de-DEen-US

Porto

What to see & discover

My favorite: View from Pedra dos Gatinhos

My highlight in Porto was the view from the Pedra dos Gatinhos viewpoint or the slightly less well-known viewpoint just a little further on. From there, you have a postcard view of the famous Ponte Dom Luís I, the Douro and the houses of Porto. And unlike all the other viewpoints, it was empty, so we were able to enjoy the view in peace... A real jam jar moment!

But it's not just from Pedra dos Gatinhos that you have a beautiful view of Porto! You have a similarly good view (only easier to reach) from the Miradouro da Ribeira. And if you want to experience the same view, just from the other side of the Douro, you should head to the Miradouro Ponte D. Luís I. Or a little further to the Miradouro das Fontainhas. You can get a completely different view of the city from Miradouro da Vitória or Parque das Virtudes. As you can see, there are no end of great viewpoints in Porto. But I can promise you one thing: the view from all of them is always picture-perfect!


It continues beautifully: Largo da Pena Ventosa

Porto's old town is well worth seeing in itself. The Sé and Ribeira districts are criss-crossed by narrow, cobbled streets and colorful houses. It is not without reason that the historic center was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. In the beautiful old town, you will find cute restaurants and cafés, small boutiques and a few souvenir stores. But you will also find the picturesque Largo da Pena Ventosa square. The square is picture-perfect with its colorful houses - another postcard location!


The city's landmark: Ponte Dom Luís I.

The iron bridge, which connects the districts of Vila Nova de Gaia and Ribeira, is considered the symbol of Porto. On the 385m-long bridge, you will have another beautiful view over Porto with its old town and the Douro.

The Ponte Dom Luís I has two levels: On the lower part of the bridge you will be able to make your way by car or bicycle, while on the upper part of the bridge you will see the streetcar running. Pedestrians can cross the bridge on both levels. However, you have a much better view from the upper level.


Stroll along the promenade: Cais da Ribeira

If you want to experience the hustle and bustle of the city, then the Cais da Ribeira waterfront promenade is the place for you. Here, pubs, cafés and restaurants are lined up one after the other and exude a certain flair.

Take a stroll along the waterfront and then choose one of the bars to enjoy a glass of the famous port wine with a view of the Ponte Dom Luís I.


A highlight outside Porto: the Douro Valley

If you're in Porto, you should definitely make time for an excursion outside the city! Because a little detour to the Douro Valley is so worth it! The region along the Douro River is known for its winegrowing. The nature around the Douro is characterized by hilly landscapes with beautiful wine terraces. We were amazed by the nature in the Douro Valley and stopped again and again to enjoy the beautiful views.

The highlight of the Douro Valley, however, was the free winery tour and wine tasting at Quinta da Padrela. Although we didn't pay for the wine tasting, José taught us a lot about winegrowing and wine tasting and gave us plenty to try. Although I have already done (paid!) wine tastings, I have never had such a good experience as I did at our (free) tasting in the Douro Valley. Naturally, we bought wine for our loved ones at home afterwards as a token of appreciation...


1001 Treppen: Crane Ladder & Azuléjos Treppen

Because Porto is so hilly, there are a few stairs here - just like in my home town of Wuppertal. You can always enjoy beautiful views of the city from these.

I particularly liked the view of the Ponte Dom Luís I and the Douro from the Escada dos Guindais. The Azuléjos staircase, which is lined with the famous white and blue tile artwork, is also very artistic.


A special library: Livraria Lello

If you are a Harry Potter fan, then I have a special tip for you! The Livraria Lello library in the heart of Porto served as inspiration for J.K. Rowling's books. But a trip to the library is also worthwhile for non-Harry Potter fans. With its high ceilings filled to the top with books, it is one of the most beautiful bookshops in the world!

Unfortunately, this makes the library very well-known, which is why you have to expect long waiting times on site. So it's best to come here as soon as the bookshop opens. Unfortunately, we were there a little too late and didn't want to wait an hour, which is why we didn't get to see the inside of the bookshop. Alternatively, you can buy a ticket online to avoid the wait! Unfortunately, we knew that too late...


Shopping in Porto's cutest shops

We kept passing cute shops and markets in Porto. There were beautiful souvenirs and handicrafts to buy everywhere. I particularly liked the Mercado na Invicta. There were all kinds of handicrafts here. You can also buy nice souvenirs at the Mercado Bom Sucesso and then fill your stomach.

Another special shop is Escovaria de Belomonte. Here you can watch the Portuguese making new “old” brooms. Super interesting! You can also buy some souvenirs in the Padaria Aguasfurtadas art gallery. These range from cute pictures to beautiful ceramics.


And what else there is to see

My favorite part was simply strolling through Porto. You'll pass the main sights anyway. But if you are looking for the most famous places in Porto, then I have even more tips for you! Let's start with the Palácio da Bolsa - the “Stock Exchange Palace”. The neoclassical building was the seat of the city's trade association.

If you're in the area anyway, you should also pay a visit to Porto Cathedral. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is located on Pena Ventos Hill and towers over the city. The Romanesque building looks very imposing from the outside, while the interior is rather plain.

Speaking of churches, the baroque church Igreja dos Clérigos with its famous tower is also worth a visit. You can even climb it and enjoy an incomparable view over Porto!

The São Bento train station is also worth a detour. The building was once home to a monastery and the first trains ran here in 1896 - but the station itself only opened in 1916. Its building is characterized by painted pictures made of ceramic tiles (so-called azulejos) by the painter Jorge Colaço - well worth seeing.

Azulejos can also be found at the Chapel of Souls and the Saint Ildefonso Church. Both buildings are decorated with blue and white tiles depicting the lives of the saints.

If you make your way just outside the city center, you can see the Douro flowing into the open sea at the Farolim de Felgueiras lighthouse.



I have put together a list of all the places on Google Maps.

You can find the list here.