Porto has been on my wishlist for quite some time and a couple of weeks ago I packed my bags to explore this photogenic city & the North of Portugal. This country is one of my favorite destinations in Europe. I love the Pastel de Nata, the Port wine, the food, the beaches, the cities and the people. These are my Porto highlights and favorite discoveries in the North of Portugal!
Start your visit to Porto with a city walk and visit the Clérigos Tower, admire the beautiful Azulejos (the typical Portuguese tiles), have a glass of Port wine at one of the many lively squares and stroll through the narrow streets. Great streets to visit are: Cândido dos Reis, Galeria de Paris, Aliados Avenue and Sta. Catarina Street. Make sure to visit the Bolhão Market, the S. Bento Train Station and Café Guarany. At the Oporto Craft Market you can buy some unique souvenirs! Vista Alegre sells special tableware. The Ribeira neighbourhood is a Unesco World Heritage Site and is packed with lovely streets and shops.
Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
Eat & Drink
We had a delicious meal at Vogue Cafe, where we enjoyed a glass of Pink Port & Tonic and tried a tasty Mushroom Cappuchino with truffle and potato. Base is a great spot for drinks. Restaurant Elemento looked very good, but unfortunately we did not have enough time for a visit. Casinha Baixa do Porto is another recommendation and Pedro Limão! Zenith Brunch & Cocktails is a great spot for brunch.
Our hotel was a bit far from the city centre, but I discovered a cute little guesthouse that looked amazing: Laurear Guesthouse! I will book a room here for my next visit! It looks so cosy and is centrally located in the heart of Porto. Click HERE for the best rates at Laurear Guesthouse.
Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
What to do?
1. Climb the Arrábiba Bridge with Porto Bridge Climb! Yes this was a bit nerveracking, but the experience and the view is absolutely worth it! When you reach the top, you will drink a Port wine from a little chocolate cup (so there is no waste)! The bridge has been open for visitors since 2016. Before that time, the local youth would climb the bridge illegally…
2. Visit Cordoaria’s Garden with very special trees…
3. Go to the beach!
Port & Tonic at Barão Fladgate | Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
4. Try a Port wine tasting at Taylor’s Port Wine Cellar; one of Portugal’s oldest Port houses. After an informative tour, I would recommend having lunch or dinner at the restaurant here: Barão Fladgate. This restaurant has an amazing view over the city and the food & Port is delicious!
5. Book a boat trip on the Douro river! We tried the popular Six Bridges Cruise. During this peaceful tour you will learn more about Porto and the view from the water is stunning. Sit back and relax!
Chaves | Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
6. Go on a little road trip and visit the photogenic towns in the North. Chaves & Amarante are two must visits. Try the Pastei de Chaves!
7. Stay a night at the impressive Vidago Palace Hotel and have dinner here! We enjoyed a delicious lunch. Chef Vitor Matos has a Michelin Star. He created the menu and can be found in the kitchen a couple of days in the week. Lunch is not always available. The price for a main course is around €30,-. Click HERE for the best rates at Vidago Palace Hotel.
On the first photo: Amarante. On the 2 last photos: Chaves | Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
8. Visit Pena Park Adventure and stay at the Pena Park Hotel. Try the toboggan run, the extreme ziplines and a whole lot more! The hotel is comfortable, quiet and has a big outdoor and indoor swimming pool. There is a great restaurant not far from the hotel: O Caneiro! Loved our dinner here! Click HERE for the best rates at Pena Park Hotel.
On the first photo: Pena Park Hotel. On the last 2 photos: Vidago Palace Hotel | Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
9. And last but not least: eat as many Pastel de Nata as you possibly can! These divine, little custard tarts are soooo good! Try a Port & Tonic! This is my new favorite summer drink. Cheers!
Amarante | Porto highlights and the North of Portugal
Our flight with Tap Air Portugal from Amsterdam was a little over 2 hours.
For more information about Porto and the North of Portugal check: http://www.visitportoandnorth.travel/
Click HERE for an amazing stay in Lisbon!