Espinho Travel Guide

Discover the best things to do, see, eat, and experience in Espinho. This comprehensive guide covers the top cultural attractions, natural wonders, hiking and biking routes, local cuisine, accommodations, local customs, safety tips, and much more.

Introduction to Espinho

Welcome to Espinho – a hidden gem in Northern Portugal! This charming seaside town is located in the region of Douro Litoral and is a perfect destination for those seeking natural beauty, cultural experiences, and delicious cuisine.

Espinho may not be as well-known as some of Portugal’s other tourist hotspots, such as Porto or Lisbon, but it has much to offer visitors. With its stunning beaches, historic landmarks, hiking trails, and thriving gastronomy scene, Espinho is a must-visit destination for any traveler.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore all the best things to do, see, eat, and experience in Espinho. From cultural attractions to natural wonders, we’ll cover it all!

List of Places to Visit in Espinho

Here’s a list of the top places to visit in Espinho:

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  1. Museu Municipal de Espinho – Learn about Espinho’s rich history through its collection of artifacts and exhibitions. The museum covers various topics, from archaeology to marine biology.

  2. Castelo de Santa Maria da Feira – A well-preserved medieval castle located just a short drive from Espinho. The castle offers incredible views of the surrounding area and is a great spot for photos.

  3. Igreja Matriz de Espinho – This historic church dates back to the 16th century and is a great example of Baroque architecture.

Natural Attractions of Espinho: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  1. Praia de Espinho – A beautiful stretch of beach with crystal-clear waters and soft sand. This is Espinho’s main beach and is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and beach sports.

  2. Serra da Freita – Located just a short drive from Espinho, the Serra da Freita mountain range offers countless hiking trails, scenic drives, and beautiful waterfalls.

  3. Miradouro do Pau da Cruz – This viewpoint offers stunning panoramic views of Espinho and the surrounding coastline. It’s a great spot to watch the sunset!

Hiking/Biking Routes of Espinho

Espinho is a great destination for hiking and biking enthusiasts. Here are some of the best trails to explore:

  1. PR2 - Rota dos Moinhos – This 15 km trail takes you through the beautiful countryside of Espinho and passes by a few historic windmills.

  2. Trilho dos Pescadores – This scenic coastal trail takes you along the stunning coastline of Espinho and offers incredible views of the ocean.

  3. PR1 - Rota da Serra da Freita – This 12 km trail leads you through the stunning Serra da Freita mountain range and takes you past some picturesque waterfalls.

Best Things to Do in Espinho: Activities and Tours

There’s so much to do in Espinho! Here are some must-try activities and tours:

  1. Surfing Lessons – Espinho is a great spot for surfing, and there are plenty of surf schools in town that offer lessons for all skill levels.

  2. Fisherman’s Trail – Take a guided tour along the Fisherman’s Trail and learn all about the rich fishing culture of Espinho.

  3. Street Art Tour – Espinho is full of beautiful street art, and taking a guided tour is a great way to see it all.

Week-Long Itinerary for Espinho

Here’s a suggested week-long itinerary for Espinho:

Day Activity
1 Explore Espinho’s beaches and visit the Museu Municipal de Espinho.
2 Take a day trip to the nearby city of Porto.
3 Hike the PR2 - Rota dos Moinhos trail and visit the Castelo de Santa Maria da Feira.
4 Relax on the beach and take a surfing lesson.
5 Visit the Serra da Freita mountain range and hike the PR1 - Rota da Serra da Freita trail.
6 Take a street art tour of Espinho and enjoy the local cuisine.
7 Tour the Fisherman’s Trail and watch the sunset at Miradouro do Pau da Cruz.

