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Porto Off the Beaten Path

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Porto is the second largest city in Portugal and its historical city center is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. It’s a city that has gone through a touristic boom over recent years, yet it still has many hidden gems to enjoy. In this guide I will let you in on a few secrets and off the beaten path tips to enjoy Porto as a local!

Good for
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Nature Lover
  • Foodie
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Thrifty Traveler
  • Like a Local

14 Places

3 City Tips

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Map

14 Places

Jardim Municipal do Horto das Virtudes

Other Outdoor Activities

Parque da Cidade do Porto

Parks

Rota do Cha

Restaurants

Miradouro da Vitoria

Points of Interest & Landmarks, Lookouts

Gazela Cachorrinhos da Batalha

Restaurants

Restaurante Antonio

Restaurants

Jardim de Joao Chagas

Gardens

Era uma vez em Paris

Restaurants

Museu do Carro Electrico

Specialty Museums

Casa de Pasto da Palmeira

Restaurants

Farol Molhe do Douro

Architectural Buildings

Pipa Velha

Restaurants

Oporto Adventure Tours

Kayaking & Canoeing, Private Tours, Nature & Wildlife Tours, River Rafting & Tubing, Eco Tours

Murca No Porto

Restaurants

AndreParente's City Tips

  • If you want to live like a local, there are nice, well located touristic apartments downtown to rent instead of staying in a hotel or hostel.
  • Don't just stick to Ribeira and the city center during your visit. The modern part of town is also great!
  • There are lots of cheap local restaurants in town, with homemade food and genuine people serving you.
  • Jardim Municipal do Horto das Virtudes
    Other Outdoor Activities
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    One of the hidden gems in the city, this garden is one of the most beautiful and one that most people don't know they can visit. Uniquely, it is a vertical garden, meaning that from each level or slope, you get a different yet amazing view over the city and the Douro River.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • No charge. You can visit the gardens for free.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #36 of 134 Outdoor Activities in Porto
    • Best place for a sunset chill 11/05/2018
    • Lovely Multi Level Park 08/11/2018
    • Jardim Municipal do Horto das Virtudes
    Address:
    Rua Azevedo de Albuquerque
    Porto 4050-076
    Portugal
  • Parque da Cidade do Porto
    Parks
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Perfect for a stroll or a run, the City Park is a favorite spot for both locals and visitors. You can go for a quiet walk, relax reading on the grass, or gear up and go for a run! There’s a nice coffee house in the park where you can have a quiet meal or just sit and enjoy the fresh breeze.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Take a walk towards the sea at the end of the day. The sunset from the park is gorgeous.
    • The sandwiches at the coffee shop were invented by famous chefs. Try them!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 303 things to do in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Loved the river walk! 06/23/2019
    • A place for contemplation or exercise 06/23/2019
    • Parque da Cidade do Porto
    Address:
    Avenida da Boavista
    Porto 4100-121
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 012 0220
  • Rota do Cha
    Restaurants (Cafe)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Located in the Arts District, this tea house is the perfect place to relax and enjoy a cup of tea or a light meal. You can choose from a wide variety of teas and have a cup in the house or in the garden. If you're an art lover and want to check out all the galleries, just walk up and down the street and you'll see plenty to peek into.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Rota do Chá closes early at 8pm, even on weekends.
    • In the summer, it’s great to have a meal or cup of tea in the garden.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #420 of 1,856 restaurants in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • 10/10 05/21/2019
    • Our Favorite Meal in Porto 04/03/2019
    • Rota do Cha
    Address:
    Rua Miguel Bombarda 457
    Porto 4050-382
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 013 6726
    Price range:
    $10 - $33
    Hours:
    Sun
    12:00 PM - 9:00 PM
    Mon - Fri
    11:00 AM - 8:00 PM
    Sat
    11:00 AM - 9:00 PM
    Other:
  • Miradouro da Vitoria
    Points of Interest & Landmarks, Lookouts
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Within a five minute walk from Clerigos Tower, you'll find one of the best viewing points in town. It is located on the grounds of a private property, but when it was purchased, the owners signed an agreement with the town hall, stating that any person who wanted access to the backyard to observe the view would be granted access.

