First time in Europe: Porto, Portugal, with kids, for a month

Winter averse but yearn for Europe? Try Portugal

After 6 months RVing across the USA, we are now international again! First stop? Porto, Portugal… with kids!

This is our family’s first time in mainland Europe. But why did we choose a place known as Portugal’s second city?

We want to thank Visit Porto for sponsoring our Porto.CARDs, which we could use for discounts on attractions and public transportation. However, this article reflects our own personal opinions and experiences.

Cheap flight with points

We flew from Miami to Porto via Amsterdam on Air France. Points covered the entire airfare. All we had to pay were the taxes.

Mild weather, even in winter

We’re a bit, shall we say, winter averse. Our first trip to Europe coincides with winter, so we are hanging in the more southern countries. Our time so far has had some rainy and foggy days, but the overall temps are mild—and the skies are clearing.

Affordable, reasonable cost of living on a family budget

Where to stay in Porto

We found a 2BR apartment minutes from the city center, and a 28-day stay got us a substantial discount.

Affordable food and drink

Just down the block is a lovely grocery store, and around the corner is a larger supermarket. Prices for food (and port!) have been quite affordable. Here are a few examples:

  • Bottle of tawny port, €6
  • Boule of very good bread with whole wheat flour, €1
  • Half-pound of ground coffee, €4

We haven’t dined out much yet. But so far when we’ve gone to cafes for drinks and treats, we’ve spent about €15–20.

Near the ocean and along the river

From many hilltop viewpoints in Porto, you can see the ocean just beyond the city, and you can watch the Douro River finish its run to the Atlantic.

Porto is a lovely place to explore Portugal and Europe with kids

Porto is a chill, workaday city. History is deep in every mossy wall and rounded cobblestone. The city especially reminds us of Old Town Edinburgh in Scotland. So far, we’ve found Porto a relaxed place where we can walk around the city, feel the history all around, and enjoy good meals and a nice glass of wine.

Save on attractions and public transportation with the Porto.CARD

The Porto.CARD is only available from Visit Porto
Image: Visit Porto

We also saved money on attractions and public transportation with the Porto.CARD, available exclusively through Visit Porto, the official tourism board for the Porto area. You can get Porto.CARDs for the entire family, with options for only savings on attractions, or get the Transport option for savings on public buses and metro lines.

First time in Europe? Porto, Portugal
About the author
Learners and Makers
We are the St. Clair Family: Anthony, Jodie, Connor, and Aster. As Learners and Makers, our family of four slows down, connects, and enjoys the world and each other's company. We have been traveling full time since 2022.

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