10 Best Viewpoints in Porto

jana meerman porto (10)

Porto, a port city in Portugal's northern region, is a visual feast. Situated on the mouth of the Douro River where it feeds into the Atlantic Ocean, Porto is home to some exceptional view points that look proudly over the vibrant orange roofs and the quaint city bustling on below.

I lived and worked in Porto for a month from the end of September to the end of October, a particularly lovely time of year with the natural lighting falling so gently, causing long shadows in the cooling evenings. I made it a priority to walk as much as possible while living here, often more than an hour a day, in search of great views and hidden gems to photograph.

Here are some of my favourite viewpoints in the whole city; places where you can just stand for a while and watch in awe at the city spread out below you.

Sé do Porto // Porto Cathedral

The courtyard surrounding the prominent Porto Cathedral, located in the centre of town at the top of Av. Dom Afonso Henriques, offers sweeping views over the city from nearly every angle - from the packed town of pretty houses layered above each other and across to the Douro River. Often, live music can be heard from somewhere in the courtyard, giving the whole place a romantic feel.

jana meerman porto (3)
jana meerman porto (3)

Ponte Luís I // Luís I Bridge

As you leave the city of Porto headed southward towards Gaia, just across the river, it's likely that you'll walk across the Luís I Bridge (or take a tram!) and you'll want to make sure you leave plenty of time to do this crossing as the views in a 360 degree view all around are simply astonishing.

jana meerman porto (8)
jana meerman porto (8)
jana meerman porto (8)
jana meerman sunset porto

The Ribeira at sunset

jana meerman sunset porto

The Ribeira at dusk

Miradouro da Serra do Pilar

If you want even more epic views, after you've crossed the bridge, head slightly higher up to the Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar where you can get even better photos, including the stunning Luís I Bridge now framed in the shot.

jana meerman porto (13)
jana meerman porto (13)

Ribeira do Porto

This stunning waterfront is the gem of Porto and where, at night, live music and twinkling lights make this one of the most romantic and endearing spots in the city. Wander along here, grab a bite to eat and sit and enjoy the views over the river and towards Villa Nova de Gaia and the bridge as the sun goes down.

jana meerman ribeira porto (1)
jana meerman ribeira porto (1)

Jardins do Palácio de Cristal

For a different view looking the other direction over the river under the Ponte da Arrábida bridge and on towards the ocean, head westward just out of the city to these 19th century gardens which are a pleasant place to sit for a while on a sunny afternoon.

jana meerman jardins do palacio cristal porto (1)
jana meerman jardins do palacio cristal porto (1)

Miradouro da Vitória

On the opposite side of the river from the beautiful Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar, at the end of R. de São Bento da Vitória, you'll find a secluded viewpoint with panoramic views towards Vila Nova de Gaia and great for sunset spotting!

jana meerman miradouro da vitoria porto (2)
jana meerman miradouro da vitoria porto (1)

Parque do Horto das Virtudes

A popular spot to catch buskers playing live music at sunset, this garden is a wonderful place to watch sunset and enjoy the views straight down along the river.

jana meerman porto viewpoints

Torreão do Jardim do Palácio

Focusing on looking across to Vila Nova de Gaia, this spot is a bit out of town but well worth the walk to get picturesque views across the river.

jana meerman foz do douro porto (1)

Marginal de Gaia

If you walk from the Ribeira in Porto across the bridge (the bottom level), you'll come to the waterfront of Villa Nova de Gaia where live music, markets and fairs, and beautiful views back to Porto are in abundance. A perfect spot to enjoy sundown.

jana meerman porto (2)

Escada Dos Guindais

These crumbling stone steps are the main way to access the Ribeira from up top at the entrance of the bridge. There's some pretty snippets of the bridge to be seen in view as you make your way carefully down.

jana meerman porto (1)



Pinterest - Porto views (1)
Pinterest - Porto views (1)


  1. October 22, 2021 / 3:59 pm

    Beautifully descriptive! I’m more than a little green! 😊

    I may have to dream bigger, much bigger, fir my walking projects.😉


    • October 24, 2021 / 10:34 am

      Quickly become one of my favourite cities, it’s just so beautiful!

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