3 Days in Porto Itinerary: Perfect Porto Guide With Map

Located in Northern Portugal, Porto is one of the most charming and historic cities you can visit! With multiple UNESCO World Heritage Sights, winding alleys, and riverfront views, it is no wonder why so many people have preferred Porto over Lisbon. If you are thinking about spending 3 days in Porto, this ultimate Porto itinerary has you covered!

3 Days in Porto Portugal Itinerary Travel Guide

Inside this Porto itinerary, you will learn how to organize 3 full days, see the top attractions, where to stay, travel tips, food recommendations, and more! This is a great guide for first-timers and those who want to see and do it all. Furthermore, you will find FREE maps to help you better visualize your days.

3 Days in Porto Itinerary
Porto Itinerary 3 Days

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. I may earn a small commission at no cost to you.

Getting Around Porto

For this Porto itinerary to make sense, I will briefly discuss how you will get around.

The best way to explore Porto is on foot. The city is relatively small, so you will be able to cover a ton of ground just by walking. In fact, you can think of this itinerary as your free walking tour to bring with you while visiting! Make sure you wear very comfortable shoes! Porto is very hilly, with narrow cobblestone roads.

Charming Alleys in Porto, Portugal Rua das Aldas with 3 days in Porto
Rua das Aldas Alley

Shoes with grip are important. I brought both Birkenstock sandals and my Converse sneakers and found myself opting for the sneakers since it was much easier to walk with them.

Porto also has buses, metro, and trams that you can certainly use if your feet start to get tired. The public transportation system can be a little difficult to figure out. Here are some tips from the official Porto Transportation website. There are three historic trams (tram 1 is considered the best).

Porto Books on a table - 3 days in Porto Itinerary

If you plan on taking a lot of public transportation, it can be worth getting the Porto Card, which gives you unlimited public transportation and free entry or discounted entry to some Porto attractions.

Or, if you are more limited on mobility, a great alternative option is going on a Tuk Tuk tour, which will bring you to all the sites!

Lastly, you can use Rideshare in Porto. Uber and Bolt are present in Porto. We found Uber to be very affordable during our visit. I prefer this method over taking public transportation.

Walk around Charming Porto Portugal

You DO NOT need to rent a car to explore the city of Porto. However, you may want to rent a car for a day trip to the Douro Valley or to other areas in Portugal, but I will go into further details when we discuss Douro Valley options.

You can save this map to your Google Maps. Click open larger on the top right corner, or if you’re on Mobile, open it in your Google Maps. You may want to save this article so you can refer back =)

Day 1: Baixa, Bolhao, Old Town,Vila Nova de Gaia

On your first day in Porto, you will visit many of the top attractions in the city. You can walk to all of them, and might consider taking an Uber back to your hotel, depending on where you’re staying.

Views from Jardim do Infante Dom Henrique
Views from Jardim do Infante Dom Henrique

Day 1 Porto Attractions include:

  • Chapel of Souls
  • Mercado do Bolhão
  • Church of Saint Ildefonso
  • Free Tour Essential Porto
  • Porto Cathedral
  • Miradouro da Rua das Aldas
  • Ribeira do Porto
  • Cais da Ribeira de Gaia
  • Vila Nova de Gaia

Porto Fun Fact: Porto inspired the name of Portugal.

Day 1 in Porto of 3 days Map
Google Map Screenshot Day 1 in Porto – Part 1
Google Maps Porto Walking Tour
Google Map Screenshot Day 1 in Porto – Part 2

Chapel of Souls (Capela Das Almas)

Chapel of Souls might just be one of the most photographed churches in Porto. With around 16,000 aulejo tiles (famous blue ceramic tiles) adorning the facade, it is clear to see why. Although the church is small, the beauty lies in the decoration.

Chapel of Souls in Porto

Also referred to as Saint Catherine Chapel, it was built around the early 18th century. While many enjoy the outside decorations, you can also go inside for free and see an 18th Century of “Our Lady of Souls.”

Fun Fact: The Azulejo were brought to Portugal (and Spain) by the Moors, who ruled over Portugal for a time after the Romans. The name “Azulejo” is derived from the Arabic word “azzelij,” meaning little polished stone.

