Porto with kids

Porto with kids: 12 family activities!

You can do just fine on a weekend to Porto with kids. Porto is a beautiful city and there are certainly some things to do for kids. Especially if you’re on a tour of Portugal, it’s nice to visit the city at least for a day. From the Netherlands there are direct flights from Amsterdam and Eindhoven to this city known for its liquor port, and in this blog we list the best activities in Porto with kids.

Porto with kids #1: visiting the inner city

Porto is a beautiful old city and it is highly recommended to at least take a tour of the old town. One of the city’s most famous landmarks is the Ponte de Dom Luis. This bridge was built by an apprentice of the creator of the Eiffel Tower, and you can see that in the bridge’s design. It is a double bridge, where pedestrians walk on a different part of the bridge than the cars drive. So you can walk up the bridge a bit, and from the bridge you have a beautiful view of the old city and the Douro River.

You can also take the little cable car Funicular dos Guindais from the bridge, which takes you 70 meters up the mountain for a few euros and where you also get a nice view and also save you some climbing. You can also climb the Clerigos Tower in the city center. From downtown, you can walk here in a few minutes. You have to climb 240 steps in the tower with your kids and from the tower you have a beautiful view of the city.

The city’s central square is Praca de Liberdade, where the large equestrian statue characterizes the square. In addition, it is fun to take a look inside the downtown train station. Because everything is close together, you can see all these sights in an hour. Along the way, of course, it is fine to grab a sidewalk cafe or an ice cream.

Porto with kids
Porto with kids

Porto with kids: exploring the city

There are several ways you can explore the city of Porto with kids. There are several modes of transportation available in the city that are fun to do with kids.

#2 Tram: Just like in the city of Lisbon, you can take an old-fashioned streetcar to explore the city of Porto with kids. Anyway, it’s fun to take a ride on these historic streetcars. You can buy a ticket in the streetcar for a few euros and line 1 is a nice ride that starts in the old town and goes along the Douro River and back again.

#3 BajaBikes: this Dutch company offers bike tours in downtown Porto accompanied by a Dutch guide. In a three-hour bike tour, you’ll cycle past the city’s various attractions, stopping frequently along the way for some explanation or a photo opportunity. We did this bike tour in Paris with our six-year-old daughter and find it a really fun activity for families with kids to get a first impression of the city. They have children’s bikes for kids and child seats for the back of parents.

#4 Yellow bus tours: with this company you have several options to explore the city of Porto with kids. For example, this company runs the famous Hop-on Hop-off buses, which allow you to see much of the city very quickly. You can buy a pass for these buses of 24 and 48 hours and you can then use these buses unlimitedly. The buses run a certain route through the city and stop at various points of interest in the city.

This company also offers cruises, where the principle is the same as the bus. The boat stops at several places in the city and you can use the boat for 48 hours without restriction. We always enjoy seeing a city from a boat anyway. Especially when the weather is nice and the sun is shining, it always makes you feel relaxed. For different options, just click on the blue link above to check out their website.

#5 Helitours: you have another spectacular way to see Porto with kids. In fact, you can take a helicopter flight to see the city from above. Obviously this is not a cheap option, but it is a very cool experience to see the city that way.

Porto with kids #6: Porto zoo

You can also go to the zoo in Porto with kids. Santa Ignacio Zoo is located in the south of the city of Porto and by car you can get there in about 15 minutes from the city center (there are also several options by public transport). There is also a shuttle bus that drops visitors from the city center at the zoo’s doorstep for a few euros. In this zoo you can admire many of the great African animals such as the giraffe, hippo, lion, zebra, rhinoceros and different types of monkeys.

The zoo is spacious and the animals are generally in spacious enclosures. One of the highlights of the zoo is the lion tunnel, where you can get very close to the lions. You walk under the lions that are here on a glass plate. Keep in mind that the information is mainly in Portuguese, but for most kids this will not be a problem as long as they can get a good look at the animals.

The zoo has a restaurant, a snack bar, as well as an area where you can picnic. So it is possible to get some food and drink from a supermarket and eat it at the zoo. There is also a small playground here. Keep in mind that you will spend about half a day with this activity. For more information on opening hours, admission prices and different animals, take a look at the zoo’s website.

