As summer is reaching its last days, we start thinking about cities for a winter break in Europe. The best winter city breaks you can find will depend highly on what you are looking for, of course. Maybe you want snow, or maybe you want some sun. Maybe you are looking for a cheap winter break – to save up for Christmas gifts and the occasional shopping spree – or you decided to go somewhere you’ve never been before. Either way, here’s why we believe Porto is, in fact, the best European city for a winter break!
1. Porto is the city to visit right now. Of course, we are biased and that’s why we keep publishing articles on our Facebook page of others saying the same. Porto is no longer Lisbon’s ugly sister but instead became the most authentic one. That’s right, we’ve said it: Porto is the most authentic city to visit!
2. Not as cold as most locations in Europe, Porto sports a warm temperate, Mediterranean climate, with daytime temperatures in winter ranging from 50-60F/10-16ºC and nighttime from 40-50F/5-10ºC. We hear that’s just like summer in a lot of countries!
3. Porto’s food can be easily considered comfort food. I mean, can you imagine eating a warm francesinha in winter? Oh, the joy it would bring your stomach! Or a bowl of Caldo Verde and a bifana? Or instead Porto-style tripe and white bean stew. Or… well the list goes on!
4. Bacalhau! Whether it’s 365+ ways to cook it or 1001 recipes to try, what matters is that there’s always a different dish of bacalhau to be had while in Portugal. Although it is eaten throughout the year, truth is, bacalhau is a staple of Christmas Eve dinner. We particularly like it “à Gomes de Sá“.
5. If you have been here already, you know Portugal is a country where you’ll easily find people speaking English. If you haven’t, believe us when we say that it is. Everyone, from the young to the elder, speaks at least some English and will be happy to talk to you. Come to think of it some elders might not, but there will always be someone else nearby!
6. In recent times Porto has become a mecca for cultural events: arts, music, food festivals, workshops, and countless outdoors events. There is always something for everyone.
7. Did you know you can have surf lessons, in Porto, during winter? It doesn’t matter if you never tried it, or if you have only done it once, or even if you are a hardcore surfer: surf schools are open all year!
8. Wine. Whether for the most known Port and the related Port Cellars, or for all the other types of wonderful wine you can find here, imagine just how much you can try and learn about wine while all cozy inside.
9. If you decide to travel during December, you can already experience the Christmas feeling: the Christmas decorations go up at the end of November and there will be small markets, a large Christmas tree, usually 2 ice skating rinks, different workshops, and much more. Also, season Events like Disney in Concert and the Russian Classical Ballet with Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker are common in one of the main halls of the city – the Coliseu. We’ll let you know more as soon as the agenda arrives!
10. Another interesting thing that happens in December is Comic Con Portugal 2016. This year with a Harry Potter panel, that so far will include Lucius Malfoy and Argus Filch.
Tickets bought yet?
Porto has many things to offer, and as a result, it has increasingly become a chosen location for tourism. These are just a few of the things we believe make it a top location for winter.
If you decide to come don’t forget to let us know!