Porto travel guide
Monuments and culture - Here you can learn more about the Luis I Bridge, the Sé do Porto Cathedral or the famous Livraria Lello bookstore.
Accommodation - Are you looking for luxury accommodation with a swimming pool, an apartment right in the city center or as close as possible to the football stadium? You can find out our recommendations in the article.
Food and drink - Of course, port wine is in the first place, and you will also learn, for example, what kind of sandwich the locals love.
Practical advice - Are you going to the cellar, on a cruise ship or even to the beach? Read our tips.
Weather - When does the sun shine most in Porto? Conversely, when does it rain? What about ocean water temperature?
Famous people - Did you know, for example, that the famous J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books, spent part of her life in Porto and was inspired by the city?
AI poem - What has artificial intelligence invented for us about the city of Porto and port wine?
Porto, the second largest city in Portugal, is located in the northwest of the country at the mouth of the Douro River into the Atlantic Ocean. It is the capital of the Porto region of the same name.
Founded by Roman settlers in the 4th century BC, Porto became an important commercial center and port for the Port wine trade. Its historic center, Ribeira, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is famous for its narrow winding streets, ancient houses and impressive bridges that connect both sides of the Douro River.
Porto is famous for its wine cellars, where the famous port wine is made. Visitors can tour the cellars, taste different types of port wine and learn more about its production and history. The city also hosts wine festivals and events.
The architecture in Porto is diverse, from ancient churches and cathedrals to baroque and renaissance palaces. The most famous building is the Cathedral of Sé do Porto, which combines different architectural styles. Another important monument is the São Bento railway station with beautiful ceramic decorations on its walls.
Porto has a Mediterranean climate. Dry, warm summers reign here. In contrast, winters here are mild but rainy. The average annual rainfall ranks Porto among the rainiest cities in Europe. However, the greatest amount of precipitation falls here in the winter months. At any other time, you will definitely be satisfied with your visit to Porto. The temperatures here remain pleasant until November, when the average temperature is around 17 degrees.
Porto is home to the famous football club FC Porto, which is one of the most successful Portuguese football teams. Their stadium, Estádio do Dragão (Dragon Stadium), can hold over 50,000 fans.
In Porto, lovers of culinary specialties will also find something to do, which includes fresh fish and seafood such as bacalhau (dried cod), sardines, shrimp or hake, as well as delicious desserts such as the famous traditional dessert "pastel de nata" or queijada.
With its rich history, architecture, wine and culture, Porto offers unforgettable experiences to visitors who come here to discover its beauties…
Sé do Porto Cathedral - the most important church in Porto, built in the Romanesque style. Construction began around 1100 and was completed roughly 200 years later. It is located in the historic center of the city. From the top of the tower you can enjoy breathtaking views of the city.
Luís I Bridge - an impressive bridge that connects both sides of the Douro River. This iron arched two-story bridge was built in the second half of the 19th century. It is the most important and most photographed symbol of the city and offers an amazing view of Porto and its surroundings. It measures almost 400 m in length and 45 m in height.
São Bento Train Station - a beautiful historic building in the center of the city, decorated with ceramic tiles and frescoes, offers an unforgettable experience for architecture lovers. The building was built at the beginning of the 20th century on the site of the original Benedictine monastery.
Church of St. Franciscan Church (Igreja de São Francisco) - a beautiful baroque building located in the historic district of Ribeira. One of the most important monuments in Porto offers breathtaking works of art. The interiors are decorated with gilded wood carvings – they used around 300 kg of real gold for the rich gilding.
Livraria Lello - one of the oldest and most beautiful bookstores in Europe (operating since 1881). It is visited by lovers of literature and architecture from all over the world. At first glance, the staircase from the ground floor to the second floor attracts attention.
Casa da Música - a modern concert hall, completed in 2005. This important cultural institution hosts various concerts and festivals. For example, last year (2022) during the Summer Festival (O festival Verão) they played 87 concerts of various genres here during the summer.
Serralves Park - a beautiful park located on the outskirts of the city. It offers greenery, works of art and unforgettable experiences for visitors of all ages in one place.
Maison Albar Hotels Le Monumental Palace is rightfully among the most luxurious hotels in Porto, offering in addition to 2 restaurants and a bar, an indoor pool and a wellness center.
Pestana Douro Riverside offers peaceful accommodation on the banks of the Douro River near the Ponte do Freixo bridge.
If you prefer to stay in an apartment with your own kitchen, Porto Old Town - Tourism Apartments can be found right in the historic center of the city.
Football fans will surely like to stay near the Estadio do Dragão stadium - for example in the Charming Antas House, which offers rooms or apartments with breakfast. Or then in cheaper accommodation 800 m from stadium, the Casa dragão.
Those looking for quality and cheap accommodation will certainly like Residência Céu Azul near the city center.
For a complete offer of accommodation in Porto, we recommend using A-HOTEL.com or Booking.com.
Unlike other destinations where we start with food, Porto certainly deserves to start with the local most famous drink, Port wine. Port is made from grapes grown in the area around the Douro River. Semi-fermented wine is mixed with brandy and left to mature in oak barrels. The final percentage of alcohol varies between 19 and 22 percent. Port wine is divided into white and red, while red wine is divided into tawny and ruby according to the time of maturation in barrels. When visiting Porto, be sure to take the time to visit one of the wine cellars that offer tastings and introduce you to the history of wine.
