Porto Gay Travel
wolfyy’s Porto gay guide to hotels, things to do, restaurants, gay bars, clubs & saunas.
The Gay Travel Experience: Porto, Portugal
If you’re planning a trip to Portugal, Porto gay travel is a must! Porto is such a beautiful city that charms travelers with gorgeous views, peaceful energy, and lively nightlife.
Visiting Porto was such a different experience compared to Lisbon, both in terms of the city’s overall vibe and local gay nightlife. Porto felt calmer, and while summertime tourists still flood the city’s center, I felt a more authentic Portugal experience here.
Porto has a ton of gay bars, clubs, and saunas to explore, often to the surprise of gay travelers! Meeting a gay local as well as other Americans out at one of the gay clubs was a highlight of my visit.
Porto’s gay district stretches from the Vitória neighborhood northward toward Santo Ildefonso. This whole area is a quick walk from most hotels on the north side of the Douro River that divides the city.
Below, I’ll share some of my top hotel recommendations, most of which are directly in the gay district.
Gay Porto: Hotels & Where to Stay
Porto has a small yet dense city center, which is where most travelers prefer to stay. Everything you’ll want to see is within reasonable walking distance, making both hotels and apartment rentals in the historic center convenient options.
Pousada do Porto Historic Hotel
I stayed in the Pousada do Porto Historic Hotel in Porto and absolutely loved it. The hotel’s interiors are newly renovated, while the original façade of the building was restored.
Everything was beautifully decorated, from the large lobby and lounge area to the cozy rooms. I loved the ultra-modern showers the most! Pousada do Porto’s location was also perfect, located right in the heart of Porto on Rua das Flores.
Eurostars Aliados is a more affordable hotel option that’s still gorgeously modern. I love their clean, minimal design and definitely want to stay here the next time I visit. The hotel’s steam room and spa facilities also caught my attention.
Located in the Aliados district, this Eurostars hotel is also close to many of the Porto gay bars. Exploring the local nightlife will be super convenient.
Hotel Moon & Sun
Hotel Moon & Sun offers a boutique hotel feel at a budget price. Comfortable and modern with character and subtle pops of color, you’ll feel right at home here. The property has a wonderful rooftop terrace, a bar and lounge, room service, and concierge services. It’s also close to Porto’s gay nightlife area.
If you’re a budget traveler or looking for value, you’d be crazy not to check out the rooms at Hotel Moon & Sun!
Vincci Ponte de Ferro
Nestled into the cliffside under a historic monastery, Vincci Ponte de Ferro caught my eye as I was walking over Porto’s Luís I Bridge. This hotel has an epic cliffside pool and lounge deck area that overlooks the Douro River and the north side of Porto.
Vincci Ponte de Ferro is a mid-range hotel in terms of price, but the super chic interiors have an unbeatably luxurious feel.
With spacious rooms, bright bathrooms with colored subway tile, and a lovely bohemian-feeling lounge, I highly recommend Porto gay travelers check this hotel out.
A gay traveler friend of mine highly recommends The Yeatman, a luxurious five-star property in south Porto. If you’re looking for the best of the best, consider staying here. It’s a particularly nice hotel for a romantic couple’s trip.
Every room comes with a glorious private terrace with sun lounger chairs. The Yeatman’s epic rooftop infinity pool with unobstructed city views, a gym, spa, bar, and a custom tasting menu experience in the hotel’s restaurant will keep you plenty busy before you even explore Porto!
Porto Gay Travel Experiences
Walk Across Porto’s Famous Pedestrian Bridge
Strolling across the top of the Ponte Luís I is one of the most iconic things to do in Porto. The bridge’s top level offers incredible views of the river and the city. It’s a mixed pedestrian and tram zone, so there’s no commotion from any cars.
Once you reach Porto’s district of Vila Nova de Gaia to the south of the river, there are a bunch more interesting things to do, which I’ll mention next!
Jardim do Morro
Relaxing in Jardim do Morro was one of the most memorable and relaxing parts of my visit to Porto. It’s a large and tranquil urban park area where everyone enjoys some music, sunshine, and a nice view of the city.
The park has plenty of seating as well as a beer garden area with various food trucks. If you’re looking for a midday snack, this is the perfect spot for it! I’d suggest coming to Jardim do Morro right after making your way over Ponte Luís I.
Pink Palace Rosé Museum
Get ready to experience a sea of bright pink at Porto’s Rosé Museum. Here you can learn all about Rosé wine in a space where every room is a different photo op. The enormous pink ball pit is the highlight for sure. You’ll feel like a kid again!
A fellow gay traveler I met while traveling through Portugal recommended visiting the Rosé Museum. It’s a unique travel experience that can be a nice change from seeing historical city sights.
