Braga Food Tour: How To Best Enjoy Your Day Trip From Porto

This article has links to products and services we recommend, which we may make a commission from.

While visiting Porto and its region, we took the opportunity to go on a Braga food tour to taste the local cuisine. 

Only a one hour train ride away from Porto, visiting Braga is one of the most fascinating day trips from Porto to take.

It is a surprising city in a number of ways. On one hand, it is Portugal’s most important religious center.  

And on the other hand, the city is lively and dynamic with a growing nanotechnology industry.

Braga’s important history and cultural diversity has given birth to a rich gastronomic tradition.

Learn what and where to eat in Braga, when you join us on a Braga food and walking tour. 

Authentic Food Quest Page_Break

Braga Food Tasting and Gastronomy

Christiane Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Cristiane our local Portuguese guide sampling food on the market

For this Braga food tour, Cristiane, native to this northern city was our local guide. This walking food tour was an immsersive experience starting at the entrance of the old town along the medieval wall. 

For over 3+ hours, we learned about the culinary tradition of Braga and the rich religious history. We also sampled a variety of Braga food specialties including Portuguese white and green wine.

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: Braga is best explored on a walking food tour. In a small group setting with a local guide, you can dive into the typical dishes and rich cultural history. This is one of the most important cities in northern Portugal and its mysteries are best unlocked with a local guide.

Touring The Bustling Braga Market On A Saturday Morning

Market Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Braga market on a Saturday morning

Oftentimes the best way to explore the local food is by starting at a farmers market. On the tour, we visited Mercado Municipal, the main local market in Braga.

The market was buzzing with vendors standing side by side tending to their mountains of fruits and vegetables. 

Your senses will be heightened by the vibrant colors, smells and noises at this lively market. It’s the perfect place to enjoy Braga’s food.

Lupin Beans Vendor Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Vendor selling lupin beans and olive oils

We picked up lupin beans, which we learned is a popular Portuguese local  snack. A superfood, these beans are rich in protein and high in fiber.

The Portuguese love fish and the market was chock-full of fresh fish and seafood sourced from the local waters. 

fish stand Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Colorful fish stand

You’ll see some of the most beautiful fish, shellfish and sardines. The quality and freshness is simply remarkable and will leave you wanting some.

We made our way through the back alleys of the Braga market to the bread, sweets and sausages sections.

Unlike the iconic Alentejo bread we discovered in Evora, Claire fell in love with Braga’s hearty, dense, delicious, cornbread. 

Known as Pão de milho or Broa de Milho, It is one of the oldest varieties of bread in Portugal.

Chouriço Vendor Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Vendor dedicated to the chourico sausages

Another popular and iconic Braga food is the chouriço sausage. These Portuguese sausages, similar to Spanish chorizo, are made with pork meat, garlic, paprika and sometimes red wine. 

RELATED: Evora Food Guide: 11 Alentejo Foods and The Best Restaurants To Eat Them

Eating at Farricoco – Traditional Petiscos at a Braga Restaurant

Farricoco Restaurante Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Quaint restaurant in the small alleys of Braga

For the next stop in our traditional Portuguese food tour, we went to Farricoco Restaurante to eat petiscos.

Petiscos are part of Portugal’s gastronomy and often compared to Spanish tapas. They are small bites, but generally, smaller versions of large dishes. 

The petiscos menu at the restaurant had five dishes, a local bread and sangria. Here are the highlights of our meal.

Pataniscas de Bacalhau or Codfish

Pataniscas Food In Portugal Braga Food Tour Authentic Food Quest
Pataniscas or codfish fritters

One of Portugal’s most treasured dishes, with over 365 ways to eating bacalhau. At this Braga restaurant, we had pataniscas de bacalhau, which are deep fried cod fritters. They were surprisingly light and quite flavorful.

Caldo Verde

Caldo verde soup Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Beautiful mix of flavors and textures in this Caldo Verde soup

Portugal’s famous soup made with a dark green cabbage, potato puree, slices of chouriço sausage and topped with Portuguese olive oil. This was one of our favorite appetizer in Portugal, a simple and flavorful soup.

Rojões

Rojões Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Rojões, traditional dish from Portugal made from pork shoulder

A local specialty, rojões is a traditional dish made from pork shoulder cut in cubes and seasoned. This pork meat dish was prepared with cumin spices and while tasty, it was a bit on the dry side. 

Dobradinha

Portuguese tripes Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Portuguese tripes famous historically and originally from Porto

This tripe dish made with cow intestines took a little getting used to. Flavored with spices and chewy textures, its definitely an acquired taste.

