Welcome to our ultimate Porto travel guide for 2023!

Porto is the second-largest city in Portugal and one of the oldest cities in Europe. It’s also home to one of the best food scenes in Europe, thanks to an abundance of fresh seafood and produces from its surrounding regions, not to mention some pretty good wine!

If you’re looking for a new city to explore, Porto is definitely worth considering, and it’s even more magical when you first learn about its history and culture.

Getting to Porto

porto food tours

When embarking on your Porto adventure, planning your journey and choosing the most convenient transportation option to reach this charming Portuguese city is essential. Whether you’re arriving from a nearby European destination or flying in from across the globe, Porto offers a range of transportation choices to suit your needs.

By Air:

  • Porto is home to Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (OPO), which is well-connected to major European cities and international destinations.
  • Airlines like TAP Air Portugal, Ryanair, and EasyJet frequently operate flights to Porto.
  • Upon arrival at the airport, you’ll find efficient ground transportation options, including taxis and shuttle services, making it easy to reach the city center.

By Train:

  • If you’re traveling within Europe, taking the train to Porto can be a scenic and comfortable option.
  • The city’s main train station, São Bento Railway Station, is a beautiful historic landmark in itself and provides easy access to Porto’s downtown area.
  • Trains connect Porto to other Portuguese cities like Lisbon and Faro, as well as international destinations such as Madrid.

By Bus:

  • Long-distance buses operated by companies like Rede Expressos and FlixBus connect Porto to various cities in Portugal and neighboring countries.
  • Bus travel can be cost-effective for travelers on a budget, offering comfortable seating and scenic routes.

Why should I visit Porto?

The biggest tourist attractions may be explored on foot, via the metro, or through applications. Trams, trains, and tourist buses may take you across Porto. The traffic is heavy. It is only worthwhile to hire a vehicle if you want to go farther and see other cities in the area.

Porto is a vibrant city with a rich history. It’s also one of the most beautiful cities in Portugal and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The historic center is full of narrow cobblestone streets lined with traditional shops and restaurants, all set against scenic hillsides overlooking the Douro River.

Porto is a great starting point for exploring Portugal: from here, you can take day trips to explore the surrounding area or head further south towards Lisbon or Coimbra (the capital city). Suppose you want to experience this amazing country but don’t have much time.

In that case, Porto makes for an excellent destination as it has so much to offer without being too big or crowded like some other places might be during the summer holidays!


Where to stay in Porto

porto hotels

Overview of Porto’s Neighborhoods

When planning your stay in Porto, understanding the city’s neighborhoods can make a significant difference in your overall experience. Each neighborhood has its unique charm and appeal, catering to different preferences and budgets. In this section of the Porto Travel Guide, we’ll explore some of the city’s prominent neighborhoods to help you choose the perfect location for your stay.

  1. Ribeira:
    • Ribeira is Porto’s historic heart and a UNESCO World Heritage site located along the Douro River.
    • Charming narrow streets, colorful buildings, and stunning riverfront views define this area.
    • Ideal for travelers who want to be close to the city’s main attractions, including the Dom Luís I Bridge and Ribeira Square.
  2. Baixa (Downtown):
    • Baixa is the city center and a hub of activity with numerous shops, restaurants, and historic landmarks.
    • Staying in Baixa provides easy access to São Bento Railway Station and Avenida dos Aliados.
    • A great choice for those who enjoy a vibrant atmosphere and convenience.
  3. Foz do Douro:
    • Located west of the city center, Foz do Douro offers a more relaxed and upscale ambiance.
    • This area boasts beautiful beaches, oceanfront dining, and the scenic Passeio Alegre Gardens.
    • Perfect for travelers seeking a tranquil and luxurious escape.
  4. Boavista:
    • Boavista is known for its modernity and is home to several cultural attractions.
    • The area features the Serralves Museum, Casa da Música, and lush gardens.
    • Ideal for art and culture enthusiasts looking for upscale accommodation.

Click here and book your Hotel in Porto at the best price

What’s the best time to visit Porto?

Porto is a great destination all year round, but you’ll want to avoid the hottest months of July and August if you don’t want your trip ruined by heatstroke.

Porto’s climate is influenced by its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, which helps keep temperatures relatively mild throughout the year. The average temperature in Porto during the summer months (June through September) hovers around 29 degrees Celsius (73 F). During winter (December through February), temperatures drop to around 5 degrees Celsius (68 F).

Exploring Porto’s Top Attractions

Porto, Portugal’s second-largest city, is a treasure trove of cultural, historical, and architectural wonders. As you embark on your journey through this charming city, the Porto Travel Guide invites you to discover its top attractions that showcase the essence of Porto’s beauty and heritage.

  1. Ribeira District: This historic district along the Douro River is a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its colorful buildings, narrow winding streets, and vibrant atmosphere. It’s a perfect place for a leisurely stroll, offering charming cafes, restaurants, and stunning views of the river.
  2. Livaria Lello: Often considered one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world, Livraria Lello is a neo-Gothic gem that has inspired authors like J.K. Rowling. Its ornate architecture and stunning interior make it a must-visit for book lovers and architecture enthusiasts.
  3. São Bento Railway Station: This historic train station is famous for its exquisite azulejo tilework that tells the story of Portugal. Even if you’re not catching a train, it’s worth a visit to admire the intricate tile art and the grandeur of the station.
  4. Porto Cathedral (Sé Catedral): Dating back to the 12th century, Porto Cathedral is an iconic landmark with a mix of architectural styles, including Romanesque and Baroque. Visitors can explore its interior and enjoy panoramic views of the city from its terrace. Book your tickets to Porto Cathedral online!
  5. Douro River Cruise: Exploring Porto by taking a boat tour along the Douro River is a fantastic way to see the city from a different perspective. You’ll pass under historic bridges, see the colorful Ribeira district from the water, and get a glimpse of the wine cellars on the opposite bank in Vila Nova de Gaia.

Where to eat out in Porto

Porto has a wide range of restaurants, from traditional Portuguese to international cuisine. Some of the best restaurants in Porto are listed below:

  • Traditional Portuguese: Pedro Limão
  • Seafood: Loja das Conservas
  • Steakhouse: Muu Steakhouse (Rua do Almada 149A)

Read more: 7 Must-Try Restaurants in Porto

What are the best things to do while visiting Porto?

If you’re looking for a new city to explore, the Portuguese city of Porto is a must!

Porto is a beautiful city that offers a lot to tourists. It’s the second-largest city in Portugal and has been named one of the top ten cities in Europe. Porto is also known for its excellent food, which can be found at many restaurants throughout the city.

There are many things to see in Porto, including various museums. Ribeira Square, Santa Catarina Church, São Francisco Church, and Convent. Clerigos Tower, Sao Bento Train Station (where passengers from Lisbon arrive), Port Wine cellars nearby Gaia neighborhood, where you’ll find some amazing wineries like Sandeman & Ferreira Ramos Pinto & Cia Lda.

Carlos Silva architects built Casa da Musica concert hall with an unusual design made out of metal frames covered with glass panels that let natural light into this modern structure which hosts concerts every day except Mondays when they’re closed, so don’t forget yours before heading there!

Porto Travel Guide: Conclusion!

Porto is a city that everyone can enjoy. Whether you’re looking for a new place to explore or want to enjoy the attractions of Europe, this Portuguese city has something for everyone!