Oporto (Porto)
Municipality (Concelho)
The historical centre of Oporto
Coat of arms
Official name: Concelho do Porto
Name origin: oporto, Portuguese compound article and subject for port
Country  Portugal
Region Norte
Subregion Grande Porto
District Porto
Municipality Porto
Civil parishes Aldoar, Bonfim, Campanhã, Cedofeita, Foz do Douro, Lordelo do Ouro, Massarelos, Miragaia, Nevogilde, Paranhos, Ramalde, São Nicolau, Santo Ildefonso, , Vitória
River Douro
Center Cedofeita
 - elevation 104 m (341 ft)
 - coordinates 41°9′43.71″N 8°37′19.03″W / 41.1621417°N 8.6219528°W / 41.1621417; -8.6219528
Highest point Monte Tadeu
 - elevation 149 m (489 ft)
 - coordinates 41°9′22″N 8°36′4″W / 41.15611°N 8.60111°W / 41.15611; -8.60111
Lowest point Sea level
 - location Atlantic Ocean, Foz do Douro, Porto
 - elevation 0 m (0 ft)
Length 11.57 km (7 mi), Northwest-Southeast
Width 5.31 km (3 mi), North-South
Area 41.42 km2 (16 sq mi)
 - urban 389 km2 (150 sq mi)
 - metro 1,883.61 km2 (727 sq mi)
Population 237,559 (2011)
 - urban 1,286,138
 - metro 1,671,536
Density 5,735.40 / km2 (14,855 / sq mi)
Settlement 275 B.C.
 - Municipality 868
LAU Concelho/Câmara Municipal
 - location Praça General Humberto Delgado, Santo Ildefonso, Porto
 - elevation 120 m (394 ft)
 - coordinates 41°9′0.24″N 8°36′38.59″W / 41.1500667°N 8.6107194°W / 41.1500667; -8.6107194
President Rui Fernando da Silva Rio (PSD)
Municipal Chair Luís Francisco Valente de Oliveira (PSD)
Timezone WET (UTC0)
 - summer (DST) WEST (UTC+1)
ISO 3166-2 code PT-
Postal Zone 4000-286 Porto
Area Code & Prefix (+351) 22[1]
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Name Historic Centre of Oporto
Year 1996 (#20)
Number 755
Region Europe and North America
Criteria iv
Demonym Portuense
Patron Saint Nossa Senhora de Vandoma
Municipal Address Praça General Humberto Delgado, 266
4000-286 Porto
Municipal Holidays 24 June (São João)
Location of the municipality of Porto in continental Portugal
Wikimedia Commons: Porto
Statistics: Instituto Nacional de Estatística[2]
Website: http://www.cm-porto.pt
Geographic detail from CAOP (2010)[3] produced by Instituto Geográfico Português (IGP)

Porto (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈpoɾtu]), also known as Oporto in English, is the second largest city in Portugal and one of the major urban areas in the Iberian Peninsula. Its administrative limits (an area of 41.66 km²/16 sq.mi) include a population of 237,559 (2011) inhabitants distributed within 15 civil parishes. The urbanized area of Porto, which extends beyond the administrative limits of the city, has a population of 1.3 million (2011)[4] in an area of 389 km2 (150 sq mi),[5] making it the second-largest urban area in Portugal. The Porto Metropolitan Area includes approximately 1.7 million people,[6][7][8] and is recognized as a Gamma-level global city by the Globalization and World Cities (GaWC) Study Group, being one of the four cities in the peninsula with global city status (the others being Madrid, Barcelona and Lisbon).

Located along the Douro river estuary in northern Portugal, Porto is one of the oldest European centres, and registered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996. Its settlement dates back many centuries, when it was an outpost of the Roman Empire. Its Latin name, Portus Cale,[9] has been referred to as the origin for the name "Portugal," based on transliteration and oral evolution from Latin. In Portuguese the city is spelled with a definite article as "o Porto" (English:  the port). Consequently, its English name evolved from a misinterpretation of the oral pronunciation and referred to as "Oporto" in modern literature and by many speakers.

