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Where to Stay in Porto: Best Areas to See The City


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If you want your next vacation in Porto to be a success, you first need to know where to stay in Porto. After spending more than 3 months in the city, I recommend searching for accommodation in central neighborhoods like Trindade and Aliados if you want to be close to the best restaurants, attractions, and things to do in Porto. 

Whether you’re here for family vacations in Portugal or a romantic city break, this is the only list you’ll ever need to find the best areas to stay in Porto for you. After scouring the city for things to see and do for almost four months, I’m pleased to finally be able to help you find your new favorite areas and accommodations in Porto.

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Camara Municipal do Porto in Aliados, one of the best ares to stay in Porto for vacations

Considered one of the more upmarket neighborhoods in Porto, booking accommodation in Aliados will put you right in the heart of Porto. Avenida dos Aliados is home to a string of excellent hotels, restaurants, and the Porto city sign where you can pose with friends and family for your next Instagram story.

In terms of things to do in Porto, you’ll also be close to top destinations like Igreja e Torre dos Clérigos and the magical Livraria Lello. This famous library in Porto weaved its way into wizard folklore when it was revealed that its unique design influenced many of the scenes in the Harry Potter series.

Why I recommend this area: This is easily one of the best areas in Porto that I would recommend to anyone looking for one of the safest neighborhoods in Porto, Portugal. Family vacations here, for example, would benefit from having accommodation in Aliados.


🔸Hotel with Best Reviews: Legends House by Sweet Porto (9.4) Clean, spacious, and very friendly staff in reception that always go the extra mile for you.

🔸Apartment with Best Reviews: Bright Downtown Apartment (9.2) Despite a very central location, this comfortable apartment is located in a quiet and peaceful area.

🔸Great for Couples: Chich & Basic Gravity (9.1) A very chic hotel that comes with an outdoor pool, this place is perfect for romantic stays in Porto.

🔸Perfect for Families: Alquimia dos Aliados (9.6) An exquisite apartment that somehow manages to look even better in real life — there’s nothing you won’t like about this place.

🔸Top Value: Porto Old Town Apartments (9.1) Spacious rooms and an excellent downtown location, perfect for getting around and sleeping soundly at night.

View our favorite activity in Aliados: Guided Walking Tour and Livraria Lello Bookshop (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐) 

São Bento

Sé de Porto (Porto Cathedral) in São Bento, a great area if you're looking for where to stay in Porto

If you want to be even more central than Aliados, just one metro stop down the hill will take you to São Bento. Accommodation here is a great option for anyone that wants to be able to step foot outside their hotel or apartment and be slap bang in the middle of everything — it’s all happening here.

São Bento is easily one of the best areas in Porto if you want to be as central as possible and close to the stunning Douro River and Porto’s main cathedral: Sé do Porto. You’ll also be spoiled for choice when looking for restaurants and bars. Porto has some of the best cuisine I’ve ever tried and while you’re here I recommend trying their world famous Francesinha, a Portuguese sandwich filled with different mouth watering meats.

Why I recommend this area: Not only will you be close to the main landmarks and things to do in Porto, you will also have São Bento Train Station on your doorstep. If you’re interested in going to the beach or visiting other cities in Portugal like Braga and Lisbon, São Bento train station is where you need to depart from.


🔸Apartment with Best Reviews: LETHESHOME Apartments (9.4) Renovated, modern, and fully equipped apartment that has high marks for cleanliness.

🔸Hotel with Best Reviews: Catalonia Porto (9.1) After a long day exploring the city, come back to Catalonia Porto and relax in it its amazing spa and pool area.

🔸Great for Couples: Pipa D’Oro (9.1) Enjoy the amazing views of the city from the pool on the terrace and don’t forget to try their delicious sangria at the bar.

🔸Perfect for Families: RS Porto Historic Center (9.1) Stay in one of the best areas in Porto in one of the best apartments for families.

🔸Top Value: Torel 1884 Suites (9.3) The Torel 1884 team were born to run this hotel: a truly unique hotel in Porto that will make your vacation unforgettable.

View our favorite activity in São Bento: Guided City Tour by Tuk-Tuk and Douro River Cruise (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐) 

Vila Nova de Gaia

View of Porto from steps in Vila Nova de Gaia, Porto

Known more commonly as “Gaia,” this charming neighborhood is separated from the center of Porto by the famous Douro River. Accommodation and hotels in Gaia will put you in the heart of the port wine world and you’ll have plenty of lodges to choose from if you’re interested in wine tasting and learning more about the industry. I was personally able to visit Calem and Grahams wine lodges and I recommend them both for tours and wine tasting.

The metro stop at the top of Gaia, Jardim do Morro, is on the yellow line and can take you to other popular stops like São Bento, Trindade, and Aliados in less than 10 minutes. Jardim do Morro also offers one of the best viewpoints in the city and is a popular spot to listen to music while watching the sun set. If you’re coming in summer you can also visit a number of beaches in Gaia such as Praia de Miramar and Praia da Madalena.

If you love Italian food you also need to visit Café Italia when you’re in Gaia. It’s just a 5 minute walk straight down from the Jardim do Morro metro stop and the food is authentic Italian cuisine that will blow your mind. The waiters and chefs are also Italian.

Why I recommend this area: One of the best areas to stay in Porto isn’t technically in Porto but as it’s only a stone’s throw away I had to include it anyway. Gaia is where you want to be if you want lots of wine tasting and wine tours. The area has lots of lodges to choose from and when you want to up the ante you can visit Cais de Gaia, a street parallel to the River Douro that has plenty of vibrant restaurants, bars, and cable carts that can take you back up to the top of the hill.


🔸Apartment with Best Reviews: Groove-Wood Loft (9.9) Stay in the center of the port wine region in this spacious accommodation near the waterfront. Also provides private parking.

