Barcelos is a charming medieval town with a strong sense of individuality located west of Braga. This is derived from craftsman customs such as ceramics and the Galo de Barcelo, the decorative rooster that came to represent Portugal. One of Portugal’s biggest weekly markets takes place on Thursdays. In addition to the typical fresh fruit, it offers a treasure trove of traditional, handcrafted items like as “figurados,” painted galos, reed baskets, and much more.
There are many churches ranging from medieval to Baroque, a medieval tower, and the somber remnants of a palace that was formerly home to the Dukes of Braganza.
- Best Things to Do in Barcelos (Portugal)
- 1. Visit the Barcelos Historic Center
- 2. Discover the Barcelos Castle
- 3. Explore the Archeological Museum of Barcelos
- 4. Wander through the Municipal Market
- 5. Visit the Church of Bom Jesus da Cruz
- 6. Explore the Casa dos Condes de Barcelos
- 7. Enjoy a Picnic at the Ponte Medieval Park
- 8. Discover the Igreja do Senhor da Cruz
- 9. Take a Boat Ride on the Cávado River
- 10. Explore the Barcelos Ceramic Museum
- 11. Attend the Barcelos Weekly Market
- 12. Visit the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Franqueira
- 13. Explore the Barcelos Municipal Theater
- 14. Relax at the Barcelos Urban Park
- 15. Visit the Chapel of São Frutuoso de Montélios
- 16. Explore the Barcelos Pottery Trail
- 17. Visit the Church of Santa Maria de Galegos
- 18. Take a Day Trip to the Peneda-Gerês National Park
- 19. Taste the Local Gastronomy
- 20. Attend the Barcelos Medieval Fair
- 21. Visit the Chapel of São João Baptista
- 22. Discover the Barcelos Bullring
- 23. Explore the Barcelos Toy Museum
- 24. Take a Wine Tasting Tour
- 25. Explore the Barcelos Municipal Archive
- 26. Visit the Chapel of Santa Luzia
- 27. Take a Guided Walking Tour
- 28. Attend a Traditional Festa
- 29. Explore the Barcelos Municipal Library
- 30. Take a Cooking Class
Best Things to Do in Barcelos (Portugal)
1. Visit the Barcelos Historic Center
Immerse yourself in the rich history of Barcelos by exploring its charming historic center. Admire the medieval architecture, stroll through narrow streets lined with traditional houses, and visit the iconic Barcelos Bridge.
2. Discover the Barcelos Castle
Explore the impressive Barcelos Castle, which dates back to the 14th century. Take a guided tour to learn about its fascinating history and enjoy panoramic views of the city from the castle walls.
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3. Explore the Archeological Museum of Barcelos
Delve into Barcelos’ past at the Archeological Museum, where you can discover artifacts from different periods, including prehistoric, Roman, and medieval times. Gain insights into the region’s rich cultural heritage.
4. Wander through the Municipal Market
Experience the vibrant atmosphere of the Municipal Market, where you can find a wide variety of fresh produce, local handicrafts, and traditional products. Taste some regional delicacies and interact with friendly locals.
5. Visit the Church of Bom Jesus da Cruz
Marvel at the intricate architecture of the Church of Bom Jesus da Cruz, known for its beautiful azulejo tiles and impressive baroque altarpiece. Take a moment to appreciate the serene atmosphere and religious artworks.
6. Explore the Casa dos Condes de Barcelos
Step inside the Casa dos Condes de Barcelos, a historic building that now houses the Municipal Library and the Municipal Archive. Admire the grandeur of the interior and learn about the noble families who once lived here.
7. Enjoy a Picnic at the Ponte Medieval Park
Escape the bustling city and relax at the Ponte Medieval Park. Pack a picnic and enjoy the peaceful surroundings while admiring the medieval bridge and the Cávado River.
8. Discover the Igreja do Senhor da Cruz
Visit the Igreja do Senhor da Cruz, a beautiful church known for its stunning rococo-style interior. Admire the intricate woodwork, gilded altarpieces, and the impressive organ.
9. Take a Boat Ride on the Cávado River
Experience Barcelos from a different perspective by taking a boat ride on the Cávado River. Enjoy the picturesque scenery and learn about the importance of the river in the region’s history.
10. Explore the Barcelos Ceramic Museum
Discover the art of ceramics at the Barcelos Ceramic Museum. Learn about the traditional techniques used to create the famous Barcelos rooster and other beautiful pottery pieces.