One of Portugal's internationally famous exports, port wine, is named for Porto, since the metropolitan area, and in particular the adegas of Vila Nova de Gaia, were responsible for the production and export of the fortified wine.[10]



Early history

The history of Porto dates back to the 4th century, to the Roman occupation of the Iberian Peninsula. Celtic and Proto-Celtic ruins have been discovered in several areas, and their occupation has been dated to about 275 BC. During the Roman occupation, the city developed as an important commercial port, primarily in the trade between Olissipona (the modern Lisbon) and Bracara Augusta (the modern Braga).[11]

Porto fell under the control of the Moors during the invasion of the Iberian Peninsula in AD 711. In 868, Vímara Peres, a Christian warlord from Gallaecia, and a vassal of the King of Asturias, Léon and Galicia, Alfonso III, was sent to reconquer and secure the lands from the Moors. This included the area from the Minho to the Douro River: the settlement of Portus Cale and the area that is today known as Vila Nova de Gaia. Portus Cale, later referred to as Portucale, was the origin for the modern name of Portugal. In 868 Count Vímara Peres established the First County of Portugal, or (Portuguese: Condado de Portucale), usually known as Condado Portucalense after reconquering the region north of Douro.[11]

In 1387, Porto was the site of the marriage of John I of Portugal and Philippa of Lancaster, daughter of John of Gaunt; this symbolized a long-standing military alliance between Portugal and England. The Portuguese-English alliance,(see the Treaty of Windsor (1386)) is the world's oldest recorded military alliance.

In the 14th and the 15th centuries, Porto's shipyards contributed to the development of Portuguese shipbuilding. It was also from the port of Porto that, in 1415, Prince Henry the Navigator (son of John I of Portugal) embarked on the conquest of the Moorish port of Ceuta, in northern Morocco. This expedition by the King and his fleet, which counted amongst others Prince Henry, was followed by navigation and exploration along the western coast of Africa, initiating the Portuguese Age of Discovery. The nickname given to the people of Porto began in those days; Portuenses are to this day, colloquially, referred to as tripeiros (English: tripe peoples), referring to this period of history, when higher-quality cuts of meat were shipped from Porto with their sailors, while off-cuts and by-products, such as tripe, were left behind for the citizens of Porto: tripe remains a culturally important dish in modern day Porto.

18th century

Avenida dos Aliados
The iconic Majestic Café
Foz neighbourhood, in the coastline

Wine, produced in the Douro valley, was already in the 13th century transported to Porto in barcos rabelos (flat sailing vessels). In 1703 the Methuen Treaty established the trade relations between Portugal and England. In 1717, a first English trading post was established in Porto. The production of port wine then gradually passed into the hands of a few English firms. To counter this English dominance, Prime Minister Marquis of Pombal established a Portuguese firm receiving the monopoly of the wines from the Douro valley. He demarcated the region for production of port, to ensure the wine's quality; this was the first attempt to control wine quality and production in Europe. The small winegrowers revolted against his strict policies on Shrove Tuesday, burning down the buildings of this firm. The revolt was called Revolta dos Borrachos (revolt of the drunks).

Between 1732 and 1763, Italian architect Nicolau Nasoni designed a baroque church with a tower that would become its architectural and visual icon: the Torre dos Clérigos (English: Clerics Tower). During the 18th and 19th centuries the city became an important industrial centre and saw its size and population increase.

19th century

The invasion of the Napoleonic troops in Portugal under Marshal Soult also brought war to the city of Porto. On 29 March 1809, as the population fled from the advancing troops and tried to cross the river Douro over the Ponte das Barcas (a pontoon bridge), the bridge collapsed under the weight. This event is still remembered by a plate at the Ponte D. Luis I. The French army was rooted out of Porto by Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, when his troops crossed the Douro river from the Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar (a former convent) in a brilliant daylight coup de main, using wine barges to transport the troops, so outflanking the French Army. In August 1820, Porto rebelled against the English presence. A Civil War took place in early 20's between those supporting Constitutionalism and a change of regime, and those opposed to this change, keen on near-absolutism and led by D.Miguel. In 1822, a liberal constitution was accepted, partly through the efforts of the liberal assembly of Porto (Junta do Porto). When Miguel of Portugal took the Portuguese throne in 1828, he rejected this constitution and reigned as an absolutist monarch. Porto rebelled again and had to undergo a siege of eighteen months between 1832 and 1833 by the absolutist army. Porto is also called "Cidade Invicta" (English: Unvanquished City) after resisting the Miguelist siege. After the abdication of King Miguel, the liberal constitution was re-established.

