The Best European Destination 2021 is a Portuguese city! After more than 600,000 votes from 192 countries, Braga receives the much-deserved title. Famous for its architecture, its young life, its enchanting history, and its wonderful pastries, Braga is representing Portugal extremely well, elected in a choice that involved all of Europe.
After a very difficult 2020, considering all the challenges of last year, having a Portuguese city as the best European destination this year is a boost for several areas that depend on tourism – be it national or international. And for those who still don’t know Braga, we’ve separated some points that will make you want to get to know this beautiful city of a very particular historical richness.
At the end of last year, Portugal has elected the best tourism brand in Europe. We talked about this subject here in our blog. See more at the link.
Located 50 km from Porto, Braga is easily accessible both by car and by plane. After all, the nearest airport is located less than 40 minutes from the city center. Many tourists choose Braga for a short trip from Porto. Others choose to sleep in Braga for strategic accommodation since nearby we can also find Guimarães, Viana do Castelo, and Esposende.
For those who want to get a taste of the reasons why Braga was chosen as the best European destination in 2021, during your visit be sure to check out these sights:
1- Sé Cathedral – it is undoubtedly the most striking building in the center of Braga. It was designed in the late eleventh century by Bishop D. Pedro. During many years, the Sé gained new adornments and spaces, so it houses in one place different styles, such as gothic, romantic and baroque.
2- Historical Center – with stores, restaurants and several old buildings, be sure to walk around and appreciate every corner.
3- Bom Jesus do Monte – the symbol of Braga. The staircase with the Basilica of Bom Jesus do Monte is the most emblematic place of this Portuguese city. Besides the unforgettable architecture, you can enjoy the panoramic view of the city.
4- Sanctuary of Our Lady of Sameiro – its construction began in 1863. Today the place is the second largest center of Marian devotion in Portugal.
5- Raio Palace – it is one of the most important works of baroque architecture in the country and one of the most beautiful buildings in Braga. It has more than 250 years of history.
Among other monuments and sights not to be missed!
The annual award chooses the best destinations for tourism in the continent, with votes from the four corners of the world. The 2021 edition was announced this month and at the top of the ranking, above destinations such as Paris, Rome, Florence or Ghent (Belgium), is the capital of Minho and one of the oldest cities in Portugal: Braga.
Learn more about the award on the official website: European Best Destinations 2021.
Translated by Miguel Marinho Soares