Portugal, despite being a small country, possesses many diverse treasures in each region. The North, for example, has unique landscapes that are very different from the rest of the country. With a mountainous natural beauty and an important cultural heritage, getting to know this region can bring about very pleasant surprises. Besides Porto – the most well-known city in the North – visitors can enjoy other cities, towns and villages that worthy of a special stop.

The one chosen in this article is a popular Minho city for attracting visitors from all over the world. Get to know more and enjoy Viana do Castelo, famous for its pleasant beaches, delicious bolas de Berlin and a charming historical center. For those who stay in Porto, it is possible to come and go in the same day. Viana has a train station as well as excellent acesses by car and bus. The trip takes no more than an hour.

But if you really want to know the place, enjoy Viana do Castelo for at least three whole days. This way, you will be able to get to know the city and several other beautiful villages in its surroundings. In Viana, another point worth visiting is the Sanctuary of Santa Luzia – similar to the Sacré-Cœur in Paris. Also located on top of a hill, visitors have a panoramic view of the city. 

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After visiting Viana do Castelo, we recommend a visit to the oldest village in Portugal: Ponte de Lima. Bathed by the river Lima, the village is extremely clean, organized and its small historical center deserves a leisurely walk. For those who want to enjoy the regional food, they will be in the right location. The place is famous for the “rojões” with sarrabulho rice. Delicious! After enjoying the delicacies, walk along the Roman bridge and enjoy the view.

Near Ponte de Lima is located Arcos de Valdevez. Another very charming village which is bathed by the river Vez. During the festive seasons, the place attracts many tourists and immigrants who stay hours and hours listening to concertinas, eating bread with chorizo and enjoying the delicious farturas.

If you have more time and it’s summer time, we recommend Gerês – a huge national park with several waterfalls and streams. The water is crystal clear and certainly asks for a dip. Spend at least one full day there.  It is a visit not to be missed, with breathtaking views. The experience will be extremely pleasant.

Besides these villages, enjoy Viana do Castelo and visit places like Valença, Monção and Melgaço, Ponte da Barca, Soajo and among other villages that will make the trip an incredible tour!


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Categories: Tourism