Food and Drink Scene of Espinho

Espinho’s food and drink scene is a foodie’s paradise! Here are some must-try dishes and local beverages:

Must-Try Dishes

  1. Arroz de Tamboril – A delicious rice dish made with monkfish, peppers, and tomatoes.

  2. Bacalhau com Natas – A creamy casserole made with codfish, potatoes, and cream.

  3. Francesinha – A hearty sandwich filled with meats and topped with melted cheese and a spicy sauce.

Local Beverages

  1. Vinho Verde – A light, refreshing wine from the Douro region.

  2. Port Wine – A sweet dessert wine from Porto.

  3. Cerveja Sagres – A popular beer in Portugal.

Where to Stay in Espinho: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Espinho has plenty of accommodation options to suit all budgets. Here are some of the best places to stay:

  1. Hotel Solverde Spa & Wellness Center – A luxurious hotel located right on the beach.

  2. Espinho Guesthouse – A cozy guesthouse located in the heart of town.

  3. Beach Hostel Espinho – A budget-friendly hostel just a short walk from the beach.

What to Buy in Espinho: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

If you’re looking for souvenirs or gifts to bring home, here are some great options:

  1. Portuguese Ceramics – Espinho is known for its beautiful ceramics, so why not pick up a handmade piece to take home?

  2. Local Wine or Port – A bottle of Vinho Verde or Port wine is a great souvenir for wine enthusiasts.

  3. Sardines in a Can – Portugal is famous for its canned sardines, and Espinho has plenty of shops selling them.

Local Culture and Customs of Espinho

Here are some interesting facts about the local culture and customs of Espinho:

  1. Fishing Culture – Espinho has a rich fishing culture, and many local restaurants specialize in seafood dishes.

  2. Carnival – Espinho’s Carnival is one of the biggest in Portugal, with colorful parades and festive events taking place all over town.

  3. The Beach – The beach is an integral part of Espinho’s culture, and many locals spend their days relaxing on the sand or playing beach sports.

Best Time to Visit Espinho

The best time to visit Espinho is between May and September when the weather is warm and sunny. However, the town is beautiful year-round, and the offseason is a great time to visit if you prefer fewer crowds.

Do’s and Don’ts of Espinho

Here are some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when visiting Espinho:


  • Do try the local cuisine, especially the seafood dishes.

  • Do visit some of the historic landmarks and museums in town.

  • Do spend some time relaxing on the beautiful beaches of Espinho.


  • Don’t be disrespectful of the local customs or culture.

  • Don’t leave your valuables unattended on the beach.

  • Don’t litter or leave trash on the beach or in public areas.

Safety and Health

Safety in Espinho

Espinho is a safe town, but as with any tourist destination, visitors should take some precautions. Here are some tips to stay safe:

  • Keep your valuables close and out of sight, especially on the beach.

  • Be aware of your surroundings, especially at night.

  • Use common sense and be cautious when walking alone or in unfamiliar areas.

Health in Espinho

Portugal has excellent healthcare, and Espinho has several public and private clinics. If you need medical assistance, seek help from a doctor or medical facility.

Getting to Espinho: Transportation Options and Logistics

Located just 20 kilometers south of Porto and 40 kilometers north of Aveiro, Espinho is easily accessible by car, bus, or train.

Airports Near Espinho

The nearest airport to Espinho is Porto Airport, located just a 30-minute drive from town.

Bus Stations Near Espinho

Espinho has a central bus station with regular routes to many towns in the surrounding areas.

Other Options

There are several car rental companies in Espinho, making it easy to explore the surrounding region independently.

How to Get Around in Espinho

Most of Espinho’s attractions are within walking distance of each other, but if you need it, the town has a good bus service.

Where to Go Next from Espinho: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

There are plenty of nearby destinations and excursions to explore from Espinho, including:

  • Porto – Just a 30-minute drive south of Espinho, Porto is a picturesque city famous for its wine, architecture, and historic landmarks.

  • Aveiro – A beautiful coastal town located just 40 kilometers north of Espinho. Known as the “Portuguese Venice,” Aveiro is famous for its canals, colorful boats, and fresh seafood.

  • Serra do Montemuro – A stunning mountain range located just a short drive east of Espinho. The Serra do Montemuro is known for its scenic hiking trails and breathtaking views.


Espinho is a beautiful and culturally rich destination in Northern Portugal. Whether you’re interested in hiking, beach holidays, history, or gastronomy, Espinho has something for everyone. With this comprehensive guide, you’re now ready to plan your dream trip to Espinho and experience this hidden gem for yourself!