expected in Porto, but it is common to round up the bill at restaurants and to leave a small tip for good service.
What should I wear in Porto?
Porto is a relatively casual city, and it’s fine to dress in comfortable, casual clothing. However, if you plan to visit a fancy restaurant or attend a cultural event, it’s a good idea to dress up a bit.
With its rich history, stunning architecture, delicious food, and warm hospitality, Porto is a city that should not be missed. We hope our travel tips have inspired you to plan your own three-day trip to this beautiful city.
For more information about Porto and its many attractions, visit the official tourism website of the city of Porto at https://www.visitporto.travel/en.