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Things to do if you spend 3 days in Porto, Portugal

Although you may think that you don't need much time to get to know Porto, the reality is that this Portuguese city has a great variety of places to visit. From its beautiful viewpoints to its famous wineries, a wide variety of plans await you. In order for you to have the best possible experience, I have prepared this itinerary in which I tell you the best places to visit if you're spending 3 days in Porto, Portugal.

Below you will find a daily route in which I explain what to do each day in the city. I will also recommend places to eat and hotels. At the end, you will find a map in which I have pointed out all the places to visit in this itinerary of Porto in 3 days.

Table of contents

3 days in Porto, Portugal: things to do

Ready to plan your visit to the city? Let’s get started!


Day:1Sé do Porto, San Lorenzo dos Grilos Church Viewpoint, Largo da Pena Ventosa, Rua das Flores, Victoria Viewpoint, Stock Exchange Palace, San Francisco Church, Ribeira, Luis I Bridge, Vila Nova de Gaia, and Miradouro da Serra do Pilar.
Day:2St. Ildefonso Church, Rua de Santa Catarina, Café Majestic, Chapel of the Souls, Mercado do Bolhão, Avenida dos Aliados, Church and Tower of the Clerigos, Portuguese Center of Photography, Livraria Lello, Church of Carmen, Crystal Palace Gardens.
Day:3Day trip to Aveiro, Guimarães, and Braga; boat trip on the Douro River; and watching a fado.
3 days in Porto, Portugal itinerary

Day 1 of the 3-day Porto itinerary

On the first day in Oporto I recommend visiting the historic center and Vila Nova de Gaia.

  • Sé do Porto.
  • Viewpoint of the San Lorenzo dos Grilos Church.
  • Largo da Pena Ventosa.
  • Castro.
  • Rua das Flores.
  • Viewpoint of the Victory.
  • Palace of the Stock Exchange.
  • Church of San Francisco.
  • Ribeira.
  • Luis I Bridge.
  • Vila Nova de Gaia.
  • Miradouro da Serra do Pilar.

Sé do Porto

porto cathedral
Porto Cathedral

Start the day with a visit to the Cathedral of Porto, located next to the ancient walls that used to protect the city. Its origin dates back to the 12th century, and it is the most important religious building in Porto.

Although visiting it from the outside is already a privilege, especially if you look out from the many viewpoints located here, my recommendation is to go inside. This way, you can also see the beautiful cloister and climb the tower to admire the views of the city. The entrance fee is 3 euros.

🎟️ During your stay, don’t miss this free tour of Porto if you would like to get to know the city with a guide. It’s one of the best free tours in Porto, Portugal!

Rua das Flores

porto 3 days
Igreja dos Grilos (Cricket Church)
3 days in Porto, Portugal
Rua das Flores

Rua das Flores is one of the main avenues in Porto. Here, you will find numerous stores, including jewelry stores. It also highlights the Church of Mercy. To get there from Sé do Porto, I recommend you visit the following places along the way:

San Lorenzo dos Grilos Church lookout point

From here, you can observe the church’s facade from high ground and enjoy beautiful views of Porto.

Largo da Pena Ventosa
Things to do in Porto, Portugal
Largo da Pena Ventosa

This is one of the most charming corners in all of Porto. Come and marvel at its colorful facades and the magic of the place.


Just before entering Rua das Flores, take the opportunity to stop at Castro, an atelier where they sell the best cream cakes; they are delicious!

🛏️ Our hotel in Porto was Trendy Flats Fontainhas, an apartment located near Bolhao, one of the best areas, where we were very comfortable. I highly recommend it!

Victoria viewpoint

Victoria viewpoint Porto
Porto, Portugal
Victoria viewpoint
Victoria viewpoint

When you are halfway down Rua das Flores, turn left and enter Rua do Ferraz. Turn left again to continue along Rua de Vitoria until you reach the Da Vitória viewpoint. Here you will find a dirt esplanade practically abandoned. You can go inside and enjoy the view of the city.

Then go down the Escadas da Vitoria and head towards the Jardim do Infante Dom Henrique.

Porto Stock Exchange Palace

The Stock Exchange Palace is one of the best places to visit if you’re spending 3 day in Porto, Portugal. If you have less time in the city, maybe your visit to the interior is not so essential, but in this case, I highly recommend you go inside if you feel like it. I will start by telling you that this place is classified as a World Heritage Site by Unesco.

