Porto Holidays - Travel guide & great deals
To visit Porto is to discover a city of authentic charm, nestled on the northwest coast of Portugal. Beyond the famous port wine, you will discover a generous local gastronomy, numerous monuments and a very specific architecture. Its small size makes it easy to visit Porto in 3 days without rushing. We have found the best places not to be missed if you are looking for something to do during your holidays in Porto.
Porto in 3 days: where to stay?
Whether you are looking for a youth hostel or a luxury hotel in Porto, you will have no problem finding accommodation in this small city. The location of the hotels in Oporto is generally very good, as most of the city can be visited on foot. However, we recommend the famous Crowne Plaza Porto, located less than a kilometre from the Casa da Musica. This five-star hotel has a spa and is ideal for a couple's day out. We also recommend Selina Porto, a youth hostel in the city centre. With simple dormitories, shared bathrooms and WIFI, it is an ideal place for the smaller budget to visit Porto in a weekend.
Get some height and visit the Clerks' Tower
In the heart of the city centre, the Tour des Clercs is an ideal first stop for anyone wishing to find their way around this small port town. From the top you can admire the most beautiful view of the city. At 76 metres high, the Clerks' Tower was, after its construction, the highest tower in Portugal and is still the highest bell tower in the country. It is also one of the most representative symbols of the city of Porto. You will still have to face the 225 steps of the tower to admire the view, which is well worth it!
Continue the tour through the Lello Bookshop
Located a stone's throw from the Clerks' Tower, at 144 rua das Carmelitas, this bookshop is worth a visit. Richly decorated with an Art Nouveau facade and a magnificent wooden staircase in its centre, the Lello Bookshop will delight book lovers or architecture enthusiasts. It was apparently a source of inspiration for J.K Rowling in the writing of the Harry Potter saga. Please note that in order to admire this incredible architecture, which makes it one of the most beautiful bookshops in the world, you will have to pay a 5 euro entrance ticket. This ticket entitles you to a voucher for books in the bookshop.
The bookshop has a large selection of books and a wide range of books to choose from.
Cover the Cathedral of Porto, also known as the Sé
Built on the highest part of the city, the Cathedral of Porto is the most important religious building in Porto. Underneath its fortress-like appearance, the cathedral has undergone numerous reconstructions, making it an architectural jewel with multiple influences. Baroque, Romanesque and Gothic in style, Porto's cathedral and its cloister are must-see places to visit during your stay in Porto
Take a stroll through the Ribeira à Porto district
This is undoubtedly the most authentic neighbourhood, which is located in the lower part of the city and goes up to the Palacio de la Bolsa. It is not for nothing that this typical neighbourhood is a UNESCO World Heritage Site! The houses here are decorated with azulejos, the small coloured ceramic squares so typical of Portuguese architecture. The Ribeira will allow you to taste the authenticity of the city and its particular atmosphere. Lose yourself in its narrow streets and let yourself be amazed by this rainbow of colours thanks to the many colourful houses.
Flash the heart of one of the most beautiful markets in Porto: the Bolhão market
Classified as a historical monument in 2006, the Bolhão Market is a covered market dating from 1914. Situated in a classical building, it has a lively atmosphere and a strong authenticity. Be impressed by its bright colours and its dishes filled with fruit, vegetables, cold meats and cheeses. You can enjoy a delicious pasteis de Nata in one of the market's patisseries or a glass of wine in one of the small bars. It is also an excellent opportunity to continue the walk along the Santa Catarina shopping street, which is full of shops, bars and restaurants and is just a stone's throw from the market.
Go to Vila nova de Gaia to taste the famous Port wine
After covering the city centre of Porto, it is time to cross the Dom Luis Bridge, from where you will have a superb view of the city and the Douro. This bridge, built by one of Gustave Eiffel's students in 1886, has two levels. The one on the upper part is completely pedestrianised and allows you to enjoy the ride to Vila Nova de Gaia. This town is at the heart of the Port industry and is full of wine cellars offering various Port wine tastings. Take time to walk along the riverbank on the famous Cais de Gaia street. There are many cafes and bars where you can enjoy a drink after dark, facing the river. It is also from this bank that many Porto cruises depart to cover the Douro in one or more days.