Porto and Northern Portugal is so rich that makes it possible to plot routes in several areas and the taste of each person. Routes such as Route Port Wine and Douro, architectural routes, the route of the historic villages or gastronomic route are of an interest and a unique beauty. To venture into Porto and North means finding more, it enriches one at every step, at every new experience.
Historical, cultural and religious tour at Porto and the North of Portugal from ARPT Porto & Norte
Route of Port and Douro
The Douro wine region is one of the most impressive scenery in the world, as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For generations, thousands of men have built extraordinary terraces staircases on steep mountains, turning almost inaccessible lands in large areas of cultivation of the famous port wine. From here comes one of the strongest and impressive characteristics of the region.
Land of great contrasts, the Douro is marked by mountains of schist, Marão and Montemuro, that protect it from the Atlantic winds, opening it to the Mediterranean and continental influences. The Douro River and its tributaries run in deep valleys, drawing a landscape of rugged beauty and a mysterious hit by extreme temperature ranges, with very hot summers and severe winters. The possible routes for visitors are endless, from the famous Quintas relating to the production of port wine, to the latest Côa rock art of the river Côa, passing some proposals of very good standard hotel and travel by boat or rail with a fabulous landscape. The regional cuisine is just as tasteful as the more and more high-rated wines of the region.
Porto and Northern Portugal has a rich cuisine hard to match. Here we highlight just some of the most representative dishes of the best that you can appreciate. Here are some suggestions:
Codfish Zé do Pipo Style Francesinha Porto Style Tripe Porto Style Viana do Castelo Chicken Rice Cabidela Sarrabulho Rice Ponte de Lima Style Pork stew Minho Style Jerimu Cookies
Abade de Priscos Pudding Roasted Cod with corn bread Minho Style Green cabbage soup Bragança Alheiras ( poultry filled sausage) of Mirandela Kid Serra de Montesinho Style Portuguese Stew
In Porto, there are some of the most important baroque monuments not to be missed, such as the Clérigos Tower and the St Francis Church.
To the north, in the surroundings of Braga, capital of the church, the Bom Jesus Sanctuary and the Tibães Monastery are also worth your visit.
Up the river by boat, marvel at the slopes marked by terraced vineyards. Upon arriving in Peso da Régua, visit the Solar do Vinho do Porto and taste the famous wine. Near Vila Real, Casa de Mateus Foundation, best known for the palace on the label of Mateus Rosé wine, awaits you. The granite work of the Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora dos Remedios, in Lamego, and contrast the sobriety Cistercian with the explosion of color and movement of the altarpiece of the Tarouca Monastery in the surrounding area. Your memory will be marked.
Historical villages Route
By being a more geographic isolated area the North of Portugal, some villages remain more preserved. On the other hand, the recovery of urban clusters allows us to know a surprising beauty and true value of the built heritage, uses and customs of the people. Knowing the historical villages of Northern Portugal is a unique experience and an amazing journey in time.
Getting to know the castles of Northern Portugal is to unveil a bit of history with every step, is to understand the determination of people who throughout the ages fought for self-determination and independence.
This program is highly recommended for those interested in history and culture.
Melgaço Castle Valença Castle Guimarães Castle Bragança Castle Póvoa de Lanhoso Castle (Braga) Mogadouro Castle (Bragança) Montalegre Castle (Vila Real) Mouros Castle (Vila Real) Castelo de Chaves Santo Estevão Castle(Chaves) Castle Castelo de Freixo de Espada à Cinta Castle (Bragança) Ansiães Castle (Bragança) Arnoia Castle (Braga)
The Historical Centre of Porto is a genious masterpiece of creativity. Military, commercial, agricultural and demographic interests converged here to house a population able to build the city. The result is a unique work of art of high aesthetic value. It is a collective work, which was not taken within a certain time, but the result of successive contributions. One of the most significant aspects of Porto and in particular its historical center, is the scenic value, the result of the complexity of the terrain, the streets of their harmonious relationship and its dialogue with the river. Despite the variety of shapes and materials, the Historical Centre of Porto retains a visual aesthetic unity. The city translates successfully, an interaction between social and geographical environments.