Hours: Monday – Friday: 7:30 AM – 6 PM; Saturday & Sunday: 7:30 – 12:30 & 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Chapel of Souls (Capela Das Almas) a must with 3 days in Porto

Stop for a Pastel de Nata

While in the area, take a walk down Rua Santa Catarina (Porto’s main shopping street) and stop for some delicious Pastel de Nata. Two very well-known places in Porto to enjoy this famous Portuguese pastry are Manteigaria – Fábrica de Pastéis de Nata (just sell Pastel de Nata) and Confeitaria do Bolhão (have a variety of pastries).

Pastel de Nata in Portugal

These little tasty treats are sweet custard pastries made with egg yolk and sometimes sprinkled with cinnamon.

You will find them all over Portugal, and they usually go for about 1€. Most people get more than 1, so they have cute little containers to put them in for takeaway.

Manteigaria – Fábrica de Pastéis de Nata
Manteigaria – Fábrica de Pastéis de Nata

Mercado do Bolhão

Next, for an authentic food market vibe, take a tour of Mercado do Bolhão. This historic fresh market has 70 traders selling fish, meat, nuts, wine, cheese, fruits, and more.

Bolhão Market has two floors, and it is not uncommon for people to grab lunch and a glass of wine to enjoy on a bench or steps. You may not be this hungry just yet, but since you will be passing by, consider looping in and seeing the market firsthand.

If you are visiting over the weekend, make sure to visit on Friday or Saturday since the market is closed on Sunday.

Mercado do Bolhão fruit stand

Hours: Monday – Saturday: 8 AM – 8 PM -They are closed on Sunday

Majestic Café

This one is for the Harry Potter fans. If you didn’t already know, J.K. Rowling spent time living and teaching in Porto. While she denies the claims, many believe that she spent time writing some of Harry Potter in the Majestic Café and even found some inspiration.

It is not all about J.K. Rowling, however. This”La Belle Époque” designed cafe celebrates 100 years of history and has been frequented by people of influence.

So, as you can imagine, the cafe is a very popular spot to visit. If you would like to visit, try to make a reservation in advance. You can also expect this to be one of the most priciest places for a coffee.

Hours: Monday – Saturday: 9 AM – 11 PM

Church of Saint Ildefonso

If you loved the design of the azulejos on the Chapel of Souls, add the Church of Saint Ildefonso to your itinerary. This is a Baroque-style 18th-century church that has been restored. The facade of the church is covered in beautiful azulejos, making it a picture-worthy spot.

The church has limited hours, but if you happen to visit when they are open, it is a 1 euro “donation” to enter the church and view the beautiful stained-glass windows.

Church of Saint Ildefonso in Porto Portugal

Hours: Monday 3 PM – 5:15 PM; Wednesday: 9 AM – 12:30 PM, 3 PM – 6 PM; Thursday 9 AM – 12:30 PM, 3 PM – 6 PM; Friday 9 AM -12:30 PM, 3 PM – 6 PM; Saturday 9 AM – 1 PM, 3 – 7:30 PM; Sunday 9 AM – 11 AM

Porto São Bento (São Bento Train Station)

Known as the most beautiful train station in Portugal, a stop at São Bento Station is a must see for this city. I have been to a handful of train stations in my life, and while it didn’t “blow my mind,” its historical significance and beautiful tiles make the visit worth it.

São Bento Station color tiles
São Bento Station color tiles on top showing progression

The train station was originally a Convent, but around 1783, it was decided that the building would turn into a train station after the last nun had passed. Little did they realize the youngest nun was under 5 years old.

So, in 1892, the last nun died, so they started building the station. Many even say the last nun haunts the station.

In the waiting hall, the walls are covered with important historical scenes in Portugal’s history. One of my favorites is the wedding of King John I and Philippa of Lancaster to celebrate their wedding in Porto. This was the Anglo-Portuguese Alliance, one of the oldest military alliances (England and Portugal).

The colored scenes depict Portugal’s progression from farmers to the industrialization of trains.