Moela de Frango

Moela chicken gizzards Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Flavorful Moela or chicken gizzards

The regional meat specialty was moela de frango or chicken gizzards. This dish was our favorite. Deliciously prepared in a spicy onion, garlic and tomato sauce, the meat pieces were very soft and flavorful.

RELATED: 7 of the Best Porto Food Tours You Want To Try – Review

Braga Drinks

Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Rosemary and Claire with Cristiane enjoying Portuguese Sangria

In Braga, you cannot miss Vinho Verde, one of the most famous  Portuguese wines from the Minho region.

Vinho Verde is a light, bubbly, crisp white wine that is naturally fresh and low in alcohol content. Consumed soon after bottling, Vinho Verde is considered a young wine and often referred to as a green wine.

This wine pairs well with seafood and starters like caldo verde and pataniscas de bacalhau.

Portuguese Sangria in Braga Food Tours for Day Trips From Porto by Authentic Food Quest
Refreshing Portuguese Sangria

At the restaurant, we also enjoyed Portuguese Sangria. Made with Portuguese white wine, punch, oranges, and apples, the white Sangria was fresh, fruity and sweet. 

This was an easy drink to accompany our heavy and flavorful petiscos experience.

RELATED: 5 Of The Best Wineries in Douro Valley Portugal You Should Visit

Finish on a Sweet Note at a Famous Pastry Shop in Braga

Lusitana for Braga Food Tour and Day Trips From Porto by Authentic Food Quest
Beautiful patio at Lustiana’s

To discover how Braga locals indulge and satisfy their sweet tooth, we went to Pastelaria Lusitana, a popular pastry shop. 

With sweets being so central to Portuguese cuisine, our Braga food tour had to end with some of Portugal’s tastiest desserts.

With a strong history of the Roman Catholic Church and religious influences, we were not surprised to find many conventual desserts in Braga. 

Tibias de Braga Portuguese Puff Pastry during Braga Food Tour for Day Trips From Porto
Creamy Tíbias de Braga Portuguese dessert

Conventual desserts are desserts that were traditionally made in convents. They are typically made with a large amount of egg yolks and sugar.

We tried two traditional desserts on our Braga food tour: Tíbias de Braga and Fidalguinhos. 

Tíbias de Braga are puff pastries filled with a soft, sweet, creamy paste and topped with powdered sugar. While we enjoyed this pastry, we found it a little too creamy for our taste. It’s perfect for sharing or eating in small amounts.

fidalguinhos Portuguese Biscuits from Braga during Food Tour for Day Trips From Porto by Authentic Food Quest
Delightful fidalguinhos desserts

Fidalguinhos are traditional biscuits with a unique shape that resembles two-crossed legs. Their shape was to mock the nobles who didn’t have to work or go to great lengths to get what they wanted. 

These golden biscuits are sweet and crunchy with a zest of cinnamon, and they pair perfectly with Portuguese tea or coffee.

This was the perfect sweet finish to our Braga food tour

RELATED: 12 of the Most Authentic Portuguese Desserts and Where to Enjoy Them

Where To Stay – Hotels in Braga

 Braga Sign Walking tour by Authentic Food Quest
Plan a few days to explore Braga

Braga has a lot to offer visitors. In addition to important buildings and gastronomy, Braga has a vibrant center with numerous shops and cafes worth exploring.

That said, staying more than one day in Braga is definitely a great way to fully enjoy this lively and historical city.

In Braga, you’ll find hotels for all budgets and tastes. The following hotels are conveniently located to the city’s main sights.

Luxury Accommodation

For a luxury stay consider Vila Gale Collection Braga, located in a beautiful historical building.

Featuring an outdoor and indoor pool, a garden, and a bar, this hotel has the ideal setting to rest after a busy sightseeing day.

Prices start at $140 per night for a Standard twin room with breakfast included

RELATED: 5 of the Best Places to Stay in Porto For Food Lovers

Mid-Range Accommodation

For mid-range accommodations, Tea 4 Nine Guest House and Bistro proposes an elegant fully equipped apartment in the center of Braga.

An excellent breakfast with local specialties is provided. This charming guest house also has a restaurant, Bistro, serving lunch and dinner all week.

Prices start at $100 a night for a standard queen room breakfast included

Budget Hotel

For the budget conscious, the Collector’s Hostel is conveniently located in the historic center of Braga. A cross between a B&B and designer hostel, Collector’s Hostel offers a unique feel and an original decor. Breakfast is offered daily.