    Good for
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • If you like churches, step inside the Victoria Church, right next to Miradouro de Vitoria.
    • This place is not so well taken care of, but the view is quite worth your while.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #32 of 303 things to do in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Excellent Spot 06/05/2019
    • Hidden Gem 04/22/2019
    • Miradouro da Vitoria
    Address:
    Rua Sao Bento da Vitoria 11
    Porto 4050-543
    Portugal
  • Gazela Cachorrinhos da Batalha
    Restaurants (Fast Food, Portuguese)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Spicy hot dogs as a snack, for lunch, or for dinner. It doesn't matter what time it is, grab one or two with a cold beer! The place is small and usually crowed. Every local knows that the best hot dogs in Porto are from Gazela. So mingle and be like one of the regulars!

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • Gazela is just next to Teatro Nacional Sao Joao.
    • There is no terrace and the restaurant is really small.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #47 of 1,856 restaurants in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • 5 Star. Period!!! 06/25/2019
    • The Best! 06/25/2019
    • Gazela Cachorrinhos da Batalha
    Address:
    Travessa Cimo de Vila 4
    Junto ao Teatro Nacional S. João
    Porto 4000-171
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 205 4869
    Hours:
    Mon - Fri
    12:00 PM - 10:30 PM
    Sat
    12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Restaurante Antonio
    Restaurants (Mediterranean, European, Portuguese)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    One of the best restaurants in Porto, totally off the tourist route. The food is incredibly delicious, with a menu composed of traditional Portuguese dishes that taste like the ones our grandmothers used to cook for us. From traditional roasted codfish to the decadent octopus in red wine, not to mention the lamb, you have plenty to choose from. And do not pass on the dessert. The vanilla ice cream with dried figs and liqueur is to die for.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • This place is bit out of the way in Leça da Palmeira, somewhat close to Casa de Chá da Boa Nova. Best way to get there might be by taxi.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 91 restaurants in Leca da Palmeira
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Superb quality 12/02/2018
    • Amazing typic food 01/27/2018
    • Restaurante Antonio
    Address:
    Rua Oscar da Silva 2681 5
    Numero Da Sala Comercial, Cruzamento, Praca
    Leca da Palmeira 4455-520
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 996 0741
    Other:
  • Jardim de Joao Chagas
    Gardens
    AndreParente Says:

    Right next to Clerigos Tower you can find Jardim de Joao Chagas, also known as Cordoaria Gardens. Within the garden you'll find the sycamore promenade, where you can enjoy the playful sculptures called 'Thirteen Laughing at Each Other,' by Juan Muñoz.

    Good for
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Take your time to observe the faces of the old men on the sculptures. It’s almost impossible not to start laughing — they'll at least put a smile on your face.
    • The sycamore promenade is right in front of the courthouse.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #84 of 303 things to do in Porto
    • Pleasant Park With Interesting Art 06/25/2019
    • Nice park 04/04/2019
    • Jardim de Joao Chagas
    Address:
    Campo Martires da Patria
    Porto 4050-368
    Portugal
    Other:
  • Era uma vez em Paris
    Restaurants (Bar, Cafe, Mediterranean, Pub)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    If you're looking for a place where you can either have a pleasant conversation with friend or dance your butt off, this is perfect. The DJs are usually good and you can have an incredible night out at this bar and disco. Era uma vez em Paris is also open during the day, meaning you can go and have a light meal and still listen to really good music. Give it a try.

    Good for
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Nightlife Seeker
    Tips
    • This bar/disco is a great choice if you don't like to walk around from place to place on a night out.
    • There is another bar from the same owners a bit up the street, called Era uma vez no Porto — also worth a try.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1,156 of 1,856 restaurants in Porto
    • Very nice place 04/09/2019
    • Ok bar in busy bar area. 03/25/2018
    • Era uma vez em Paris
    Address:
    Galeria de Paris 106-108
    Porto 4050-284
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 208 3756
    Price range:
    $5 - $10
    Other:
  • Museu do Carro Electrico
    Specialty Museums
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Learn about the history of the city and its transport at one of the most beautiful museums in Porto. For those who like trains and trams, this is the right place to visit. Once you've finished exploring, take the number 1 tram from Infante to Foz and back. It’s one of the most beautiful rides in Porto.