São Bento Station in Porto board and tiles

Igreja de Santo António dos Congregados

If you’re the type of person who loves churches, Igreja de Santo António dos Congregados is just across the street from Bento Sation and is also covered in beautiful ceramic tiles.

Igreja de Santo António dos Congregados in Porto

Rua das Flores (Rua de Santa Catarina das Flores)

Next, head to Rua das Flores, one of Porto’s most prestigious and historical streets. It was opened up to the public in the 16th century, and it has been bustling ever since.

Church of Misericórdia do Porto
Church of Misericórdia do Porto

Look for the “Vestir Bem e Barato Só Aqui” sign and walk toward it. You will find tons of shops, cafes, and street artists down this street. The Church of Misericórdia do Porto is also located here. We also enjoyed listening to the artists signing on this street.

Entrance to Rua das Flores
Entrance to Rua das Flores

Porto Cathedral (Sé do Porto)

Next, head to the Porto Cathedral. You have likely already noticed this stunning National Monument in the distance, as it is one of the most recognizable skyline landmarks.

The Porto Cathedral is a must-see with 3 days in Porto - Sunset over the cathedral

The Roman-Gothic structure church was built in the 12th century, but it has been altered throughout the years. The cloister, added in the 14th century, is one of the popular features of the church. And, of course, this is where King John I and Philippa of Lancaster got married.

Se do Porto is considered one of the most important buildings in Porto and one of the oldest.

Right next to the cathedral is Museu da Cidade – Casa Guerra Junqueiro, an art gallery. You can also enjoy really nice views from the Cathedral.

Admission: 3€ (includes the tower).

Hours: April – October: 9 AM 6:30 PM; November – March: 9: AM – 5:30 PM

Porto Cathedral

Miradouro da Rua das Aldas

With “miradouro” meaning viewpoint in Portuguese, make your way over to the Miradouro da Rua das Aldas, which is located near the Porto Cathedral. From here, you will see lovely views overlooking the city and be right next to Saint Lawrence Church. It makes for a picturesque spot.

Miradouro da Rua das Aldas in Porto Portugal

Praça da Ribeira

After, take about an 8-minute walk downhill to Praça da Ribeira, a historic square in the city. It is one of the oldest squares in Porto!

Praça da Ribeira Square in Porto - Historic

Here, you will see dozens of restaurants lined up, smell fresh fish through the alleys, and get your first up-close view of the Douro River. The Fonte da Praça da Ribeira (Fonte de São João), which is a fountain, is also in the middle of the square.

Take time exploring by the river and walk up and down some of these charming alleys. I find the food is the most expensive on the river, and the quality is not as great, so you may want to skip eating around here.

Ribeira in Porto
Down Ribeira Riverfront

You can also catch the Porto: 6 Bridges Douro River Cruise. People either love this or feel meh about it. We skipped it, but you can read reviews and decide.

Ribeira Alleys
Ribeira Alleys

Dom Luís I Bridge

After enjoying your time by the river, it is time to cross to the other side. You will do this by walking across the lower level of the Luis I Bridge. The bridge is somewhat of a landmark itself and a must-see/cross with 3 days in Porto. This double iron arch bridge was the longest in the world at the time of being finished in 1886.

The Luís I Bridge also offers lovely views, especially from the upper deck, which we will get to later!

Dom Luis I Bridge in Porto

Cais da Ribeira de Gaia

Now that you have made it into Vila Nova de Gaia. This city is actually no longer Porto, even though it is just across the river.

Cais da Ribeira de Gaia is just to the right of the bridge. This is a scenic little square to enjoy some lovely views of Porto, so just stop here for a minute and take it all in. You will be able to see the traditional Rabelo Boats up close. These boats have been used for centuries to transport wine along the Douro River.

View of the Luis I Bridge from Cais da Ribeira de Gaia
View of the Luis I Bridge from Cais da Ribeira de Gaia

Visit a Winery in Vila Nova de Gaia

By now, you know Porto is famous for Port Wine. Well, did you know all the wine cellars are actually located in Vila Nova de Gaia? This is where Port wine goes to be aged before getting bottled.