Guimarães is one of the most fascinating cities in Portugal, whose center was medieval and sixteenth-century and was classified as UNESCO World Heritage Site.Associated with the founding of the kingdom of Portugal and D. Afonso Henriques, there is a character, unjustly forgotten, who had a role in the development of the city the Countess Mumadona Dias, built a monastery in the 10th century on the plain and the adjacent hill. Connecting both, a path which leads to Santa Maria Street. And with this, were born the cornerstones of the future city of Guimarães, at the initiative of this determined woman.
Guimarães is a land where you feel like returning to medieval times, to walk through the old streets, visit monuments like the famous castle or palace, or have a drink in one of the most beautiful Portuguese squares: the set consists of the Oliveira Square and the Santiago Square. And the citys master is the Penha Mountain, with a beautiful forest garden. More recently, in addition to a new cultural center (Vila Flor), the city invested in various sports and leisure equipment such as Sports City, the City Park and a Multifunction Leather Complex.
Alto Douro Wine Region
The classified area of the Alto Douro Wine Region encompasses 25 000 hectares, which represent ten percent of the Douro Region, which for nearly 250 years produces what is considered one of the world's best wines: the Port Wine. The region classified by the UNESCO as World Heritage Site is dominated by the geometry of the vineyards and terraces cut into hillsides. It is a wonder of nature, combined with the intervention of Man ruled that, over time, the activity here has been developing wine, creating a unique and unrepeatable. The area ,with this cultural and landscape richness, encorpasses the municipalities of Mesão Frio, Peso da Régua, Santa Marta de Penaguião, Vila Real, Alijó, Sabrosa, Carrazeda de Ansiães, Torre de Moncorvo, Lamego, Armamar, Tabuaço, São João da Pesqueira and Vila Nova de Foz Côa.
Engravings of the Côa Valley
The Archaeological Park of the Coa Valley is the entity responsible for the management and protection of the estate of the rock valley as well as the promotion of visits and the dissemination of the paintings. Remember that the rock art of the Coa is classified as a National Monument since 1997 and a World Heritage site in 1998. The Côa Valley is in its grandeur, one of the main areas of rock art in the world, with 28 cores of prints over the 17 miles of the River Côa.
Today the Côa Valley is predominantly a place where the mountains color themselves with the yellow and red poppies, the rich fauna of the site, which includes the blue magpie, a bird that exists only in the Iberian Peninsula and in China, and a breathtaking landscape. At the time prehistoric men drew their paintings, the temperature of the ice age was around 10 degrees Celsius, therefore with a more temperate climate and thats why the establishment of a seminomadic people there. Contrary to popular belief, these men did not live in caves but in huts built of wood and animal skin, which also served as their clothes. There existed the bear, and it was the last local extinction of this animal in our country.
Traveling in northern Portugal and the best places to stay is a privilege. Discover the Pousadas of Portugal and of the North with the tradition and hospitality in cozy and picturesque scenery that you will certainly remember forever.
Pousada de Amares, Santa Maria do Bouro Pousada de Valença, São Teotónio Pousada de Viana do Castelo, Monte de Santa Luzia Pousada de Guimarães. St. Marinha da Costa<h3>Douro</h3> Pousada de Alijó, Barão de Forrester Pousada do Marão, São Gonçalo Norte Pousada do Porto, Palácio do Freixo.
São Bartolomeu Pousada de Bragança Pousada do Gerês, Caniçada São Bento
Routes to Santiago
The Routes to Santiago tours are taken by pilgrims who flock to Santiago de Compostela since the ninth century. These are called pilgrims, from the Latin per ægros, one who crosses the fields. They have a shell as its symbol, usually referred to locally as a scallop for worship, a custom that was already the time when ancient peoples flocked to Finisterre.
The paths are scattered throughout Europe and will trace back to the Spaniards ways.
Most Portuguese paths junctions Valencia do Minho, where they did (still do) cross the border to Tui and then extend for about 130 miles. On the Portuguese side, the most frequented routes are from Fatima, Porto, Braga and Barcelos. In recent years, the course has gained prominence Oporto-Rates-Ponte de Lima Barcelos-Valencia-as Portuguese main road.
Churches and Shrines Route
The route of churches and sanctuaries of Northern Portugal is particularly interesting when you want to learn more about the people, their customs and beliefs while you enjoy the rich heritage of the built heritage.
I - Churches
Viana do Castelo
Caminha Church Monção Church Ponte de Lima Church Vila Nova de Cerveira Church
Misericórdia Church São João do Souto Church Bom Jesus Church - Fão (Esposende) Fafe CHurch São Francisco Church (Guimarães) Fonte Arcada Romanesque church (Póvoa de Lanhoso) Nossa Senhora da Abadia Church (Terras de Bouro) Church of Sao Palo (Vila Verde).
Clérigos Church and Tower São Francisoo Church Vila de Conde Church Penafiel Church Bom Jesus Church (Matosinhos) Gondomar Church
Clérigos Church Valpaços Church Cumieira Church (Santa Marta de Penaguião) Divino Salvador Church (Ribeira de Pena) Mondim de Basto Church Misericórdia Church (Chaves)
II - Shrines
Bom Jesus do Monte Shrine Nossa Senhora da Penha Shrine (Guimarães) São Bento da Porta Aberta Shrine (Terras de Bouro) Nossa Senhora do Alívio Shrine - Soutelo (Vila Verde)
Nossa Senhora da Saúde Shrine (Valpaços) Nossa Senhora da Conceição Shrine (Vila Pouca de Aguiar) Imaculada Conceição Shrine (Sabrosa) São Caetano Shrine (Chaves)
The Craft is a body of work that requires manual dexterity and artistic skill. They are functional and decorative pieces that symbolize the culture and folklore of its people. Come and learn more about this popular art!
Best buys Route
When traveling the corners of Northern Portugal, you can also book a day for shopping. After all, who does not like to buy something that reminds one of the place visited?
In Guimarães you can peek through the windows of the local craft stores, clothing and footwear, while strolling through the beautiful historical center.
The city of Porto is also known for great activity related to footwear, design and fashion jewelry. Start by walking through the downtown Porto, namely Santa Catarina street, where the best shops in town are located. In Boavista and near Foz you can also find upscale shopping and brands worldwide.
The popular festivals are an excellent opportunity to learn about the customs and traditions of each region. Taking place mostly during the summer, fill the towns and cities of color and joy.
When the balloons, the sardines, the caldo verde (green cabbage soup) and leeks come out to the streets of Porto, you are in São João - the great festival of the city and one of the largest in the country. Come party in the North!
Other festivals in the North of Portugal:
Festas da Senhora da Agonia, Agosto - Viana do Castelo Braga Holy Week Festivities - Braga São Torcato Pilgrimage, July São João Fiests, June 24th Porto, Vila do Conde e Braga Senhora do Amparo e de São Tiago Fiests, July and August - Mirandela
Experience the feeling of sitting on a park bench, listening to the birdsong, fresh air and recharge your batteries after your trip to the North of Portugal. This region offers many extremely pleasant green spaces.
Take these suggestions in Porto, retreat to the confusion typical of a busy city and go to the gardens of Palácio de Cristal and the Botanical Garden. In Viana do Castelo seek the tranquility of the garden of Monte de Santa Luzia. In the Douro region, enjoy the beautiful gardens of Mateus Palace in Vila Real.
Other gardens, other places:
Viana do Castelo: Jardim Marginal; Jardim D. Fernando; Jardim do Monte de Santa Lúzia;
Braga: Jardim do Bom Jesus do Monte; Jardim de Santa Barbára;
Guimarães: Jardim do Carmo; Jardim do Mosteiro de Santa Marinha da Costa;
Porto: Jardim de São Lázaro; Jardim Botânico; Jardim do Palácio de Cristal; Jardim do Marques de Pombal;
Vila Real: Jardim da Casa de Mateus; Jardim de Chaves; Vila Real
Bragança: jardim da Alameda Duque de Bragança
Photographic tourism routes
Photography and tourism activities can be both intrinsically linked. For those who like to record the best moments of a trip to the North of Portugal's prime locations to admire the most beautiful landscapes, such as the Santa Luzia in Viana do Castelo, the Viewpoint Miradouro Sameiro , in Braga, or the Viewpoint Miradouro Penedo Durão in Bragança! Come and see them!</p>
Other suggestions Viewpoints:
Viana do Castelo (Minho)- Miradouro do Monte de Santa Luzia; Miradouro do Monte do Faro; Miradouro do Monte da Encarnação; Forte da Ínsua
Braga (Minho) - Miradouro do Sameiro; Miradouro da Pedra Bela (Terras de Bouro); Parque e Monte da Penha
Guimarães (Minho) - Parque e Monte da Penha; Guimarães (Minho)
Porto - Miradouro da Serra do Pilar; Miradouro dos Jardins do Palácio de Cristal Bragança (Douro)- Miradouro do Penedo Durão
Vila Real (Douro) - Miradouro de São Leonardo da Galafura
Route of the Romanesque
A Route founded in the memories of the Romanesque, inviting you on an inspiring journey through places with history, near singular monasteries, churches, chapels, bridges, castles, towers and memorials, matured in a land forged in green, full of wisdom and flavours.
In the land of the valleys of Sousa, Tâmega and Douro, in the heart of the North of Portugal, stands an important architectural heritage of Romanesque origin. This exceptional legacy is seen in 58 monuments that carry legends and stories born with the foundation of the Portuguese Nationality.
Wander along paths that reveal surprises at every turn. Surrender to the harmony between nature and historical legacies. Admire the architecture and sculpture that represent the excellence in the Portuguese Romanesque.
Church of Saint Mammes of Vila Verde
Church of Saint Mary of Airães
Church of Saint Vincent of Sousa
Church of the Saviour of Unhão
Monastery of Saint Mary of Pombeiro
Bridge of Espindo
Bridge of Veiga
Bridge of Vilela
Church of Saint Mary of Meinedo
Church of the Saviour of Aveleda
Tower of Vilar
Paços de Ferreira
Monastery of Saint Peter of Ferreira
Chapel of Our Lady of Piety of Quintã
Chapel of Our Lady of Vale
Monastery of Saint Peter of Cête
Tower of the Alcoforados
Tower of the Castle of Aguiar de Sousa
Church of Saint Genesius of Boelhe
Church of Saint Michael of Entre-os-Rios
Church of Saint Peter of Abragão
Church of the Saviour of Cabeça Santa
Memorial of Ermida
Monastery of the Saviour of Paço de Sousa
Castelo de Paiva
Memorial of Sobrado
Church of Our Lady of Nativity of Escamarão
Church of Saint Christopher of Nogueira
Church of Saint Mary Major of Tarouquela
Bridge of Panchorra
Church of Saint Martin of Mouros
Church of Saint Mary of Barrô
Monastery of Saint Mary of Cárquere
Bridge of Esmoriz
Church of Saint James of Valadares
Monastery of Saint Andrew of Ancede
Marco de Canaveses
Bridge of Arco
Chapel of Our Lady of Deliverance of Fandinhães
Church of Saint Andrew of Vila Boa de Quires
Church of Saint Isidore of Canaveses
Church of Saint Martin of Soalhães
Church of Saint Mary of Sobretâmega
Church of Saint Nicholas of Canaveses
Church of the Saviour of Tabuado
Memorial of Alpendorada
Monastery of Saint Mary of Vila Boa do Bispo
Bridge of Fundo de Rua
Church of Saint Andrew of Telões
Church of Saint John the Baptist of Gatão
Church of Saint Mary of Gondar
Church of Saint Mary of Jazente
Church of the Saviour of Lufrei
Church of the Saviour of Real
Monastery of Saint Martin of Mancelos
Monastery of the Saviour of Freixo de Baixo
Monastery of the Saviour of Travanca
Celorico de Basto
Castle of Arnoia
Church of Saint Mary of Veade
Church of the Saviour of Fervença
Church of the Saviour of Ribas