Porto: How to Visit the City on a Budget?

Exploring a city on a budget can be challenging, right?

Porto is a beautiful and vibrant city located in the northwest region of Portugal. Known for its stunning architecture, rich history, and delicious cuisine, Porto is a popular destination for travelers from all over the world. However, it can be challenging to visit the city on a budget, as prices for accommodation and activities can be quite high. In this blogpost, we will explore some tips and tricks for visiting Porto on a budget, including where to stay, what to eat, and how to save money on transportation and activities. With a little bit of planning and creativity, it is possible to experience the best of Porto without breaking the bank.

Let’s start by showing you some places to eat, sleep and activities to do on a budget.

Where to sleep?

1. The Central House Porto Ribeira

2. Rosalma Hostel

3. SUPERNOVA – Hostel & Café

4. So Cool Hostel Porto

5. The Passenger Hostel

Where to eat?

1. Tasco

2. Brasão Foz

3. Restaurante Chama

4. Farinha

5. Dama Pé de Cabra

What to do?

1. Visit the Porto Cathedral

2. Take a stroll along the Douro River

3. Explore the historic Ribeira neighborhood

4. Visit the Mercado do Bolhão

5. Explore the city with Explorial


Where to sleep?

Hostels are a popular and budget-friendly option for travelers in Porto. They often offer shared dormitory-style rooms, as well as private rooms, and usually have a common area where travelers can socialize and meet other travelers. Many hostels in Porto also offer additional amenities such as a shared kitchen, laundry facilities, and sometimes even a bar or café on-site. Some hostels may also offer organized activities and tours for guests.

Hostels are a great way to meet other travelers and save money on accommodation costs while traveling.

1. The Central House Porto Ribeira

The Central House Porto Ribeira is a charming lodging option in Porto that offers air-conditioned rooms, a communal lounge, free WiFi, and a restaurant. The hostel, which has a bar, is adjacent to a number of well-known sites. Ribeira Square, Palacio da Bolsa, and Ferreira Borges Market are all within 100, 400, and 300 meters, respectively, of the hostel. The hotel has karaoke and a front desk that is open round-the-clock. There is bedding in the rooms and each morning, the hostel offers a continental breakfast.

The Sao Bento Metro Station, Sao Bento Train Station, and Clerigos Tower are popular attractions close to The Central House Porto Ribeira. Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, located 16 kilometers from the lodging, is the closest airport.

2. Rosalma Hostel

Rosalma Hostel is a charming establishment in the heart of Porto that offers air-conditioned rooms, a garden, free WiFi, and a common area. Clerigos Tower, Palacio da Bolsa, and Ferreira Borges Market are popular attractions close by. There is nightly entertainment available, as well as a communal kitchen. There is bedding in the rooms. The crew is available around-the-clock at the front desk and is fluent in English, French, and Portuguese.

The Ageas Porto Coliseum, Sao Bento Metro Station, and Sao Bento Train Station are all within close proximity to the hostel. Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, which is 15 miles from Rosalma Hostel, is the closest airport.

3. SUPERNOVA – Hostel & Café

The SUPERNOVA – Hostel & Café hostel, which is situated in Porto’s historic center, is only a one-minute walk from the main Trindade Metro Station. There is a bar, a 24-hour front desk, and free high-speed WiFi available at this lovely hostel that has just been remodeled.

The contemporary lodgings at SUPERNOVA – Hostel & Café provide either private bathrooms or access to communal restrooms. Certain have balconies. Additionally, each have separate reading lamps and hardwood floors. Bunk beds, hardwood floors, and access to communal restrooms are all amenities of dorm rooms.

Within 100 meters, visitors may discover pubs and restaurants. A variety of restaurants can be found on the famous Santa Catarina shopping district, which is only a 5-minute walk away. It takes 10 minutes to walk to the Galerias de Paris nightclub and the Clérigos Tower. To get to Francisco Sá Carneiro International Airport, which is 16 kilometers distant, a shuttle service may be arranged by reception staff.

4. So Cool Hostel Porto

So Cool Hostel Porto is a contemporary hostel with private and communal rooms that is housed in a totally renovated 19th-century structure on Avenida da Boavista, one of Porto’s most important thoroughfares. There is free WiFi connection available.

The rooms are spacious with high ceilings decorated with stucco. All of them have key card access, lockers, and personal reading lamps. The bathrooms are communal.