Known as the city of bridges, Porto built its first permanent bridge, the Ponte das Barcas (a pontoon bridge), in 1806. Three years later it was sabotaged. It was replaced by the Ponte D. Maria II, popularised under the name Ponte Pênsil (suspended bridge) and built between 1841–43; only its supporting pylons have remained.

The Ponte D. Maria, a railway bridge, was inaugurated the 4th of November of that same year; it was considered a feat of wrought iron engineering and was designed by Gustave Eiffel, notable for his Parisian tower. The later Ponte Dom Luís I replaced the aforementioned Ponte Pênsil. This last bridge was made by Teophile Seyrig, a former partner of Eiffel. Seyrig won a governmental competition that took place in 1879. Building began in 1881 and the bridge was opened to the public on 31 October 1886.[citation needed]

Unrest by Republicans led to a revolt in Porto on 31 January 1891. This would result ultimately in the creation of the Portuguese Republic in 1910.

A higher learning institution in nautical sciences (Aula de Náutica, 1762) and a stock exchange (Bolsa do Porto, 1834) were established in the city, but would be discontinued later.

20th century

In 1958 and 1960, Porto's streets hosted the Formula One Portuguese Grand Prix.

The historic centre of Porto was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996. The World Heritage site is defined in two concentric zones; the "Protected area", and within it the "Classified area". The Classified area comprises the medieval borough located inside the 14th-century Romanesque wall. [12]


Historical part of Porto and the Douro river

In recent years, UNESCO recognised its historic centre as a World Heritage Site. Among the architectural highlights of the city, Oporto Cathedral is the oldest surviving structure, together with the small romanesque Church of Cedofeita, the gothic Igreja de São Francisco (Church of Saint Francis), the remnants of the city walls and a few 15th-century houses. The baroque style is well represented in the city in the elaborate gilt work interior decoration of the churches of St. Francis and St. Claire (Santa Clara), the churches of Mercy (Misericórida) and of the Clerics (Igreja dos Clérigos), the Episcopal Palace of Porto, and others. The neoclassicism and romanticism of the 19th and 20th centuries also added interesting monuments to the landscape of the city, like the magnificent Stock Exchange Palace (Palácio da Bolsa), the Hospital of Saint Anthony, the Municipality, the buildings in the Liberdade Square and theAvenida dos Aliados, the tile-adorned São Bento Train Station and the gardens of the Crystal Palace (Palácio de Cristal). A guided visit to the Palácio da Bolsa, and in particular the Arab Room, is a major tourist attraction.

Many of the city's oldest houses are at risk of collapsing. The population in Porto municipality dropped by nearly 100,000 since the 1980s, but the number of permanent residents in the outskirts and satellite towns has grown strongly.[13]

Porto is ranked number 3 in the Portuguese most livable cities survey of living conditions published yearly by Expresso.[14]

Porto City Hall in the Avenida dos Aliados
Clérigos Church and Tower

Administratively, the historic city of Porto is divided into 15 civil parishes:

International relations

Twin towns — sister cities

Porto is twinned with:[15]

Partner towns

Within the context of development cooperation, Porto is also linked to:


Porto features the warm-summer Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification Csb). As a result, its climate shares many characteristics with the coastal south: warm, dry summers and mild, rainy winters. Unlike the south, however, cool and rainy interludes can interrupt the dry season and the season's average length is usually shorter.

Summers are typically sunny with average temperatures between 15 °C (59 °F) and 25 °C (77 °F) but can rise to as high as 35 °C (95 °F) during occasional heat waves. During such heat waves the humidity remains quite low but nearby forest fires can add haze and ash to the air making breathing somewhat uncomfortable, especially at night. Nearby beaches are often windy and usually cooler than the urban areas. In contrast, occasional summer rainy periods may last a few days and are characterised by showers and cool temperatures of around 20 °C (68 °F) in the afternoon.

Winter temperatures typically range between 5 °C (41 °F) during morning and 15 °C (59 °F) in the afternoon but rarely drop below 0 °C (32 °F) at night. The weather is often rainy for long stretches although prolonged sunny periods do occur.

