Outside Porto – Chaves

Explore Portugal with AtWill’s tips! Today: Chaves.


Located near the Spanish border, in northern Portugal, Chaves is a charismatic city crossed by the Tâmega River that offers a great mix of natural landscapes and historical legacy! With the passing of time the city suffered many occupations – the Romans, for example, called Chaves “Aquae Flaviae” (because of the emperor Flávio Vespasiano), reason because its inhabitants are named “flavienses“!


A walk in the city center is a great historical lesson! Some places that you can visit in Chaves are: Menagem Tower and Medieval Castle, the protective wall, São Francisco fortress, the roman bridge, “paço dos Duques de Bragança” and the roman baths. Here’s our list of those places that we think are really worth a visit and why:


The city’s main attraction is the Menage Tower, erected in medieval times and classified a National Monument in 1938. Nowadays there’s a Military Museum inside the tower, holding exhibitions about the city history. At the top you can enjoy a magnificent view over the city and the river! Tickets cost 1€ and you can visit it between 9am to 1pm and 2pm and 5:30pm.

Other military attractions are two fortresses: São Franscico and São Neutel. These fortresses were constructed during the Restaurantion war (17th century) and have a similar architecture. Although they suffered a lot of with the spanish attacks they are both in good shape and very well conserved. It’s only possible to visit them from the outside.

Another very well preserved monument is Trajano Bridge, the roman bridge that crosses Tâmega River. With 12 arches and made of granite, it is considered one of the city’s greatest monument both for its beauty and resistance! Also Chaves has a lot of public gardens – look the Public Garden, the oldest in town; Tabolado Garden, Bacalhau garden and the beautiful garden outside the Menage tower.

Don’t miss a visit to the recently inaugurated Nadir Afonso Museum of Contemporary Art! Working since last June, the museum building was designed by the famous Siza Vieira and holds a incredible collection of Nadir Afonso’s works. They also present temporary exhibitions of contemporary artists. Check their page for more information!

Last but not least, another great reason to visit Chaves is to try the original “Pastel de Chaves“, a local delicacy famous in the entire country! Made of puff pastry and with different fillings, choose your favourite kind and enjoy!


We hope you liked our tips and go visit Chaves! And check here more places you can explore near Porto :)

Don’t forget: to see everything Porto has to offer, book a tour with us! We will tell you all about Porto and region!

Photos: BestGuide Portugal|monumental.chaves.pt|travel-in-portugal.com|Checkin com Sandra|Flickr|Vortex Magazine|Alma de Viajante|diarioatual.com