Lisbon vs Porto – Which Metropolis in Portugal Ought to You Go to?

Having visited Portugal just a few instances over the previous couple of years, I’ve explored it from north to south. I’ve visited its hottest cities – Lisbon and Porto. The primary is the capital of Portugal and the second is a historic metropolis within the North.

Are you searching for a metropolis break in Portugal and questioning which metropolis to go to?

Lisbon and Porto are each main cities in Portugal. I’ve loved each of them they usually each have so many similarities and but so many variations. They’re each fascinating in their very own approach and I hope that will help you determine which one to select between Lisbon vs Porto to your subsequent vacation.

Fast Introduction

Introducing Lisbon

Lisbon view from the highest

Lisbon is Portugal’s capital metropolis and is constructed on seven hills. It faces the Atlantic Ocean and the river Tagus goes by means of town. It’s known as “Lisboa” in Portuguese, town is historic and but has a up to date tradition.

Lisbon is my favourite of all of the European capitals not solely due to its magnificence but additionally the tradition, the meals, the climate, and its many viewpoints.

Introducing Porto

Porto has many ranges, many viewpoints

Porto is called the “Unvanquished Metropolis” and is constructed alongside the hills overlooking the Douro River estuary. Porto was known as Portas Calle by the Romans and town middle has been constantly inhabited for the reason that 4th century. Porto was by no means conquered!

Porto’s metropolis middle is a UNESCO World Heritage website and that’s what makes it so particular as a result of you’ll really feel such as you’re strolling in a museum while you go to.

Getting in Lisbon vs Porto

Each Lisbon and Porto have worldwide airports. Extra worldwide airways fly to Lisbon’s Humberto Delgado Airport however a number of airways from inside Europe fly to Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport in Porto.

Whether or not you fly to Lisbon Airport or Porto Airport – these two Portuguese cities are only a 3-hour prepare or bus trip away from one another.

So if you’re flying from inside Europe, then each these cities are good however in case you might be flying in from a faraway nation like India, then Lisbon is the perfect metropolis so that you can begin your travels in Portugal.

Winner: Lisbon (if you’re touring from far-off nations) and a tie (if you’re flying in from inside Europe)


Portugal is positioned in western Europe and Lisbon is positioned in the midst of Portugal on the coast. Porto is positioned in Northern Portugal, and likewise on the coast.

If you wish to discover Portugal from North to South, for that goal Porto is the proper place to begin that journey. If you wish to discover a piece of Portugal like simply the South (Lisbon after which Algarve street journey) then it makes extra sense to begin from Lisbon.

You may hire a automotive from Lisbon or Porto for a street journey in Portugal.

Winner: Lisbon

Total great thing about Lisbon vs Porto

A random viewpoint in Lisbon

Lisbon has colourful buildings which are pastel-hued, iconic yellow trams, slanted streets, and a sunny vibe even in winter. Porto alternatively has extra of a Gothic vibe with its darkish structure that’s extremely ornate.

Porto Cathedral views

Lisbon’s magnificence is extra like a Wes Anderson film and Porto’s magnificence is extra like a Harry Potter film set.

Though I’m an enormous Potterhead, I desire Lisbon’s pastel hues as in comparison with Porto’s gothic magnificence. So in my thoughts, Lisbon wins. However I do know of many individuals who think about Porto extra stunning than Lisbon.

Winner: All of it relies on what you might be searching for. I discover Lisbon extra stunning however many different folks discover Porto higher when it comes to the scenic magnificence.


Lisbon is the biggest metropolis in Portugal with an space of 100.05 sq. kilometers. Porto is lower than half of its dimension with an administrative space of 41.42 sq. kilometers. So, Lisbon is greater than Porto.

Winner: Lisbon

Getting Round

Yellow Tram in Lisbon with Tagus River within the background

Each Lisbon and Porto are walkable however be ready for a exercise as a result of each these cities are constructed on steep hills. Each have tremendous fairly slim streets that you’ll fall in love with.

In each Lisbon and Porto, you may get on Uber for actually low cost however I often noticed an even bigger visitors jam in Porto as in comparison with Lisbon.

