Set along the gorgeous Douro River, Porto, Portugal is one of the oldest cities in Europe, and a must-see for many reasons. Among the historic sites and museums, there is also magnificent shopping to be found, for everything from artisan chocolate to fine clothing. Portugal's second largest city is full of chain and specialty stores for any and every kind of product, but these are a few of our favorite spots for special souvenirs and exciting experiences.
The grand staircase at Livraria Lello; photo via Portugal Resident.
Can there be any doubt that Livraria Lello is the most beautiful bookstore in the world? It draws people in such numbers that there is now a charge of a few euros to even enter the store—but the fee goes towards any books you may buy! This ornate shop stays packed; go early in the day, when it's less crowded. An absolute must-see in Porto.
A Favorita Do Bolhao has been in business since 1934, selling fine charcuterie, cheeses, wine and more. The extensive selection can be overwhelming, but the friendly staff is happy to make recommendations. This place is stocked full to the brim with any kind of delicious thing you can think of, from figs and a wide array of fresh nuts to candy, coffee and tea. Go there for fresh and delicious food that makes for a perfect picnic. While you may not be able to bring much of the fresh products here home, it's worth the stop to make a quick meal while on the go downtown.
A port wine tasting at Vinologia; photo via Oenos.
If you're looking to take home some of Porto's namesake wine, be sure to check out Vinologia. It offers a full tasting, with chocolates and cheeses to accompany the port; staff will help you find the right bottle and take care of shipping it home for you. The intimate experience factor of the tasting elevates this shop and your souvenir bottle. You can buy a bottle of port anywhere in the city, but for something a little more special, visit Vinologia.