After Lisbon, Porto is Portugal’s second largest city. With over two million people, Porto is quite large to navigate. The strategic location where the Duoro River meets the Atlantic Ocean gives Porto quite a lengthy and interesting history. Known best for port wine cellars and a plethora of bridges, Porto dates back to 300 BC and later became an important part of the Roman Empire, centuries before becoming a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Visitors to Porto today come for the wine, the colourful architecture, and picturesque bridges. Porto is relatively easy to get around, but it’s a bit hilly, so keep this in mind when choosing where to stay in Porto. Using our guide to Porto neighborhoods, you can choose the best Porto hotel for your travel style.
We will cover off all types of Porto accommodation options from Hostels to luxury Porto hotels as well as how to decide where to stay in Porto, the best Porto hotels, best places in Porto to visit, the best places to stay in Porto, hotels near Porto attractions, Porto neighborhood guide and many more. Airbnb is also a great option for short or long stays.
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Baixa – Where to stay in Porto Portugal for tourists
Centered on the Avenida dos Aliados, Baixa Porto may be the best area for tourists visiting Porto for the first time, as it’s centrally located and one of the trendier, more modern neighborhoods of Porto. If you are planning any day trips from Porto, the Sao Bento railway station is located here, as is the Trindade Metro station for each access to other areas of Porto.
This historic centre of Porto is filled with winding narrow streets lined with 19th-century buildings which house cafes, shops and boutique hotels. Travellers will pay a premium for the central location of Baixa, but if you want to know what’s the best neighborhood to stay in Porto, this is it. That said, you’ll have a large range of Porto hotels to choose from in Baixa.
Best places to stay in Baixa
Boavista – Where to stay in Porto on a budget
A bit northwest of the Baixa city center is Boavista, a thriving artistic neighborhood full of museums and performing art centers. Avenue Boavista stretches out from the Praca Mouzinho de Albuquerque and is home to many restaurants, rooftop bars, and hotels in Porto Portugal.
Some of the best attractions in Boavista include the City Park, the Planetarium, the Museum of Modern Art and Casa Musica. Travelers looking for a budget-friendly hotel in Porto will find some good options in this area, as it’s just enough out of the city centre to make it affordable.
Best places to stay in Boavista
Ribeira – Where to stay in Porto for nightlife
If you’ve seen photos of colorful buildings along the waterfront, you’ve seen photos of Ribeira. This historic residential area is the part of Porto that has earned UNESCO World Heritage status, and while it’s quite popular with tourists, there are still Porto residents who live here and carry on their daily activities amidst the tourism.
If you are looking for a boutique hotel in Porto, there are many in Ribeira’s historic buildings. Ribeira also happens to be a popular nightlife spot in Porto, so the streets are quite lively, making this one of the areas to avoid in Porto if you are traveling with young children and prefer a more quiet environment.
Best places to stay in Ribeira
Masserelos – Where to stay in Porto for foodies
Just west of Baixos is the university area of Masserelos. Foodie travelers will absolutely have to visit the Mercado do Bom Sucesso, Porto’s culinary market hall which has a produce market, food court, cafes and even a boutique design hotel. Closer to the University of Porto, you’ll find budget-friendly cafes and bars brimming with students.
Masserelos is also a family-friendly area of Porto, with lots of green space including the Jardim Botanico and the Jardins Palacio de Cristal. Along the river, you can take a stroll on the promenade for beautiful views.
Best places to stay in Masserelos
Cedofeita – Where to stay in Porto with family
Adjacent to both Masserelos and Boavista is another area popular with students called Cedofeita, named for the Sao Martinho da Cedofeita, a medieval church (the oldest church in Porto!) and National Monument. The main thoroughfare, Rua Miguel Bombarda, is also known as the arts districts of Porto as it is lined with galleries and boutiques.
If you want to know where to stay in Porto with family, Cedofeita is a good choice with many nice apartment rentals, while couples visiting Porto will find many romantic boutique hotels also.
Best places to stay in Cedofeita
Foz do Douro – Where to stay in Porto for beach lovers
Along the Atlantic coast in the far west of Portugal, Foz do Douro is the best place for beach lovers who are more interested in a laid-back atmosphere than a fast-paced urban experience. Easily reached by tram, there is much to explore in this area.
From the beautiful waterfront promenade to the waterfront bars, restaurants, and hotels, Foz do Douro has something for everyone. At Mercado da Foz, take a stroll through several stalls and sample traditional local food before checking out one of several Michelin-starred restaurants in the area.
Best places to stay in Foz do Douro
Vila Nova de Gaia – Where to stay in Porto for couples
Across the river from Foz do Douro is the home of Port wine, Vila Nova de Gaia. If you want to stay near as many port wine cellars as possible, then this is the Porto neighborhood for you. Beach lovers will also find some nice beaches here, and the view of Porto across the river is magical.
Access to Porto is pretty easy and you can even take a ferry for a fun transportation mode. The Porto Gaia cable car is another fun way to get around, and a great way to get amazing views over Porto without having to drag yourself up a hill. The Telerifico is a must when visiting Porto!