Looking for some summer vibes? Look no further – Matosinhos is the answer. Chase the waves, breathe in the sea breeze or eat the best fish in town. Get to know the best places to enjoy this cool neighbourhood while you get your tan on.
Top 10 things to do in Matosinhos
The ice creams at Modì – Gelateria Italiana are made daily by hand and are the best way to end a great day at the beach. The flavours vary but if they have the pistachio or watermelon in stock, there’s no need to consider any of the others.
Wednesday is the day to venture up the 46-metre lighthouse at Leça, also known as Farol da Boa Nova. It’s free and offers the best view of the area.
Grab a wetsuit and your board and make waves off Praia de Matosinhos. If you didn’t bring any supplies don’t worry, you can rent equipment as well as take lessons at the likes of SurfAventura, Onda Pura and Surf’in Monkeys – all of which are in the vicinity of this beach.
Still a working market, but also now a place for great prepared food – from sushi to veggie dishes, cakes and speciality coffees – and a design incubator.
Antonio Mezzero, a master pizzaiolo from Naples and ambassador of Neapolitan pizza in Portugal, is the mentor at Pulcinella, a restaurant where regulars wait patiently to be seated. That’s because the pizzas are made in a wood-fired oven in real Neapolitan style, with thin crusts, thick edges and fresh ingredients, some of which are imported straight from Italy.
Raising the profile of architecture in a city that is home to Álvaro Siza Vieira, the first Portuguese to win the Pritzker Prize, is the mission of the House of Architecture. Whether you’re a specialist in the field or not, it’s worth visiting this building, which once belonged to Siza’s family.
Named Building of the Year 2017 in the Public Architecture category by the highly respected ArchDaily online magazine, the Leixões Porto Cruise Terminal is a great building to photograph, thanks to its spiral shape and shiny white exterior (using tiles made by Portuguese company Vista Alegre). The terminal is also home to the Sea Center of the University of Porto’s Science and Technology Park, an important maritime research unit.
Designed by Álvaro Siza Vieira, the Pool of the Tides is made up of a collection of saltwater pools – one just for children – that became a listed national monument in 2006. During the summer it’s a real hit.
It is at this fresh produce market where many of Porto’s top chefs stock up on fresh fish and shellfish. Even if you don’t take anything home, it’s a great place to take photos, explore the Lavra neighbourhood, and work up an appetite for lunch.
It’s a restaurant called Terminal 4450, it’s in Leça and the concept revolves around, well, an airport terminal. There are suitcases at the end of a long corridor, check-in boards and a menu like a passport. Meat is the speciality here, so dig in.