Its construction began in the mid-nineteenth century and lasted almost 50 years. Inside, you will find different rooms decorated by renowned artists and sculptors. Among its rooms, the Patio of the Nations, the Arab Hall, the Hall of General Assemblies, the Golden Hall, and the library stand out.

The entrance fee to visit Porto’s Stock Exchange Palace is 12 euros.

Church of San Francisco

Church of San Francisco
Church of San Francisco

Nearby, you will find the Church of San Francisco, built in the 14th century. The highlight of this church is its baroque interior, which creates an interesting contrasts with its simple facade. Inside, you can appreciate the richness of its three naves, lined with gilded carvings that required about 300 kilograms of gold dust for their elaboration. Also noteworthy are the impressive wooden sculpture of the Tree of Jesse and the catacombs.

Admission to the Church of San Francisco costs 8 euros.

Ribeira and Don Luis I Bridge

3 days in porto
Puente Don Luis I

Now it is finally time to explore one of the most beautiful and magical areas of the city. I’m talking about the Ribeira, which features the Douro River and is surrounded by many colorful houses. Stroll around the area, sit by the river, or have a drink on one of its terraces. Then continue this first of 3 days in Porto by crossing the Don Luis I Bridge.

Inaugurated at the end of the 19th century, the Don Luis I Bridge is one of the symbols of the city. It is possible to cross it from above or below. In this case, we cross it from below to reach Vila Nova de Gaia.

Vila Nova de Gaia

3 days in porto
Bordalo II
vila nova de gaia
Vila Nova de Gaia

Although technically another city, due to its proximity, Vila Nova de Gaia should be part of any Porto itinerary.

You will be able to appreciate one of its main attractions as soon as you arrive, because from this town there are stunning views of the Ribeira de Porto area. They are beautiful! Walk along the Cais de Gaia to enjoy them while strolling. Here, you will find numerous bars and restaurants.

Other places to see in Vila Nova de Gaia are the sculpture of the rabbit of Bordalo II, the Beira-Rio Market, and the Parish Church of Santa Marinha.

Although Vila Nova de Gaia is especially famous for something, it is for its cellars, where you can book a guided tour and taste wine. These are some of the most popular ones:

Sunset from the Miradouro da Serra do Pilar.

The Monastery of Serra do Pilar
Don Luis I Bridge
3 days in Porto, Portugal

One of the best viewpoints in Porto is undoubtedly the one located next to the Serra do Pilar Monastery, in the upper area of Vila Nova de Gaia. To get here, you can walk or take the Gaia Cable Car, which costs 7€ (one way). We walked. From the Miradouro da Serra do Pilar, you will have beautiful views of the Don Luis I Bridge and the whole city.

When you finish enjoying the views and watching the sunset, I recommend crossing the Don Luis I Bridge again to return to Porto. This time, you will have to do it from the top. Impress!

Day 2 of this Porto itinerary

On the second day in Porto, it’s time to visit the Bolhao and Vitoria neighborhoods.

  • Church of San Ildefonso.
  • Rua de Santa Catarina.
  • Café Majestic.
  • Chapel of the Souls.
  • Manteigaria.
  • Bolhão Market.
  • Avenida dos Aliados.
  • Church and Tower of the Clerigos.
  • Portuguese Center of Photography.
  • Livraria Lello.
  • Church of Carmen.
  • Crystal Palace Gardens.

Church of San Ildefonso

Church of San Ildefonso
Church of San Ildefonso

Your second day starts at the Church of San Ildefonso, one of the most beautiful places to see in Porto in 3 days. Upon arrival, the first thing that will catch your attention about this church built in the early eighteenth century will be its spectacular facade covered with white and blue tiles. It is also possible to visit the interior.

Rua de Santa Catarina

Rua de Santa Catarina is the main street of the Bolhao neighborhood. Here, you will find numerous stores. Walk along it, and be sure to visit these places:

Café Majestic
cafe majestic
Café Majestic

This cafe is probably the most emblematic coffee shop in Porto. Apart from its attractive modernist style, Café Majestic stands out for having been a famous meeting place for several celebrities of the cultural and artistic life of the city. Although the prices are quite high, it is worth going in and having a drink.

