Cais da Ribeira (Ribeira Waterfront), Porto

Cais da Ribeira (Ribeira Waterfront), Porto (must see)

The origins of the settlement along the Ribeira is not really known. A riverside settlement developed near the confluence of the Vila River and the Douro River. Some Roman mosaics from the fourth century have been found in the area. The Ribeira grew along with Porto in the 13th century. Especially by the river and Penaventosa hill.

Two settlements arose. One on the escarpment of Penaventosa by Porto Cathedral. The other appeared below in Ribiera on the banks of the Douro River. Until the last decade of the 14th century the settlements were connected by a web of narrow, constricting streets difficult to move around in. A new street was needed to pierce the labyrinth.

On the initiative of John I a new street was opened. In fact, it was called "New Street" (Rua Nova). It was a perfect contrast to the tangled web of passageways of Porto. It was straight, and wide for its time. It became a prestigious address for the bourgeoisie, clergy and business.

The Ribeira district lures the visitor on. It is a captivating place of medieval streets and alleys ending in a busy waterfront square, the Ribeira Square. The remains of the 14th century wall run next to the Ribeira Wharf. Beyond this point are the steep twisted ways of the Barredo.

In the evenings clubs on the Ribeira Wharf promise a stimulating nightlife to romantic strollers. In days gone by the district alongside the Douro River was a center of lively commerce and business.

The Ribeira Square has many shops and cafes. At the northern part of the square is a huge fountain. The Ribeira Wharf starts on the west side of the Luis I Bridge and it follows the riverside to Ribeira Square.

There is an upper walkway where there are more shops and cafes. The walkway is what is left of the old city walls, once patrolled by medieval soldiers on watch. Sit down, have a drink and watch the river with them. Time glides by like the river.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Porto. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Cais da Ribeira (Ribeira Waterfront) on Map

Sight Name: Cais da Ribeira (Ribeira Waterfront)
Sight Location: Porto, Portugal (See walking tours in Porto)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Porto, Portugal

Create Your Own Walk in Porto

Create Your Own Walk in Porto

Creating your own self-guided walk in Porto is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Porto's Monuments and Statues

Porto's Monuments and Statues

In general, just like any other European nation, sunny Portugal is rich in history and matching love of monuments. This is more so evident in the country's second largest city of Porto, dotted with statues and sculptures of various sort, decorating the gardens, sidewalks, squares and various corners. Each of them has its own story; some are quite old, while others are not so much and rather...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles
Historical Churches

Historical Churches

Portugal is one of the oldest countries in Europe, and is home to a number of historic worship sites. The Catholic religion has deep roots in this country, which is why you will see many chapels, churches and monasteries. Whatever your religion may be, you will not be disappointed by your visit to some of Porto's most beautiful places of worship.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.9 Km or 2.4 Miles
Shopping and Food Tour

Shopping and Food Tour

Renowned for its centuries-old culture and architecture, Porto also boasts a wealth of shopping and dining opportunities. With a mix of the modern and historical, the city represents a fertile ground for bargain hunters, foodies and luxury-seekers alike.

Those on the look-out for trendy clothing and accessories, or wanting to sample some delicious local cuisine, will certainly not be...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.9 Km or 1.2 Miles
Porto Historic Center Walking Tour

Porto Historic Center Walking Tour

The Historic Centre of Porto, dating back to the Medieval times, is the oldest part of the city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. Despite all the changes over the years, it has maintained the unique urban characteristics, which are a world apart from other European cities, and preserved much of its legacy from the times gone by.

Firmly set on the hillsides overlooking the mouth of...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 Km or 1.7 Miles
Porto Introduction Walking Tour

Porto Introduction Walking Tour

After 711 Porto fell to Moorish invaders. The Muslim control existed in the Iberian peninsula until 1491. However, the conquest was not total and in 868 things began to change for the people of Porto.

Vimara Peres, an Asturian count of Gallaecia, came to reconquer for the Christians. He secured the town of Portu Cale and the land of Vila Nova de Gaia. Vimara became the Count of Portucale. From...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 Km or 2.1 Miles