Climate data for Porto
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 13.5
Daily mean °C (°F) 9.3
Average low °C (°F) 5.0
Precipitation mm (inches) 157.6
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 17 16 15 14 13 9 6 5 8 14 15 15 147
Sunshine hours 124.0 130.0 192.2 216.0 257.3 273.0 306.9 294.5 225.0 182.9 138.0 124.0 2,463.8
Source: Instituto de Meteorologia,[18] Hong Kong Observatory[19] for data of avg. precipitation days & sunshine hours


Barrels of Port wine aging: the fortified wine is the best-known of city's exports

Porto has always rivaled Lisbon in economic power. As the most important city in the heavily industrialised northwest, many of the largest Portuguese corporations from diverse economic sectors, like Altri, Ambar, Amorim, Bial, Cerealis, BPI, CIN, EFACEC, Frulact, Lactogal, Millennium bcp, Porto Editora, Grupo RAR, Sonae, Sonae Indústria, and Unicer, are headquartered in the Greater Metropolitan Area of Porto, most notably, in the core municipalities of Maia, Matosinhos, Porto, and Vila Nova de Gaia.

The country's biggest exporter (Petrogal) has one of its two refineries near the city, in Leça da Palmeira (13 km) and the second biggest (Qimonda, now bankrupt) has its only factory also near the city in Mindelo (26 km).[20]

The city's former stock exchange (Bolsa do Porto) was transformed into the largest derivatives exchange of Portugal, and merged with Lisbon Stock Exchange to create the Bolsa de Valores de Lisboa e Porto, which eventually merged with Euronext, together with Amsterdam, Brussels, LIFFE and Paris stock and futures exchanges. The building formerly hosting the stock exchange is currently one of the city's touristic attractions, the Salão Árabe (Arab Room in English) being its major highlight.

Porto hosts a popular Portuguese newspaper, Jornal de Notícias. The building where its offices are located (which has the same name as the newspaper) was up to recently one of the tallest in the city (it has been superseded by a number of modern buildings which have been built since the 1990s).[citation needed]

Porto Editora, one of the biggest Portuguese publishers, is also in Porto. Its dictionaries are among the most popular references used in the country, and the translations are very popular as well.

The economic relations between the city of Porto and the Upper Douro River have been documented since the Middle Ages. However, they were greatly deepened in the modern ages.[citation needed] Indeed, sumach, dry fruits and nuts and the Douro olive oils sustained prosperous exchanges between the region and Porto. From the riverside quays at the river mouth, these products were exported to other markets of the Old and New World. But the greatest lever to interregional trade relations resulted from the commercial dynamics of the Port wine (Vinho do Porto) agro industry.[citation needed] It decidedly bolstered the complementary relationship between the large coastal urban centre, endowed with open doors to the sea, and a region with significant agricultural potential, especially in terms of the production of extremely high quality fortified wines, today known by the world-famous label Port. The development of Porto was also closely connected with the left margin of River Douro in Vila Nova de Gaia, where is located the amphitheatre-shaped slope with the Port wine cellars.

In a study concerning competitiveness of the 18 Portuguese district capitals, Porto was the worst-ranked. The study was made by Minho University economics researchers and was published in Público newspaper on 30 September 2006. The best-ranked cities in the study were Évora, Lisbon and Coimbra.[21] Nevertheless, the validity of this study was questioned by some Porto's notable figures (such as local politicians and businesspersons) who argued that the city proper does not function independently but in conurbation with other municipalities.[22] A new ranking, published in the newspaper Expresso (Portuguese Newspaper) in 2007 which can be translated to "The Best Cities to Live in Portugal" ranked Porto in third place (tied with Évora) below Guimarães and Lisbon.[23] The two studies are not directly comparable as they use different dependent measures.


Roads and bridges

Luís I Iron Bridge and Porto viewed from Vila Nova de Gaia
Internal highway
Trindade Station, Line D platform
Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport
Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport

The road system capacity is augmented by the Via de Cintura Interna or A20, an internal highway connected to several motorways and city exits, complementing the Circunvalação 4-lane peripheric road, which borders the north of the city and connects the eastern side of the city to the Atlantic shore. The city is connected to Valença by highway A28, to Estarreja by the A29, to Lisbon by the A1, to Amarante by the A4 and to Braga by the A3. There is also an outer-ring road the A41 that connects all the main cities around Porto, linking the city to other major metropolitan highways such as the A7, A11, A42, A43 and A44. In the future a new highway, the A32, is to connect the city to São João da Madeira.

