The charm of Porto lies in the views of the city itself — perched perfectly on the hillside with buildings of different heights and colours …and the occasional church towering above the rest. The view of the city is the reason why I was dying to visit Porto, and historic view didn’t disappoint.
Finding the best view of this gem of a city, almost became an unspoken mission during our time in Porto.
Then as I was flipping through my guidebook, I found Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar… a 17th century monastery turned military fortress with sweeping views of this gorgeous city.
There are tours of the grounds on the hour, which I would highly recommend as it gave us the most incredible view of the city – close to being on a helicopter — for only €3. (What!?! This has to be one of the best deals in the entire city!)
Our tour group was small, only 6 of us in total, which made it wonderful to hear the tour guide explain the building’s history and symbols. Then he took us into the chapel, only accessible via tour, which had lovely carvings and alters and details (so many details!).
After about 20 minutes in the chapel, we headed up to the top of the dome. Although it was only 140 steps, it was rather close quarters and there was moments I felt a bit claustrophobic …but then there was a light at the end of the tunnel and I was greeted with the most incredible views of Porto.
It was worth the hike, and easily worth the €3 to see this stunning view of the city of Porto.
If you are planning a visit to Porto then be sure to add Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar to your list of places to visit, and make sure to do the tour — the climb is well worth it for these views! [Insert heart eye emoji!]
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