Visit Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar
Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar is short uphill walk from Jardim do Morro. This monastery dates back to the 1500s and has a stunning lookout point directly next to it. The elevation here is so high that you’ll even get a good view of Ponte Luís I.
On your way up to the monastery, you’ll pass a cute local market where vendors sell everything from freshly baked bread to discount clothing and souvenirs.
Take a Cable Car Ride
Porto’s Teleférico de Gaia is a cable car that runs high above the Douro River’s south bank. You can catch a ride at either of the two stations, Cais de Gaia Station or Jardim do Morro Station. It operates from late April until late September.
Buying electronic tickets is easy on the cable car website. Considering all the ride’s beautiful scenery, I’d say is relatively affordable.
Jardim do Infante Dom Henrique
Jardim do Infante Dom Henrique is a small urban park right near the waterfront along the northern bank of the Douro River. It’s a nice area to stroll through as you make your way to the riverfront restaurants and cafes.
Sé do Porto Cathedral (The Porto Cathedral)
The glorious Porto Cathedral is one of the city’s most popular attractions. It’s also one of the oldest monuments in Porto. A short visit inside reveals a mixture of several iconic architectural periods.
The cathedral is largely Romanesque, but you’ll notice the attached cloisters are Gothic in style and the altar area is ornately baroque. Outside the entrance is a lovely plaza with more city views. Entry is only 3 euros too!
Restaurants in Porto
Gastrobar at Pousada do Porto
The Pousada do Porto Gastrobar is a delicious lunch spot to take in the energy of Rua das Flores, a popular street lined with hotels and restaurants.
Staying at the hotel myself, eating here was admittedly an easy option, but I thought the food was great! I loved their prawns and the steak sandwich.
Miss’opo is a highly rated and gay-friendly Portuguese restaurant in central Porto. This place is popular for its consistently reinvented menu, intimate ambiance, and friendly service.
Prices at Miss’opo are a little higher than most other restaurants, but the authentic cuisine and unique experience make eating here worth it.
Elemento has an incredibly unique concept—cooking food only using the element of fire. Chef Ricardo Dias Ferreira leaves behind modern cooking methods that involve gas, electricity, and technology while creating absolutely gorgeous dishes.
The restaurant is open daily from 7 PM to 11 PM with the exception of Wednesdays and Sundays. Book a table ahead of time and get the chance to experience Elemento’s 8-course tasting menu.
Café A Brasilera
I stopped at Café A Brasileira for some evening cocktails during my last night in Porto. An upscale café and restaurant, it was the perfect place to relax and enjoy some impeccable service with a luxurious ambiance.
Stopping here for breakfast or an afternoon snack would also be perfect—the interior has such an elegant and traditional décor. They serve all sorts of food, from breakfast pastries to seafood.
Porto Gay Bars & Clubs
Invictus Café & Bar
Invictus Café is my favorite gay bar in Porto. It’s an absolute must-visit. I had such an amazing time here laughing with everyone during the drag performances. Invictus is known for being a drag bar in Porto, but it can also be a casual hangout.
The bar is at the end of an alleyway that has plenty of tables where you can relax with a drink. Especially for solo travelers, it’s a great gay bar to start your night out, check out the vibe of the night and maybe meet some new friends.
Make sure to bring cash to Invictus. The staff uses drink cards to track your bar tab and you’ll pay as you exit in cash. There’s a minimum consumption of 6 euros.
Bar Conceição 35
Bar Conceição 35 has the most local feel of all the Porto gay bars. There’s nothing particularly flashy about it, and aside from the crowd, it doesn’t look much like a gay bar. But it’s still worth a visit, especially since it’s right around the corner from Invictus Café.
The vibe is very relaxed, with both indoor lounge-like seating as well as some tables along the street. The hostess I met is such a witty and hysterically funny woman who lit up the bar with her personality. I actually met another traveling gay couple here—all thanks to her introducing us!
Pride Bar is one last Porto gay nightclub absolutely worth a mention! Located to the north of the city’s center, you can expect disco vibes and a younger crowd here. Everyone gathers around tables in front of the stage to enjoy the high-energy performances at Pride Bar.
They’re open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays starting at midnight.
Zoom is a fantastic gay club in Porto. It was my absolute favorite. They host epic parties on the weekend, switching between themes. Some are Rio de Janeiro-inspired Brazilian nights with circuit party music, while other nights have more pop music.
The club is quite large—much more spacious than I would have expected for a gay club in Porto. I had a blast dancing and watching the go-go dancers. I even met a Porto gay local here, who I met up with the following day!
Kiosk Mompilher is more of a streetside gay café as opposed to a gay bar. I’d say this place is ideal for a low-key hangout or a casual drink with a friend.
The bar is entirely outdoors. You grab your drink from the kiosk stand and can sit down at one of the tables on the sidewalk.
