Being Portugal a small country, many of us have a myth that it cannot entertain visitors and traveler. Although it is a least-tourist spot in Western Europe, if you love vibrant culture, great architecture, peaceful beaches, natural beauty and sense of romance then you will be allured by the charm and varied experience Portugal offers. Lisbon is the capital city of Portugal, but Porto country’s second largest city situated in the Rio Douro (River of Gold) region is the most attractive and worth visiting. By landing down to the World Heritage City, Porto you can explore the most unconventional features of Portugal. Here are some interesting facts about Porto that will entice you to settle on Porto for your next travel!
11 Interesting Facts about Porto as a Traveler
Porto People are great at English Language – Most European Countries are good at English language and Portugal is no different. You will have no difficulty moving around Porto, as Portuguese people are skilled at English speaking. Especially the youth, who are taught English in school to have at least basic grasp of the language. Even the hotel staff, taxi drivers, pedestrians and shopkeeper speak English to help the tourist. Not just that, Portuguese people are very nice and soft-spoken – “Thank You” and “Please” are words you will often hear.
Porto has a Great Wine Tour – It is a must, if you are in Porto. As Porto is where Port (Fortified Wine, usually strong and red in color) comes from. An interesting fact is that Porto has a something called Vintage year when a special vintage port is made; this is a classy year with best climate condition for port making. Consider yourself lucky if you are in Porto and the vintage year is announced. Apart, just take a wine tour to understand how port is made and become a port drinker once in life.
Porto is a City of the Bridges – Porto is not only famous for its Port and cultural richness but is also known for its beautiful bridges. Often the city is called as “City of Bridges” having 6 iconic bridges making the city more attractive. These bridges start from Porto and go a long way to connect to another city Vila Nova de Gaia. Maria Pia, Dom Luis I, Arrabida, Infante D. Herique, Sao Joao, and Freixo Bridge all have unique characteristics that made Porto the only city with 6 bridges in Europe.
Porto has some most beautiful Coastline – Porto is blessed with some stunning coastlines where land connects the sea. Even during sunny summer days these coast can offer breathtaking views with lazy appeal. For travelers who are ready to ditch adventure and trill to grab some soothing time for self, should head to Porto beaches!
Porto is much Easy on Budget comparatively – You might have heard that some parts of world are cheap and best to travel; well Porto is one such paradise. You are sure to get good food, stay and transportation at reasonably priced say 5 euro for a meal and 20 euro for a hotel room. Not every tourist place in Europe is easy on budget and successful in offering scenic views and natural beauty.
Porto’s ancient architecture is Unbeatable – Ancient architecture of Porto will give you a perplexed feeling of awesomeness yet mysterious. Porto accommodates many historic buildings – some have become historic site and some still needs to be discovered. Best way is to visit Ribiero do Porto where you will find interesting ancient architecture located near waterfront. This place offer shopping, dining and exploring the contemporary interior of old buildings at once.
Porto Food will blow your mind – People believe that veggie dishes are challenging to locate in Porto. But the fact is Porto has many pure veg restaurants that even serve vegan food. Caldo verde soup, traditional bread items, baked Castanhas (Chestnuts), Portuguese Pastries, Bolo rie (King Cake), Arroz Doce (Sweet Rice), Veg Salad, Vegan chocolate cake and of course Port Wine are some yummy veg dishes you can easily find.
Porto can be explored in a Short Tour – You don’t need a week long to explore Porto, just pull out 2-3 days from your schedule and go ahead. Just make sure you don’t miss out on, River Douro, National Park, Old mansions/palaces, coastline, Vila Nova de Gaia, church towers, Livraria Lello & Irmao book shop, Parque de Cidade do Porto, Casa Da Musica and Clerigos Tower.
Porto is loaded with lovely Ancient Churches – Porto is a house of many pretty churches which great architecture. Clérigos Tower Church is documented as the oldest building in Porto, which is 75m high with 240 spiral steps worth climbing. Other notable church building includes, The Carmelite church, Cedofeita Church, Sao Francisco Church, and Se Cathedral remains attractive.
Porto is Beautiful by Nature – Porto is no less in scenic views when compare to other parts of Europe. Right from bridges to park in Gaia to riverbank all view are extremely beautiful in nature. Just were your shoes and walk down the authentic small alleys of Porto to explore red-tiled roof buildings and other attractions on own without troubling the taxi man.
Porto Hotels are Affordable and Exclusive – Most hotels in Porto are affordable and exclusive in design and look. While the architectures in most hotels are the old ones yet they have their own charm. In-house exhibition, cozy bars, and lounges will give you all in all a “luxury hotel” feel. You can even rent an apartment in case travelling with friends or family to get great deal!
Porto may not be the richest or biggest city of Portugal, but friendly and welcoming approach of the city will leave you with lifetime fond memories.