11. Attend the Barcelos Weekly Market
Immerse yourself in the local culture by visiting the Barcelos Weekly Market, one of the largest and most vibrant markets in Portugal. Browse through stalls selling everything from fresh produce to handicrafts.
12. Visit the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Franqueira
Take a trip to the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Franqueira, located on a hill overlooking Barcelos. Enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding countryside and learn about the religious significance of the chapel.
13. Explore the Barcelos Municipal Theater
Experience the arts at the Barcelos Municipal Theater, which hosts a variety of cultural events, including theater performances, concerts, and dance shows. Check the schedule for upcoming shows during your visit.
14. Relax at the Barcelos Urban Park
Unwind and enjoy nature at the Barcelos Urban Park. Take a leisurely stroll, have a picnic, or simply sit back and relax in the peaceful surroundings of this well-maintained park.
15. Visit the Chapel of São Frutuoso de Montélios
Discover the Chapel of São Frutuoso de Montélios, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located near Barcelos. Admire the intricate carvings and architectural details of this early medieval chapel.
16. Explore the Barcelos Pottery Trail
Embark on a journey along the Barcelos Pottery Trail, where you can visit local pottery workshops and witness the craftsmanship behind the region’s famous ceramics. Purchase unique souvenirs directly from the artisans.
17. Visit the Church of Santa Maria de Galegos
Marvel at the Romanesque architecture of the Church of Santa Maria de Galegos. Admire the beautiful sculptures and reliefs that adorn the exterior of this ancient church.
18. Take a Day Trip to the Peneda-Gerês National Park
Escape to nature and explore the stunning landscapes of the Peneda-Gerês National Park, located just a short drive from Barcelos. Hike through scenic trails, swim in crystal-clear lagoons, and admire breathtaking waterfalls.
19. Taste the Local Gastronomy
Indulge in the flavors of Barcelos by sampling the local gastronomy. Try traditional dishes such as arroz de pato (duck rice), bacalhau à braga (codfish), and the famous Barcelos roasted rooster.
20. Attend the Barcelos Medieval Fair
Experience the magic of the Middle Ages at the Barcelos Medieval Fair, held annually in July. Immerse yourself in the medieval atmosphere, watch historical reenactments, and browse through stalls selling traditional crafts.
21. Visit the Chapel of São João Baptista
Explore the Chapel of São João Baptista, a beautiful example of Manueline architecture. Admire the intricate details of the façade and the stunning stained glass windows.
22. Discover the Barcelos Bullring
Learn about the traditional Portuguese sport of bullfighting at the Barcelos Bullring. Take a guided tour to understand the history and cultural significance of this controversial spectacle.
23. Explore the Barcelos Toy Museum
Step into a world of nostalgia at the Barcelos Toy Museum. Admire a collection of vintage toys and learn about the history of toy-making in the region.
24. Take a Wine Tasting Tour
Discover the rich wine heritage of Barcelos by taking a wine tasting tour. Visit local wineries, learn about the winemaking process, and sample a variety of regional wines.
25. Explore the Barcelos Municipal Archive
Delve into the historical documents and records of Barcelos at the Municipal Archive. Learn about the city’s past and gain insights into the cultural and social development of the region.
26. Visit the Chapel of Santa Luzia
Enjoy panoramic views of Barcelos from the Chapel of Santa Luzia, located on a hill overlooking the city. Admire the beautiful architecture and the intricate tilework.
27. Take a Guided Walking Tour
Discover the hidden gems of Barcelos by taking a guided walking tour. Learn about the city’s history, legends, and traditions from a knowledgeable local guide.
28. Attend a Traditional Festa
Experience the vibrant atmosphere of a traditional festa in Barcelos. Join the locals in celebrating religious or cultural events, enjoy live music, and indulge in delicious traditional food.
29. Explore the Barcelos Municipal Library
Visit the Barcelos Municipal Library, housed in the historic Casa dos Condes de Barcelos. Browse through a wide selection of books, relax in the reading area, or attend literary events.
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30. Take a Cooking Class
Learn to prepare traditional Portuguese dishes by taking a cooking class in Barcelos. Discover the secrets of local recipes and techniques, and savor the fruits of your labor.
With so many incredible things to do in Barcelos, you are sure to have an unforgettable experience in this charming Portuguese city. Whether you are interested in history, culture, nature, or gastronomy, Barcelos has something to offer for everyone.