Fabrik Bar (Gay-Friendly)
I’ve noticed quite a few websites mentioning Fabrik Bar, so I decided to check it out. Turning the corner and arriving outside of the bar, it was clear that Fabrik is not a gay bar.
It may be gay-friendly, but the crowd was entirely mixed. Overall, it was cute but felt like a standard bar.
Along with the fact that navigating through the crowd outside was tough, I decided to move on to the real Porto gay bars.
Porto Gay Saunas, Cruising & Sex Parties
There’s a selection of a few popular gay saunas in Porto. While I didn’t get a chance to visit them all myself, I’ll give you all the essential info about the local gay saunas and cruising bars.
Sauna Thermas is the biggest and most well-known gay sauna in Porto. Facilities include dark rooms, a jacuzzi, private cabins, a dry sauna, and a steam room.
They’re open every day starting at 2 PM and stay open until either midnight or 2 AM depending on the day, which is much later than the other saunas. Sauna Thermas is probably best to visit on weekends when they’re busiest.
Sauna Camões is another popular Porto gay sauna, located not too far from Sauna Thermas mentioned above.
On Saturdays, they’re open from 1 PM until 8 PM. They’re open from 2 PM to 8 PM every other day of the week. So no matter which day you choose, Sauna Camões is a great spot for some daytime gay cruising.
Facilities include a dry sauna, steam room, private cabins, and a cinema room, all spread out over two floors.
While Sauna Camões is on the smaller side, it’s noted to be a cleaner establishment than the other local gay saunas. Reviews also tend to be higher. I think it’s worth a try!
1906 Club Sex Parties
1906 Club hosts several monthly gay sex parties in Porto. Their main event is held one to two times each month, typically on the weekend, and runs from 5 PM to 10 PM. “Re-play” is their smaller gay sex party held on a weekday typically once per month.
Now and then, 1906 Club will host a special one-of-a-kind sex party event, but you’ll need to check their website to see if any of these are in the works. Their website’s main page is always updated to show the next planned event.
Their locations change with each party and are only provided once you’ve signed up to attend. For tourists, these Porto gay sex parties will cost 22 euros for the main event or 12 euros for the weekday re-play event.
Mistik Sauna Club
Mistik Sauna Club welcomes everyone, including gay men. However, this venue is actually branded as a swinger’s spa, which promotes an open and friendly mixed environment.
The facilities are known to be clean and include a dry sauna, Turkish baths, a jacuzzi, and a movie room. Mistik Sauna also tends to have an after-work crowd, so you can expect things to be busiest around 5 PM on weekdays in addition to Friday and Saturday nights.
FUNPLA Cruising Bar
While there’s not so much information about FUNPLA, I still want to mention this local gay cruising bar. It’s a hidden, lesser-known establishment located just east of Porto’s gay district. If you’re interested in an adventure, try it out. I’d love to know what it’s like!
Porto Travel Tips
Bring Walking Shoes
Many travelers are surprised at how hilly the city of Porto is. Aside from the fact that there are a lot of places to walk to, many streets have a decently steep slope.
Don’t Engage with Beggars
I had quite a few beggars approach me while walking around Porto. Not the typical type you’d expect though. One was so formal and polite that even I got tricked into a conversation.
While witnessing this poverty is sad, it’s important to protect yourself by avoiding any interaction with beggars. This is one of my top “anywhere, anytime” travel safety tips.
You never know what people will do and occasionally negative situations can result even when tourists try to help beggars.
Be Prepared for Cooler Nights
Temperatures in Porto are even cooler than in Lisbon, which is already much cooler than other European cities during the summer months.
If you’ll be spending a lot of time outdoors at night, bring a pair of pants and maybe a light jacket. I visited in mid-August, and some nights were pretty chilly.
Porto Trip Planning Links
Sightseeing: Viator and GetYourGuide are two of the most trusted and reliable platforms for tours and activities.
Flights: Skyscanner has the most advanced interface for finding the lowest-cost flights and comparing options.
Hostels & Apartments: I’ve used Hostelworld dozens of times while backpacking. For vacation apartments, I often find deals on VRBO.
Buses, Trains & Rides: Omio is awesome because it compares literally all modes of transport, including BlaBlaCar rideshares. FlixBus is my go-to for bus travel between cities. Their buses are always clean and have Wi-Fi.
Car Rentals: I have always had good experiences with Europcar. If you’re not sure which rental company you prefer, compare them with Discover Cars.
Swimwear: Look your best at the beach or hotel pool with wolfyy’s suggestions from top gay swimwear brands.
Luggage: Check out my favorite suitcases, bags & backpacks for stylish inspiration.
Travel Insurance: Insure your trip against delays, luggage mishaps, and medical issues with Travelex.
See wolfyy’s complete collection of gay travel guides for more gay destination ideas around the world.