During the 20th century, major bridges were built: Arrábida Bridge, which at its opening had the biggest concrete supporting arch in the world, and connects north and south shores of the Douro on the west side of the city, S. João, to replace D. Maria Pia and Freixo, a highway bridge on the east side of the city. The newest bridge is Ponte do Infante, finished in 2003. Two more bridges are said to be under designing stages and due to be built in the next 10 years, one on the Campo Alegre area, nearby the Faculty of Humanities and the Arts, and another one in the area known as the Massarelos valley.[citation needed]

Nowadays, Porto is often known as Cidade das Pontes (City of Bridges), "Cidade Invicta" (Invincible City) and "Capital do Norte" (The Capital of the North).


Porto is served by Francisco de Sá Carneiro Airport which is located in Pedras Rubras, Moreira civil parish of the neighbouring Municipality of Maia, some 15 km to the north-west of the city centre. The airport is a state-of-the-art facility, having undergone a massive programme of refurbishment due to the Euro 2004 football championships being partly hosted in the city.

Public transport


Porto's main railway station is situated in Campanhã, located in the eastern part of the city (connecting to the lines of Douro (Peso da Régua/Tua/Pocinho), Minho (Barcelos/Viana do Castelo/Valença) and Norte (on the main line to Aveiro, Coimbra and Lisbon). From here, both light rail and suburban rail services connect to the city centre. The main central station is São Bento Station, which is itself a notable landmark located in the heart of Porto.

Subway/Light rail

Currently the major project is the Porto Metro, a light rail system. Consequently, the Infante bridge was built for urban traffic, replacing the Dom Luís I, which was dedicated to the subway on the second and higher of the bridge's two levels. Six lines are open: lines A (blue), B (red), C (green) and E (purple) all begin at Estádio do Dragão (home to FC Porto) and terminate at Senhor de Matosinhos, Póvoa de Varzim (via Vila do Conde), ISMAI (via Maia) and Francisco Sá Carneiro airport respectively. Line D (yellow) currently runs from Hospital S. João in the north to D. João II on the southern side of the Douro river. Line F (orange), from Senhora da Hora (Matosinhos) to Fânzeres (Gondomar). The lines intersect at the central Trindade station. Currently the whole network spans 60 km (37 mi) using 68 stations, thus being the biggest metro system in the country.

PortoMetro.png   Metro do Porto
Line Length
Stations Inauguration Vehicle
Metro do Porto linha A.svg
Estádio do Dragão ↔ Aeroporto BSicon FLUG.svg
16,7 21 27 May 2006 Flexity Outlook (Eurotram)
Metro do Porto linha F (laranja).svg
bus network run by the STCP (Sociedade dos Transportes Colectivos do Porto, or Porto Public Transport Society) which also operates lines in the neighbouring cities of Gaia, Maia and Gondomar. Other smaller companies connect such towns as Paços de Ferreira and Santo Tirso to the town center. In the past the city also had trolleybuses.[citation needed] A bus journey is 1.50 Euro, which can be paid in cash.


A tram network, of which only four lines remain one of them being a tourist line on the shores of the Douro, saw its construction begin in 12 September 1895, therefore being the first in the Iberian Peninsula. The lines in operation today all use vintage tramcars, so the service has become a heritage tramway. STCP also operates these routes. The first line of the area's modern-tram, or light rail system, named Metro do Porto, opened for revenue service in January 2003[24] (after a brief period of free, introductory service in December 2002).


Sculpture of Ângelo de Sousa at Avenida da Boavista, a services avenue

In 2001, Porto shared the designation European Culture Capital.[25] In the scope of these events, the construction of the major concert hall space Casa da Música, designed by the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, was initiated and finished in 2005.

