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Central hotel in Porto please!

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Catford
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Central hotel in Porto please!

Hello

I'm going to Porto at the satrt of May and have found a good deal to the Le Meridian Hotel in the 'Trade Centre' in Porto.

Please could someone let me know if this is a central location?

Thanks

Porto, Portugal
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587 posts
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1. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

Not exactly. It’s located in the Boavista area, which is mostly residential, about 4km from the city centre. The hotel itself is located approximately 1km from the nearest metro station “Casa da Musica”, which is about 4 stops from the centre.

Apart fom apartment buildings, the only amenities close to the hotel are two other 5-star hotels (Sheraton and Porto Palacio), a few shops and some fairly dull neighbourhood cafes. The avenue itself (Avenida de Boavista) is a very long thoroughfare, that gets progressively more upmarket the further you go from the city centre, and ends up right at the beaches. The hotel is located roughly where the shabby part of the avenue ends and the posh part begins.

Catford
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2. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

Thank you very much!

Could you reccomend a decent hotel that is central?

Porto, Portugal
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3. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

Depends what you mean by decent (bearing in mind that the Meridien is a 5-star). In terms of central location, I would point you to the hotels mentioned by Sergio, the local expert, in his reply on the thread entitled “Hotel on Porto close to bars and restaurants”; of which the best hotel is almost certainly the Pestana.

Two other hotels that are quite well located are the Quality Inn (Praça Batalha) and the Mercure (Praça Batalha); I haven’t stayed in either but they appear to have decent reviews on this site.

Catford
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4. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

Thank You. Would recommend Porto for a city break?

Porto, Portugal
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587 posts
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5. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

Absolutely. It is an extremely atmospheric city, with a dramatic setting. The old centre is not especially big but it’s very hilly, so bring good walking shoes.

For a short visit, I would recommend:

Sightseeing:

1.The Dom Luis bridge is unmissable. It now has the metro running on the upper level, but you can still walk across and it’s worth the trip.

2.In the centre, the Torre de Clerigos is the tallest building, you can climb to the top, for some good views, but it is currently being renovated and may not be open to the public.

3.Palacio do Cristal is a pleasant public park and exhibition centre, which has good views over the river in one section.

4.If you like walking, but are tired of the Porto hills, then the walk along the river from Dom Luis bridge to the Arrabida bridge (2km) and on to Foz (5km) is very nice.

5.Fundação Serralves, which is an award-winning modern art museum on Avenida Boavista (you probably need to take a cab – also check what exhibitions are on before you go, as it may or may not be of interest)

6. Of course a visit to the wine cellars in Gaia is mandatory!

Shopping:

Rua Santa Catarina, Rua Formosa and Rua 31 de Janeiro are the main shopping streets. (Metro Bolhão). Even if you are not a big shopper, this area is full of life when the shops are open. Shops tend to close on Saturday afternoons, except for the shopping centres. Via Catarina shopping centre is on Rua Santa Catarina. Dolce Vita is an very flashy new shopping centre beside the FC Porto stadium (metro Estadio do Dragão.)

Restaurants and Bars

The Ribeira (waterfront area) has plenty of choices on both sides of the river, with everything from traditional joints on the Porto side to Indian restaurants on the Gaia side.

Beaches:

Twenty minutes by train from São Bento station are the blue-flag beaches of Vila Nova de Gaia. Plenty to choose from, try Miramar for example (the beach is approx 1km from the train station)

Negatives:

Every city has it’s downside. In Porto the city centre was neglected for many years and has quite a few shabby areas and derelict buildings. For some people, this adds to the atmosphere, others find it off-putting. The only other negative factor I find is that there is still quite a deal of poverty, the local economy is not in great shape. Having said that, it is a safe city and the people are very welcoming to outsiders. Plenty of other stuff to do also, I'm sure Sergio could add to my list. Enjoy your trip!

Lisbon, Portugal
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6. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

Hi,

HCMh said it all!

I totally agree with his/her recommendations.

Just come over and enjoy the beautiful city of Porto, UNESCO world heritage!

just one further suggestion. If possible, try to hire a car and drive alongside Douro River until Régua. Well worth it. Beautiful landscapes full of vineyards.

Sérgio

7. Re: Central hotel in Porto please!

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