Prices start at $81 per night for a suite with terrace

Porto To Braga by Train – How To Get to Braga

Campanha Train Station Porto to Braga by Train by Authentic Food Quest
Early morning at Campanha station to go from Porto to Braga by train

The best way to reach Braga from Porto is by taking public transportation and in particular the train. The train is easy to use and departs from the central station in Porto, arriving close to the center in Braga.

Take the train to Braga at the São Bento or Campanhã train station in Porto. Tickets starts at about €3.20 euros one way for a total of €6.40 euros (approx $3.30 one way/ $6.60 round trip).

You can purchase your tickets directly at the train station or in advance on the Omio platform for an additional fee.

Be sure to take the regular train and not the fast speed train. The fast speed train cost 5 times the price for only a few minutes gained. Check the dates and times on the Omio platform.

The trip takes about one hour and you can enjoy the northern Portugal landscape on the way.

RELATED: Top 10 Authentic Foods You Want to Delight in Porto

Things To Do In Braga – Portugal’s Oldest and Most Christian City

Braga is the oldest Portuguese city. The medieval town is filled with narrow lanes, plazas and stunning baroque architecture. You’ll also find over 35 churches including the country’s oldest cathedral.

Walking around the city, you quickly feel the ecclesiastical power, embodied by all the religious buildings, shrines and sanctuaries.

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: For a fun day trip from Porto with traditional Portuguese lunch included, consider this Braga and Guimaraes tour. In addition to Braga and its sites, visit the charming city of Guimarães as well as the sanctuary Bom Jesus do Monte.

Start at the Arco Da Porta Nova or Arch of the New Gate

Arco da Porta Nova Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Arco da Porta Nova in Braga

The Arco da Porta Nova, or Arch of the New Gate, the oldest door of the city, welcomes visitors.

This door is historically significant for being an invitation for commerce, versus other cities where the door was closed.

In Braga, they say, “the door is always open.”

The extremely narrow streets right behind the arch lead into the main plaza. Buildings covered in beautiful tiles and wrought iron railings are everywhere. 

The architectural styles range from Gothic, Romanesque, Manueline and Baroque.

Cathedral of Braga or Sé De Braga

Cathedral of Braga Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Cathedral of Braga

One of the most important monuments in the city is the Cathedral of Braga or Se de Braga.

This is the oldest archdiocese in Portugal, and the Cathedral of Braga is said to be even older than the country. 

The building dates to the 12th century with a Romanesque façade exterior and two impressive Baroque bell towers.

The interior is richly decorated with gold-leafed carvings and the huge organ in the main chapel.

The Church Influence and Medieval Vestiges

Interior Cathedral Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
Richly decorated interior of Braga’s Cathedral

Braga is a perfect city for exploring on a walking tour and you do want comfortable walking shoes. 

As we walked around the city, we were delighted by the distinctive architecture, cultural sights, and attractive landscaped gardens.

The religious significance of Braga was evident all around. Braga was once considered the religious capital of Portugal. 

And even today, people from all over the country come to Braga for Holy Week or Semana Santa during Easter.

During that week there are ceremonies and processions to remember the death and rise of Christ.

The Archbishop’s Palace and Jardim de Santa Bárbara

Jardim de Santa Barbara Braga Food Tour Day Trips From Porto Authentic Food Quest
The palace as a backdrop to the beautiful garden of Santa Barbara and medieval arches

The Archbishop’s Palace in the center of town once covered one-tenth of the city.

You will be struck by the impressive fortress-like building, which today is home to a library and various university faculties..

One of the great things to do near the Archbishop’s Palace is the must-see Gardens of Santa Barbara or Jardim de Santa Bárbara in Portuguese. 

The romantic style gardens are beautifully laid out and incorporate medieval arches. These arches have artistic significance as they were once part of an arcade from the palace.

RELATED: 10 of The Best Day Trips from Porto for Food and Wine Lovers

Other Things to Do in Braga

Visit Bom Jesus do Monte – A Stunning Sanctuary Outside Braga

Bom Jesus de Monte easy day trip From Porto by Authentic Food Quest
Rosemary at the bottom of Bom Jesus, one of Portugal’s most extravagant Baroque creations

Continuing on our walking tour around Braga, we went outside the city to explore the Portuguese sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Monte.

Visiting Bom Jesus, which translates to Good Jesus, is one of the most famous day trips from Porto.