Several popular cellars offer experiences that are more than just tastings. These are very popular attractions and usually need to be booked in advance.

Some of the most popular cellars to visit Taylor’s Port, Caves Cálem, Graham’s Port Lodge, and Caves Ferreira. These usually require some type of reservation.

If you want to just enjoy a port tasting without having to do a full experience, you can visit Quevedo. Port Wine is usually pretty sweet and contains high alcohol levels.

Quevendo has a wide range of different ports to try in a fun atmosphere. They have been growing grapes for 5 generations, and you can even visit their actual vineyard in the Douro Valley. Moreover, they are open a little later than other experiences, and you do not need a reservation. A tasting is around 3 euros per glass.

Oh, and while in Portugal, make sure to try the green wine! It is superb.

Fun Fact: Did you know the Portuguese did not invent Port wine? It was invented by the British. The wine coming from the Douro River by boat would take so long that many times it would spoil. It was the English who added Brandy to the wine, which fortified it. It is also the reason Port Wine is so sweet.

Quevedo Winery Port tasting

Other Things to Do in Vila Nova de Gaia

If you’re not a wine drinker, there are still other things to do in Vila Nova de Gaia, and you won’t want to miss visiting this side of the bridge.

Vila Nova de Gaia Waterfront
Vila Nova de Gaia Waterfront

There is the World of Wine Museum, which I have been told is still very interesting even for non-drinkers (WOW Porto – The Best Cultural District), The Chocolate Story Museum, Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar (temporarily closed), the Gaia Cable Car, shopping along the riverfront, and wandering around looking for art.

One of my favorite pieces is the Rabbit by Artur Bordalo, located here: Address: R. Guilherme Gomes Fernandes 42, 4400-266 Vila Nova de Gaia

Fun Fact: Did you know Portugal is a huge exporter of Cork? Cork comes from Cork trees, and you will find tons of Cork products throughout Portugal. You will find cork being sold along the riverfront.

Rabbit Street Art in Vila Nova de Gaia
Rabbit by Artur Bordalo

Jardim do Morro or Rooftop Bar

Vila Nova de Gaia is one of the best places to experience the sunset, and one of the best spots is at Jardim do Morro. Every night, you will see tons of people getting their picnics ready to enjoy the show. Bring some wine or local beer with you. Super Bock and Sagres beers are both popular and good.

Sunset overlooking Porto a must with 3 days
Sunset in Porto | 3 Days in Porto itinerary

Another option is to head to a rooftop bar. Two of the most popular bars are Espaço Porto Cruz, and Esplanada do Teleférico.

If you choose to visit the garden square, you will be located at the top of the Luís I Bridge at this point, so cross back into Porto with some more beautiful views.

Jardim do Morro in Porto
Jardim do Morro

Porto at Night: Fado or Party

If you’re not totally wiped out from your first busy day in Porto, you can end it with a Fado show. Fado, meaning fate, is a traditional and very popular thing to experience in Portugal. In fact, Fado was added to the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List.

Some argue that if you’re visiting Lisbon, it is best to experience a Fado show there since that is the “birthplace.” The choice is yours!

Alternatively, if you’d like to party, head to the party district, Galerias de Paris, where you will find tons of bars. It will be especially popular if you’re spending a weekend in Porto.

Galerias de Paris Party Street in Porto
Galerias de Paris Party Street during the day

Porto Free Walking Tour (Optional)

On our first day in a new city, many times we like to check if there are any good free (pay as you wish) walking tours. We took this Free Tour Essential Porto. Our guide was Raquel. She grew up in Porto and loves sharing about her city.

Check the attractions, and consider walking to them with a guide so you can get some additional information and ask questions! If you go with Raquel, make sure to tell her Sam, the blogger, said hi! I recommend starting your day with this if the tour interests you.

Related: Important Things to Know for Your First Time in Portugal!

