Porto on the weekend — 10 best things to do
Why visit Porto?
And why not?
Porto is located in the north of Portugal and is characterized by its cultural and historical heritage and the diversity of nature in the region, from natural landscapes to beach areas. The city's traditional gastronomy is also a very appealing point, who has never heard about the famous “francesinha”? Do not forget the hospitality and kindness of the people from Porto and the Portuguese people in general — an aspect that tourists most highlight when visiting Portugal.
In case there are still doubts about the next destination… In 2020 the city of Porto won the award for Best City Break Destination in Europe, in the 2020 edition of the World Travel Awards for the fourth consecutive year. And now, are you convinced?
We don’t want anything to be missing, so we’ve prepared a list of 10 of the many things to do and visit in Porto. We will also show you some of the best places to taste the famous francesinha, of course! All the time is too short to visit all the city corners, so don’t let your luggage hold you back! LUGGit is available in Porto to collect, store, and deliver your luggage where and when it is most convenient for you.
Remember: before planning your travels, consult the information and security measures related to COVID-19 implemented at the destination.
1. Torre dos Clérigos
It is more than 75m high, after climbing 225 steps, that you can reach the top of the Torre dos Clérigos and find a stunning view over Porto in a 360° perspective. Those who visit the baroque style tower completed in 1763 witness a unique moment in what is an excellent viewpoint over the city, both by day and night — in special times, the tower keeps its doors open until 11 pm.
2. Catedral do Porto
Since the 12th century, the most important religious building in Porto is the imposing Sé Catedral. It has an initial roman-gothic structure and has been undergoing renovations over the years. It also has baroque style details. Located in one of the highest points of the city, it provides a fantastic view over it.
Going to Porto and not taking a walk along the Ribeira is almost like going to Rome and not seeing the Pope. Douro’s river bank is synonymous with history, tradition and a beautiful and pleasant landscape to the other side of the river, Vila Nova de Gaia, connected through the famous D. Luís I Bridge. A walk along the river bank and a boat ride along the Douro river is almost mandatory in this historic part of the city.
4. Caves vinho do Porto
Port wine is undeniably a symbol of the region worldwide recognized. It differs from ordinary wines by its unique characteristics and is generally appreciated for its sweetest aroma and taste. Although the name refers to Porto's city, it is in Vila Nova de Gaia that the dozens of Port Wine Cellars are located. It is difficult to choose which one to visit, but we leave here three possibilities: Sandeman, Calém, and Taylor's.
5. Parque das Virtudes
Lover of a sunset over the river? The Jardim do Passeio das Virtudes is the ideal place. This garden provides a unique view over the Alfândega, Douro River, and Vila Nova de Gaia.
The Serralves Foundation is characterized by stimulating interest and knowledge in contemporary art, architecture, landscape, and critical issues for society targeting audiences of different age groups and origins. The harmony between the complex patrimonial set — Museum of Contemporary Art, House, and Park — makes the Foundation unique and of an indispensable visit.
7. Estação de S. Bento
Inaugurated in 1916, Estação de São Bento is one of the city's main points, distinguished for its panels that count with about 20 thousand tiles. These represent different Portuguese historical inheritance scenarios, as customs, modes of transport, and country life.
8. Livraria Lello
Livraria Lello, opened in 1906, is known for its authentic style, capable of creating an environment that makes anyone travel through time. Tall wooden shelves, up to the roof, full of books, the central staircase, the colors, and the stained-glass on the roof create a unique setting that gave rise to the urban legend that J.K. Rowling was inspired by Livraria Lello when writing the Harry Potter saga.
9. Where to take a break
Yes, knowing the city is good, but a break to recharge energies is also fundamental.
Guindalense — With a terrace with a privileged view of the Douro River, it’s a relaxed style space, with a warm and simple atmosphere. The ideal for a coffee, beer, and conviviality.
Esplanada do Teleférico — Located in Vila Nova de Gaia's side, Esplanada do Teleférico is a wine bar with a superb view over the Douro River.
Majestic Café — It is located in the famous street Rua Santa Catarina. It is a conviviality distinguished by its refinement and excellence, and where several cultural events are also realized.
10. Where to try francesinha
Last but not least, the famous francesinhas… There are francesinhas in almost every restaurant in Porto. It can be difficult to find the best ones, so we selected two of the best francesinhas restaurants in town: Café Santiago and Cervejaria Brasão.
They don’t need detailed descriptions. Both claim to be the best francesinha in town. They have in common the waiting lines, so the only advice we give you is that you better hurry up.
Excited to know the entire city? To enjoy your days in Porto to the fullest, we advise you to let our Keepers take care of your luggage. LUGGit is available in Porto to make your days easier!