Chapel of Souls
3 days in Porto
Chapel of Souls

Another mandatory stop on Rua de Santa Catarina is the Chapel of the Souls, built in the eighteenth century in a neoclassical style. This also stands out for its beautiful facade covered with tiles. These represent religious events in the lives of St. Catherine and St. Francis of Assisi.

Manteigaria: Fábrica de Pastéis de Nata (Cream Pastry Factory)

Although it is not on Rua de Santa Catarina itself, very close to it you will find Manteigaria, another of the best places to try pastéis de nata (cream cakes) in Porto. What a delight! Order one to take away or sit down to enjoy this treat for the palate.

Mercado de Bolhao (Market)

bolhao market
Mercado de Bolhão

Recently restored, Bolhao Market is a place you can’t miss if you find yourself in this neighborhood. Although I must admit that it used to have a much more local atmosphere and was therefore nicer and more special, it is still worth a visit. Here, you will find a wide variety of stalls selling all kinds of local products.

Avenida dos Aliados

avenida dos aliados
Avenida dos Aliados

This avenue is located in the heart of the city. At the top of this avenue, you will see the beautiful building that houses the Porto City Hall. Another place you can approach on this avenue is McDonald’s. That’s right, as you read it! It is one of the most beautiful establishments of this chain in the world. Go, and you will understand why.

São Bento Station

São Bento Station
São Bento Station

The São Bento Station is a true architectural jewel, and you can see it as soon as you set foot in it. Inaugurated in 1916, this station is known for its spectacular walls covered with more than 20,000 hand-painted tiles. These tiles depict historical scenes and key moments in Portugal’s history.

Clerigos Church and Tower

3 days in porto, portugal
Clerigos Church and Tower
Clerigos Church and Tower
View from the tower

Once you finish walking along the Avenida dos Aliados, head towards the Clerigos Tower, one of the most iconic buildings in Porto. Built in the 18th century in baroque style, it is the tallest building in the historic center of the city. It is possible to climb 240 steps to reach the top of the tower and enjoy spectacular panoramic views.

The entrance fee is 8 euros. I recommend you buy your ticket to the Clerics Tower to avoid queues. The visit to the Church of the Clerics is free.

Portuguese Center of Photography

A less-visited place among tourists who come to this Porto, Portugal is the Portuguese Center of Photography. It is an admission-free cultural space focused on the history of photography. Inside, you will find numerous cameras from all eras and a collection of photographs. In addition, the building is very interesting as it is a former prison.

Lello Bookstore

Livraria Lello
Librería Lello
3 dyas in Porto, Portugal
3 dyas in Porto, Portugal

We arrived at one of the most famous and beautiful bookstores, Livraria Lello, founded in 1906 by the two brothers, José Lello and Antonio Lello. Both the facade and the interior of this bookstore are true works of art.

Due to its popularity, it is a place that is always overflowing with tourists. If you also want to enter, I recommend you buy the ticket in advance on the website of the Lello Bookstore. It costs 5 euros, which is discounted if you make a purchase.

Tip: If you want to visit this place with a few people, choose the entrance for 19:00h and wait for it to empty, as it closes at 19:30h.

Church of el Carmen

Church of el Carmen
Church of el Carmen

The next stop on this 3 days in Porto, Portugal itinerary is the Church of Carmen. As is the case with other churches in the city, this one is striking for its side facade covered with tiles. They are a real beauty. The church was built between 1756 and 1762. The tiles were added in 1912. Attached to it, you will find the Church of the Carmelites.

🎟️ If you are going to visit several tourist attractions, you may want to buy the Porto Card to save some money. This gives you free access to some attractions and discounts on some of the city’s must-sees. In addition, you can choose to include public transportation. You can book the Porto Card in advance.

Jardins do Palácio de Cristal (Palace Gradens)

Jardins do Palácio de Cristal
Jardins do Palácio de Cristal Tower
3 days in Porto
Da Quinta da Macieirinha Park

To finish off your second day in the best possible way, I recommend going to the Crystal Palace Gardens to watch the sunset. It is a large and beautiful park full of green areas and views of the Douro River. Do not miss the Tower of the Palace Garden.

To watch the sunset, I recommend you go to a place called Parque da Quinta da Macieirinha, inside the Crystal Palace Gardens. You can take something to drink and enjoy even more of one of the best sunsets in the city.

