Portugal’s second-largest city of Porto manages to fit in almost everything that makes the country so very charming in one handy place. You can get a brilliant overview of Portugal when you spend time getting to know Porto. From lively and quaint coffee houses and an energetic and growing night scene, to intriguing vintage bookshops and countless wine cellars tucked away into the terraced hillside, Porto is certainly very captivating. It is a place ht you may never want to leave!
Ready to plan your trip? Here are some of the best things to do in Porto:
Perched high on a hilltop and overlooking the city, Porto Cathedral, known as the Sé, is one of the city’s oldest buildings. An attractive sight, the religious building was constructed between the 12th and 13th centuries. Once one of the most important Romanesque monuments in Portugal, it boasts an array of architectural styles.
Igreja de Sao Francisco
This church is an absolute must-visit when in Porto. Stunning and rich with details, the olden interiors and the grand exteriors cannot fail to impress and evoke that wow feeling. A Gothic church that dates back to the 14th century, it is most well-known for its later additions, the gorgeous 18th-century baroque details. Step inside and admire the gleaming gilded carvings and soak up the serene and tranquil air.
Port Wine Tasting
A visit to Porto wouldn’t be complete without a stop to sample the city’s most notable export, port wine. There are many wine cellars scattered throughout Porto, some serving gourmet food and / or offering insights into the tasty wine’s production. Don’t miss trying port when in Porto!
Sao Bento Railway Station
Sao Bento Railway Station was built on the site of an old Benedictine Abbey. An eye-caching building, you’ll notice influences from the French Beaux Arts style of architecture. Inside, detailed hand-painted tiles depict Porto’s past. It’s a very beautiful sight, and one that is very interesting too.
The UNESCO-protected district of Ribeira is a lovely part of the city, complete with alluring small streets and medieval architecture. Small and charming eateries line the streets, and you can wander around and soak up the atmosphere before calling in at one of the cafes for a drink and a bite to eat. The olde-worlde charm is sure to invoke your senses, with the somewhat decaying buildings whispering messages from times gone by. Stroll down to the riverfront and enjoy sights such as Sao Francisco Church and the Dom Luis I Bridge. Many tourists come here, and the main streets are thronging with people. Escape the crowds and wander through the quieter back alleys for a peaceful view of the area.
FC Porto Museum
If you’re a fan of football, this is one museum that you definitely shouldn’t skip. Home to lots of soccer memorabilia from one of Europe’s top teams, you can take a sporting journey through more than 120 years, reliving both the team’s victories and defeats. See the kits, learn about the players, enjoy the highlights, and more!
Still debating a trip? Other things to do in Porto include watching the sun go down from Foz do Douro, lapping up the atmosphere at the lively fresh market of Mercado do Bolhao, enjoying the harmonies at Casa de Musica, and admiring the views from the top of the Torre dos Clerigos.