Rua dos Caldeireiros in Porto with colorful alley
Rua dos Caldeireiros (street)

Day 2: Cedofeita and Ribeira

Your second day won’t be as busy, but we will still explore some really cool attractions and viewpoints. Some attractions you will see today include:

  • Livraria Lello
  • Clerigos Church and Tower
  • Miradouro da Vitória
  • Bolsa Palace
  • Monument Church Of St Francis (Igreja de São Francisco)
Day 2 Porto Map
Google Map Screenshot Day 2

Livraria Lello Bookstore (Optional)

Considered one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world, Livraria Lello is a must-see on most Portugal itineraries. It is just about a 5-minute walk from the Clerigos Tower. It is said that J.K. Rowling was inspired by this bookstore for Harry Potter.

Livraria Lello Bookstore Red Staircase with Sam Opp standing in the middle in Porto

Even if she claims otherwise, there are many similarities. You can definitely feel Hogwarts vibes.

The bookstore is perhaps Porto’s busiest tourist destination, with lines that go on for hours. If you want guaranteed entry, you need to purchase a timed ticket in advance from their official website. The ticket includes one of their books and starts at 15.90€.

We chose the first entry ticket to the bookstore and qued 30 minutes before the opening. When they opened the doors, they became incredibly packed.

Is Livraria Lello worth a visit? I think it depends, which is why I made it optional. If you’re a huge Harry Potter fan or love bookstores, then yes. If being in a small space with crowds bothers you, I would skip this.

Travel Tip: Praça de Lisboa is right next to the bookstore and has some food options, and there is an Amorino Carmelitas Porto (French Gelato).

Hours: 9 AM – 7 PM Daily

Livraria Lello waiting Line
Waiting in Line for the bookshop with pre-purchased tickets

Fonte dos Leões (Fountain of the Lions)

Right across from the bookstore is Fonte dos Leoes, a 19th-century fountain, which makes for a great picture and is located in the Praça de Gomes Teixeira square near the University of Porto.

Igreja do Carmo and Igreja dos Carmelitas

From the Praça de Gomes Teixeira square, you can also see a glimpse of Igreja do Carmo and Igreja dos Carmelitas. Igreja do Carmo gets all the attention because of its beautifully titled side.

Between the two churches is Portugal’s narrowest house (less than 1 meter wide). It is free to visit both churches.

Fonte dos Leões,Igreja do Carmo and Igreja dos Carmelitas
Fonte dos Leões,Igreja do Carmo and Igreja dos Carmelitas at Praça de Gomes Teixeira square

Clerigos Church and Tower (Torre dos Clérigos)

One of the best “paid views” to experience in Porto is at Clerigos Church and Tower, an 18th-century baroque-inspired building. You have certainly seen this National Monument along the Porto skyline, and today, you can climb the 225 stairs to get some panoramic views of the city from 249 ft high.

Clerigos Tower in Portugal

Aside from climbing the stairs, they have organized a small museum that you can walk through, along with visiting the church. The staircase at some points is small and narrow.

If you have difficulty climbing steps, you may want to skip this attraction.

During high-season, the best way to acquire tickets is by getting a skip-the-line ticket(what we did), which was seamless to go in.

Nearby is Avenida dos Aliados. This is where you can find the big Porto sign to take a picture.

Hours: Daily 9 AM to 7 PM and a night pass at 7 PM to 11 PM (just the tower)

View of Porto from the top of the Clerigos Tower - a must with 3 days in Porto Portugal
top of the Clerigos | 3 days in Porto Itinerary

Miradouro da Vitória

Next, make your way to the Miradouro da Vitoria, located in the Jewish Quarter. This is a lovely viewpoint looking down on the city, and worth a stop.

Views of Porto Skyline from Miradouro da Vitória
Miradouro da Vitória views

Bolsa Palace (Palácio da Bolsa) Optional

If you love architecture, I would add Bolsa Palace to your Itinerary. This Neoclassical UNESCO World Heritage site was a stock exchange in Porto. It began construction in 1842, and while the outside of this palace is nothing too impressive, the inside is beautiful.

With specialty rooms, including the Arab Room, the Library, and the Hall of Nations.

You can only visit the Stock Exchange Palace with a guided tour. These tours last about 30 minutes, and the tour time depends on the language you speak. Tickets in advance are recommended, and you can get them from the official website here.

