Portugal or the Portuguese Republic is a beautiful country lying along the Atlantic coast of the Iberian Peninsula and is one of the most beautiful countries to visit in southwestern Europe. Its beauty knows no boundary and that boundless beauty can best be experienced when you explore the magnetic cities in Portugal. Porto, Lisbon, Aveiro – the cities in Portugal are full of enigmatic beauty and each of them is stunning in its own way.
The cities in this country are versatile in nature each of them carries different flares in its characteristics. Photogenic, bestowed with a great Mediterranean climate, having great architecture, and characterized by scrumptious seafood variations – below are the best cities in Portugal that every globetrotter must check out.
Top-rated And Most Beautiful Cities In Portugal To Visit:
Fondly nicknamed the Venice of Portugal, Aveiro is a city to visit to soak in its history and to experience its beautiful networks of canals. The iconic whitewashed Mediterranean houses dominate the cityscape whereas the streets are all idyllic with stunning Portuguese-style architecture. Take a trip along the canals to explore the city’s most beautiful secrets and it is a pleasure to board on the colorfully painted Moliceiros boats. Other than the ria, the waterways, and the architecture, there is Aveiro Museum which is a great place to witness architectural as well as religious art exhibits. The Art Nouveau-style buildings with their wrought iron gates and balconies add elegance to the city and the shopaholics would find their hearts in the big shopping center. Overall, Aveiro is a hidden gem with romance, history, and art, and is one of the best cities in Portugal to visit.
One of the largest cities in Portugal, Coimbra is also the former capital of Portugal and home to the oldest university in the country. The university which is set atop a hill overlooking the city is also said to be the inspiration behind J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter due to its imposing structure looming over the hill. Other than the university, the city has many more great sights and activities on offer. Although most people only make a day trip to this city on their way to Lisbon or Porto, staying a night or two here will help you explore all its attractions at your own pace. Get mesmerized by visiting the Old Cathedral of Coimbra, the National Museum Machado de Castro, Quinta das Lágrimas, the beautiful Portugal dos Pequenitos which is a miniature park, and enjoy a great vacation at Coimbra.
In past, Sintra has served as host to royalty and nobility and today it is one of the most picturesque cities in Portugal with astonishing scenic beaches, castles, royal palaces, and gardens. You will start your sightseeing by first visiting the 19thcentury Vila de Sintra. Then explore the other exquisite landmarks like the Castle of the Moors, the Pena National Palace, and the Portuguese Renaissance Sintra National Palace. Cabo da Roca is where nature lovers would love to spend a few hours. Here the Serra de Sintra sinks dramatically into the ocean and there is also a lighthouse on the top of the cape. To have a fulfilling experience, do not leave the city without visiting the old center which is a melange of narrow cobbled streets, beautiful buildings, and stairways.
Being one of the oldest European centers, the heart of the town, the Historic Centre of Porto, Luiz I Bridge, and Monastery of Serra do Pilar” has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 1996 and it is also a national monument of Portugal. Porto is that old good grandpa that offers everything from ravishing architecture to rich culture to good food, and obviously wine. Although best known for Douro River and obviously Port wine, Porto is one of the top-rated cities in Portugal that you would not prefer to miss out on. Ask for either charming culture or colossal architecture, the city has it all. The eminent São Francisco Church with its baroque interior, the former stock market building – Palácio de Bolsa will baffle you with their grandeur and on the other hand, the iconic metal bridge – Luiz I Bridge whispers the story of the past crossing the rocky banks of Douro. Excellent Port wine in Gaia, cobbled alleys, cute cafes, narrow tiled buildings, excellent gastronomy – Porto will offer you pretty attractions that you just can’t ignore.
The third-largest city of Portugal, Braga will be liked by those who are looking out for a city destination that is not as crowded as Lisbon and Porto. It has stunning monuments and the breathtaking staircase of Bom Jesus is a delight to visit. The Cathedral of Braga is the oldest religious building in Portugal and qualifies as a must-visit one. Get to the historic city center and visit all the Roman ruins. The Arco da Porta Nova, being one of the oldest gates of the city is well worth a visit. The well-tended Biscainhos Palace Gardens are worth visiting too for being grand and examples of the best Baroque gardens of that period. Locating in Portugal’s northwestern Minho region, Braga is gorgeous in every term.
The capital city of the Algarve region, Faro can be considered as the gateway for many South Portugal destinations. Being a spectacular beach town it rejoices plenty of sunshine and super soft sand beaches. Feed yourself with history when you visit Arco da Vila and Faro Cathedral and head to the Old Town of Faro for a journey down memory lane. It is a place with old history, cozy cafes, cobbled streets, and whitewashed buildings with terracotta roofs. A great getaway to seek some solace and check out some really intriguing sights – the Old Town is chilled out, relaxed, and a small slice of past. Explore the town on foot and visit Cidade Velha and Muralhas De Faro which are the remnants of the old Faro town. The pristine Ria Formosa Nature Reserve is a must-visit from Faro and you can reach there by sightseeing cruises or catamarans that run daily. Check out Tavira Island, Armona Island, Barreta Island, and get mesmerized by the show of beaches too. So if you are looking out for tempting seafood, lively beach vibe, nightlife coupled with fascinating culture, Faro is one of the best coastal cities in Portugal to visit.
A global city and the proud capital of the country of Portugal, Lisbon is also the westernmost capital in continental Europe. A charming destination that also happens to be one of the least expensive capital cities in Europe, Lisbon is scenic and wonderful. It has so seamlessly blended old heritage with modernism and it has a rich history, a bustling city life, great cultural extravaganza, and it has true proximity to some wonderful beaches too. Among the must-visits, there are Belem Tower and Saint George’s Castle. Ride tram 28 which is a fun thing to do. Wander around the streets of Alfama which is a stunning neighborhood of Portugal.
Art lovers will love to visit places like Gulbenkian Museum which is also one of the best museums in Portugal. Lisbon is also a city where one with a sweet tooth will indulge in savory bakery items. If your time allows, also consider planning many day trips to the nearby places from Lisbon. One of the finest beach towns near the city is Cascais where you need to head to. Lisbon is certainly one of the best cities in Portugal to visit.