Miranda do Douro, Portugal, is a rather tiny town. As you probably have heard, the small towns in Portugal are the gems of the country. Miranda do Douro is one of those gems. It is located right on the border between the main Iberian Peninsula countries, on the shores of the Douro river. Perfect for a short stop on you way to Porto, or even organize a Douro Valley day trip.
Its geographic situation makes Miranda do Douro the ideal place to be for every nature lover, but these are not the only activities you can do to have an exceptional time. Next we will tell you all you need to know about Miranda Do Douro, Portugal.
Miranda do Douro boat trips:
Arribes del Duero natural park
Taking the Miranda do Douro boat trip and Shailing through the most important river of Portugal, was the highlight of the trip for us. After your visit, you will understand why this place is twice in our top things to do in Miranda do Douro. Luckily, we had the chance to enjoy it from up above and also from the Douro river.
On the first day’s afternoon, we decided to take the Douro river cruise. An hour and a half beautiful trip that will leave you speachless. From the boat, you can see a wide variety of birds (golden eagle, the native black stork). You might also have the chance to spot otters in the wildlife. But don’t worry if you don’t see any animal because the impressive view you have during the douro river boat trip, will be more than enough.
Traditional portuguese food
It is well known that Portugal and Spain are two of those countries racing to make the best food. In that regard, Miranda Do Douro has the great advantage of being located between these two countries, which leads them to have not just really good food, but also a great variety to choose. One of the most famous dishes is the Iberico Ham. The “chorizo”, the “lomo” and the “salchichón” are also must try portuguese dishes. In despite of portuguese pork´s reputation, this is not the main meal of the Mirandeses, but the cod fish (“bacalao”), which by the way, is served in most of Miranda do Douro´s restaurants, so don´t forget to try it!
Visit Miranda do Douro Cathedral.
As said before, Miranda Do Douro is a small town, therefore it is not known for having outstanding monuments. However there is one that needs to be mentioned, and you should add to your top things to do in Miranda do Douro. Miranda do Douro cathedral is located in the historical center and it still the place of worship of the town. The insides are beautiful and it´s worth it spending some time observing the art of the cathedral. It is a Portugal must see.
As we are always looking for the best photos, we prefer to spend more time outside, in the surroundings. In the back side, you will find the ruins of the old Episcopal Palace and a stunning garden. From there, you can what was for us one of the best Miranda do Douro photos (the postcard of the trip). So make sure you bring wide lenses. But the best of this spot, is enjoying the view of the river, which it will also be a perfect drone flight!
Locals, Mirandese language and old town
Another thing you should do in Miranda Do Douro, is meeting the locals. The best place to do it, is the old town.
The Mirandeses have their own language, the Mirandese. They speak Portuguese and some Spanish ass well. Anyway, don´t worry if you don´t speak any of these idioms because they´ll always try to understand and help with anything you need.
Next to the main square, you can see a church placed in another beautiful square. This one and the cathedral, are the main places of worship in the old town.
We also advise you to wonder through the different streets. The white streets will remind you to the ones in Mikonos and the old town is not really big, so you won´t need much time for it.
At last before leaving the historical center, go visit the ruins of Miranda do Douro´s castle.
Pauliteiros of Miranda do Douro
The historical center is surrounded by a wall. When you go through it, taking any of the three main streets, you´ll arrive to the most important square of the town. Once there you´ll find the sculpture of the Pauliteiros de Miranda do Douro dressed with the typical Mirandeses´ clothes. The Pauliteiros is a popular group in the Miranda land specialized in the traditional portuguese dance of the town. Two of the most important buildings are located here. In one side, the town hall and in the other side the Museu da Terra de Miranda. In the museum you´ll get to know more about the history of Miranda.
Enjoy the best view of the Douro Valley
As we said at the begining, we have to add two of the Douro valley tours to the list of top things to do in Miranda do Douro, there is a reason why this place is one of the world heritage sites in Portugal.
The other tour we are talking about, is enjoying what is known as the Grand Canyon of Europe, from above.
There are many viewpoints from where you can admire an impressive view of the Douro valley in Portugal. However, the most impressive one of all of them, is with no doubt São Joao das Arribas. Perfect place for who wants to relax enjoying nature and also for whoever is up to a nice hike.
Out of all the ones in the list, we advise you to come here first if you just have a couple of hours in Miranda do Douro. It was our favorite part of the trip, and we are sure you won´t regret it!
Miranda do Douro hotels
Miranda do Douro is a small town, but that doesn´t mean is hard to find places where you can stay. You can decide to go to an Airbnb, to a hostel or even try to rent an apartment for a few days… the options are unlimited. Anyway if you end up looking for hotels in Miranda do Douro, there are more than 70 hotels! These are our favourite recommendations:
Casas campo cimo da quinta miranda do douro
The hotel “Casas campo cimo da quinta” was our first hotel when we visited Miranda do Douro. We enjoyed a lot our stay at the hotel, it´s perfect if you are just looking for a place where you can be more relaxed and also have a taste of the rural atmosphere. It´s located 6km far from Miranda do Douro. And last of all what we enjoyed the most of this hotel was the food, as it was all typical food from the area, DELICIOUS!! By the way the hotel also owns a pool, which is perfect for summer time!
Hotel Turismo Miranda do Douro
The purpose of the “Hotel Turismo Miranda” is totally different. It´s a smaller hotel, but it´s located just 100 meters far from the old town, which is perfect if your idea of the trip is just to enjoy the small town of Portugal and use the hotel just to sleep and have some rest. The rooms are comfortable enough and you will find free wifi at the hotel.
Miranda do Douro Map
As we said before, what Miranda do Douro is famous for is because it´s location on the map. It´s a region situated betweeen Portugal and Spain, right by the Douro river. It´s a great advantage as you can either go if you are in Spain or if you are in Portugal as the distances are not really long.
Weather Miranda do Douro Portugal
If you are wondering, when is the best time to visit Miranda do Douro, then you should know all these tips about the Miranda do Douro weather:
If you are not a big fan of the rain, Miranda do Douro should not be your choosen destination during October to February (February the worst), as it rains a lot during these months. Other than that July and August are the hottest months, so try to avoid those two. Our favourite optios are May/June or September, as the weather is great and you can feel the summer vibes!