When we were there, they even had complimentary Nespresso coffee.

Hours: 9 AM – 6:30 PM

Admission: 12€ per adult. Student/Senior: 7.50€. Free for children under 12 years old.

Outside of Bolsa Palace in Porto

Monument Church Of St Francis (Church of São Francisco)

The Monument Church Of St Francis is located right next to the Bolsa Palace. This church is considered one of the most prominent Gothic monuments in Porto. It is yet another World Heritage Site and has Baroque-style decoration.

Igreja de Sao Francisco Church
Igreja de Sao Francisco Church

When visiting, you have access to the two churches and the museum.

Also, right below the church is the Linha 1 tram, Porto’s historical tram. The Porto Tram 1 route goes through the historic city centre of Porto, along the Douro River, and to Foz. The tickets are 5 € (one way) and can be purchased on the tram. Here is the tram route.

Hours: April – September: 9 AM to 8 PM; October – March: 9 AM – 7 PM daily.

Admission: Adult: 9€; Student: 6.50€; Port Card: 7€; Children aged 6-12: 2.50€; Children under 5: Free

Porto Historic yellow tram

Parque de Serralves (Optional)

You have already toured a ton of the city today, but If you want to see more, consider adding Parque de Serralves to your itinerary. This park is a great place for architecture lovers, or those who like anything that looks “Instagrammable.”

It is located outside of the Historic city center, so you will need to take public transportation or an Uber over there.

With 18 hectares of beautiful gardens, it makes for the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle. While here, you can also visit the house and contemporary art museum. You can find tickets and more information here.

Alternatively, for a free garden with lovely views, consider Jardins do Palácio de Cristal. It is about a 20-minute walk or train ride from the Bolsa Palace.

Admission: €13 for the park

Casa da Música at Night

For nighttime entertainment, catch a show at Casa da Musica at night in Porto. Most shows happen later in the afternoon. The most popular music is the orchestra, although they have different shows all throughout the year. You can find the show schedules here.

Watching a sunset in Porto Portugal is a must with 10 days

Day 3: Day Trip to Douro Valley

For your last day in Porto, make it a day trip by heading to the Douro Valley, where all the Port Wine is grown!

After telling you all about the Douro Valley, I will also leave you with some additional options – just in case wine and vineyards are not your thing.

There are 3 ways to get to the Douro Valley, and I will cover all of them, and what I recommend.

Douro Valley is a must when visiting Porto Portugal

Driving to the Douro Valley

One way to visit the Douro Valley is by driving. This is what we did, and while it has its perks, I don’t recommend it.

We rented a car because we were driving from Porto to Lagos the next day, so we already had the car. What I love about driving is that you have the opportunity to make additional stops. One stop I wanted to make was in Lamego to see Santuario de Nossa Senhora da Peneda. I also saw the famous viewpoint, Miradouro São Leonardo De Galafura.

However, the drive is long (at least 1.5 hours there), and it twists and turns around the mountain. Furthermore, someone has to remain sober if you’re driving. Moreover, you need to make sure you organize your visit with a vineyard first.

If you still decide you would like to drive, Pinhão is the most popular town to visit vineyards.

Santuario de Nossa Senhora da Peneda
Santuario de Nossa Senhora da Peneda

Organized Tour From Porto to the Douro Valley (Recommended)

In my opinion, the best way to visit the Douro Valley is by going on an organized tour.  This will give you the most optimized experience since you won’t have to figure out any logistics. Just show up, learn from an experienced guide, drink, eat, and return to Porto.

I would have done this option if I could do it all over again. Doing an Organized tour of the Douro Valley does come with a price tag, but renting the car and planning the visit to the vineyard will not be much less.

Train From Porto to the Douro Valley (Budget Option)

The last option to visit the Douro Valley is by taking the train. This is also the most budget-friendly way to do it. Moreover, you can feel like a local visiting Douro Valley going this way, and it is incredibly scenic.

It is pretty simple to visit the Douro Valley by train. You just have to take the Douro Line train(MiraDouro train). The train runs daily between Oporto São Bento/Campanhã to Pocinho and back. It is also considered one of the most scenic train rides in Europe.