Porto with kids
Porto with kids

Porto with kids #7: FC Porto stadium tour

One of the biggest clubs in the world plays in the city of Porto and, of course, you and your kids (if you are soccer crazy) can book a stadium tour. Estadio do Dragao is the stadium of the soccer club FC. Porto and is right in the center. By public transportation, you can be at hets stadium within twenty minutes.

Daily you can travel to the stadium and book a tour of the stadium and museum here. You do this tour yourself and not with a guide. Please note that the tours are not possible when the club itself has to play. However, then of course it is very cool to see if you can get tickets to a game. Of course, it is still best to watch the stadium when a game is being played and the stadium is full of spectators.

At the museum you can see the awards the club has achieved (such as the Champions League cup) and you will get much more information about the club’s history here. As you tour the stadium, you’ll get to the field, locker rooms and press area. For more information on opening hours, entrance fees and competitions, check out the club’s website.

Porto with kids: other activities

In addition to the seven activities in Porto with kids described above, there are a number of other activities you can do in this city. We briefly name them below.

#8 museum world of discovery: this historic museum is located right in the center and can be an option if you still like to go to a museum with your family. The museum tells about the Portuguese’s voyages of discovery, and there are also staff members walking around the museum dressed as pirates, trying to create the experience in the kids. The museum is fairly interactive for young kids. In addition, you can take a boat ride, taking a kind of Fata Morgana (attraction Efteling) tour of different places around the world.

#9 Sealife Porto: You can also go to a branch of Sealife in Porto. If you’ve been to any of the branches worldwide, then you know what to expect. There are several aquariums where you can see sharks, rays and many colored fish. There are also penguins, turtles and seahorses. One of the highlights of Sealife is always the tunnel through which you can walk and see the entire underwater world above your head. By public transportation, you can get there from downtown in half an hour.

#10 Porto street art: also in the city of Porto you can enjoy street art in the different streets of the city. Tours are offered by locals, who will take you past the city’s various works of art in two hours. It is also possible to make your own tour of the city. This blog, for example, already shows various works of art and herewith also the streets where you can see the works of art. This allows you to create your own route through the city with your kids.

#11 Pavilhao da Aqua: This is a small science museum located in Portugal’s largest city park (Parque da Cidade do Porto). Kids can do experiments here mainly with water.

#12 Porto bridge climb: if you visit Porto with kids who are older, this activity can be fun. This activity is only for kids 12 and older and you will climb the 262 steps of the bridge above the water. Everyone is secured in the process. To get an idea of this activity, take a look at the provider’s website (blue link).

Porto with kids

Package tour Porto

You can obviously arrange a trip to Porto with kids just fine on your own, but sometimes it can also be easy to book a package tour. Here you book the flight including hotel right away. You can then often choose which airport you want to fly from in the Netherlands, Germany or Belgium. For more information on a package tour to Porto, take a look here.

Porto with kids

Porto with kids: Porto map

As in many major cities, the city of Porto has a map you can purchase. You have several options with the Porto card. So you can take a Porto card including “free” access to public transportation and excluding access to public transportation. The Porto card gives you free admission to various attractions in the city. You can purchase the Porto card at the airport and the two tourist offices in the city. Look carefully in advance at what all you want to visit in Porto with kids and then calculate if the card will benefit your family. It can if you want to do many things in the city be an advantage.

Porto with kids: Renting a car

If you are going to do the activities described above on Porto with kids, a car will come in handy. Basically, there is public transportation in the city, but we still really like having our own car. We actually find the cars from Sunny Cars are always top notch!

You actually have all costs included in the price here and are insured for most things (including your deductible). We have had problems with this in the past, because all kinds of costs are added at the destination. With Sunny Cars, you know that’s not the case and that’s a nice feeling. You can additionally cancel the car 1 hour before your reservation free of charge. You can also rent a car on Porto with kids from Sunny Cars.

Check out the different rental cars here.

Where to stay in Porto with kids?

You can stay in Porto with kids just fine. There are plenty of accommodations suitable for families with kids. We list the best options for each price range.

Budget hotel: The Rex Hotel

Mid-range hotel: Hotel Porto Interface Trindade By Kavia

Luxury hotel: Porto Old Town – Tourism Apartments

For a list of all accommodations in Porto, take a look here.

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