Tripas à moda do Porto – this dish has the name of the city right in its name. It is a tripe and white bean dish that the locals supposedly invented in the 14th century during the siege of Lisbon by the Castilians. The people of Porto broke through the naval blockade and imported all the meat they could get to the Lisbons. Only the entrails were left in Porto itself, from which they had to cook themselves.
Francesinha – a large meaty sandwich originating from Porto. It is a popular dish among locals and tourists alike. You can find it on the menu in restaurants all over the city. It consists of several layers of slices of meat, often beef, pork and chicken, separated by slices of cheese and ham. The sandwich is then wrapped, baked in the oven and covered with a thick sauce made from tomatoes, beer, chili and other ingredients. Franchesinha is usually served with fries or various types of potato side dishes.
Super Bock - in addition to port wine, beer is also produced in Port - the popular Super Bock is a light beer with a high alcohol content.
The airport is connected to the city center by buses and the metro. The city is well connected by public transport, including metro, trams, buses. You can easily get to different parts of the city by metro, trams are ideal for exploring the historic center. Public transport is well organized and not expensive. You can buy individual tickets or a 24-hour metro and bus ticket for approx. 6.50 Euro.
When visiting Porto, be sure to take a walk along the famous Dom Luís I Bridge. This two-story iron bridge offers stunning views of the city and the Douro River.
Prepare comfortable shoes for the walk, because Porto lies in a hilly landscape and the streets are sometimes steep.
Don't miss a visit to a wine cellar with tasting or a cruise along the Douro River. Some companies sell a boat ride together with a visit to the cellar.
If you want to cool off in the waves of the Atlantic Ocean after a day of walking around the city, you can go to the city's Matosinhos beach or drive further afield to Castelo de Queijo.
The climate in Porto is mild and the weather is strongly influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. Thanks to the Atlantic Ocean, Porto has pleasant weather all year round. The temperature rarely drops below 10°C. Air temperatures are pleasant even in summer, when they are usually around 24-25 °C.
In the northern part of Portugal, it rains more often than in the southern part of the country, so it is better to pack an umbrella during the winter months.
From spring to autumn, visitors to Porto will be greeted by pleasant sunny weather, but the water in the ocean is not so pleasant. The water reaches its highest temperature in September and October, a mere 19°C. In winter, lovers of cellars and port wine, who don't mind a bit of rain, head to Porto.
Dom Luís I (1838 - 1889) - King of Portugal who ruled from 1861-1889. He had a great influence on the development of Porto. During his reign, they built the iconic Dom Luís I iron bridge, which connects the city to the part of Vila Nova de Gaia where the famous port cellars are located.
António de Oliveira Salazar (1889 - 1970) - Portuguese politician, Prime Minister of the country in 1932-1968. Born near Porto, Salazar had a significant influence on Portugal's political scene, including the development of Porto.
J.K. Rowling (1965) - Famous British writer, author of the Harry Potter book series. She spent part of her life in Porto. Some parts of the city and its atmosphere inspired her work.
Almeida Garrett (1799 - 1854) - Portuguese poet, playwright and politician. He is considered one of the most important Portuguese writers ever. He became famous for his works reflecting Portuguese culture and traditions.
Porto, city of stone and ancient stories,
Where history mixes with rumors and dreams in their hearts.
The streets are narrow, stone, with crooked steps,
He guides you along magical paths and oblivion.
Port houses line up colorfully on the banks of the Douro,
And the roofs touch the horizon as if they want to talk to it.
Bridges rise above the stream, connecting the banks together,
And in their flash, the beauty of the city of leisure is reflected.
Where port wine ages in dark cellars,
Time stops, stories are born, memories leave traces.
Where the crystal bottle opens and the fragrance is released,
The taste is sweet and rich, melts gently and boldly on the tongue.
There in Porto, where people meet with laughter,
They sing and dance, get drunk on life to the fullest.
The aroma of coffee and fresh pastries wafts through cafes,
And in cathedrals, prayers float, in hearts they leave peace.
AI invented this poem about port wine
In the Douro hills the vineyards stretch,
Where the sun meets and the storm threatens,
Port wine is born there, how a miracle is created,
There is a secret in every grape.
Fingers move carefully along the vine,
Pickers gather the grapes lovingly,
Each grape is a treasure, like a stone in a vine,
And looking forward to working out what comes next.
Crushed grapes trampled in a vat,
They are poured into barrels with careful care,
There they meet raisins with hidden power,
And the dance begins, as in magical hospitality.
Gistification takes place, fermentation starts,
The yeast works and the sugar turns into alcohol,
Fragrant essences materialize, riot in wine,
Port wine lights up like stars in the sky.
Port wine is stored in wooden barrels,
And there it matures, like a tale old and wise,
Year after year it adjusts its taste and smell,
When he finally wakes up, like a dream dreamed.
Port wine, so sweet and surprisingly deep,
A taste that blooms on the tongue and reveals secrets,
In every bottle hides life and love mighty,
A wine with a history that appeals to the heart and mind.
So let's celebrate the creation of port wine, as a true gem,
Born of effort, care and skill infinite,
As a tribute to the Douro vineyards that shine with their beauty,
Let port wine continue in the stories of excellent and rare.