Lisbon and Porto each have an incredible community of public transportation. Each of those cities have buses, metro, and historic trams. Though Lisbon’s yellow trams are extra well-known Porto has them too.

It isn’t straightforward to get on the yellow trams of Lisbon due to the lengthy strains of vacationers however the metro is an incredible choice. In Lisbon, a metro trip prices about €1.90 from the airport to anyplace within the metropolis middle.

The metro ticket system in Porto is a bit more difficult than in Lisbon as a result of it’s a must to purchase a card “Andante” primarily based on the zone and pay at some stage in the trip – one hour, at some point, or much more. The one-hour card may be from €1.25 to €2 relying on the zone. Porto’s metro is newer and higher than Lisbon’s.

Winner: Tie


Like many of the necessary cities on the planet, each Lisbon and Porto are additionally located alongside a river. Lisbon is located alongside the Tagus River and Porto is alongside the Douro River. Lets examine Porto vs Lisbon and see which one is healthier.

Lisbon’s Riverside

Ponto Remaining Restaurant in Lisbon – prime Instagram spots

Lisbon’s riverside space that’s near Augusta Arc has a pleasant strolling space. In case you stroll right here within the evenings and sit on the marble steps, you’ll love the vibe. Within the evenings in summer time, additionally, you will see some cocktail stands.

The bridge Ponte 25 de Abril which seems like San Fransisco’s Golden Gate bridge goes over this river. You may as well get on a ferry to the opposite aspect of the river, which is named Almada. Christo Rei is a well-known landmark of Lisbon that’s in Almada.

Porto’s Riverside

Ribeira (Riverfront), Porto

Porto’s riverside space is the Ribeira District which is the oldest a part of town. Ribeira is a UNESCO World Heritage website and the waterfront space comes alive at evening because the lights glow right here and replicate on the water. You may cross the Dom Luis I bridge to go to the opposite aspect – Vila nova de Gaia.

Due to the Ribeira district, Porto’s riverside space is certainly extra stunning than Lisbon’s and has a number of character. Additionally, you will discover the world’s most stunning MacDonlad restaurant right here in Porto’s Ribeira.

Winner: Porto

The Meals Scene

Pastel de Nata – a must have in Lisbon

Each Lisbon and Porto are superb locations for meals, however Porto is claimed to have extra finer eating places than the remainder of Portugal. I really had actually good meals in each Porto and Lisbon. Let’s discuss it intimately right here.

Consuming lavish meals in each Lisbon and Porto received’t burn a gap in your pocket and the price of a meal with a drink was sometimes EUR 15 per individual, besides that one time once we ordered a number of seafood after which it was simply double. The principle programs are from EUR 7 to EUR 15, relying on what it’s. Seafood is clearly costlier.

Meals in Lisbon

Grilled Octopus at Santo André, Alfama

In Lisbon, some of the standard issues that you would be able to eat is Pastel de Nata and probably the most well-known bakery for that is Pastéis de Belém. Different well-known issues are Bacalhau (salted codfish cooked in some ways), bifanas (pork sandwich), ameijoas a bulhao pato (saucy clams), caldo verde (inexperienced soup), and Polvo a lagareiro (octopus) to call just a few.

My lunch – prawns in LX Manufacturing unit

The very best locations to get pleasure from quite a lot of meals are positively small family-run eating places in Chaido, and Bairro Alto. However you can too go to the well-known meals court docket – Time Out Lisboa or Mercado da Ribeira which has a set of rigorously curated eating places from among the finest cooks in Lisbon.

One other superb place for attempting completely different meals and drinks in Lisbon is LX Manufacturing unit, which has some enjoyable and quirky eating places.

Make sure you strive Ginjinha, a conventional liquor made with bitter cherries. Lisbon’s meals was additionally featured on Netflix’s “Someone Feed Phill” and he raved concerning the “Ponto Remaining” restaurant in Almada for the meals and the view.

Meals in Porto

The Well-known Francesinha Sandwich of Porto at Café Santiago

Porto’s most well-known meals is Francesinha, a multi-layered sandwich that’s topped with cheese, egg, and Francesinha sauce. This sandwich was an excessive amount of for me and I couldn’t have greater than just some bites. I believe it could make a great hangover meal for some nevertheless it didn’t work out for me.

