Foz do Douro & Western Porto
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FOZ DO DOURO & WEST PORTO

Five kilometres (3 miles) from the centre of Porto is the mouth (Foz) of the river Douro. This vibrant neighbourhood was formerly a fisherman's district, but now it has become home to Porto's more affluent citizens. Its beaches, sea views, parks and numerous restaurants attract visitors both local and foreign. MADABOUTPORTUGAL.COM is your friendly knowledgeable guide to the fine beaches, the several high-quality restaurants, the best places to stay and how to get there.

Mad About Lisbon   TOP ATTRACTIONS OF FOZ & WESTERN PORTO

Beaches

Three kilometres of beaches from the mouth of the Douro River to Matosinhos

Parque da Cidade

The largest urban park in Portugal, and the only one in Europe to border a coastline

Sea Life Porto

One of Porto's top family attractions and is home to about 5,600 marine creatures

Tram Museum

Step back into the time when these beautiful trams traversed the streets of Porto

ABOUT

At the southern end of Foz do Douro is the Chapel Lighthouse called Farol de São Miguel whose square tower dates back to 1538. It was designed to safely guide shipping through the Douro estuary. A little further west you'll encounter the palm-lined Jardim do Passeio Alegre gardens which offer welcoming shade and moments of tranquillity.

Opposite the park the Farolim de Felgueiras lighthouse stands sentinel at the head of a long jetty. A walk here, especially at sunset, will be rewarded with amazing views looking out at sea or looking back to Porto. The ten-metre high hexagonal beacon has defied crashing waves from its construction in 1886 until its decommission in 2009. Its red light had a range of nine nautical miles.

Fortress São João Baptista

This 16th-century fortress was built to defend the mouth of the river Douro, the city of Porto and its citizens. It has undergone several upgrades during its history yet remains a prime example of military architecture found on Portugal's coastline. Although it continues to be used by the Delegação Regional do Instituto de Defesa Nacional (Regional Office of the National Defense Institute), it is open to the public. | FREE
Weekdays: 09h00 – 12h00/14h00 - 17h00
Rua São João da Foz, 4150-196 Porto, Portugal. | 41° 08' 54.6" N | 08° 40' 03.5" W
+351 226 153 440 | idn.secretariaporto@defesa.pt

Fortress São João Baptista

|  Fortress São João Baptista

SEA LIFE PORTO

Sea Life Centre Porto

ONLINE TICKET

With this entrance ticket you can gain entry to the SEA LIFE Porto at your leisure. Buy online before you arrive to avoid queues and have the convenience of the e-ticket on your phone. Children under three get in for free. Book with confidence with FREE CANCELLATION.


Monday - Friday: 10h00 - 18h00, Weekends: 10h00 - 19h00
Adult: €15.50, Child & Concessionary: €10.50

The Sea Life Porto is one of Porto's top family attractions and is home to about 5,600 marine creatures. Sea Life Porto is divided into twelve different distinct areas and 32 aquariums. The aquatic creatures live in various habitats, from freshwater landscapes to Atlantic and tropical oceanic and rugged coastal environments.

To celebrate 10 years of Sea Life Porto's existence seven Humboldt penguins have taken up residence on their own designated island within the aquarium grounds. One of the unique themed areas is dedicated to the unique eco-system of the Douro River. Within the Rockpool exhibit, you'll be able to touch a sea urchin or a starfish. Walkthrough Portugal's first underwater tunnel for a fish-eye's perspective of the 500,000 litres of water contained within the main tank. Home to hundreds of species, including a green turtle Mariza who weighs over 130kg, friendly rays and black tips sharks. See the animals being fed; sharks at 11h00 and 14h30, rays at 1h00 and 16h00. More About [ ► ]

Mad About Portugal

Pergola da Foz

Probably the most romantic location in Porto stretching between the Praia da Luz beach and the gardens of Montevideo Avenue, the Pergola da Foz is said to have been inspired by the Promenade des Anglais in the French town of Nice. Designed by António Enes Baganha in the 1930s and cost about 53,000 Escudos as part of a broader redevelopment scheme designed to improve the area. Popular with couples who take full advantage of the spectacular sunsets and the cafés and bars that line the Avenida do Brasil. Due to the corrosive nature of the sea air, the pergola undergoes periodic renovation, the most recent occurring in 2008.

