Top things to do

Top Choice Palace in Vila Real

Casa de Mateus

Famously depicted on bottles of Mateus rosé, the 18th-century Casa de Mateus is one of Portugal’s great baroque masterpieces – probably the work of Italian-born architect Nicolau Nasoni. Guided tours of the mansion …
Top Choice Portuguese in Bragança

Don Roberto

It's worth catching a cab out to this traditional roadside tavern 7km from town, in the village of Gimonde en route to Montesinho. The ambience is down-home rural – think wooden beams and smoked hams hanging off the…
Wine Bar in Chaves

Adega Faustino

Resembling a fire station from the outside, this cavernous ex-winery oozes atmosphere inside, with cobblestoned floors and gigantic wine casks lined up behind the bar. The menu features a long list of carefully prep…
Fortress in Bragança

Cidadela

Climb uphill from Largo de São Vicente and you’ll soon set foot inside the astonishingly well-preserved 12th-century citadel. People still live in its narrow, atmospheric lanes, unspoilt by the few, low-key handicra…
Village in Parque Natural de Montesinho

Rio de Onor

This lovely little town of 70 souls situated in the eastern half of the park is entirely unfazed by the Spanish–Portuguese border splicing it down the middle. It’s interesting not just for its rustic stone buildings…
Village in Parque Natural de Montesinho

Dine

Dine and Moimenta, two of the prettiest villages in the western half of the park, are connected by a high-altitude road with panoramic views of the windmill-speckled hills along the Spanish border. In well-preserved…
Museum in Bragança

Museu do Abade de Baçal

Set in a restored 18th-century bishop’s palace, this is one of Portugal’s best regional museums. Its diverse collections include local artefacts from the Celtic and Roman eras, along with objects, paintings and phot…
Village in Parque Natural do Alvão

Ermelo

The 800-year-old village of Ermelo is famous for its schist cottages capped with fairy-tale slate roofs that seem to have been constructed from broken blackboards. Once the main village of the region, it boasts trad…
Museum in Miranda do Douro

Museu da Terra de Miranda

This modest but attractive museum sheds light on a unique culture that has preserved age-old traditions into the 21st century. The handsome 17th-century building (formerly Miranda’s city hall) houses a fascinating c…
Village in Parque Natural de Montesinho

Montesinho

Hidden at the end of the road in a narrow valley wedged between forbidding granite heights, this tiny village is one of the park’s best-preserved, thanks to a program to restore old dwellings and stop construction o…