Seafood dinner in Adega Bebe-Se Mal, Porto

To be trustworthy, I didn’t get pleasure from Francesinha however I had probably the most superb seafood dinner in Porto in a restaurant known as Adega Bebe-Se Mal the place I used to be with two different ladies and we ate a number of seafood and drank wine. We ordered the largest seafood meal of our journey and drank a number of wine nevertheless it was beneath EUR 60 for us three.

In case you are visiting Porto in July, then go to Matosinhos for the fish pageant to eat tremendous contemporary seafood. They are going to put together it for you on the grill on the aspect of the road.

Aside from meals, make sure to drink Port wine at Douro Valley in Porto, in any case, it comes from right here. When the grapes come out of Douro Valley and the wine is produced and bottled in Porto then it’s known as Port Wine. You can see many wineries throughout Porto. Examine the day journeys part for more information.

Winner: Tie

Nightlife in Lisbon vs Porto

Lisbon’s most well-known space for nightlife is Bairro Alto but additionally the close by Pink Road. Porto’s hottest nightlife road is Rua da Galeria de Paris.

Each Bairro Alto and Rua da Galeria de Paris are fairly comparable as a result of there’s a outstanding road that’s lined with bars, pubs, and dance golf equipment. There are all kinds of locations to occasion – some have dwell music and others have DJs.

Bairro Alto is certainly a lot greater than Rua da Galeria de Paris. It’s greater than only a road however has aspect streets and is a complete neighborhood.

I had a greater time partying in Lisbon as in comparison with Porto however I’d like to present Porto’s nightlife one other probability after I go to subsequent.

Lisbon and Porto each have eating places and bars with the Fado present, however Lisbon is a greater vacation spot for this music style. Fado is conventional Portuguese blues music. There are two main Fado subgenres in Portugal – one from Lisbon and the opposite one from Coimbra. So Lisbon’s Fado is distinctive and distinctive.

Winner: Lisbon

The Previous City

Let’s speak concerning the outdated cities and the oldest districts of each Lisbon and Porto.

Lisbon’s Previous City Alfama

Rua dos Remédios in Alfama

Lisbon’s outdated city is in Alfama – which is Lisbon’s oldest district. On one aspect of Alfama is the Castelo de São Jorge (São Jorge Fortress) and on the opposite aspect is the beautiful Rio Tejo – Tagus River on the aspect is Graça and São Vicente districts.

Alfama is in contrast to any outdated city that I’ve seen as a result of it’s principally residential. There are outdated buildings, slim streets, viewpoints, outdated cathedrals, and historic trams that transfer on these slanted roads.

Alfama has a number of character and if you happen to go to Lisbon, it’s best to attempt to get a room on this neighborhood. Stroll round Alfama and get misplaced within the labyrinth of outdated streets. Observe the route of Tram 28 and benefit from the sights.

Porto’s Previous City Ribeira

The gorgeous residential buildings close to Porto Cathedral with a grandma on the balcony

Porto’s outdated city is Ribeira, a UNESCO world heritage website. It’s a historic district that faces the Douro River and streets out to the hills behind. On the opposite aspect of the Douro River is Ribeira de Gaia.

Similar to Alfama, Ribeira additionally has a maze of slim streets, crumbling residential buildings, outdated church buildings, and towers.

Winner: Tie

Historic buildings

Belem Tower in Lisbon

Each Lisbon and Porto have their very own set of historic buildings which are a UNESCO World Heritage Website. Lisbon’s most well-known historic buildings and iconic constructions are:

  • Castelo de são Jorge,
  • Jerónimos monastery,
  • Belem tower,
  • Christo Rei Statue,
  • Santa Justa Elevate,
  • Augusta Arc,
  • Sé de Lisboa – Lisbon Cathedral
  • Monastery of São Vicente de Fora
  • Nationwide Pantheon

Porto’s well-known historic buildings and constructions are:

The long-lasting Porto Cathedral
  • São Francisco church,
  • Torre dos Clerigos,
  • Palácio da Bolsa,
  • Porto Cathedral (Sé do Porto)
  • São Bento Practice Station

Each Lisbon and Porto have a number of historic buildings. The important thing distinction is that Lisbon’s historic constructions are unfold out, whereas Porto’s outdated buildings are all close to to one another within the historic metropolis middle.