Forte de São Francisco Xavier or Castelo do Queijo (Cheese Castle)

This 17th-century fortress at the northern end of the Foz district acquired its colloquial name from the round piece of bedrock on which it stands, which is said to resemble a wheel of cheese. Dedicated to the 16th-century Spanish saint and evangelist. The fortress was completed in 1661 and was constructed to protect the area from raiding pirates from North Africa. Its commanding position still looks over a 140-metre long beach famed for its sunsets. Restored it now houses a small military museum commemorating the Portuguese troops who saw action in Angola and Mozambique.
High Season: Tuesday - Sunday: 13h00-18h00, Low Season: Tuesday - Sunday: 13h00-17h00, Monday: CLOSED
Praça de Gonçalves Zarco, Porto, Portugal. | 41° 10' 8.4" N | 08° 41' 24" W
+351 226 181 067 | associacaocomandosporto@sapo.pt

Pergola da Foz

|  Pergola da Foz


Sealife Porto

TOP TOURS

TRAM NUMBER #1 (ELÉCTRICO LINHA 1)

Tram Number 1

Tram Number 1

This tram line is one of the last three remaining original tram routes in Porto and runs along the riverfront. Starting from Rua do Infante Dom Henrique, in the downtown area (alongside the Igreja Monumento de São Francisco church), the rickety vintage tram chugs along the route of the Douro all the way to the Jardim do Passeio Alegre gardens in Foz do Douro. Taking in amazing views along the way.

09h00 – 20h00, every 20 minutes
Single: €3.50, Return: €6.00
Timetable |  Website

En route the tram passes the Tram Museum located in an old power station next to the STCP (Sociedade de Transportes Colectivos do Porto) depot. Here too you can catch tram number 18 which takes you into the historic centre of Porto. Further on the Tram #1 stops under the Arrábida Bridge. For the brave, it's possible to climb the 65 metre arch of the bridge with the aid of a guide and safety equipment to experience amazing views downriver to Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia. |  Website

TOP PORTO TOURS

The Best of Porto: 3-Hour Guided Walking Tour

Best of Porto: 3Hr Guided Walking Tour

Delve into the rich history of Porto alongside a professional guide on this immersive Porto walking tour. Experience northern Portugal’s historic city of Porto, known for its winding, narrow streets and blend of Moorish and Roman influences. Visit the UNESCO World Heritage-listed historic city centre, explore Porto Cathedral and baroque churches, and learn how grapes travelled the Douro River to the coast where winemakers make famous Port wine.

Book Online ►

3-Hour Best of Porto Segway Tour - Guided Experience

Best of Porto: 3Hr Guided Segway Tour

Zip along the UNESCO-listed Ribeira neighbourhood during a guided Segway tour of Porto. Select a small-group or private tour in the morning or afternoon and glide along cobblestone paths lined with historic monuments and attractions such as Ponte de Dom Luis I, Porto Cathedral, São Bento Station, and Clérigos Tower. With your local guide, appreciate architecture and uncover Roman legend all on a sleek electric Segway.

Book Online ►

Porto Downtown and Sightseeing Bike Tour

Porto Downtown: Sightseeing Bike Tour

Get your adrenaline pumping while seeing Northern Portugal on this small-group Porto extreme city bike tour. Cycle through the city and see its history, architecture, culture, and gardens. An expert guide leads the way past historic landmarks. Along the way, break for lunch at a traditional Portuguese restaurant (additional expense). Travellers on this small-group tour are limited to ensure a quality experience. Private tours are available.

Book Online ►

Booking.com

OUR RECOMMENDATIONS

Bartolomeu Beach Apartments

Bartolomeu Beach Apartments

The unit is set in Foz do Douro, a 15-minute drive from Porto city centre. Some of the apartments in the building feature views of the Ocean from their balcony. Bartolomeu Apartments Sea View is a two-minute drive from the Serralves Modern Art Museum. These apartments come with a private bathroom, a dining area, kitchen, cable TV and free WiFi. A surprise welcome basket will also be provided for guests upon arrival. A continental breakfast may be included in the rate and served each morning at the suite. It is a two-minute walk from popular restaurants and cafés, such as the seafront Tavi. Several sea and riverfront bars are available within 50 yards of the unit. Guests may take a stroll in the long boardwalk or go cycling.

Travessa dos Banhos Nº14 R/C , Aldoar - Foz do Douro - Nevogilde, 4150-121 Porto, Portugal.
41º 09' 04.1" N | 08º 40' 38.5" W

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Hotel Boa - Vista

Hotel Boa - Vista ★ ★ ★

With views out to sea from the rooms, a rooftop bar and outdoor terrace within easy reach of the centre of Porto. Fully equipped with a restaurant, pool, gym and wifi, minibar and cable TV in the rooms. Ideal for visitors who wish to combine a beach holiday with a city break. Offering a tranquil stay, all rooms are fitted with air conditioning and include a minibar and cable TV. Guests can have a drink at the hotel's bar or enjoy a gentle sea breeze over a bottle of port wine on the terrace. You can round off your day with a visit to Boa-Vista’s fitness centre or spend an afternoon soaking up the sun in the pool area. Boa – Vista Hotel is a five-minute walk from Ingleses Beach.

Esplanada Do Castelo Nº 58, Foz do Douro, Aldoar - Foz do Douro - Nevogilde, 4150-196 Porto, Portugal.
41º 08' 58.6" N | 08º 40' 27.3'' W

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Hotel Aliados

Vila Foz Hotel ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Vila Foz Hotel & SPA has a restaurant, fitness centre, a bar and garden. Among the facilities at this property are room service, a business centre, and free WiFi throughout the property. The hotel features an indoor pool and a 24-hour front desk. All rooms are fitted with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel, the rooms are fitted with a wardrobe and a private bathroom. Vila Foz Hotel & SPA offers a buffet or American breakfast. Guests staying at the accommodation have access to the in-house wellness area that includes a sauna. Guests at Vila Foz Hotel & SPA will be able to enjoy activities in and around Porto, like cycling.

