Porto Old Town, the most beautiful districts in Portugal

Porto Old Town is one of Portugal’s most beautiful and fascinating districts. Explore the narrow cobbled streets and picturesque squares, featuring colorful houses and Baroque churches. Be sure to visit the 12th century Cathedral, Clérigos Tower, and traditional cafés and shops. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Douro River and a cruise along the River. Porto Old Town is sure to leave you with lasting memories.

Porto Old Town Portugal

Porto Old Town Portugal Summary

  • Attraction: Porto Old Town
  • Country: Portugal
  • Continent: Europe
  • Capital Name: Lisbon
  • Language: Portuguese (official)
  • Currency: the EURO
  • Nationality: Portuguese

Tell us about Porto Old Town Portugal

Porto Old Town is a historic district in the city of Porto, Portugal. The city’s old town is full of narrow cobbled streets lined with colourful painted houses, vibrant cafes and restaurants, and quaint shops and churches. There is plenty to explore here, from the River Douro waterfront area to the unique Elevador da Santa Justa, a neo-Gothic lift that connects the lower and upper towns.

The city is also home to numerous museums and monuments, all of which offer an insight into Porto’s history and culture. There are several festivals and events that take place throughout the year, making it the perfect destination for a cultural, historical and culinary getaway.

What to do in Porto Old Town, Portugal?

Many things to do in Porto Old Town Portugal include:

  1. Visit the Clerigos Tower: A baroque belltower which is an architectural masterpiece from the eighteenth century.
  2. Relax in the Majestic Café: An iconic café with an art-deco space and live piano music.
  3. Admire the Gothic São Bento Train Station: See the 20th-century ceramic panel depicting 500 years of Portuguese history.
  4. Take a Trip to the Lello Bookshop: Stroll through the most beautiful bookstore in Portugal and Europe’s third most beautiful bookstore.
  5. Take a River Cruise on the Douro River: Enjoy the stunning views of the city’s bridges, monuments, and palaces as you sail along the Douro River.
  6. Visit Palácio da Bolsa: This Moorish-style palace has been converted into a modern exhibition space and auditorium.
  7. Go Shopping at the Aliados Avenue: Visit the shopping districts—Rua da Matinha, and Rua Fernandes Tomás—for some great deals.
  8. Stroll Through the Flower-Filled Gardens of Jardim do Morro: Enjoy the romantic landscaped lawns, water fountains and flower beds in the park.
  9. Take a Guided Tour of Porto’s Historic Neighborhoods: Take a walk through the winding streets, discover hidden cafés, bars and clubs, and immerse yourself in the old-world charm.
  10. Explore the Gothic Sé do Porto: Admire the grandeur and ornate details of this awe-inspiring church from the 12th century.

What are best foods at Porto Old Town Portugal?

The best foods at Porto Old Town Portugal are:

  1. Sardinhas Assadas (Grilled Sardines)
  2. Caldeirada de Peixe (Fish Stew)
  3. Bife à Portuguesa (Portuguese Steak)
  4. Pasteis de Bacalhau (Codfish Cakes)
  5. Francesinhas (sandwiches)
  6. Carne de Porco à Alentejana (Alentejo-style pork)
  7. Cozido à Portuguesa (Portuguese Stew)
  8. Bacalhau com Natas (codfish with cream sauce)
  9. Tripas à Moda do Porto (Tripe according to Porto style)
  10. Arroz de Pato (Duck Rice)

What are best hotels to stay in Porto Old Town Portugal?

The best hotels in Porto Old Town Portugal are:

  1. Yeatman Hotel – a luxurious five-star hotel with an outdoor pool and a wine spa.
  2. Casa da Música Luxury Guest House – a beautiful restored 18th century guest house with a charming garden and terrace.
  3. Hotel Infante Sagres – a modern four-star hotel located in the city centre within walking distance of the historic Ribeira district.
  4. Pestana Porto Hotel & World Heritage Site – a unique five-star property combining classic antique décor with modern amenities.
  5. The Gallery Guest House – a modern boutique hotel located within walking distance of the railway station, art galleries, churches, and traditional local markets.

What is the next Portugal tourist destination?

After immersing in the wonders of Portugal, elevate your exploration with our curated guide to the next must-visit tourist destination. Click below to unveil the next chapter in your journey, where captivating landscapes, rich cultures, and extraordinary experiences await. Continue the adventure beyond with new destinations and experiences. Let the journey unfold and captivate your senses. Explore now!

*Please rotate your phone to landscape mode for a two-view display – one on the left and one on the right. Thank you!