The train journey is ~13.60 euros or less, depending on the station you stop at. The train can take anywhere from 2.5 – 3.5 hours.

Make sure to check the train timetable first and confirm that there are no delays on the official Portugal train website.

The cons with taking the train are still having to organize your vineyard tour and not having the flexibility for additional stops.

Miradouro São Leonardo De Galafura in the Douro Valley
Miradouro São Leonardo De Galafura in the Douro Valley

Additional Options for Day 3

If the Douro Valley is not a must-do during your stay, I have some additional options for you.

Stay Local: The first is just to explore anything you may have missed on the first 2 days in Porto since we covered a lot. Or maybe the weather wasn’t great one of the days, so you can make it up now.

Visit Foz: Take the Historic Tram 1 to Foz. This is a popular trip where you can see the Fortaleza de São João da Foz (Fortress), walk through the garden (Jardim do Passeio Alegre), or hang out at one of the beaches.

Day Trip to Braga: Braga is another great day trip from Porto. This historic city has fortress walls and stunning cathedrals. Quite frankly, it is very high on my list the next time I am in Portugal. You can visit by train (about 1 hour) or by car (about 40 minutes).

Day Trip to Aveiro & Costa Nova do Prado: Unless you plan to take a road trip from Porto to Lagos (we did), you can visit Averio and Costa Nova do Prado today. Aveiro is known as the Venice of the North (although I’d argue it’s not); it is still a really cute town to explore. You will also be right next to Costa Nova, a beach town. You can take the train to Aveiro and public transport or Uber to Costa Nova.

Read: My Detailed Itinerary for 10 Days in Portugal(Porto section will be slightly repetitive)

Aveiro in Portugal
Aveiro in Portugal
Costa Nova do Prado Colorful homes

Where to Stay in Porto

Now that we have your Porto itinerary figured out, you need to book your accommodation!

Some of the most popular areas to stay in Porto, Portugal, are Ribeira, Baixa, Bolhão, and Cedofeita.

Porto is the second largest city in Portugal, but there are nowhere close to as many centralized accommodations. Therefore, booking in advance is important – especially during the busy season. If you haven’t secured your room yet, here are my recommendations on centralized and highly rated places to stay.

View of Porto from our Airbnb
View of Porto from our Airbnb

casaporto.207 C Airbnb: Located in Cedofeita and central to everything. We were advised to book a room here by a friend. Beautiful vistas could be seen from everywhere.

Since it is an Airbnb they asked you to discard your trash in the dumpster, which is fine, but you have to exit the building and walk down the block and around the corner to do so. Also, they expressed that there was a Nespresso Machine, but the capsules were fake (I am a Nespresso snob, lol). I would still recommend staying here despite the above.

NH Collection Porto Batalha: Located in Batalha Square, this 4-star hotel is also very centralized and close to all major attractions. This hotel also has an indoor pool. We originally planned to stay here.

Torel 1884 Suites & Apartments: This 5-Star hotel is located near the Sao Bento Station and has stunning rooms and an inner courtyard. They also offer a paid airport shuttle service.

Oca Flores Hotel Boutique: If you love hotels that offer wellness centers, consider this 4-Star boutique hotel right on Rua das Flores.

PortoBay Flores: Also located on Rua das Flores, this gorgeous luxury 5-Star hotel has all the bells and whistles one could ask for.

Airbnb in Porto
Our Airbnb in Porto

How to Get to Porto, Portugal

Now, let’s make sure you know how to get to Porto!

Plane: You can fly into the Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (OPO), which has a couple of direct flights from the USA. The airport is about 20 minutes from the city center, and you can get an Uber. Taxis will run you around 25€ – Uber is usually less.

Train: Lisbon to Porto is a very popular train ride. You can catch the fast train from Campanha to Estação do Oriente (Lisbon East). The train takes just under 3 hours and costs around €44.60/€31.90 (First Class/Second Class).

Depending on what time you leave, they sometimes offer promotions on the price.