Winner: Tie


If in case you have learn just a few of my posts already on my web site you then would have seen that I’ve a factor for viewpoints. Irrespective of the place I am going, my journey revolves round discovering the proper locations to eat drink, or sleep with a view. Each my posts for Lisbon and Porto have many viewpoints as a result of each these cities have a great deal of superb miradouros.

A miradouro is a Portuguese phrase for a viewpoint and each these cities are filled with them as a result of they’re constructed on steep hills.

Lisbon’s Viewpoints

Miradouro de Santa Luzia – Lisbon Instagram spots

For the perfect viewpoints in Lisbon, go to the Alfama district and the close by Graça. Alfama’s Miradouro de Santa Luzia is totally beautiful and you can too go to the close by Miradouro das Portas do Sol and drink a cocktail proper there with the views as a result of there’s a stand proper there. One other superb viewpoint in Lisbon is Miradouro da Senhora do Monte, which is increased than the others.

Porto’s Viewpoints

Jardim do Morro Sundown view

Porto’s well-known viewpoint is Jardim do Morro and it’s significantly better than any viewpoint in Lisbon. One other well-known one is Miradouro da Serra do Pilar, which is subsequent to Jardim do Morro. One can simply stroll on Dom Luís I Bridge in Porto for improbable views in each course.

Though I desire Lisbon’s pastel homes that present from the viewpoints, the explanation why I believe Porto’s viewpoints are higher is due to the curve of the Douro River.

Winner: Porto (however solely barely)


Each Lisbon and Porto are heat cities however let’s speak concerning the common temperatures.

Climate in Lisbon

A Heat Summer time day in Lisbon even with clouds

In the summertime months, the every day imply temperatures vary from 21.2 °C (70.2°F) in June to 22.1°C (71.8°F) in September.

The common excessive temperature in summer time can go as excessive as 28.3 °C or 82.9°F in August, which is the most well liked month. Keep in mind, that is the common imply – it implies that the most well liked a part of the day shall be positively hotter than the common. The evening shall be positively cooler than the common.

The common excessive in summer time is 25.7 °C (78.3 °F) in June to 26.5 °C (79.7 °F) in September. The file excessive in summer time was 44.0 °C or 111.2 °F in August

In winter months, January is the coldest with the every day imply temperature being 11.6 °C or 52.9 °F. The file low was recorded in February being −1.2 °C or 29.8 °F.

Though Lisbon is a year-round vacation spot, I’d nonetheless say that the perfect time to go to is in late spring or early. Peak summer time can be good to get pleasure from a pleasant heat summer time day however it’s often tremendous crowded.

Climate in Porto

Porto Cathedral within the background

The climate in Porto is sort of the identical as in Lisbon however solely barely cooler. In the summertime months, the every day imply temperature ranges from 19.0 °C (66.2 °F) in June to 19.5 °C (67.1 °F) in September. The common excessive in August can go as excessive as 25.7 °C (78.3 °F) and the file excessive was 40.9 °C (105.6 °F).

The common excessive in summer time was 19.0 °C (66.2 °F) in June to 19.5 °C (67.1 °F) in September.

The file low was −3.3 °C (26.1 °F) in January however the every day imply ranges from 10.7 °C (51.3 °F) in December to 10.4 °C (50.7 °F) in February.

Winner: Tie – each these cities have nice temperatures which are heat with Porto being only a bit cooler. I do bear in mind sporting jackets in Porto in August and nonetheless feeling chilly however

Day Journey Choices

Let’s examine the day journeys from Porto versus Lisbon and determine which choice is healthier.

Day journeys from Lisbon

Pena Palace, Sintra, Portugal

There are a lot of day journey potentialities from Lisbon however probably the most well-known ones are to Sintra’s Pena Palace, Cabo da Roca, & Cascais. Sintra is the identify of the mountains, the area, and likewise town.

Sintra’s Pena Palace is a multicoloured constructing which is a sight you’ll bear in mind for all times. It’s a citadel perched on prime of the mountains in Sintra that overlooks the ocean. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage website and one of many seven wonders of Portugal.

