Porto, Portugal
Cátia, 29
Civil Engineer
see her Porto city guide

ask Cátia about

burgers parks fine dining bakery breakfast and brunch cocktail bars museums concerts walkways picnic spots

What do you do and why do you do it?

I am a Civil Engineer and I work as a construction manager. I love management, planning and the art of creation that this job allows. It is a complex and a bit chaotic sector, but the sense of accomplishment when I finish a building or rehabilitation is awesome. I also love logic and induction so this job is a great way to practice those.

You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?

If we are being totally honest where I have to say Adele. She just gets it! I mean she puts in words all the feelings and emotions and drama that we all have been through!

What are the best TV shows of all time?

Gladly this is not asking my favorite because I do have a list! So let's start with Friends, that taught me a lot about life and made me laugh even more. Then Breaking Bad, Heisenberg is this genius who made us think about values like family, honor and courage. I'm also a huge fan of Game of Thrones, anyone with me? The dialogues, the plot twists, the fabulous scenarios, the drama, the romance! What a show! And this year I got also addicted to Westworld. It is just mind blowing and I admire such creativity and imagination. Also I got a bit scare by what the future may offers technology speaking but I try not to think too much about it!

Name some spots in Porto that are good for a Tinder date.

My favourite spot is called Base. It is a bar located right in the heart of the city, in a garden created in the rooftop of a parking lot. The music and the staff are just super cool and also the parties are great. Moustache is also on my top, since it was one of the first coffee shop's opening in the city and I love the concept and the decoration. BOP is also a great spot. The lights are a bit darker than we are used to, which helps to create a quite mysterious place. The menu has also great choices so I had to include it!

Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?

My favorite place to go shopping is Rua Sta Catarina. There you can find all the coolest shops all located in a beautiful old street. It is a tour and a shopping all in one place. When I want something more vintage or hipster Rua Miguel Bombarda is the best street to find it, which is also consider the Art District of Porto.

What restaurant in Porto looks crap, but the food’s amazing?

Sandeira is this small place that if you go on the street you won't have your eyes wanting to enter there. The decoration is old style, the place is really small so it doesn't make your eyes pop. But don't fool yourself by this description. Sandeira has delicious sandwiches and salads with fresh ingredients and amazing combination of flavors.

Where can you get the best cocktail in Porto? Which one do you like?

I love a place called Terrace Lounge 360º. It is located at the building Espaço Porto Cruz, that has a museum about Porto wine, a shop, wine tasting, and in the rooftop there is a bar with an awesome view to the river and the city. I would suggest you to try a cocktail with Porto wine like Porto Tonic since it is from our local production and really tasty.

Which snacks can you only get in your country, and which ones do you recommend?

We Portugueses LOVE to eat, so we have quite a few specialties. Salty snacks that you can find in Porto are hot dogs Batalha's style at Snack-bar Gazela, pasteis de bacalhau (it is a fried ball of cod) also delicious and easy to find at any restaurant. Casa Guedes is a snack bar known by is pork sandwiches. I must also recommend for you to try the famous Francesinha, a meat sandwich with tasty sauce at Cafe Santiago. If you are a dessert lover like I am, you must try our Pasteis de Nata, you can put cinnamon or powder sugar on the top, I love with power sugar! At Porto I also suggest the eclair from Leitaria do Paço, they are just delicious.

What are the Porto spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

In the city center there are some must sees like Avenida dos Aliados, Rua do Almada, Clérigos Tower, Livraria Lello (which inspired J. K. Rowlling), Rua das Flores, Palácio da Bolsa, São Francisco Church, Ribeira, Dom Luis Bridge, Porto wine cellars, S. Bento Station, Rua Sta Catarina, Crystal Palace and its gardens, Serralves Garden, Casa da Música and Mercado do Bom Sucesso. Then if the schedule allows it, explore Rua Miguel Bombarda, Cedofeita and the city park. This are the top spots of the city and if you can you should check them all!

Tomorrow’s your last day in Porto. How do you spend it?

I would start the day with a big breakfast at Diplomata (best pancakes!!), then would go to Dom Luis bridge just to enjoy the best view of the town. I think it is the best place to feel that you're at the lovely Porto. Than I would go in the direction of Foz do Douro, which is where the river meets the sea. I would have lunch in Mercearia do Miguel, that is the cutest snack bar/ grocery shop. Then I would go to Serralves, do a walk and just enjoy the nature. To finish, I would go to Edifício Transparente to have a drink and appreciate the sunset.

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

I have visited quite a few countries and without a doubt my favorite trip was to Croatia. I am a sun and beach lover and Croatia's coast is just breathtaking. I drove from Dubrovnik to Split, and between them I went to Hvar. The colours of the sea, the quiet and peace, the breeze coming from the sea, it was a unique and unforgettable experience. Then we went to one of my dream places: Plitvice Lakes. It blown me away and I loved that trip. I think Croatia it's the paradise on earth, for nature and sea lovers. I just wish I can come back there soon!

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Ana Marta Ferreira