Best Areas of Porto to Stay 2023
This guide will not only take you through some of Porto’s most popular neighborhoods, but it will also help you find the best hotels, apartments, budget-friendly hostels, and unique accommodation options in them.
Located at the junction of the Douro River with the Atlantic Ocean, Porto is one of the most popular stops of Western European cultural tours with its historical and elegant buildings.
Portugal’s second largest city, Porto, is not only culturally; Its vibrant nightlife, gastronomy with different tastes and cultural accumulation make this city a unique holiday destination.
In this accommodation guide, I will tell you about the regions and hotels that can be the answer to Where to Stay in Porto.
The Yeatman is widely regarded as one of Porto’s best luxury hotels. The five-star hotel in the Vila Nova de Gaia area has a Michelin-starred chef, multiple pools, and beautiful views of the city and river.
The Grand Hotel do Porto is another excellent Porto hotel option, particularly for history buffs. Built in 1880 in the Baixa neighborhood, the hotel has hosted diplomats, politicians, performers, royalty, and even spies during their visits to the city for over a century.
Recommended hotels in Porto for those in a hurry
- Clean and economical 3 ★★★ Ribeira do Porto Hotel in the Old City,
- 4 ★★★★ Eurostars Porto Centro, within walking distance of attractions,
- In the very center of the city, luxury and quality 5 ★★★★★ InterContinental Porto.
Best Area to Stay in Porto
There are 4 regions where you can stay in Porto:
- Ribeira, which is the center of the city’s lively nightlife;
- Baixa, where luxury hotels are ideal for first-time vacationers;
- Vila Nova de Gaia, which is full of accommodation options that appeal to families;
- Foz do Douro is the choice of those who want to enjoy the sea away from the crowd.
Stay in Ribeira if you want to experience the best of the city and its vibrant nightlife. You’ll be just steps from sun-drenched cafes, seafood restaurants, and the famous Luis I Bridge. Ribeira is also an excellent home base due to its location between the central historic districts of Baixa and Cedofeita on one side and the Vila Nova de Gaia neighborhood on the other.
The area, where pastel-colored buildings are lined up side by side, is very close to the banks of the Douro River. Travelers can enjoy the breathtaking scenery in this manner.
We can make a list of Porto attractions after deciding to stay in comfortable Riberia hotels. The flamboyant Palácio da Bolsa and the Gothic-style St Francis Church must be written on the first lines.
Numerous wines can be sampled in the region, which is close to the world-famous Port Wine Cellars. The D. Luiz Bridge is another architectural masterpiece that draws a lot of attention in the area. You can take a detour to Oficina de Nana to see the masters who created miniature versions of the “Rabelos” boats that made river transportation possible for centuries.
Following your visit to the monumental structures, consider taking the 50-minute 6 Bridges Boat Tour. You can also spend time at the World of Discoveries theme park, which is suitable for people of all ages.
As you can imagine, Ribeira provides much more to its visitors than just nightlife opportunities. In fact, with hotels to suit every budget, this location remains the most important alternative to the city center.
Ribeira, a very lively region, may not provide the desired environment for families or those seeking a quiet holiday period.
Ribeira Hotel Recommendations
3 ★★★ Ribeira do Porto Hotel:
9.0 on Booking.com.
With a view of the Douro River, the hotel is 10 minutes away from the metro and train stations. The property is ideal for those who want to stay close to Lello Bookstore and Clerigos Tower.
4 ★★★★ Eurostars Porto Douro:
9.0 on Booking.com.
Access to the wine cellars is very easy from the hotel by the river. It is only 15 kilometers from the airport.
4 ★★★★ The House Ribeira Porto Hotel:
Booking.com score 8.9.
Located close to the airport, the hotel with a high level of comfort operates right next to the Palacio da Bolsa.
5 ★★★★★ Pestana Vintage Porto Hotel:
9.0 on Booking.com.
The luxury hotel on Riberia Square welcomes its guests in a 16th-century building. Torre dos Clerigos, Porto Cathedral and Pestana Porto are a few popular points of interest near the hotel.
Baixa, or the city center, is the best place to stay for visitors who are visiting for the first time.
This area, which is the commercial and financial heart of Porto, is well-known for its luxury tourist attractions. Furthermore, its small squares, which are linked by maze-like narrow streets, provide many opportunities for visitors to learn about the local culture.
Baixa attractions include Torre dos Clerigos, which offers a spectacular view of Porto, and Sao Bento Train Station, which resembles a work of art.
Galleria de Paris, with its lively atmosphere and entertainment options, appeals to those looking for a pleasant evening out. Before you start spending time on the street, I strongly advise you to visit the gardens of Livraria Lello and Palacio de Cristal.
Those looking to shop should go to Quarteiro das Artes. This area also has galleries where art enthusiasts can view valuable works of art.
The hotels in Baixa, which house iconic venues such as Majestic Cafe and Teatro Nacional So Joo, compete to provide their guests with the best experience possible.
As I previously stated, Baixa is the ideal region for first-time visitors to Porto. Why is this the case? Many landmarks are located here, in addition to the city’s high-end shopping and dining venues.
Baixa Hotel Recommendations
3 ★★★ Pao de Acucar Hotel:
Booking.com score 8.0.
Featuring Art Deco decoration, the hotel is just 100 meters from Avenida dos Aliados and the metro station. Its proximity to Port Wine Cellars makes the facility popular. .
4 ★★★★ Eurostars Porto Centro:
9.1 on Booking.com.
Located close to Galeria de Paris, Oporto Coliseum and Bolhao Market, the distance to the airport is only 11 kilometers.
4 ★★★★ NH Collection Porto Batalha:
9.1 on Booking.com.
Located on Batalha Square, the stylish hotel is a few minutes away from Ribeira, the city’s most popular district. Click for detailed information and reservation.
5 ★★★★★ InterContinental Porto:
Booking.com score 9.2.
Offering travelers the opportunity to stay in an 18th-century palace, the luxury hotel is located 200 meters from Galerias de Paris, known for its lively atmosphere.
Vila Nova de Gaia
Vila Nova de Gaia, located on the south coast of the Rio Douro, is well-known for its Porto wines.
The suburb, which merged with Porto in the 9th century, provides unique gastronomic experiences, particularly with its restaurants lined up along the river.
Wine cellars, which became famous throughout Europe after the British discovered the region, are the first places that visitors to Gaia visit.
The majority of the wine cellars are easily accessible by yourself. However, guided tours of the cellars provide detailed information about both traditional storage methods and the history of port wines.
After the tasting, you can visit the Espaço Porto Cruz market, which is housed in an elegant 18th-century building, or take the cable car to the upper parts of Serra do Pilar to photograph the breathtaking view of the historical city center.
You can take long walks on the track that runs parallel to the river at Cais de Gaia while being away from the crowded atmosphere on the opposite side of the city.
Of course, if you want to have a good time with your kids, you can go to Parque da Lavandeira. The charming Afurada and Madalena Beaches, which are teeming with fish restaurants, are also worth a visit.
If you are visiting Porto with your family and want to stay in a budget-friendly area, Vila Nova de Gaia is the best option.
Vila Nova de Gaia Hotel Recommendations
4 ★★★★ Hotel Mercure Porto Gaia
Booking.com score 8.6.
A few steps from the Arrábida Bridge, the hotel is appreciated for its comfort and friendly atmosphere.
4 ★★★★ Holiday Inn Porto Gaia
Booking.com score 8.8.
Thanks to the metro station nearby, you can easily reach the historical city center from the hotel, which is 2 kilometers from the Porto Wine Cellars.
5 ★★★★★ The Yeatman
9.3 on Booking.com.
A 10-minute walk from the Douro River, the stylish hotel hosts many events that will make it easier for you to gain detailed knowledge about port wines.
Foz do Douro
Foz do Douro is situated at the mouth of the river, where it empties into the Atlantic Ocean. During the summer months, the city’s long coastline is one of the most popular tourist destinations. This is a popular winter destination for travelers looking to unwind.
Although the beaches on the coast are popular, the center of Foz do Douro is the most appealing. When walking from the center to the beach, you will frequently pass upscale cafes, restaurants, and boutiques.
I recommend that you go to those near Matosinhos Beach rather than those where the density increases during the season. You can also find very nice options around Rio Leça, which is within walking distance of this popular beach with the locals.
For those who enjoy outdoor activities, Foz do Douro is the best place to stay in the city. Furthermore, you can take the vintage tram to the vibrant city center whenever you want. Furthermore, the region’s hotel options cater to all budgets and tastes.
Foz do Douro Hotel Recommendations
3 ★★★ Hotel Boa – Vista
Booking.com score 8.3.
The well-located hotel is a 15-minute drive from the city’s most important shopping district, Arrábida.
5 ★★★★★ Vila Foz Hotel & SPA
Booking.com score 9.1.
Offering airport transfer service, the hotel aims to provide its guests with a first-class accommodation experience 2.5 kilometers from the peaceful Porto City Park.
Transportation in Porto Portugal
Buses are the most practical mode of transportation in Porto. Between 06:00 and 01.00, the STCP-controlled vehicles transport passengers to many tourist attractions throughout the city.
Trams, which were once the city’s primary mode of public transportation, now operate on only three lines. You can choose these vehicles, which have become a symbol of Porto, especially if you need to travel in the city center.
If you choose to stay on the river’s north bank, you can take advantage of metro services to meet your transportation needs quickly.
In Porto, there are also alternative modes of transportation such as boats and funiculars. If you only use public transportation on occasion, single-use tickets purchased from vending machines at stations or stops will suffice.
If you plan on using public transportation frequently, you can get a Porto Card or an Andante Tour Card.
Final Word on Porto Hotels
Porto is a dream city that appeals to both the culturally minded and the fun-loving traveler. I can recommend four different areas for lodging in Porto.
Ribeira is considered the center of vibrant nightlife, revealing the city’s unique charm in all its glory.
Baixa, located in the city’s upper reaches, is also known for its lively atmosphere. However, unlike Ribeira, the region, which is the city’s center, has more options in terms of luxury dining and shopping.
Travelers who come to Porto with their families prefer Vila Nova de Gaia hotels because of the tranquil atmosphere.
Foz do Douro, the last accommodation area in the city I can recommend, offers the opportunity to enjoy the sea in summer for those who want to escape the city’s chaos.
Porto hotel recommendations
3 ★★★ Ribeira do Porto Hotel, Pao de Acucar Hotel and Hotel Boa – Vista are the ideal options for those looking for comfortable accommodation in the city at an affordable price.
If you want the hotel to be a little higher in terms of service quality, you can choose between 4 ★★★★ Eurostars Porto Douro and Eurostars Porto Centro.
For high-end accommodation, you can choose 5 ★★★★★ Pestana Vintage Porto Hotel & World Heritage Site and InterContinental Porto.