The first Portuguese moving pictures were taken in Porto by Aurélio da Paz dos Reis and shown there on 12 November 1896 in Teatro do Príncipe Real do Porto, less than a year after the first public presentation by Auguste and Louis Lumière. The country's first movie studios Invicta Filmes was also erected in Porto in 1917 and was open from 1918 to 1927 in the area of Carvalhido. Manoel de Oliveira, a Portuguese film director and the oldest director in the world who is still active, is from Porto. Fantasporto is an internationalfilm festival organized in Porto every year.

Many renowned Portuguese music artists and cult bands such as GNR, Rui Veloso, Sérgio Godinho, Clã, Pluto and Ornatos Violeta are from the city or its metropolitan area. Porto has several museums, concert halls, theaters, cinemas, art galleries, libraries and book shops. The best-known museums of Oporto are the National Museum Soares dos Reis (Museu Nacional de Soares dos Reis), which is dedicated especially to the Portuguese artistic movements from the 16th to the 20th century, and the Museum of Contemporary Art of the Serralves Foundation (Museu de Arte Contemporânea).

The city has concert halls of a rare beauty and elegance such as the Coliseu do Porto by the Portuguese architect Cassiano Branco; an exquisite example of the Portuguese decorative arts. Other notable venues include the historical São João National Theatre, the Rivoli theatre, the Batalha cinema and the recent Casa da Música. The city has a magnificent, and beautiful bookshop, "Lello", that was featured in third place in The Guardian's list of world's top bookshops.[26] From the three top bookshops, Lello was the only one that was originally built to be a bookshop, as the other ones were, respectively, a church and a theatre.


Casa da Musica on opening day

Porto's most popular event is St. John (São João Festival) on the night of 23–24 June.[27] In this season it's a tradition to have a vase with bush basil decorated with a small poem. During the dinner of the great day people usually eat sardines and boiled potatoes together with red wine.

Another major event is Queima das Fitas, that starts in the first Sunday of May and ends in the second Sunday of the month. Basically, before the beginning of the study period preceding the school year’s last exams, academia tries to have as much fun as possible. The week comprehends 12 events, starting with the Monumental Serenata on Sunday, reaching its peak with the Cortejo Académico on Tuesday, when about 50,000 students of the city's higher education institutions march through the downtown streets till they reach the city hall. During every night of the week a series of concerts takes place on the Queimódromo, next to the city’s park; here it’s also a tradition for the students in the second last year to erect small tents where alcoholic beverages are sold in order to finance the trip that takes place during the last year of their course; an average of 50 000 students attend these shows.[28]


On the waterfront, She Changes sculpture by artist Janet Echelman is the city's graphic symbol

In 2005, the municipality funded a public sculpture to be built in the Waterfront Plaza of Matosinhos. The resulting sculpture is entitled She Changes[29] by American artist, Janet Echelman, and spans the height of 50 × 150 × 150 meters.


Due to its prolonged existence, the city of Porto carries an immense architectural patrimony. From the Romanesque Cathedral to the Social Housing projects developed through the late 20th century, much could be said surrounding Architecture.

Porto is home to the Porto School of Architecture, one of the most prestigious architecture schools in Europe and the world. It is also home to two earners of the Pritzker Architecture Prize (two former students of the aforementioned school): Álvaro Siza Vieira and Eduardo Souto de Moura.


Porto is home to a number of dishes from traditional Portuguese cuisine.

A typical dish from this city is Tripas à Moda do Porto (Tripes Porto style), which still can be found everywhere in the city today.

Bacalhau à Gomes de Sá (Gomes de Sá Bacalhau) is another typical codfish dish born in Porto and popular in Portugal.

The Francesinha - literally Frenchy, or more accurately little French (female) - is the most famous popular native snack food in Porto. It is a kind of sandwich with several meats covered with cheese and a special sauce made with beer and other ingredients.

Port wine, an internationally renowned wine, is widely accepted as the city's dessert wine, especially being that the wine is made along the Douro River which runs through the city.


The city has a large number of public and private basic and secondary schools, as well as kindergartens and nurseries. Due to the depopulation of the city's interior, however, the number of students has dropped substantially in the last decade, forcing a closure of some institutions.[citation needed] The largest and oldest international school located in Porto is the Oporto British School established in 1894.