Meals may be prepared in the communal kitchen by visitors, who can then either eat in the bright dining room or outside in the furnished garden area while sipping wine from the wine cellar. The crew plans dinners with a Portuguese theme.

Visitors may unwind with a book in the common spaces of the So Cool while also enjoying music, TV, and DVDs. It takes 5 minutes to walk to Rotunda da Boavista, and 10 minutes to go to Casa da Msica.

Within 200 meters, there are several public transportation alternatives that provide access to the rest of Porto city. A 10-minute bus trip will bring you to Casa de Serralves and its Contemporary Art Museum. From So Cool Hostel Porto, use the metro for 20 minutes to reach the famous Clérigos Tower.

5. The Passenger Hostel

Within Porto’s UNESCO World Heritage district, the Passenger Hostel is situated in the renowned S. Bento Train Station. It has both individual and communal lodging, a bar, and free WiFi.

Each visitor in a dorm room has a personal locker, as well as a curtain for more privacy, a bedside outlet, and a lamp. Access to communal restrooms with a shower and a hairdryer is available from each room.

The common kitchen is available to all visitors, and there are several places to eat nearby. The visitors can use the washing machine and dryer.

The Passenger is situated 400 meters from Galerias de Paris street and 15 minutes’ walk from the Douro riverbank. Less than 5 minutes may be spent strolling to Santa Catarina retail street. The S. Bento Metro Station is right outside, and Porto International Airport is around 16 kilometers distant.


Where to eat?

Porto is a city with a diverse range of dining options, including many budget-friendly restaurants. Here are a few general tips for finding affordable restaurants in Porto:

  1. Look for local, family-owned restaurants: These types of restaurants are often more affordable than touristy or chain restaurants.
  2. Eat where the locals eat: Look for restaurants that are popular with locals, as these are often more affordable and offer authentic, local cuisine.
  3. Try the daily specials: Many restaurants offer daily specials that are typically less expensive than items on the regular menu.
  4. Consider eating at the bar: Often times, bar seating is less expensive than table seating at a restaurant.
  5. Look for restaurants that offer “menu of the day” or “menu do dia”: These are typically set menus that offer a starter, main course, and dessert for a fixed price.
  6. Try street food: Porto has a vibrant street food scene, with vendors selling a variety of affordable and delicious options such as sandwiches, pastries, and grilled meat.
  7. Consider eating at a cafeteria: Cafeterias in Porto often offer affordable meals, including sandwiches, salads, and other light dishes.
  8. Look for restaurants that offer a fixed-price menu: Some restaurants offer a fixed-price menu with a selection of dishes at a set price, which can be a good value.
  9. Don’t be afraid to try local, lesser-known dishes: Traditional Portuguese dishes such as caldo verde (kale soup) and bacalhau (cod) can be very affordable and are often delicious.

Here are some suggestions:

1. Tasco

The motto of the restaurant, or, as they say, ”the soul”:

A toast! To madmen and their young and irreverent minds! To incredible cocktails and that succulent octopus dancing to the rhythm of the shaker! To dreams and happiness. To all those moments we spent aboard the most mysterious and fascinating spaceship of all: The freedom to do what we love. Together.

2. Brasão Foz

Brasão Bistrô was born to share a timeless experience with you, combining the modernity with the know-how of other times. A comfortable and uncomplicated place, where you can enjoy a wide and personalized offer of craft beers, francesinhas, appetizers and steaks.
All this, in a Portuguese house for sure!

3. Restaurante Chama

Sustainable food cooked in a centenary wood oven. There’s no menu because only fresh local ingredients are used by the chef.

4. Farinha

Farinha was born in June 2019, with the aim of bringing the taste of real Neapolitan pizza to Porto.
Why pizza? For us, this dish par excellence brings the whole family together and represents the authenticity of family culture. We have three fundamental principles: good homemade food, service worthy of a great restaurant, and making our guests feel part of the family.
With this cosy atmosphere, we pursue a simple objective: because we know that each person is unique, we guarantee a personalised service to make you feel at home.