Frequently Asked Questions: Your Guide to Porto Old Town

Explore the Latest Destination Attraction with ease through our comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions guide. Discover insightful answers to common queries, providing a seamless experience. Your journey begins with clarity and confidence as we address uncertainties and offer essential information. Let this guide enhance your adventure, ensuring you make the most of the latest destination attraction, leaving no question unanswered.

What are Porto Old Town's nearby must-visit attractions or landmarks?

Porto Old Town, also known as Ribeira, is a charming district with a rich cultural and historical heritage. In addition to its own unique charm, there are several nearby must-visit attractions and landmarks. Here are some notable places to explore in the vicinity:

  1. Dom Luís I Bridge (Ponte Dom Luís I): This iconic double-deck iron bridge spans the Douro River and connects Porto to Vila Nova de Gaia. Walk across the upper level for panoramic views or take a boat cruise beneath it.
  2. Ribeira Square (Praça da Ribeira): The heart of Porto Old Town, Ribeira Square is a lively area with colorful buildings, outdoor cafes, and a bustling atmosphere. It’s a great place to soak in the local culture.
  3. São Bento Train Station (Estação de São Bento): Known for its stunning azulejo tilework, São Bento Train Station is a historic railway station featuring intricate blue and white tiles depicting Portuguese scenes.
  4. Porto Cathedral (Sé do Porto): This medieval cathedral offers panoramic views of Porto from its terrace. The cathedral combines various architectural styles, including Romanesque and Gothic.
  5. Church of São Francisco (Igreja de São Francisco): A Gothic church known for its Baroque interior, including ornate woodwork and golden decorations. The catacombs beneath the church are also worth exploring.
  6. Palácio da Bolsa (Stock Exchange Palace): A neoclassical building with impressive halls and chambers, including the Arabian Hall. Guided tours provide insights into Porto’s economic history.
  7. Lello Bookstore (Livraria Lello): Often considered one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world, Lello Bookstore is renowned for its stunning architecture, wooden staircase, and vibrant ambiance.
  8. Clerigos Tower (Torre dos Clérigos): Climb to the top of this iconic tower for panoramic views of Porto. The adjacent Clerigos Church is another architectural gem.
  9. Port Wine Cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia: Cross the river to Vila Nova de Gaia, where you can visit famous port wine cellars such as Sandeman, Graham’s, and Taylor’s for tastings and tours.
  10. Cais da Ribeira: The riverside promenade along the Douro River offers picturesque views, outdoor dining options, and a chance to relax by the water.
  11. Mercado do Bolhão: While a bit farther from Ribeira, this traditional market is worth a visit. Experience the vibrant atmosphere and explore fresh produce, local crafts, and more.
  12. Portuguese Centre of Photography (Centro Português de Fotografia): Housed in a former prison, this center showcases photography exhibitions and provides insight into Portugal’s photographic history.

Exploring these nearby attractions allows visitors to immerse themselves in Porto’s history, culture, and architectural wonders, creating a comprehensive experience of this vibrant city.

Is Porto Old Town a suitable travel destination for solo adventurers, honeymooning couples, or those traveling with families?

Porto Old Town is a versatile travel destination that caters to a diverse range of travelers, making it suitable for solo adventurers, honeymooning couples, and families. Here’s why it can be a great choice for each group:

Solo Adventurers:

  1. Historical Exploration: Solo adventurers can immerse themselves in the rich history of Porto Old Town, exploring historic landmarks, narrow streets, and cultural sites at their own pace.
  2. Social Atmosphere: The lively ambiance of Ribeira Square and the waterfront offers opportunities for solo travelers to socialize, meet locals, and enjoy the vibrant atmosphere of the district.
  3. Walking Tours: Joining walking tours allows solo travelers to discover hidden gems, learn about the city’s history, and meet fellow travelers in a group setting.

Honeymooning Couples:

  1. Romantic Setting: The picturesque views of the Douro River, charming streets, and historic architecture create a romantic ambiance, making it an ideal setting for couples.
  2. Wine Tasting: Honeymooners can indulge in wine tasting at the nearby wine cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia, enjoying the famous Port wine in a scenic riverside setting.
  3. Boat Cruises: Take a romantic boat cruise along the Douro River, providing a unique perspective of Porto Old Town and its beautiful surroundings.


  1. Cultural Exploration: Families can explore Porto Old Town’s historical landmarks, such as the Porto Cathedral and São Bento Train Station, offering both educational and entertaining experiences.
  2. Riverside Activities: Enjoy family-friendly activities along the riverside, including boat rides, picnics, and walks, with stunning views of the iconic Dom Luís I Bridge.
  3. Gastronomic Delights: Porto Old Town has a variety of restaurants catering to different tastes, allowing families to enjoy traditional Portuguese cuisine together.
  4. Livramento Market: Families can visit the Mercado do Bolhão and experience the lively market atmosphere, where kids can explore fresh produce, local products, and unique crafts.