    Good for
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Hidden Gems
    Tips
    • Across the road from the museum, you have one the of the best views of Porto.
    • If it’s your birthday and you have come with friends, you can rent a tram for your birthday party!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #67 of 303 things to do in Porto
    • Not a vast collection 04/22/2019
    • Worth if you are interested at least to some extent in ... 01/02/2019
    • Museu do Carro Electrico
    Address:
    Alameda Basilio Teles 51
    Porto 4150-127
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 615 8286
    Hours:
    Mon
    2:00 PM - 6:00 PM
    Tue - Sun
    10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
    Other:
  • Casa de Pasto da Palmeira
    Restaurants (Mediterranean, European, Portuguese)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Delicious, decadent, Portuguese-style tapas (the word is actually ‘petiscos’) with a gourmet touch. Don't worry, you don't have to get all dressed up just to grab some delicious eggs and ‘alheira.’ The wine selection is really good and the food is to die for. The dishes are meant for sharing with friends or with your loved one. And don't forget about the desserts!

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • Try to get a table outside. The view is quite nice.
    • Order a couple of dishes and share among friends.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #311 of 1,856 restaurants in Porto
    • Bursting with flavour 06/13/2019
    • Best meal in ages 06/09/2019
    • Casa de Pasto da Palmeira
    Address:
    Jardim Passeio Alegre 450
    Porto 4150-569
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 616 8244
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    12:00 PM - 12:00 AM
    Other:
  • Farol Molhe do Douro
    Architectural Buildings
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    'Molhe' means 'pier' in Portuguese, and this pier a truly local place. It’s one of the most known reunion points for people who live in the neighborhood. The sea views are just wonderful, and you can walk all the way along the pier if the waves are not too big. From here, you can also walk along the pathway that runs along the beach and all the way to Matosinhos.

    Good for
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Family
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • Beware of waves hitting the pier. It can dangerous if the swell is big.
    • The pergola walkway is a great romantic spot for couples and lovers.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #11 of 303 things to do in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A point that has seen sailors come and go for centuries. 06/15/2019
    • Average common or ..... 06/05/2019
    • Farol Molhe do Douro
    Address:
    Avenida Dom Carlos I
    Porto 4150-190
    Portugal
  • Pipa Velha
    Restaurants (Bar)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Open since 1981, this is one of the best bars in town. Friendly and not too loud, with an incredible choice of music. It's a great place for a drink with friends all year round. In the summer you can stay outside and enjoy the summer breeze. In the winter, you can admire the interior stone walls and enjoy the great music.

    Good for
    • Friends
    • Hidden Gems
    • Nightlife Seeker
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • If you get hungry, try the cheese and smoked ham sandwich.
    • This bar, located in the "nightlife district," is the perfect place to start a night out.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #431 of 1,856 restaurants in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Chorizo experience at its best 11/21/2018
    • NICE PLACE FOR DRINKS AND TAPAS 11/07/2018
    • Pipa Velha
    Address:
    Rua Oliveiras 75
    Porto 4050-449
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 934 172 721
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 PM - 3:00 AM
    Other:
  • Oporto Adventure Tours
    Kayaking & Canoeing, Private Tours, Nature & Wildlife Tours, River Rafting & Tubing, Eco Tours
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    This is the best adventure tour you can go on to enjoy Gerês National Park. The tour guide will collect you from your accommodation in the morning in a 4x4 and drive you to the most amazing natural pools and waterfalls. During the tour, you can hike, swim, check out beautiful viewpoints, and have a nice, traditional lunch. These guys are locals and they know the park really well.

    Good for
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • If you own one, take a water camera with you.
    • It’s a long and physical day. Perhaps it's best not to go out and party the night before.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 45 Boat Tours & Water Sports in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • CANYONING In GERES NATIONAL PARK 06/23/2019
    • An Experience To Remember! 06/22/2019
    • Oporto Adventure Tours
    Phone:
    +351 915 781 103
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 AM - 7:30 PM
    Other:
  • Murca No Porto
    Restaurants (Mediterranean, European, Portuguese)
    See more photos
    AndreParente Says:

    Murca is a village in the north of Portugal, well known for its curvy roads, its wine, and its delicious food. This small restaurant serves typical, home cooked dishes for a very nice price. It’s not a fancy restaurant, but the food is well worth the visit.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Friends
    • Family
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • Try the typical chicken soup and the "iscas" (cow liver).
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #183 of 1,856 restaurants in Porto
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A little gem 06/14/2019
    • Evening meal 06/12/2019
    • Murca No Porto
    Address:
    Rua da alegria
    Porto
    Portugal
    Phone:
    +351 22 200 8795
    Other:
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