Estrada do Cabo da Roca, Colares, Portogallo through Unsplash

Cabo da Roca is the Cape of Roca and is an attractive spot with excessive sea cliffs the place you possibly can stroll and luxuriate in nature. Cascais is a conventional fishing village close to Lisbon which is now a high-end vacation vacation spot due to the beautiful seashore.

The excellent news is that you would be able to mix a go to to all these locations in at some point on a day journey from Lisbon. Clearly, it’s higher to spend extra time in every vacation spot however that isn’t all the time potential.

Sure, you can too go to different locations from Lisbon however the perfect day journeys are to the Sintra area, and past that, it makes extra sense to make it longer than only a day.

If in case you have a rental automotive, then you can too embrace Praia das Azenhas do Mar in Colares on this day journey itinerary from Lisbon, which can be an attractive seashore vacation spot and isn’t on some excursions that you simply see on-line.

Day journeys from Porto

Douro Valley – Porto day journeys through Unsplash

Let’s speak concerning the day journeys from Porto now. Among the finest day journeys from Porto are to Douro Valley with wine tasting, a go to to the wine cellars, and a river cruise. These day journeys additionally embrace a cease at Pinhão, the place you will note an attractive viewpoint.

An alternative choice for a day journey from Porto is to Guimarães and Braga, the place you’ll cross by means of the attractive pure landscapes of the Minho area and see the spiritual metropolis of Braga which is likely one of the oldest Christian cities on the earth.

Journey lovers will love this present day journey suggestion from Porto – Paiva Walkways and Arouca 516 Footbridge the place you’ll stroll on the longest suspension bridges on the earth.

In case you examine each Porto and Lisbon – though it might seem that Porto has extra day journey choices, Lisbon additionally has the identical quantity of choices and you’ll see them in only one journey as an alternative of splitting them.

Winner: Tie

Close by Seaside Locations

Seaside Locations close to Lisbon

The empty Benagil Cave seashore within the morning

If you wish to go to seashore locations close to Lisbon and Porto, there are various choices. Let’s discuss Lisbon first.

We already talked about the seashores of Sintra within the day journey submit, however are you aware that you would be able to arrive in the Algarve area in simply 3 hours from Lisbon?

I’m really in love with the Algarve as a result of the seashores are completely beautiful with an ideal backdrop of rock formations. Furthermore, the water high quality is clear and the sand is smooth. The world-famous Marinha Seaside is true right here within the Algarve and so is the hidden Benagil Cave Seaside.

The well-known Marinha seashore in Portugal – Algarve itinerary

Algarve isn’t only one vacation spot however has many superb seashore locations inside they usually all have one thing particular to supply. I’ve spent every week in each Lagos and Carvoeiro and I extremely advocate them each.

Seaside Locations close to Porto

Praia da Nazaré, Nazare seashore view from the cliff, Portugal

The seashore locations close to Porto are Nazare, Matosinhos, Aveiro, and Figueira da Foz to call just a few. Out of those, I’ve visited Nazare and Figueira da Foz – though they’re each good locations with superb seashores they don’t come even near Algarve’s awesomeness.

So, for a seashore trip in Portugal with a little bit of metropolis break, I counsel you choose Lisbon over Porto.

Winner: Lisbon

The place to Keep

Lisbon Lodge Ideas:

Having stayed in three completely different lodges in Lisbon, the perfect expertise was once we stayed proper within the Alfama / Graça neighborhood. Listed below are the locations I counsel you think about:

Porto Lodge Ideas:

Attempt to discover a resort in Porto’s Ribeira to be near the river and the viewpoints. Listed below are just a few lodges that I’ve shortlisted for you for each price range. Click on on the hyperlink to guide.

Conclusion: Lisbon vs Porto

Each Lisbon and Porto are superb locations for a metropolis break. The truth is, in contrast to many of the cities in Europe, I counsel the next period in Lisbon and Porto as a result of they provide a lot extra. Plus, in contrast to many different cities in Europe, Lisbon and Porto are each inexpensive compared.

So between Lisbon and Porto which one is healthier? My private desire is Lisbon however I’ve in contrast them each in lots of points so that you could discover your personal private favourite.

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