All Visitors:

  1. Accessibility: Porto Old Town is easily accessible by various modes of transportation, making it convenient for all types of travelers to reach and explore.
  2. Diverse Activities: The district offers a mix of cultural experiences, historical exploration, culinary delights, and scenic walks, catering to the diverse interests of different travelers.

Whether you’re seeking a solo adventure, a romantic getaway, or a family-friendly vacation, Porto Old Town provides a captivating and welcoming environment for all types of travelers.

Why should you visit Porto Old Town?

Porto Old Town, also known as Ribeira, is a captivating district in Porto, Portugal, with numerous reasons to visit. Here are some compelling reasons to explore Porto Old Town:

  1. Historic Charm: Porto Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its historic architecture, narrow cobblestone streets, and colorful buildings. It offers a glimpse into the city’s rich history and traditions.
  2. Ribeira Square: At the heart of Porto Old Town, Ribeira Square is a vibrant and bustling area surrounded by restaurants, cafes, and shops. It’s a perfect place to soak in the local atmosphere and enjoy outdoor dining.
  3. Douro River Views: The district is situated along the Douro River, providing stunning waterfront views. You can stroll along the riverbanks, take a boat cruise, or simply relax by the water.
  4. Historic Landmarks: Explore landmarks such as São Bento Train Station, known for its intricate tilework, and the Porto Cathedral (Sé do Porto), a medieval masterpiece with panoramic views of the city.
  5. Bridge Views: Admire the iconic Dom Luís I Bridge, a double-deck iron bridge that connects Porto to Vila Nova de Gaia. You can walk across the bridge for panoramic views of both sides of the river.
  6. Gastronomic Delights: Porto Old Town is home to traditional Portuguese restaurants, offering authentic dishes and local specialties. Enjoy a meal while savoring the picturesque surroundings.
  7. Wine Cellars: Venture into the wine cellars of Vila Nova de Gaia, located across the river. This is where the famous Port wine is produced. Take a guided tour and enjoy tastings in the historic cellars.
  8. Art and Culture: Discover art galleries, street art, and cultural spaces throughout Porto Old Town. The district is a blend of old-world charm and contemporary creativity.
  9. Livramento Market: Visit the Mercado do Bolhão, a traditional market known for its fresh produce, seafood, and local products. It’s a lively place to experience the city’s daily life.
  10. Festivals and Events: Porto Old Town hosts various festivals and events throughout the year, adding to the lively atmosphere. Check the local calendar for any cultural celebrations or performances.
  11. Azulejo-Tiled Buildings: Admire the façades adorned with colorful azulejo tiles, depicting intricate patterns and historical scenes. These decorative tiles are a distinctive feature of Portuguese architecture.
  12. Walking Tours: Join walking tours to explore the hidden gems, hear fascinating stories from local guides, and gain insights into Porto’s past and present.

Porto Old Town offers a delightful blend of history, culture, and scenic beauty, making it a must-visit destination for travelers seeking an authentic Portuguese experience.

How can one travel to Porto Old Town?

Porto Old Town, also known as Ribeira, is a charming and historic district in Porto, Portugal. Traveling to Porto Old Town is convenient, and you can use various modes of transportation depending on your starting point. Here are some common options:

By Plane:

  1. Porto Airport (Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport):
    • Arrive at Porto Airport, which is located about 17 kilometers north of Porto.
    • From the airport, you can take a taxi, airport shuttle, or use ride-sharing services to reach Porto Old Town. The journey takes approximately 20-30 minutes, depending on traffic.

By Train:

  1. São Bento Train Station:
    • If arriving by train, São Bento Train Station is centrally located in Porto.
    • From São Bento, you can walk to Porto Old Town or take a short taxi ride.

By Metro:

  1. Trindade Metro Station:
    • Trindade is a major metro station in Porto. From there, you can take the D Line (Yellow Line) towards D. João II and get off at São Bento Station.
    • São Bento Station is close to Porto Old Town.

By Bus:

  1. Bus Services:
    • Porto has an extensive bus network. Depending on your location, you can find bus routes that pass through or near Porto Old Town.

By Car:

  1. Driving or Taxi:
    • If you prefer to drive or take a taxi, Porto Old Town is easily accessible by car. Use a navigation app to guide you.

By Foot:

  1. Walking:
    • If you are staying in the city center or near the riverfront, Porto Old Town is often within walking distance. Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the charming streets.