Porto has several institutions of higher education, the largest one being the state-managed University of Porto (Universidade do Porto), which is the largest Portuguese university with approximately 28,000 students. There are also a state-managed polytechnic institute, the Instituto Politécnico do Porto (a group of technical colleges), and privately owned institutions like the Lusíada University of Porto, Universidade Fernando Pessoa (UFP), the Porto's Higher Education School of Arts (ESAP- Escola Superior Artística do Porto) and a Vatican state university, the Portuguese Catholic University at Porto (Universidade Católica Portuguesa – Porto) and the Portucalense University at Porto (Universidade Portucalense – Infante D. Henrique). Due to the recognition, potential for employment and higher revenue, there are many students from the entire country and particularly from the north of Portugal, attending a college or university in Porto.

For foreigners wishing to study Portuguese in the city, there are a number of options. As the most popular city in Portugal for ERASMUS students, most universities have facilities to assist foreigners in learning the language. There are also several private learning institutions in the city, such as the Fast Forward Language Institute

Public health

Porto district has the highest rate of tuberculosis positive cases in Portugal. Porto tuberculosis rates are at Third World proportions (comparatively, London faces a similar phenomenon [30]). The incidence of positive cases was 23/100 000 nationwide in 1994, with a rate of 24/100 000 in Lisbon and 37/100 000 in Porto. Porto area represented the worst epidemiological situation in the country, with very high rates in some city boroughs and in some poor fishing and declining industrial communities. Epidemiological analysis indicated the existence of undisclosed sources of infection in these communities, responsible for continuing transmission despite a cure rate of 83% in the district.[31] In 2002, the situation was not better with 34/100 000 nationwide and 64/100 000 in Porto district. In 2004 the situation improved to 53/100 000.[32]


Porto, in addition to football, is the home to many athletic sports arenas, most notably the city-owned Pavilhão Rosa Mota, swimming pools in the area of Constituição (between the Marquês and Boavista), and other minor arenas, such as the Pavilhão do Académico.

Porto is home to northern Portugal's only cricket club, the Oporto Cricket and Lawn Tennis Club. Annually, for more than 100 years, a match (the Kendall Cup) has been played between the Oporto Club and the Casuals Club of Lisbon, in addition to sporadic games against touring teams (mainly from England). The club's pitch is located off the Rua Campo Alegre.

In 1958 and 1960, Porto's streets hosted the Formula One Portuguese Grand Prix on the Boavista street circuit, which are reenacted annually, in addition to a World Touring Car Championship race.

Every year in October the Porto Marathon is held through the streets of the old city of Porto.


Estádio do Bessa XXI (Bessa's Stadium), home of Boavista FC

As in most Portuguese cities, football is the most important sport. There are three main teams in Porto: FC Porto, Boavista and Salgueiros. FC Porto is one of the Big Three, and a major club in Europe. Boavista is considered the second club in the city, having won the championship once, in the 2000-2001 season, but the club had financial and disciplinary problems and was demoted 2 tiers. Salgueiros was a regular first division club during the 1980s and 1990s but, due to financial indebtedness, nowadays plays at regional level championships (5th tier or lower).

The biggest stadiums in the city are the Estádio do Dragão and the Estádio do Bessa. The first team in Porto to own a stadium was Académico, who played in the Estádio do Lima, Académico was one of the eight teams to dispute the first Primeira Liga. Salgueiros, who sold the grounds of Estádio Engenheiro Vidal Pinheiro field to the Porto Metro and planned on building a new field in the Arca d'Água area of Porto. Located a few hundred meters away from the old grounds, it became impossible to build on this land due to a large underground water pocket, and, consequently, they moved to the Estádio do Mar in Matosinhos (owned by Leixões). Other amateur football clubs also have fields in Porto, but with the exception of FC Porto's old stadium and football school (the Campo da Constituição) these fields have only sand or dirt. For the Euro 2004 football competition, held in Portugal, the Estádio do Dragão was built (replacing the old Estádio das Antas) and the Estádio do Bessa was renovated.

F.C. Porto won the 1986–87 European Cup, the 1987 Intercontinental Cup, the 1987 European Super Cup, the 2002-03 UEFA Cup, the 2003–04 UEFA Champions League, the 2004 Intercontinental Cup and the 2010–11 UEFA Europa League.

Notable citizens

See also


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External links

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