Bus: Occasionally, the trains are striking, and if this is the case, you can opt for the FlixBus. You can get tickets for around 12-15 Euros if you book in advance and it takes between 3-4 hours.

Car: If you are driving from Lisbon, the drive is around 3 hours. I recommend parking just outside of the city. Driving down the narrow streets is tough! We parked the car at Parking Comércio do Porto – SABA.

Parking in Porto near Clerigos Tower in Portugal
Parking in Porto near Clerigos Tower in Portugal

What and Where to Eat in Porto

I know we have touched on the famed Pastel de Nata, but there are some other staples to try. These include:

Francesinha (the little Frenchie): A sandwich that was born in Porto. It includes toasted bread, meats (steak/hams), cheese, a sunny side-up egg on top, and a spiced tomato sauce, served with fries. You will see it all over the city, but the birthplace is at A Regaleira. For a vegetarian option, you can also try Francesinhas Al Forno da Baixa.

Bifana: This is a Portuguese Steak sandwich, but instead of steak, they actually use pork that is marinated. Conga was recommended by our lovely guide.

Toasty: This is your classic toasted ham and cheese sandwich. You will find these all over Portugal. They are a cheap and easy-to-go snack.

Fresh Fish: Portugal is known for their fresh seafood. Some fish you will see on menus include sardines and Salted Cod (bacalhau), the country’s National Dish.

Other restaurants to try:

  • Pizzeria Bella Mia!: You can take pizza to go- and it was pretty good. Also, I love this alley.
  • Clérigos Corner Bar: It is directly across from the Lello bookstore and a good place to grab a quick sandwich. They have a walk-up counter with outdoor seating.
  • Chama: Highly recommended Portuguese restaurant. Reservations must be made months in advance, and expect a 3+ hour dinner experience.
  • Flow Restaurant & Bar: Trending and known for delicious seafood.
Pizzeria Bella Mia! Pizza in Porto
Pizzeria Bella Mia! Pizza in Porto – really cute street

Best Time to Visit Porto

Arguably the best times to visit Porto are in the late spring (May/early June) and early fall (September/ very early October). This is when you will experience the best weather in Porto with fewer crowds.

One of the positives about visiting in late spring is having a lot of daylight. The sun does not start to set until 8-9 PM.

You will need to pack a light jacket since Porto can be a little chilly in the Spring, with temperatures around 50°F – 68°F.

Fall in Porto can also be chilly at times but usually warmer than Spring, with the average temperatures around 60°F to 70°F.

It is also known as a rainy city, so I wouldn’t doubt your hotel will have an umbrella to offer. When it rains, it rains hard, but usually not all day. October through April are known as some of the rainier months in Porto.

Summer is undoubtedly the most popular month to visit. This is when you will have the longest days, the warmest weather, and fewer rain showers. If you want to visit during the summer, just make sure to book everything well in advance and prepare for larger crowds. You can expect the average temperatures to be around 60°F to 80°F.

Winter is when you will see the fewest crowds and low prices. It tends to rain more in the winter, but the temperatures are not “freezing” at around 44°F – 60°F.

Side of Porto Cathedral with Tuk Tuk
Side of Porto Cathedral with Tuk Tuk

3 Days in Porto Wrap-up

This concludes my ultimate 3 days in Porto itinerary. I hope you have found a lot of value and tips to help plan your vacation in Porto, Portugal, and that you have the best time exploring this city!

Read more: My Detailed Guide For Visiting Portugal

Have any questions about how to spend 3 days in Porto, or do you need more help? Let me know in the comments below!

Did you find this Porto Itinerary helpful? I’d appreciate it if you could share it below!

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Samantha Oppenheimer

Samantha Oppenheimer (Sam Opp) quit her corporate marketing job in 2018 to travel the world and become a travel writer, blogger and content creator. She loves experiencing authentic travel experiences, photography, and nature. Sam shares helpful travel itineraries, travel tips, budget tips, and travel advice from her personal experiences. You can also find Sam's words featured in large publications including Mirror, Thrillist, and Well + Good. Learn more here: https://findloveandtravel.com/samantha-oppenheimer/

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