Must-see entertainment in Portugal

  • Fado Com História


    If you haven't experienced fado, this comprehensive introduction is even more worthwhile. Space is limited, so buy your ticket a couple of hours ahead…

  • Fado ao Centro


    At the bottom of the old town, this friendly cultural centre is a good place to acquaint yourself with fado. The evening 6pm show includes plenty of…

  • PORTO, PORTUGAL - 2022/12/14: Icelandic multi-instrumentalist and music producer Ólafur Arnalds returned to Casa da Música in Porto to present Some Kind of Peace album. (Photo by Telmo Pinto/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
PORTO, PORTUGAL - 2022/12/14: Icelandic multi-instrumentalist and music producer Ólafur Arnalds returned to Casa da Música in Porto to present Some Kind of Peace album. (Photo by Telmo Pinto/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
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    Casa da Música


    Grand and minimalist, sophisticated yet populist, Porto's cultural behemoth boasts a shoebox-style concert hall at its heart, meticulously engineered to…

  • Hot Clube de Portugal

    Príncipe Real, Santos & Estrela

    As hot as its name suggests, this small, poster-plastered cellar (and newly added garden) has staged top-drawer jazz acts since the 1940s. It's considered…

  • A Baiuca

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    On a good night, walking into A Baiuca is like gatecrashing a family party. It’s a special place with fado vadio, where locals take a turn and spectators…

  • Estádio da Luz


    SL Benfica play at this 65,000-seat stadium in the northwestern Benfica district, which also houses the club's well-done museum (https://museubenfica…

  • Alface Hall

    Bairro Alto, Chiado & Cais do Sodré

    With one wall covered in LPs and another with old cinema chairs, there's an old-time feel to this jazz and blues bar in Bairro Alto. Free concerts happen…

  • Cinemateca Portuguesa

    Marquês de Pombal & Around

    Cinemateca Portuguesa screens offbeat, art-house, world and old movies.

  • A Tasca do Chico

    Bairro Alto, Chiado & Cais do Sodré

    This crowded dive (reserve ahead), full of soccer banners and spilling over with people of all ilks, is a fado free-for-all. It's not uncommon for taxi…

  • Maus Hábitos

    Aliados & Bolhão

    Maus Hábitos or 'Bad Habits' is an arty, nicely chilled haunt hosting a culturally ambitious agenda. Changing exhibitions and imaginative installations…

  • Tasca Bela

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    This intimate spot features live fado on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and eclectic cultural fare (jazz, poetry readings) on other nights…

  • Parreirinha de Alfama

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    Owned by fado legend Argentina Santos, this place offers good food amid candlelit ambience; it attracts an audience that often falls hard for the top…

  • Mesa de Frades

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    A magical place to hear fado, tiny Mesa de Frades used to be a chapel. It’s tiled with exquisite azulejos and has just a handful of tables, including a…

  • Fatias de Cá


    This Tomar-based theatre company presents highly innovative and entertaining monthly performances (more in summer) of works such as The Name of the Rose…

  • Teatro Nacional São João

    Aliados & Bolhão

    The lavish, romantic Teatro Nacional São João was built in the style of Paris' Palais Garnier. One of Porto’s premier performing-arts organisations, it…

  • Teatro Municipal Rivoli

    Aliados & Bolhão

    This art deco theatre is one of the linchpins of Porto's evolving cultural scene. It traverses the whole spectrum from theatre to music, contemporary…

  • Stevie Ray’s


    This intimate, two-level, candlelit joint is the best live-music bar in town, with blues, jazz and occasional rock acts. Admission is free, but a €5…

  • Senhor Fado

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    Small and lantern-lit, this is a cosy spot for fado vadio (street fado). Fadista Ana Marina and guitarist Duarte Santos make a great double act.

  • Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian

    Marquês de Pombal & Around

    Home to the Gulbenkian Orchestra, this classical-music heavyweight stages first-rate concerts and ballets.

  • Cinema Ideal in Lisbon

    Cinema Ideal

    Bairro Alto, Chiado & Cais do Sodré

    Opened in 1904, this small neighbourhood cinema was last refurbished in the 1950s and keeps much of the same atmosphere of a classical movie theatre. The…

  • Fado singer reaches an emotional pitch at Clube de Fado, Alfama, one of Lisbon's most famous fado clubs.

    Clube de Fado

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    Clube de Fado hosts the cream of the fado crop in vaulted, dimly lit surrounds. Big-name fadistas performing here include Cuca Roseta and Maria Ana Bobone…

  • Casino da Madeira


    This concrete brutalist-style casino was designed by Oscar Niemeyer, the architect behind Brazil's planned capital Brasilia, and is a great night out even…

  • Arsenio's


    The aroma of a loaded charcoal grill wafts along Rua de Santa Maria from Arsenio's, luring evening strollers into the old, atmospheric dining room, all…

  • Teatro Lethes


    Faro's tiny and exquisite Italianate theatre hosts drama, music and dance performances. Adapted into a theatre in 1874 (from a building dating back to…

  • Convívio Associação


    Started 52 years ago, this creative cultural association – also a jazz school – is still going strong. Its programme includes classical music concerts,…

  • Teatro Nacional de São Carlos

    Bairro Alto, Chiado & Cais do Sodré

    Teatro Nacional de São Carlos is worth visiting just to see the sublime gold-and-red interior (email ahead for €5 guided tours), and it has opera, ballet…

  • Tasca do Jaime

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    This low-key restaurant in Graça hosts authentic fado on weekends from about 4pm to 8pm. Decorated with azulejos and photos of prominent fadistas, it’s a…

  • Á Capella


    A 14th-century chapel turned intimate cocktail lounge, this place hosts nightly performances by the city's most renowned fado musicians. Shows cater…

  • Senhor Vinho


    Fado star Maria da Fé owns this small place, welcoming first-rate fadistas (fado singers). Go for the fado (from 7pm) not the food, and feel free to…

  • Casino Figueira

    The Beiras

    Shimmering in neon and acrylic, Figueira’s landmark casino is the epicentre of the resort's nightlife. Crawling with cash-laden holidaymakers, it has…

  • Taverna dos Trovadores


    This atmospheric restaurant and bar features live music (folk and acoustic) on Friday and Saturday nights – an institution that’s been around for more…

  • Sabor e Fado


    Though not as illustrious as other Funchal fado-and-dinner venues, Sabor e Fado is an intimate affair. The menu is meat-heavy; the live music starts at…

  • Hot Five Jazz & Blues Club


    True to its name, this spot hosts live jazz and blues as well as the occasional acoustic, folk or all-out jam session. It’s a modern but intimate space,…

  • Damas

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    Part restaurant, bar and alternative concert hall, Damas has given the cool kids a reason to climb the hill to Graça since its opening in 2015. From DJs…

  • Centro Cultural Vila Flor


    CCVF kick-started the city’s cultural revival when it opened in 2005 in a striking modern building added on to a converted 18th-century palace. Events at…

  • Teatro Taborda

    Alfama, Castelo & Graça

    This cultural centre showcases contemporary dance, theatre and world music, and is the residence of experimental theatre company Teatro da Garagem. It…

  • O Fado


    Porto has no fado tradition of its own, but you can enjoy the Lisbon or Coimbra version of ‘Portugal blues’ into the wee hours at Restaurante O Fado. It's…

  • Centro de Artes e Espectáculos

    The Beiras

    Behind the Museu Municipal Dr Santos Rocha, CAE hosts big-name bands, theatre performances and art-house cinema. Check the website or pick up a schedule…

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