There’s a special kind of energy in Porto: one that buzzes with an infectious appetite for all the good things in life – especially food and wine.
The best way to get to know this fabulous culinary scene is by diving straight in. Choose a restaurant along the banks of the River Douro and settle into the city’s al fresco dining culture. ‘Bacalhau’ (salted cod) and freshly grilled octopus pair perfectly with a glass of dry white port – but the star of Portuguese cuisine is the original, sweet red port. Take a tasting tour of the wine cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia or get lost in the maze-like streets of the medieval Ribeira district to seek out the best varieties in the city.
After quenching your thirst, let your attention turn to Porto’s breadth of impressive architecture. São Francisco Church wows visitors with its lavish baroque interior and gilded carvings, while the blue and white-tiled facades of the Chapel of Souls captivate with their intricate picture stories.
For the best views in town, cross Dom Luís I Bridge from São Bento railway station, or climb the 240 steps to the top of Clérigos Church, an 18th-century tower located in the heart of the city. Meanwhile, the golden sands and consistent swells of Matosinhos Beach will keep any sunbather or surfer content for the afternoon.