236 Avenida de Montevideu, Aldoar - Foz do Douro - Nevogilde, 4150-516 Porto, Portugal.
41º 09' 53.5" N | 08º 41' 12.7'' W

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OUR CHOICE

Pedro Lemos Restaurante

Pedro Lemos Restaurante

One of Porto's most prestigious restaurants. It has a Michelin Star with a price tag to match. Contemporary Portuguese and European food expertly prepared, paired with wine and attentively served. A choice of tasting menus and an extensive interesting menu, with excellent choice of fine wines to accompany your meal.

Tuesday - Sunday: 12h30 - 15h00/19h30 - 23h00, Monday: CLOSED
Rua Padre Luis Cabral, 974, Porto 4150, Portugal.
41º 09' 00.6" N | 08º 40' 19.6" W
+351 223 753 549
reservas@pedrolemos.net |  Website


eLeBe Baixa

Terra

The restaurant's somewhat modest exterior is deceptive and hides a homely and welcoming dining area inside. An unusual mix of Portuguese and European food, with a Japanese twist including a sushi bar. Fifty metres off the Avenida do Brasil and the seafront it's an ideal location that attracts a regular clientele who are in the know. There is an excellent wine list to complete your dining experience.

Daily: 12h30 - 15h30/19h30 - 00h30
103 Rua do Padrão, 4150-559, Foz do Douro, Portugal.
41º 09' 24.4" N | 08º 40' 46.8" W
+351 226 177 339
email@restauranteterra.com |  Website


Foz Velha

Foz Velha

The entrance is typically unpretentious but once ascended to the first floor and stepped through its doors one is welcomed by the tasteful decor and waiting staff. Food is excellently cooked and prepared by the creative skills of chef Marco Gomes, one is treated to luxury at sensible prices. The list of wines is extensive and well thought out.

Monday - Thursday: 12h30 - 15h00/19h30 - 23h00, Friday - Saturday: 12h30 - 15h00/19h30 - 24h00
141 Esplanada do Castelo, Porto, 4150-196, Portugal.
41º 09' 00.5" N | 08º 40' 33.3" W
+351 226 154 178
mail@fozvelha.com

Francisco de Sá Carneiro Airport Porto is 17.5km (10.9 miles) North of the Foz District. Website

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From Lisbon and south:
Take the A1 in the direction of Ponte do Freixo. Take the exit toward Freixo-Gondomar/Entre-os-rios. At the second roundabout, head to Porto (marginal). Follow Douro river and head to the tunnel next to Dom Luis I Bridge and then take the first left.

From Porto International Airport: Take the IC24/A41 and then to IC1/A28.
Latitude - 41° 41' 33.6" N Longitude - 08° 49' 45.9" W


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Linha do Minho
Regular trains to/from the Minho region including Barcelos, Viana do Castelo and Valença from Porto Campanhã, use the Regional train service (comboios regionais) Linha do Minho:
Train Timetable

Linha do Douro
When the line first opened in 1887 it was an engineering marvel as it follows the course of the river and up through the dramatic landscapes of the Alto Douro where vineyards are carved into terraces from the living bedrock. Although the branch lines have closed the Linha do Douro is still very impressive and a great way to spend a day. Regular trains leave São Bento and Campanhã and passes 20 tunnels, 30 bridges and 34 stations. The line becomes more dramatic after the town of Régua on to the pretty wine towns of Pinhão (one of the most beautiful railway stations in Portugal), Tua and terminating at Pocinho, (close to the Cão Valley rock art). A picturesque steam train runs along the Linha do Douro on Saturdays from May to October: Train Timetable

Linha do Aveiro
Urban trains (urbanos) run between Porto and Aveiro along the coast, stopping at resorts such as Ovar, Espinho, and Miramar. Onward connects can be made to Coimbra from Aveiro:
Train Timetable

Linha do Braga
Regular urban trains (urbanos) run between Porto and the Minho's capital city of Braga: Train Timetable

Linha de Guimarães
Regular urban trains (urbanos) run between Porto and the beautiful town of Guimarães: Train Timetable

Alfa Pendular
A high speed train service connecting cities the whole length of Portugal from Faro in the Algarve, Lisbon, Aveiro, Coimbra and Porto: Train Timetable

Comboios de Portugal Website

Old Tram # 1. Igreja Monumento de São Francisco church - Passeio Alegre (Foz) Timetable |  Website

STCP (Sociedade de Transportes Colectivos do Porto) is the company who run the bus and what's left of the tram service in and around Porto. Website
Rede Expressos run services National services to Porto from various locations within Portugal. Website
Rodonorte is a coach company servicing North & Central Portugal Website