🔸Hotel with Best Reviews: The Rebello Hotel & Spa (9.8) The Rebello Hotel’s fitness centre, luxury spa, garden, and private parking are just some its many excellent perks.

🔸Great for Couples: The Yeatman (9.4) In addition to having one of the best views of Porto, this couple-friendly hotel features a selection of pools, spas, and a restaurant with two Michelin stars.

🔸Perfect for Families: My River Place Apartments (9.2) Perfect for family vacations in Porto, this accommodation offers two self-catering apartments with panoramic views of the city.

🔸Top Value: Porto View by Patio 25 (9.1) An amazing apartment that’s modern, roomy, stylish, and absolutely essential for couples who want an amazing view and location.

Book our favorite activity from Gaia: 6 Bridges Douro River Cruise (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐)


The grassy roof of Trindade Metro in Porto, Portugal

A short walk up the hill from Avenida dos Aliados will take you to the Trindade area, which is most well known for its large metro station which can get you to just about anywhere in Porto. If you’re looking for a quieter part of the city than São Bento or Aliados where you’re still close to the best things to do in Porto, Trindade might be the place for you.

Trindade many not be as beautiful as other neighborhoods around the river but it’s still one of the best areas to stay in Porto and has plenty of restaurants, cafes, and bars that are just as good as those in the center. And if you look hard enough you’ll find some fun things to do. For example, you could visit MiniGolf Porto for an evening of fun and games with your family or partner. This was actually one of my favorite hidden gems here, which you can read more about here in my full list of hidden gems in Porto.

Why I recommend this area: Porto has one of the best metro systems I’ve used in a long time and the trains are also very clean. If you want to see as much of Porto as you can while you’re here and avoid steep hills, you should definitely make use of the metro. All of the metro lines pass through Trindade which makes it one of the best areas to stay in Porto for visitors that want to get from one part of the city to another as quickly as possible. Porto is also very hilly — you have officially been warned!


🔸Hotel with Best Reviews: Hotel Dom Henrique (8.5) Just a few of this hotel’s best features include a wonderful restaurant, lounge area, and hotel terrace with panoramic views of Porto.

🔸Apartment with Best Reviews: Byobu Apartment (9.9) Beautifully decorated, comfortable, and completely silent at night.

🔸Great for Couples: Janika’s Patio (9.7) A cozy, nicely furnished home perfect for couples to relax in peace after a day out in the center. Furnished with lots of plants and gets plenty of natural light.

🔸Perfect for Families: OTF Porto Centro (9.2) Apartment minutes from Trindade Metro Station that comes with all the amenities you need for a perfect family vacation in Porto.

🔸Top Value: Oporto Old In New (9.7) Highly rated for two-person trips in Porto, this traditional apartment has all the facilities you’ll need and is very affordable considering its excellent location.

Check out our recommended activity from Trindade: Braga and Guimarães Full-Day Trip (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐)


A rainbow colored walkway in Marques, Porto

When I really want to get to know a city I prefer to spend more than just a few weeks there. Marques is where I rented my apartment and it’s one of the best areas to stay in Porto if you’re interested in staying for longer than 3-4 weeks. That’s because there are more locals living here, which is nice if you want to experience another side of the city.

When you’re living among Porto locals in a neighborhood like Marques you’re also in a much better place to practice speaking Portuguese. Supermarkets, stores, and barber shops in Marques don’t get nearly as many tourists and their employees are more likely to respond to you in Portuguese if you make the effort. Usually they always reply to you in English in the center.

Marques is a very easy-going neighborhood with a mix of old and young people in the area, most of whom are were friendly during my stay there. What it lacks in jaw-dropping architecture, it more than makes up for in charming shops and friendly folk. In addition to being incredibly affordable, it’s also one of the best areas to stay in Porto if you like using the gym: Fox Gym is easily the best gym near the center and it’s right here in Marques.

Why I recommend this area: Accommodation is decidedly more affordable here than in areas like São Bento and Aliados, which you may prefer for long stays in Porto. And having one of the best gyms in Porto here is a huge bonus if you’re a fitness fanatic like me. From Marques metro station you can get to the center in five minutes and 15 minutes on foot.


🔸Hotel with Best Reviews: Pur Oporto Boutique Hotel (8.8) This beautifully decorated hotel offers guests a stunning outside area with parking onsite.

🔸Apartment with Best Reviews: LV Premier Marques MQ2 (9.1) A spacious and very bright apartment right next to the metro so that you can get to your favorite destinations fast.

🔸Great for Couples: Comfy Sunny Flat (9.6) Located in a prime location in Porto and featuring a large double bed, this pet-friendly apartment is great for couples that want to bring their furry friends along.

🔸Perfect for Families: Porto’s Heritage Upperground (10) Remarkable attention to detail and top marks for cleanliness, this family apartment is just next to the metro for quick access.

🔸Top Value: Chill House Porto (9.2) A lovely apartment with fantastic furnishings and a supermarket and metro just minutes away.

Recommended article: Best places to stay in Seville 


To summarize; Aliados, Marques, São Bento, Trindade, and Vila Nova de Gaia are all very safe neighborhoods with great reputations where you’ll also be close to the best things to do in Porto. And if you made it this point in the post you should already have a much better idea of where to stay in Porto. Don’t forget to take a look at my accommodation recommendations if you haven’t already: they’re the very best I could find for each area after spending hours browsing the web. Hopefully you can find the perfect accommodation in Porto for your next trip there.

Enjoy your upcoming vacation in Porto and if you’ve been before please let readers know in the comments if you’d recommend any of these areas and why. Know where to stay in Porto that isn’t on the list? Drop that in the comments too! 

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