Day 3 of the 3 days in Porto, Portugal trip

On your third day, I suggest you take a day trip to one of the best places to see near Porto in the morning and continue exploring the city in the afternoon.

Day trip to Aveiro and Costa Nova

costa nova aveiro
Costa Nova, Aveiro

One of the most famous excursions to do from Porto is to Aveiro and Costa Nova. Aveiro is a charming little fishing village located about 75 km from Porto. You can stroll through the historic center of this charming seaside town, walk along the canals of Aveiro, and go to Costa Nova, where you will find the famous colorful striped houses. They are very cool!

The easiest way to visit Aveiro is through this organized tour of Aveiro and Costa Nova. It has a total duration of 4 hours, and thanks to it, you will visit the most important places of the destination. It also includes a 45-minute boat ride.

If you prefer to go on your own, you also have it very easy thanks to the train, which connects both points quickly and affordably. Then, to go from Aveiro to Costa Nova, you will have to take some kind of transportation, as it is far away. You can go by cab or bus (line 5951).

Day trip to Guimarães and Braga


Another option for your third day in Porto is to make an excursion to Guimarães and Braga, or just to one of these two locations. If you take this organized tour to both cities, you will have the opportunity to visit the most important places in Braga and Guimarães. One of the places that will impress you the most is the Santuário do Bom Jesus do Monte.

If you prefer to go on your own, it is also very easy, as the three cities are connected by train. The journeys are not very long and are inexpensive.

Six Bridges Cruise

Douro River Six Bridges Cruise
Six Bridges Cruise
things to do 3 days in porto
3 days in Porto, Portugal

To end your trip to the city in the best possible way, I recommend you book this cruise on the Douro. Thanks to this, you will get to know Porto from a different perspective. You will have the opportunity to cross under the most emblematic bridges of this city, such as the Don Luis I Bridge or the Infante Don Enrique Bridge, and appreciate the beautiful views on both sides of the river.

The tour lasts 50 minutes and costs around $20 USD per person.

Fado show

If you feel like getting closer to Portuguese culture and art, there is nothing better than attending a Fado show, the most traditional musical genre in Portugal. One of the best places to see a fado show is the Ideal Clube. You can book your ticket to watch a Fado show in advance. During the show, you will be served a glass of port wine. It’s a complete plan!

Where to stay in Porto, Portugal

One of the most important steps in organizing your trip is deciding where to stay in Porto. Any area in the historic center and surroundings, or even in Vila Nova de Gaia, is a good option. In my case, I have always stayed in the Bolhao area.

The three accommodations I have stayed in on my different trips to Porto are Belas Artes Apartments, Cocorico Luxury House and Trendy Flats Fontainhas. I recommend them all!

If you need more ideas, you can take a look at my compilation of charming hotels in Porto and below I leave you more ideas for different budgets:

Map of 3 days in Porto itinerary

In the following map, I have indicated the places to visit each of the days and the accommodations I recommend, with their respective links to Booking.

Where to eat in Porto, Portugal

On this other map, you can see the best restaurants and cafes in Porto:

Do not miss all my Portugal travel guide to continue organizing your visit to the country.

I hope this article about the best places to visit if you spend 3 days in Porto, Portugal has been very useful for you to prepare your visit to this beautiful Portuguese city. If you have any questions, I encourage you to leave a comment or write me an email. See you next time!

↠ Book free tours and guided visits on Civitatis or GetYourGuide. I always use these platforms to check what organized activities there are at my destination.

↠ To pay with card in foreign currency or withdraw money from ATMs, I always use this card (there are free and paid plans). It works the best!

↠ Traveling with travel insurance to a destination where you don’t have healthcare coverage is a must. Get your insurance 5% cheaper with this link.

↠ If you want to have cellphone data at your destination from the moment you land and don’t want to waste time, there is nothing like this eSIM. Use the code “comeamaviaja” for a 5% discount.

↠ Check out Booking’s offers, a platform I always use, as I always find very good options thanks to its search engine with filters.

↠ For destinations where I need to rent a car, I always check Discover Cars and Auto Europe search engines. I recommend them!

↠ If you still need to buy flights for your trip, there is no better search engine than Skyscanner (although I always recommend booking the flight on the company’s website).

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