Porto: It is more than just a Port wine (Part II)

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My last blog post about Porto was hinted at something more than just sightseeing and experiencing the local life. It offers tremendous culinary experience and hence I felt of writing about it in a separate blog. Right from the variety in fish and other seafood, amazing pork and beef sandwiches to beautiful heritage cafes, Porto has immense in it to fill your tummy.

Beautiful Cafes to visit Porto:

1. Mcdonald’s Imperial: This is one of the most beautiful McDonald’s in the world. Located at the Liberdade Square. McDonald’s menu here is the same as other McDonald’s but the interior and the historical background make it special. Formerly this used to be Imperial Cafe in the 30s only when McDonald’s rented the space and conformed to renovate the space and maintaining its iconic features. They do have some Portuguese menu but you can also just have a cup of coffee starring at the stunning ceiling.
One of the most beautiful McDonald’s in the world located at the Liberdade Square, Porto.

2.  Cafe Majestic: It is arguably one of the beautiful cafes in the World. A cup of coffee there costs 5 euros. Though expensive, once this cafe used to be a gathering point for the creative people be it be, artists, writers, thinkers or musicians. People say that the aura there is so compelling that it automatically brings the creativity out from you. The interior takes you back to the 20s. I just wanted to check out the cafe for its interior, but the manager didn’t let me in since I wasn’t interested in ordering anything. That’s my personal experience.

The historic Cafe Majestic opened in 1920’s in Porto. Image Coursey: GoPorto.com

3. Cafe Guarany: This is also one of the historical cafes in Porto. If you are a budget traveller looking for a cup of coffee in a heritage cafe then you shouldn’t miss Cafe Guarany. This Cafe is also famous for its interior dating back to the 19th century. I personally chose to have a cup of coffee in Cafe Guarany over Cafe Majestic since the same coffee costs 2.5 euros in Cafe Guarany. The walking tour guide had recommended hot chocolate in Cafe Guarany.

Cafe Guarany is another heritage cafe dating back to the 19th century. This is an ideal experience for a budget traveller like me.

Places to eat

Portuguese food is one of those cuisines I fell in love with in Europe. Especially the availability of fresh seafood and fish in general at a very affordable price makes it special. I was in Porto just for 2 days, so I could try only a few places, but I will also mention places which were local recommendations.

The Porto exclusive Francisinha sandwich.
  1. Restaurant O Afonso: If you are in Porto it happens that you do not get curious about Francesinha just by watching the boards outside restaurants. Francesinha is a sandwich exclusive to Porto made with layers of cured ham, fresh sausage, roast meat stuffed in bread slices and covered with melted cheese. This complete calorie bomb is served in a beer and tomato sauce. Almost in every restaurant, you would get this sandwich but Cafe Restaurent Afonso was suggested by our walking tour guide and it was worth it. One sandwich costs 8 euros and can satisfy 2 people as it is also served with fries. This place is at a 15 min walk from the main square.
  2. A Sandeira: One more highly recommended sandwich place is A Sandeira, located very much in the centre of the city. I went to this place, but I was impatient enough to wait in the queue. Bifina is another trademark sandwich that people enjoy in Porto.
    This is how the meal is served in the food market. Fried fish with vegetable rice at a price of 6 euros. Healthy food at an affordable price.
  3. On a busy afternoon, if you are in the city centre, you can head into the Mercado do Bolhao food market. Grilled Salmon or white fish, finger sardines, Pork sandwiches, vegetable rice, you can find everything here. If you are looking for traditional Portuguese food- Feijoada Portuguesa or Cozido Portuguesa this is the place to be.
    Finger Sardines and Fish nuggets called Bacalao are delicious appetizers.
  4. Bacalao- It is also a traditional street food or snack. It is nothing but a nugget made up of fish and mashed potato. You can find this in every corner of Porto.
    This delicious Salmon steak at Tamisa restaurant just costs 7 euros. It is served with either boiled potatoes or rice.
  5. Tamisa Buffet restaurant– This cafe-restaurant was recommended by a friend living in Porto. If you are near to the Clerical tower looking for a meal with fish, head to this restaurant. They serve delicious Salmon steak with boiled potatoes and salad at a price of 7 euros.

To get recommendations other than the ones mentioned, check out this link and this link.

Apart from that some sea-food recommendations from Porto Walker’s tour guide!

  1. Sai Cao: family-owned restaurant
  2. S. Antonia

If you would like to experience Porto at its best do check out the blog post- Porto: It’s more than just Port Wine (Part I).

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One Reply to “Porto: It is more than just a Port wine (Part II)”

  1. […] experience the culinary life in Porto check out Part II of this […]

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