The Botanic Garden is very close to my place. So, one of these pleasant sunny afternoons (yes, we have a lot of them this year) I went there. The area of Campo Alegre is quite busy during weekdays, but not so much in the weekends, and the Botanic Garden is a wonderful oasis anytime.
There’s a beautiful house, small-palace style, typical from this area of Porto in late 19th century to early 20th, owned by a rich family of Port wine merchants until the mid 1900s. Sophia de Mello Breyner, probably the most famous Portuguese female poet, part of that family, has a statue in the garden. The house has been under renovation, and usually hosts exhibitions.
The garden has been a Botanic garden since the 1950s, and has many different species from all around the world, two ponds, and a greenhouse. It’s really worth discovering, either for its botanical feature (paid guided visits), or just as a relaxing refuge.
In the surrounding area there are several of these amazing Porto houses worth discovering, like in Rua Antonio Cardoso. One of them is Casa das Artes (cinema, photo, exhibitions) at no. 175.
The garden doesn’t have a cafe (yet?) but you can find nice places to eat in the area, like Alicantina and Petulia (Rua do Campo Alegre 814 and 654) or BB Gourmet (Antonio Cardoso 301).
Going down Rua Campo Alegre you’ll reach the river shore not far away.
PS – the National Geographic photo exhibition there very worth checking!