Discovering Porto by bicycle

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Discover Porto in an eco-friendly way: take a bike ride and make your visit to the city extra special!

Whether you’re a local or are just passing through the city of Porto, for the first or for the twentieth time, it’s always a pleasure to walk around and (re)discover the best places in town. If you think you’ve already visited everything or are looking for another way to explore the city, this is our healthy and environmentally friendly suggestion – opt for a bike ride and discover Porto from another perspective!

Forget the car, bus or motorcycle and hop on two wheels for a true bicycle adventure! Besides being an eco-friendly choice, this activity works wonders for your health and is an experience that will let you escape the confusion of the city and fully soak up nature and its surroundings.

Wake up early, have a hearty breakfast – HF Hotels have great choices! –, energise yourself, rent one of our bikes and, as soon as you’re ready, start cycling!

If you’re out of ideas and are staying at HF Ipanema Park or at the HF hotels in Boavista, this is our tour suggestion, so you can spend an entire day biking all over the city:

Starting at HF Ipanema Park:

Estimated duration of the tour: 9h

Leave the HF Ipanema Park, head towards Rua do Campo Alegre and discover the Botanical Garden! If you’re a botany lover, be prepared to be dazzled by the diversity of plants you’ll find here. Even if you’re not much of a plant fan, you’re really going to enjoy this!

  • Porto Botanical Garden

Distance from the previous location: 650 m

Go from botany to ornithology, which means: bird watching! When leaving the Botanical Garden, head west and go down to Largo António Calém. There you’ll find an observatory with the Arrábida Bridge and the Douro river as a backdrop. You’ll also find the starting point of a waterfront bicycle path that connects the Ribeira and Foz do Douro.

  • Lordelo do Ouro Bird Observatory

Distance from the previous location: 1.4 km

Continue on the bicycle path – which will ensure a much safer tour – and along the way you’ll find Passeio Alegre, a beautiful garden designed at the end of the 19th century, with centuries-old trees and benches inviting you to take a rest in the shade!

  • Passeio Alegre

Distance from the previous location: 1.5 km

If you follow the bicycle path to the northwest, you will come upon Porto’s beautiful beaches.

Cycling with a view of the ocean will definitely make you want to stop and take a dip! Choose the beach you like best – it won’t be an easy choice  – and enjoy a swim or simply breathe in the sea breeze and feel the sand on your feet.

  • Beaches

Distance from the previous location: 1 km

If you’re getting hungry, along the bicycle path, on the Foz line, you’ll find many of Porto’s best restaurants. Stop to enjoy lunch and recharge your batteries before you continue the afternoon part of the tour!

 

  • Foz

Distance from the previous location: 500 m

 

 

Head north along the bicycle path that travels alongside the beach front and you’ll find the São Francisco Xavier Fort or, as it is popularly known, Castelo do Queijo. Legend has it that this fort, edified in the 17th century, was built on a rock whose shape was similar to that of a cheese.

  • “Castelo do Queijo” (Cheese Castle)

Distance from the previous location: 2 km

Very close to Castelo do Queijo, you’ll find one of the entrances to the largest urban park in the country, Parque da Cidade and a new bicycle path.

With an area of 83 hectares, stretching all the way to the Atlantic Ocean – a rarity in the world – in this city park you’ll come across various lakes and animals, such as frogs, ducks or swans.

The entire tour will be even easier to navigate, with well defined paths and a unique natural diversity.

  • Porto City Park

Distance from the previous location: 500 m

After exploring the city park, head to the south exit and get back on the road, heading towards Avenida da Boavista. Be extra careful with traffic and signage.

Go east until Rua D. João de Castro, where you’ll find the Serralves Foundation. There you can finish your tour by visiting the Museum of Contemporary Art, as well as one of the most beautiful gardens in the city of Porto.

  • Serralves Foundation

Distance from the previous location: 2 km

Starting at HF Fénix Porto, HF Tuela Porto or HF Ipanema Porto:

Estimated duration of the tour: 11h

If you are in Porto, you can’t miss the emblematic Avenida da Boavista! When leaving HF Fénix Porto, HF Tuela Porto or HF Ipanema Porto, go north and head towards the city’s most emblematic artery. Enjoy some window shopping, don’t get lost among the shops, but be dazzled by the luxury brands you’ll find there!

  • Avenida da Boavista

Distance from the previous location: 2 km

Once you reach the Boavista roundabout, you will also reach the end of Avenida da Boavista. There you’ll find Casa da Música on your left. Much more than a concert hall, it is also an icon of contemporary architecture.

Guided tours to the building, which has bars and a rooftop restaurant, occur daily.

  • Casa da Música

Distance from the previous location: 2 km

After your visit to Casa da Música, access the Boavista roundabout and get off at the 4th exit, where you’ll find the Bom Sucesso Market. Completely renovated in 2013, this is a place where you can delight in an array of irresistible scents that linger in the air and choose your favourite spot for lunch.

  • Bom Sucesso Market

Distance from the previous location: 500 m

After a leisurely lunch, head southeast and descend to Rua D. Manuel II, where Palácio de Cristal is located, accompanied by an incredible 8-hectare garden. With amazing lookouts and panoramic views of the Douro river, you may even be welcomed by some species such as peacocks and other birds that wander around, keeping you company during your visit.

  • Palácio de Cristal Gardens

Distance from the previous location: 1 km

Continue in the same direction until you find the Santo António hospital. Go around the hospital building and turn right on Rua de Azevedo Albuquerque.

Right at the back of the Palácio da Justiça (Palace of Justice) is the Virtudes Garden, where you’ll come across one of the best views of the Douro river and the Alfândega do Porto (former customs house). Here you’ll also find largest Ginkgo Balboa in Portugal, which is about 35 metres tall.

  • Virtudes Garden

Distance from the previous location: 1 km

Turn back and head to Rua Dr. António de Sousa Macedo, where you should turn right. Go straight ahead until you inevitably see the Clérigos Tower, one of the city’s most characteristic monuments.

Attached to the Clérigos church and over 75 meters high, it’s possible to take a guided tour and – for those who are courageous enough – to climb to the top of the tower.

  • Clérigos Tower

Distance from the previous location: 500 m

Walk down to Praça da Liberdade and you’ll see Avenida dos Aliados on your left! This is one of the city’s most emblematic avenues. Right in the centre of Oporto, this avenue is surrounded by old buildings of incredible beauty and architecture.

Tip: Even if you’re not a fan of fast food, take a look at the McDonald’s building, one of the most beautiful in the world. You will be surprised!

  • Avenida dos Aliados

Distance from the previous location: 500 m

Cycle a bit more and head down to the legendary São Bento train station.  Go straight ahead until you see the entrance to the D. Luís I bridge.

Continue a few more metres along the bridge and end your day surrounded by pure beauty: turn off everything (except your phone’s camera) and simply enjoy the scenery and the sunset over the Douro. It will definitely be a memorable moment!

  • Luís I Bridge

Distance from the previous location: 700 m

Anxious to grab a bike and go for a ride? Take advantage of our tours to start cycling right in the morning and only stop at the end of the day!

Rest assured that all this effort will be rewarded when you reach the places and see the landscapes that we suggest! In case you get hooked and are looking for more suggestions, check out the Granja or the Prelada bicycle paths.

And don’t forget, even if you don’t have a bike and are staying at HF Hotels in Porto, all our city hotels have bicycles for rent (subject to availability), so there is no excuse for not exploring Porto on a bicycle!

Learn more at www.hfhotels.com

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