A Destination Guide to Porto 

Experience the Invicta City of Porto

Portugal is a country teeming with culture, incredible architecture, delicious food, and jaw-dropping scenery. In this guide, we will be focusing on Porto, a city famous for its wine that was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.

You need local insight and expertise to explore the north of Portugal truly. Check out our guided tours from Porto to see the variety of places we like to take visitors to highlight our extraordinary food, wine, history, and scenery. If you have any questions about our region tours, please get in touch.

For now, buckle up, and we will tell you everything you need to know about Porto before your trip…

When are the best times to visit Porto?

Portugal has such a temperate climate that you could visit any time of the year! That said, here are the times of the year that most people prefer to stay.

March-May: Capture the country waking up after winter when our flora and fauna start to blossom and nature comes alive again. The temperature during this period ranges from 16 degrees centigrade (60.8°F) to 26 degrees centigrade (78.8°F), making it very comfortable for most visitors.

May to September is the best time to visit if you prefer to visit when it’s a little warmer. The nearby beaches will help you stay cool and help you catch those rays you have missed at home!

What should you pack for your trip to Porto?

We get this question a lot, so let’s go through an ideal packing list for visiting Porto…

  • Sunglasses and a sun hat!
  • Comfortable shoes: You'll most likely be doing a lot of walking and exploring, so it's a good idea to take care of your feet.
  • Sandals: In the warmer months, you'll want to be able to slip on and off a pair of sandals after you've hit the beach or the pool.
  • Ear Masks and Ear Plugs: If you struggle to sleep in a new place, it's always a good idea to pack these. Porto is a bustling city, but once you leave to explore the rest of Northern Portugal, you’ll enjoy a calm and relaxing pace, so you should sleep well!
  • Swimming Costume: This one is self-explanatory!
  • Smart clothing: In Porto, the locals dress in a smart-casual style, so perhaps pack a nice summer dress or a smart shirt, trousers and dress shoes.
  • Layers: Depending on the time of year you visit, maybe pack a cardigan or jumper to keep you wrapped up in the evenings! But if you're visiting from a colder climate, you probably won't need them.

How to Get Around Porto

Porto is a bustling city, which is ideal because there are plenty of transport links for you. You can travel around Porto either by bus, on foot or on the metro.

The city’s transportation system is designed for the ease of use of tourists. Whether it’s the tram, metro or bus, they are relatively inexpensive, convenient and take you to the most popular tourist destinations.

How much should you budget for your visit to Porto?

One of the most important things to consider when planning your holiday is your budget. Luckily, Porto is one of the least expensive cities in Europe and one of the best value-for-money city breaks you can get!

We recommend that your accommodation budget be around £50 ($55) per night, although some accommodation prices can be as low as £15 ($16.50).

Make sure to have a total budget of around £100 ($111) a day; this will cover you for attractions and grabbing a bite to eat!

Make Sure to See the Sights in Porto

Porto is a classic, historic Mediterranean city with cobblestone streets, quaint coffee shops, winding paths and plenty of history.

Here are some things you can’t miss when visiting Porto…

  • Explore the historic centre of Porto – the city was once an outpost of the Roman Empire, so it has a long history! The centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Cais da Ribeira – Porto’s riverside area is colourful, full of life and packed with great places to eat, drink, and shop 
  • Luís I Bridge – designed by German engineer Théophile Seyrig in 1886, this enormous bridge is one of the city’s most recognizable landmarks
  • Porto Cathedral – Located in the oldest section of the city, this imposing cathedral has survived since the 12th century
  • Parque de Cidade – the largest park in Portugal, this expanse of green space is the ideal place to escape the city’s bustle and enjoy a picnic
  • The Douro River – take a scenic boat trip along the city’s river
  • FC Porto – a great day out for young travellers, here you’ll learn all about the most successful team in Portuguese football
  • Livraria Lello – located on Rua das Carmelitas, this is one of the world’s most beautiful bookshops; a must-visit for bibliophiles

Of Course, Try the Wine

Porto is world-renowned for its Port Wine, also known as vinho de Porto. It’s a sweet, fortified red wine that pairs well with cheese, chocolate, pickles, and olives.

Make sure to plan a relaxed wine and cheese evening to experience one of our best and most beloved regional specialities!

(Join our Porto Private Tour to enjoy a wine tasting in a traditional cellar bar.)

Take a Day Trip to Peneda-Gerês National Park

Fancy a trip out of the city? Take a trip to the jewel in Northern Portugal’s crown: Peneda-Gerês National Park. Explore its imposing mountain ranges, breathtaking waterfalls and hiking trails.

For the best experience in this beautiful spot, look at our Gêres Private Tour, which includes food tasting and a ride in a horse-drawn carriage!

Where To Eat in Porto

If you’ve ever had the privilege of trying Portuguese cuisine, you’ll know it’s something truly special. There’s plenty to choose from, whether it’s Pastéis de Nata (Portuguese Custard Tarts) or Arroz de Pato (duck rice).

Here are two restaurants to get you started when in Porto…

Taberna Dos Mercadores

Le Monument Restaurant

Taberna Dos Mercadores is a classic Portuguese restaurant that proves it doesn’t always have to be quality versus quantity. Sometimes you can have both!

Relax in their laid-back setting and browse their extensive wine range, which decorates the walls. If you’re unsure what to go for food-wise: we recommend our regional dish, the “Arouquesa” meat pot.

Check out their Instagram!

If you want a fine dining experience, then Le Monument Restaurant is your place in Porto. This Michelin-starred restaurant that specializes in contemporary Mediterranean cuisine is, predictably, pricey, but it’s certainly worth it for the experience!

Make sure you try their raw seabass with horseradish and dill, and – for the vegetarians – you mustn’t miss their green asparagus from Guimarães scented with mint.

Check out their Instagram!

 

For a truly local experience, check out our all-inclusive Porto Private Tour.

On this tour, we will try Porto wine in our very own wine caves and enjoy a delightful traditional lunch.

You’ll leave having embraced our food, wine, and culture all while enjoying the views of Porto.

 

There you have it. We hope you’ve found this guide helpful for your break to Porto. If you want to learn more about the tours we offer, take a look at our Porto City Tours, and if you have any questions, please get in touch.

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Join Your Tours Portugal for a day trip to Portugal's northern capital, Porto. One of Europe's most beautiful cities, Porto offers fantastic culture and cuisine!

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