5. Dama Pé de Cabra

We are a point of sale and tasting of food products of popular and traditional origin. The name “Dama Pé-de-Cabra” establishes a relationship with folklore and oral tradition, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, with Alexandre Herculano, who was second librarian at the BPMP, right there across the garden from São Lázaro. This association seemed all the more appropriate the more we remembered that Romanticism was largely an exercise in rehabilitating national traditions, including its folklore. In this we can say that we are romantics, “Dama Pé-de-Cabra” wants to retrace the flavours and traditions of the Portuguese way of eating, from north to south, passing through the islands. In each piece of bread there are generations who perfected the bread-making processes, in each piece of codfish an epic of generations in the northern seas, in each conserve the memory of difficult times, in each chorizo the creativity of a people.

Our products are simple, rudimentary, in short, honest. They are what is (or used to be) eaten in this or that region, and therefore have a local character. Tasting these flavours is a kind of sentimental archaeology, a return to the roots of a time when people didn’t snack, but rather had a snack, a reunion with the rural and popular roots of our food. Many of these products were conceived by popular wisdom, passed down from generation to generation, and were primarily intended for personal, domestic or festive consumption. Despite their high quality, they should not be classified as gourmet products. Gourmet shops are a nice manifestation of globalisation (Italian olive oil, French cheese, English jam, wine from all over the world…) and are aimed at an exclusive, urban consumer with high purchasing power. Rare, highly elaborate and creative signature products predominate here, many of them designed exclusively for this purpose. However, our shop is dedicated to Traditional or Folk Food.

Folk Food or Traditional Food is any food that is consumed – on a daily basis or at festive times – by a community


What to do?

Fortunately, Porto is a city with a lot to see without having to spend a lot of money or even no money at all. With breathtaking views, streets where cars don’t pass and houses with typical Porto architecture… There is no shortage of things to see and do in this charming city!

1. Visit the Porto Cathedral

The Porto Cathedral, also known as the Sé do Porto, is a beautiful Romanesque cathedral located in the historic center of Porto, Portugal. It is one of the city’s most iconic landmarks and a popular tourist attraction. The cathedral dates back to the 12th century and has undergone several renovations and renovations over the years. It features a stunning façade, with a mix of Romanesque and Gothic styles, and a beautiful interior with a nave, chapels, and a cloister. The cathedral also houses several important artworks and artifacts, including a Gothic stone pulpit and a 16th-century Flemish tapestry. The Porto Cathedral is a must-see for anyone visiting the city.

2. Take a stroll along the Douro River

The Douro River is a river in northern Portugal and western Spain that flows into the Atlantic Ocean. It is known for its beautiful landscapes and is a popular tourist destination. The Douro Valley, which is located along the river, is known for its stunning vineyards and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The river is also home to several charming towns and villages, such as Régua and Pinhão, which are known for their beautiful architecture and wine production. The Douro River is a popular place for activities such as boat rides, wine tasting, and hiking. It is an important cultural and economic region of Portugal.

3. Explore the historic Ribeira neighborhood

Ribeira do Porto is a historic neighborhood in Porto, Portugal, located along the Douro River. It is known for its narrow, cobbled streets, colorful houses, and charming squares. Ribeira is a popular tourist destination and is known for its lively atmosphere and beautiful views of the river. The neighborhood is also home to many restaurants, bars, and shops, as well as several landmarks such as the Porto Cathedral and the Dom Luis I bridge. Ribeira do Porto is a great place to explore on foot and is a must-see for anyone visiting Porto.

4. Visit the Mercado do Bolhão

Mercado do Bolhão is a traditional market located in the center of Porto, Portugal. It is a covered market with stalls selling a variety of fresh produce, seafood, meats, and other local specialties. The market is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, and is known for its lively atmosphere and colorful stalls. It is a great place to try local foods and get a sense of the city’s culinary culture. The market is open from Monday to Saturday, and is a popular place to shop for fresh ingredients to cook at home. It is also a great place to find souvenirs and gifts. Mercado do Bolhão is an important part of Porto’s cultural heritage and is a must-visit destination for anyone visiting the city.

5. Explore the city with Explorial

A pretty smart and on a budget idea to help you explore the city. Explorial is an interactive and challenging game in which the objective is to collect as many points as possible as a group. You explore the city on foot and get points for solving different types of tasks. Whether you know your way around the city or are just visiting, with Explorial you are guaranteed to get to know the city in a new way. Find out more by clicking on the image!


LIKE THIS ARTICLE ABOUT VISITING PORTO ON A BUDGET? PIN IT!

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Pinterest