It is a pilgrimage site with a magnificent Baroque double stairway that climbs 116 meters (381 feet) up to the church. It is located about six kilometers east of downtown Braga.

While there is a funicular you can take, we recommend walking and enjoying the views.

The first chapel on the site was built in 1373 and the current sanctuary dates back from 1722.

Bom Jesus do Monte, a UNESCO Heritage Site, is one of the most important tourist attractions. During Holy Week, penitents go up the stairway or “Sacred Way” on their hands and knees.

Walking up the monumental staircase is beautiful and at the same time very peaceful.

The sweeping views of the countryside were quite remarkable. Regardless of your religious affiliations, this site, rich in history, is worth a visit.  

How to Get To Bom Jesus From Braga

Getting to Bom Jesus do Monte from Braga is easy and convenient. 

In Braga, head to the main plaza called Praça Conselheiro Torres Almeida. Across the Roman Catholic Church, Igreja do Pópulo, you will see a popular bus stop.  Wait at the bus stop ‘Conselheiro Torres Almeida II’.

Take bus number #2 in the direction Bom Jesus do Monte. The bus will drop you off at the terminus which is located at the bottom of the sanctuary and near the departure of the funicular.

Bus tickets cost $2 euros one way/ €4 euros total (approx $2.05 one way/ $4.10 round trip). Carry small change and pay the driver directly.

The trip takes about 25-30 mins and there are about 2 to 3 buses every hour going to Bom Jesus do Monte.

To go back to Braga, simply take the number #2 bus back from the terminus.

Authentic Food Quest Page_Break

In Summary

The northern city of Braga is worth visiting for the cultural sights and unique Portuguese gastronomy.

The medieval wall and vestiges along with the numerous churches and gardens are rich in history and tradition.

When you take a walking food tour with a local guide, you’ll learn about the significance of various Braga attractions. You’ll also enjoy Braga’s food while learning about the local specialties.

Our Braga food tour with Cristiane was a comprehensive experience. Starting from the Arco da Porta Nova gate, to the Braga market and the delicious Farricoco restaurant, it was an enriching experience.

Enjoy a deeper experience in Braga, when you take a Braga food and walking tour.

Have you been to Braga, Portugal and tasted Braga food? Please let us know in the comments below.

Savor The Adventure!

Love Braga Food Tour? Pin It!

Pinterest Braga Food TourPortugal by Authentic Food Quest

Special thanks to Cristiane for having us on this Braga food tour. All views and opinions expressed are our own. Full bellies and happy taste buds too!

69 Comments on “Braga Food Tour: How To Best Enjoy Your Day Trip From Porto”

  1. My dad loved to travel, and I remember him saying that Portugal was a great place to visit. He wasn’t quite a foodie, but he enjoyed exploring all the cultural aspects, including foods and beverages wherever he went. I never really thought about traveling from a culinary perspective until I started reading your blog.

    Reply
  2. Goodness where do I start? I’ve never been to Portugal but after reading this post, I’m convinced that a trip to Porto should be on my bucket list.

    Reply
  3. This is the place where everything is on the good from fresh foods, vegetables, and fruits. The city looks really clean and has friendly people. The place you’ll wish for.

    Reply
  4. Braga looks like an incredible place to explore. I’d probably come home 20 pounds heavier because all the food looks so dang good! I hope I can visit someday and take it all in myself as well 🙂

    Reply
  5. There is a popular food joint in Nairobi called Mercado, so the moment I read about Mercado Municipality I and the rich food culture, I already understood where it draws its inspo! Always a pleasure reading your posts and the authentic experiences you get!

    Reply
  6. Braga looks like a beautiful little city. It seems very cozy and I like your recommendation, there is a lot of information about what not to miss 🙂

    Reply
    • Touring Braga with a local guide really does allow you to get you the most out of your experience. We provided a guide to Braga here and there is still much more rich history and culture to dive into. Glad you enjoyed the article, Albi.

      Reply
  7. I’ve never heard of Braga before, and it looks like such a cute town! The Arco Da Porta Nova is so beautiful, the stained glass at the top really makes it unique looking. After your description of the lupin beans I really want to try some. I agree with you about Vinho Verde, it really is a great wine!

    Reply
    • Yeah, another Vinho Verde fan. We had it for the first time in Portugal and loved it. Just as much as we loved discovering lupin beans. Braga is truly a charming town and one worth exploring on your travels to Portugal.

