13 Apr Best Things To Do In Porto In Just 24 hours

You have one day in Porto.  What should you do?

Portugal’s second city after Lisbon is becoming an increasingly popular destination for weekend breaks. This vibrant hub of history and culture has something for everyone, making it the perfect destination if you’re looking for a sunny city excursion this summer. Porto is quite a compact place, so it’s easy to get from the centre to where you want to be.

With this in mind, we’ve been working with Hertz to give you a few tips to make the most of 24 hours in this southern European city.

First. Get Your Bearings

torre dos clérigos

Take the Rua de Julio Dinis road out of the heart of the city and head for Torre dos Clérigos, a baroque tower in the medieval centre of the Ribiero district. Climb the 225 steps of this former bell tower and you’ll find yourself 76 metres above ground level.

The tower is a great spot for a bird’s eye view over this UNESCO World Heritage Site and the city’s beautiful architecture that surrounds you on all sides. Then, you may want to head to the far bank of the River Douro where you can catch the Funicular dos Guindais which takes you up to the suburb of Batalha and gives you more great views of the city below. With the one-way system in Porto’s centre, you’ll be there in no more than 20 minutes by car

Visit A Museum Or Two

Museu de Arte Contemporanea

There are so many museums to visit in Porto that you’ll have to be selective. A good place to start would be the Museu Nacional Soares dos Reis. Set in the spectacular Palaccio das Carrancas, it houses examples of Portuguese art dating from the Neolithic era right up to the Modernist art movement of the 20th century. From here, head east along Rua do Campo Alegre, then north on Rua de Bartolomeu Velho to the Museu de Arte Contemporanea, which showcases the country’s modern art in a minimalist whitewashed space set in the Parque de Serralves.

To round off your day head for the Caso do Infante. This was the city’s first customs house and today you’ll find three floors of local history as well as excavated Roman remains and mosaics in the cellars. Take the riverside route Rua do Ouro to get here.

Enjoy A Spot Of Shopping

Rua Santa Catarina

Rua Santa Catarina is home to lots of swish boutiques and stylish shops where you can pick up a souvenir or two and then, when you’ve shopped to your heart’s content, stroll down to the grand square of the Praça da Batalha for a coffee in one of the many bars. It’s located just a 15-minute drive out of the centre – take the A28 northbound before turning off onto Antunes Guimarães Avenue.


It’s also well worth visiting one or two of the city’s many markets, where you might pick up a bargain – the famed Bolhão Market is the best of the lot.

Time To Eat


You’ll be ready for a good meal after a busy day’s sightseeing, so round the day off with a visit to the Ribeiro Quayside where there’s a huge choice of restaurants serving local delicacies ranging from sardines to francesinhas – slices of bread topped with sausage, steak and cheese.

Porto’s abundance of attractions and things to do make it the perfect place to enjoy a city break this summer.

With thanks to Hertz, our AA Rewards partner, for providing us with information on the best things to do in Porto in just one day.

Don’t forget, if you’re an AA customer and planning to hire a car when abroad, you’re entitled to up to 10% off Hertz car hire with AA Rewards.  To find out more click here.

Hertz Car Hire

Mary-Lou Quinn