If you’re looking for an affordable destination in Portugal that is rich in history, culture, and gastronomy, then look no further than Braga! This charming city in the northwest of the country is often overlooked by travelers in favor of bigger destinations like Lisbon and Porto, but it’s definitely worth a visit. Plus, there are plenty of free things to do in Braga that will keep you entertained without breaking the bank.
1. Explore the Historic Center
Braga’s historic center is full of stunning architecture and beautiful plazas. Take a stroll through the streets and you’ll come across buildings that date back to the Roman era, as well as medieval churches and baroque palaces. The Praça da República is a particular highlight, with its grand fountain and colorful buildings.
2. Visit the Braga Sanctuary
The Braga Sanctuary, also known as the Bom Jesus do Monte, is a must-visit attraction in the city. This pilgrimage site is located on a hill overlooking Braga and features a grand staircase with 573 steps. At the top, you’ll find a church and a stunning view of the city. The best part? The entrance to the sanctuary is free!
3. Visit the Municipal Stadium
Soccer fans will want to check out the Municipal Stadium, home of the Braga football team. While catching a game might cost you, you can visit the stadium for free during the day and take a tour of the facilities.
4. Check Out the Street Art
Braga is home to some fantastic street art, much of which can be found in the historic center. Take a walk around the city and you’ll come across murals, graffiti, and other street art pieces that add a colorful and creative touch to the city’s walls.
5. Explore the Jardim de Santa Bárbara
If you’re looking for a peaceful place to relax, head to the Jardim de Santa Bárbara. This lovely park is located near the city center and features a beautiful fountain, plenty of green space, and even a small zoo.
And, of course, no visit to Braga would be complete without trying some of the local cuisine. One must-try dish is the “rojões,” which is a traditional pork dish often served with potatoes and rice. And for dessert, be sure to try the “Pudim Abade de Priscos,” a delicious pudding made with eggs, sugar, and port wine.
6. Take the Free Tour of Braga
To make the most of your visit to Braga, consider taking the Free Walking Tour of Braga. This is a great way to get an overview of the city’s history and architecture, as well as to discover some hidden gems that you might not find on your own. The tour typically covers the main attractions in the city center, as well as some lesser-known spots that are off the beaten path.
So there you have it, folks – five free things to do in Braga that will give you a taste of the city’s history, culture, and gastronomy. And don’t forget to top it all off with a free walking tour to really make the most of your time in this charming Portuguese destination.