Good weather, delicious wine, beautifully decorated historic buildings and everything within walking distance. Porto is a top destination for a city trip: whether with friends, lover or family. Porto is the place to be.
You should definitely put these 10 things on your list:
Azulejos in the old city center
The historic churches and the Porto railway station are true works of art because of the azulejos, the beautiful blue and white decorated tiles. These azulejos show the rich history and other important cultural aspects of Portugal. It is just one of the reasons that Porto’s city center is on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
These gems are not to be missed:
- São Bento railway station
- Igreja de Santo Ildefonso
- Capela das Almas
- Igreja do Carmo
5. Treat yourself to Pastel de Nata at Majestic Café
Enjoy Portugal’s most famous pastry in one of the most beautiful cafes in the world. The Art Niveau decoration inside the Majestic café has been stealing the show since 1921. Can you imagine how many stories these walls have heard. What’s yours? Share it over coffee, order a Pastel de Nata and enjoy the view. This hotspot can get quite crowded, so don’t be surprised if you need to wait in line to be seated.
6. Harry Potter vibes in Livraria Lello
This century-old bookshop has become one of the most famous attractions in Porto thanks to J.K. Rowling. Rumor has it that it was an inspiration for the Harry Potter author, who lived in Porto for a few years. When you step into Lello it is easy to imagine another world where magic comes to life. Popularity, however, has a downside: a queue and a 5 euro entrance fee. Outside the high season/weekends a visit to this beautiful bookstore remains a must.
7. Visit a Port house in Gaia
When in Porto, you need to taste some Port – wehen you are 18+ 😉 . Tawny, Ruby, white port….all delicious. Be sure to visit one of the dozens of Port houses on the other side of the river, in Vila Nova de Gaia. Wander through the dark corridors of world-famous Port houses and finish the tour with a delicious tasting, where you can taste not only the familiar 3, but also a very old port. And yes, they do get better with age. Affordable, informative and it gives you an insight into the rich history of one of Portugal’s most important export products.
8. Enjoy the view from the Louis I bridge
This iconic bridge may look somewhat familiar to you. In fact, this metal structure is related to another world-famous metal tower in Europe. Designer Théophile Seyrig was an associate of Gustave Eiffel, the engineer of the Eiffel Tower. The bridge can be crossed by metro, foot, bike and by car. From the upper deck you have a beautiful view of the city and the Doura from a height of 60m.
9. Go on a street art scavenger hunt
What many people don’t know is that Porto, in addition to having beautiful Azulejos and Art Niveau also has a lot of colorful street art to discover. So keep your eyes open. My favorite piece can be found in Vila Nova de Gaia: the Half-Rabbit by artist Bordalo II. A giant 3D rabbit made out of found objects and trash. Half of the artwork is deliberately left unpainted, so you can still clearly see the raw materials.
10. Having a drink at the Cais da Ribeira
Enjoy a drink and tapas on a sunny terrace on the Cais da Ribeira. One of the most beautiful parts of Porto because of the backdrop of colorful houses. Add a little sunshine, what more could you want 😉 !