By Boat:

  1. Boat Tours:
    • You can also reach Porto Old Town by taking a boat tour along the Douro River. This provides a scenic and unique perspective of the city.


  1. Combination:
    • You can combine different modes of transportation based on your convenience. For example, you might take a metro or bus to a central location and then walk the rest of the way.

Porto Old Town is a popular destination, and its central location makes it easily accessible from various parts of the city. Consider factors such as convenience, cost, and your preferred mode of transportation when planning your journey.

Is it difficult to find halal food in Porto Old Town?

Finding halal food in Porto Old Town might be a bit challenging compared to more cosmopolitan cities with diverse culinary offerings. Portugal, in general, is known for its traditional cuisine, and halal options may be limited.

However, it’s essential to note that the culinary landscape in cities can change, and new establishments may have opened since my last update. Here are some tips to help you find halal food in Porto Old Town:

  1. Check with Local Restaurants: Inquire with local restaurants in Porto Old Town to see if they offer halal options. Some restaurants may be willing to accommodate dietary preferences if you inform them in advance.
  2. Explore the City Center: Porto’s city center may have a more diverse range of dining options, including international cuisine. You can explore areas like Ribeira or Baixa for restaurants that may offer halal choices.
  3. Halal Grocery Stores: Check if there are any halal grocery stores or markets in the broader area. You can purchase halal ingredients and prepare your own meals or snacks.
  4. Online Apps and Reviews: Utilize online apps and review websites to find updated information on halal dining options in Porto. Travelers often share their experiences and recommendations on such platforms.
  5. Ask Locals: When in doubt, ask locals or staff at your accommodation. They may have insights into nearby places that offer halal food or can provide recommendations based on your dietary preferences.

It’s always advisable to check for the latest information closer to your travel date, as the culinary scene can evolve. Additionally, consider reaching out to local mosques or Islamic centers, as they may provide guidance on halal dining options in the area.

Exploring Rich Diversity: A Search Across European Countries.

Explore diverse destinations worldwide! Click below to select your next travel adventure by country. Discover cultural gems, scenic landscapes, and hidden treasures awaiting your exploration. Let your wanderlust guide you as you embark on a journey across continents and immerse yourself in the richness of each destination. Start your adventure now!

*Please rotate your phone to landscape mode for a two-view display – one on the left and one on the right. Thank you!

STEP 3: Iceland Best European Countries to Visit

Iceland Best European Countries to Visit Explore Iceland’s enchanting landscapes, from cascading waterfalls to geothermal wonders. Plan your adventure now. Read more on our website! Iceland is a dynamic Nordic country known for its stunning...

Read More

STEP 3: Portugal Best European Countries to Visit

Portugal Best European Countries to Visit Discover Portugal’s charm – from historic Lisbon to scenic Porto. Explore vibrant culture, stunning coastlines, and more. Dive into our website for an unforgettable Portuguese journey! Portugal is a...

Read More

STEP 3: Netherlands Best European Countries to Visit

Netherlands Best European Countries to Visit Discover the Netherlands, a land of picturesque canals, historic windmills, and vibrant tulip fields. Immerse in Amsterdam’s cultural richness, explore charming villages, and experience the warmth of Dutch hospitality....

Read More

STEP 3: Germany Best European Countries to Visit

Germany Best European Countries to Visit Discover Germany’s rich history, breathtaking landscapes, and vibrant culture. Explore charming villages, historic cities, and scenic countryside. Plan your trip now at our website! Germany is a key component...

Read More

STEP3: Ireland Best European Countries to Visit

Ireland Best European Countries to Visit Explore Ireland’s enchanting landscapes, rich history, and warm hospitality. Click here to plan your unforgettable journey through the Emerald Isle! The country is an island located in the North...

Read More

STEP3: Spain Best European Countries to Visit

Spain Best European Countries to Visit Explore the vibrant culture, stunning beaches, and rich history of Spain. Click for more info and start planning your Spanish adventure today! Spain is a country located on the...

Read More

STEP 3: Switzerland Best European Countries to Visit

Switzerland Best European Countries to Visit Discover the breathtaking landscapes and cultural richness of Switzerland. Immerse yourself in a world where Alpine beauty meets vibrant cities. Explore further on our website for an unforgettable Swiss...

Read More

STEP 3: Italy Best European Countries to Visit

Italy Best European Countries to Visit Explore Italy’s rich history, stunning art, and delectable cuisine. From the iconic Colosseum in Rome to the romantic canals of Venice, there’s something for everyone. Discover more about this...

Read More
error: Content is protected !!