If you are reading this you’ve decided to visit Coimbra. Or maybe you are wondering if you should. I visited Coimbra as a day trip during my trip to Portugal, as a stop between Lisbon and Aveiro.
Coimbra is a very interesting and history rich city. It used to be a Roman settlement and some structures of that time remain. It also used to be the capital of Portugal, and is the land of Inês de Castro and King Pedro, two major historical figures of Portuguese history. Also, Coimbra houses one of the oldest universities in the world: Coimbra University.
Would I recommend you visit? Honestly, I had lots of trouble finding the answer to this question before my trip so this is my verdict, having ended up visiting it. I think Coimbra is definitely worth a day or half day stop if you are doing a road trip but wouldn’t recommend you go out of your way to visit it, specially if your visit to Portugal is short (a week).
Now I’ll walk you through everything there is to do in Coimbra, where to stay and how to get there and around.
Sintra was one of the highlights of my Portugal trip. Seriously, I loved it. I regret tons not staying for one night versus just visiting for the day from Lisbon. It is a magical place likely due to the combination of nature with attractions that were just so incredible and unique. It’s truly out of a Portuguese fairy tale.
So, either if you are visiting for the day or spending one night I’ll walk you through how to best enjoy it.
Porto was the last city I visited in my 8 day trip to Portugal. The city has a unique feel and although it’s just 300 km away from Lisbon, they are completely different! Lisbon is immediately charming as many of its neighborhoods are fully refurbished, it’s full of light and lively colors. Porto is a bit more grey and misty, which makes it more mysterious and intriguing, with colorful houses and oh-so-many tiles. To me it’s like the city is still painted with the past, wherever you go. Even the hotel where I stayed in Porto, which I describe below, had so many stories to tell!
There is a lot to do in Porto, in this post I’ll walk you through all the things to do and how to get around.
Best Things to do in Porto
Start with a free walking tour
As soon as you get to Porto, take a free walking tour to get a grasp of what the city has to offer, some history and insider tips from the tour guides that live there. It will help organise how you’ll spend the rest of your time in the city, and you can ask all the questions you want.
Aveiro is one of the cities I visited between Lisbon and Porto in my 8 day trip around Portugal. Aveiro is a very beautiful city with enough things to do for a full day. I stayed in Aveiro for one day and two nights but one day and one night would have worked as well. You can also visit it as a day trip from Porto. See all things to do, where to stay and how to get to and around Aveiro in this post.
The best things to do in Aveiro
Visit the cute striped sea side houses at Costa Nova
Ok, I’ll admit that this was the reason I visited Aveiro. And it was Instagram heaven as I expected. These striped houses by the beach make the freshest photos ever. An important thing to note is that Costa Nova is not in Aveiro but getting to it is very easy either by car or local bus.