      Reply
  8. Arco da Porta Nova is stunning! What a great way to enter the city. Your trip looks amazing and all that food looks sooooo yummy. I do love a white Sangria, the perfect pairing to any meal I’d say. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  9. Wow! Braga is such a gorgeous city! The Arco da Porta Nova or Arch is especially beautiful. Thank you for taking us along on your food tour. I am inspired to start doing these when I visit new destinations!

    Reply
  10. Thanks for writing so in-depth about Braga and its amazing food offerings! I enjoy wandering around local markets but I’m always too nervous to buy anything. That’s why I love reading posts like this. Everything looks really amazing, using simple ingredients to make great dishes!

    Reply
    • Thank you so much, Erika. Glad you found the article inspirational. The next time you got a local market on your travels, buy something. Taste something new. I promise you it will change the way the travel and visit the local markets 🙂

      Reply
  11. Wow! Braga is such a beautiful city. And the food looks amazing! I love all the different markets they have. And those restaurants look like a must-visit! Pinning for a future trip!

    Reply
  12. I love food tour! Whenever I travel to new destinations, I’ll always to join a local food tour. I think it’s the best to learn how the local people live through their food. I’ve been to Portugal but haven’t been to Braga. Looks like I’d enjoy wandering around because I’ve always have a soft spot for medieval town. Now I can’t even choose which food to taste first, they all look delish! I’m curious about the Portuguese tripes and the Creamy Tíbias de Braga. Thanks for making me hungry 😀

    Reply
    • You are most welcome, Debbie 🙂 Happy to make you hungry!! If you love medieval towns, don’t miss Braga on your next visit. The religious history is quite powerful and the architecture is very distinct. We certainly recommend a Braga food tour for your next trip to Portugal.

      Reply
  13. I spent a night and half a day in Braga during my road trip through Portugal. I didn’t get to experience all of this sadly. But I did visit the Bom Jesus and the staircase to the cathedral is amazing.

    Reply
    • In person the staircase and Bom Jesus is truly remarkable. Glad you had a chance to spend time in Braga. Next time, plan for more time and be prepared for all the local food delicacies. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  14. I love visiting local markets when I travel! Not only for the food though. I think it’s where you can really get to know the locals, and I also love how chaotic it can be. An organized chaos lol!

    Reply
  15. Wow the Arco da Porta Nova is a truly impressive entrance way. The medieval arches in the garden look magnificent. After all that great food, I can see why you chose to walk after lunch. The food looked so good though. Good food and amazing architecture, sound like my kind of place.

    Reply
  16. Looks a really interesting city, we are hoping to visit Porto later this year and a trip to Braga looks a great addition. We love a lot of Portuguese food although I think I would pass on the tripe and chicken gizzards. I would go for an extra glass of Vinho Verde and some Tíbias de Braga instead.

    Reply
    • Lol…the tripe was not our favorite either, but the chicken gizzards were quite delightful! Braga is an easy trip from Porto and very different. Definitively make plans to include it on your trip to Porto later this year. And enjoy several glasses of Vinho Verde as well 🙂 Cheers.

      Reply
  17. Food tours are such a cool way of exploring the culinary culture. I’m a dessert person and I have to say that creamy Tíbias de Braga looks super delicious. Didn’t know Portugal has sangria as well! Another reason to visit Portugal!

    Reply
  18. The “Arco” is GORGEOUS! I can’t believe I was in Porto for days and didn’t think to go to Braga. I’ve enjoyed Vinho Verde back here in Boston, but didn’t know it was from that town.

    Reply
    • Lucky you if you can get good Vinho Verde in Boston. The options in Chicago for Vinho Verde are limited. Next time you are in Portugal, don’t miss out on Braga and and seeing where this delicious wine comes from 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
    • We completely understand about the vinho verde…wow!! A really nice white wine. Where did you do your food tour? In Lisbon? Indeed, the pasteis de nata are quite special. Don’t miss Braga on your next visit to Portugal!!

      Reply
  19. Lupin beans sound interesting – are they steamed or boiled?

    Pao is something that the Portuguese left back in Goa too, though of course, it is the localized version. We still get it from our neighborhood bakery. It has a small hollow inside.

    Reply
    • Wow, that interesting about pao..indeed the Portuguese left their influence all over the world, and they also brought back new spices and flavors. In Portugal, Pao is not hollow inside. I actually found it quite dense. I wonder if it tastes different? The lupin beans are quite tasty and they are boiled and then salted. A nice and healthy snack!! Thanks, Anu.

      Reply

Leave a Comment

Post a Comment

We love to hear from you, so tell us what you think.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked.