Where to stay in Porto, an expert guide

written by Amanda Tomlin
updated 10/9/2021
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Wondering where to stay in Porto? Here's our best hotel guide. The information in this article is taken from The Rough Guide to Portugal, your essential guide for visiting Portugal.

Portugal's second city sits on the Rio Douro. It's atmospheric. And a place well worth a few days. Or more, to fit in Vila Nova de Gaia wine lodges.

Porto's narrow streets and alleys climb up from the river. The centre's about broad squares, neoclassical buildings and Baroque churches. But it’s not all history.

You'll find hip cafés and restaurants. The art scene's thriving. Much of the city's been restored. And Porto's now popular. So take your pick of good hotels.

Where to stay in Porto near the Sé and Aliados

Porto’s oldest streets lie below the Sé cathedral.

Sé district is home to the Paço Episcopal. Igreja de Santa Clara and Igreja de Santo Ildefonso are also here. And it's where to see São Bento station.

Aliados is the area for grand civic buildings.

Best for vintage vibes? Pão de Açúcar

Art Deco Pão de Açúcar was a favourite of fado diva Amália Rodrigues. It's known for an amazing staircase and vintage bumper cars.

Best for film-themed fun? Rivoli Cinema Hostel

Rivoli Cinema Hostel is bright and airy. Book for movie-themed dorms or double rooms. There's a roof terrace too.

Where to stay in Riberia

Ribeira's tall, colourful houses tumble down to the Douro. This district is Porto's medieval heart. And it's now a World Heritage site.

It's also very appealing. Bars and restaurants line the riverbank. Winding backstreets conceal historic buildings. And getting lost is a pleasure.

Look out for double-decker Ponte Dom Luís I. It's one of many Porto photo opportunities. The bottom level's for traffic. The Metro runs on the upper level - 60m above the river. And you can walk either level to Vila Nova de Gaia.

Some of the best hotels in Porto are in Ribeira © Michal Ludwiczak/Shutterstock

Best for river views? 1872 River House

The 1872 River House has Douro views. It's on the riverfront. The rooms are comfortable. And breakfast's included.

Best for good value with style? InPatio Guest House

InPatio Guest House is close to Porto Cathedral. It's stylish and a bargain for the location.

Prefer to leave planning and booking to experts? Have a look at some sample itineraries. Both Complete Portugal or Portugal Itineraries offer inspiration. All Tailor Made Trips can be modified together with your local expert, then booked for a stress-free holiday. Click 'Modify this itinerary' to contact a local Portugal expert.

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Where to stay in the Baixa

Lively Baixa contains many of Porto's famous sights.

Igreja do Carmo is here. It's home to Torre dos Clérigos and Porto University. And you can also browse Livraria Lello in Baixa.

Best for location and indulgence? PortoBay Flores

Find PortoBay Flores on Rua das Flores. Good location to explore Baixa. There's an indoor pool and hammam here.

Get under the city's skin. Take a Tuk Tuk tour of Porto with local guides.

Igreja do Carmo with traditional tiled façade, Baixa, Porto © leonori/Shutterstock

Where to stay in Vila Nova de Gaia

Vila Nova de Gaia is Port's birthplace. Wine lodges first appeared here in the 12th century. And today the district still dominates the riverfront. Take a cable car ride for an aerial view.

Tours of smaller lodges tend to be more personal. But they're all informative. So expect to know your Tawny from Ruby by the end of one.

The riverfront faces Ribeira. Its long dock's lined with cafés and restaurants. Cruise boats moor on the esplanade. And you'll see Barcos Rabelos on the water. These historic boats used to carry wine casks downriver from Douro estates.

Best for five-star views? The Yeatman

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The Yeatman is Porto’s best hotel. It's views are amazing. There's a luxurious spa. And the restaurant has two Michelin stars.

Porto Ribeira, traditional facades, old multi-colored houses with red roof tiles on the embankment in the city of Porto, Portugal © Daliu/Shutterstock

Where to stay in Masserelos

Masserelos is home to Museu Nacional Soares dos Reis. It's also Porto’s creative district. And at the centre is Rua Miguel Bombarda. This is where to browse art galleries and craft workshops.

Best hotel at hostel prices? Gallery Hostel

Try family run Gallery Hostel. This 1906 townhouse offers dorms and doubles. The courtyard garden's relaxing. And it hosts local art exhibitions.

Discover the city's creative heart. Take a three hour walking tour of Porto with guides.

Where to stay in Foz do Douro

Take a city tram to Foz do Douro. With its attractive old town and sandy beach, it's a great day trip. Or a good seaside base for exploring Porto.

Matosinhos Beach is where locals go for seafood and clubbing. And you'll more beaches an easy walk away at Leça da Palmeira.

Best for self-catering with sea views? Flattered to be in Porto

Flattered to be in Porto is a traditional seaside house. All apartments are light and airy. And the location's great. It's close to beaches and the Old Town.

Need a sea view? Take a Tuk Tuk trip to the Ocean from Porto.

Ready for a trip to Portugal? Check out the snapshot Rough Guide to Portugal. Read more about the best time to go to Portugal, the best places to visit and best things to do in Portugal. For inspiration use the Portugal Itineraries from The Rough Guide to Portugal and our local travel experts. A bit more hands on, learn about getting there, getting around the country and where to stay once you are there. And don't forget to buy travel insurance before you go.

We may earn commission when you click on links in this article, but this does not influence our editorial standards - we only recommend services that we genuinely believe will enhance your travel experiences.

Top image: Porto Ribeira, traditional facades, old multi-colored houses with red roof tiles on the embankment in the city of Porto, Portugal © Daliu/Shutterstock

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written by Amanda Tomlin
updated 10/9/2021
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