75% of my relatives went on vacation to Portugal this summer.
It was about time for us to discover other places than the overcrowded Lisbon or Porto.
Guimaraes! How about that?! I mean it’s almost impossible to say the name if you’re not a Portuguese speaker. You might have never heard this name before but Guimaraes is a big deal in Portugal since it’s said to be the place where the country was born in 1128. Sounds like a big deal now hun?!
1- Getting there
No airport around: Porto would be the closest. Guimaraes is close to Braga so I guess the best way would be to rent a car… But if you don’t want to consider this option, there are many bus lines throuh the country at a very cheap price. Check your trip here with Renex.
We stopped at Hotel da Oliveira booked through booking.com. You can’t beat the location right in the old city center! The hotel looks new and was decorated with a modern style. Very “raffiné”! The rooms are large and comfy! The staff is adorable the breakfast was ok.
We were surprised of the great value.
=> You should totally stop there during your trip. I actually think I could go to Guimaraes just to stay at this hotel…
Get lunch in the main place “Oliveira“. There are several options. You have to try a Portuguese specialty: “prego no pao“. It’s a steak inside bread => simple but so good! You’ll be surprised to get excellent products at a very decent price!
Manifestis Probatum had a great ranking on tripadvisor and since we are tapas lovers, we wanted to try it.
The furniture is very design and the place looks different from a normal Portuguese restaurant. There are many options in the menu and we tasted several options. All of them were perfectly cooked and tasty. In addition to that, the staff was knowledgeable about the wines and recommended great products. We did enjoy the experience and recommend 200%!
Go first to Paço dos Duques. It’s a very beautiful place filled with history. We rented the audio guide and it took us one hour to go around. There was useful information about the History of the country but I regret they did not talk much about Salazar living there. It’s curious how hard it is to learn about the dictature, it only ended 40 years ago.
Just right by the Paço dos Duques, you’ll find the castle. Not much to see but there is a man inside showing wild birds. If you feel like taking a picture 😉
Serra da Penha is impossible to miss! You can get there with a cable railway. People say there are many hidden caves. We tried to look for one but unfortunately it had been replaced with a café 😦
Take your time to walk around the park and get inside the sanctuary.
It’s really worth staying overnight in Guimaraes. It is so nice to walk in the city by night time! There are many lights around the windows, it looks so romantic! ❤ ❤ ❤
I hope you’ll consider Guimaraes when travelling to Portugal!
It’s not so touristic yet and there are plenty of beautiful places to see.