Barcelos: The Complete Guide

Cavado River In Barcelos
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Krzysztof Golik

Barcelos, a sprawling river town situated on a plateau encircled by verdant hills, does not boast a singular prominent attraction, but is renowned for its bustling open-air markets. The town holds a significant place in Portuguese folklore as the birthplace of the national icon, the rooster. As per the legend, in the 16th century, a pilgrim passing through Barcelos was falsely accused of theft. Professing his innocence, the pilgrim prophesied that the judge’s dinner that night would exonerate him as well. Astoundingly, a rooster, which was being prepared as the main dish for the magistrate’s dinner, crowed just as it was about to be served, leading to the pilgrim’s release.

Visiting Barcelos for the first time and wondering what are the top places to see in the city? In this complete guide, I share the best things to do in Barcelos on the first visit. To help you plan your trip, I have also included an interactive map and practical tips for visiting!

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4 Best places to See in Barcelos

This complete guide to Barcelos not only tells you about the very best sights and tourist attractions for first-time visitors to the city but also provide insights into a few of our personal favorite things to do.

This is a practical guide to visiting the best places to see in Barcelos and is filled with tips and info that should answer all your questions!

Torre do Cimo da Vila

Barcelos Torre Do Cimo Da Vila
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Pedro
The Torre do Cimo da Vila, also known as Torre de Barcelos, Postigo da Muralha, Torre da Porta, Torre da Porta Nova, or Torre da Cadeia, is situated in the parish of Barcelos, comprising Vila Boa and Vila Frescainha. This tower, located in the city and municipality of the same name, in the district of […]
Location: Torre da Porta Nova, Largo da Porta Nova, Barcelos, Portugal | Distance: 0.20km
Visiting Torre do Cimo da Vila

Olaria de Barcelos (Ceramics Museum)

Museu De Olaria De Barcelos
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Halley Oliveira
The Barcelos Ceramics Museum, housed in the historic Casa dos Mendanhas, a prominent building from the 18th century, showcases a collection of approximately 7,000 pottery pieces from across Portugal and Portuguese-speaking countries, with the primary focus being on pieces from the local region. The museum features a range of interesting pieces, including everyday utilitarian and […]
Location: Museu de Olaria, Rua Cónego Joaquim Gaiolas, Barcelos, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Friday: 10am - 5.30pm; Saturday and Sunday: 10am - 12.30am / 2pm - 5.30pm; Closed: Mondays, 1st january, Easter Sunday, 15 August, 1st November, 24 and 25th December | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Olaria de Barcelos (Ceramics Museum)

Paço dos Duques - Museu Arqueológico de Barcelos

Paço Dos Condes De Barcelo
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Joseolgon
As one enters Barcelos via the bridge spanning the River Cávado, a garden with the ruins of the former Palace of the Counts of Barcelos comes into view, bearing witness to the city’s medieval past. The remains are a vestige of a construction from the early 15th century, commissioned by D. Afonso, the eighth Count […]
Location: Museu Arqueológico, Barcelos, Portugal | Hours: Summer: 9am / 7pm; Winter: 9am / 5.30pm; Open every day | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Paço dos Duques - Museu Arqueológico de Barcelos

Igreja Matriz de Barcelos

Barcelos, Santa María Maior
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Lameiro
The parish church of Barcelos, dedicated to Santa Maria Maior, is a 14th-century monument that still retains its original sturdy medieval appearance. It is adorned with some decorative and architectural features that showcase the imposition of the Gothic style onto a Romanesque structure. The third Count of Barcelos, D. Pedro, initiated its construction, and his […]
Location: Igreja Matriz de Santa Maria Maior, Barcelos, Portugal | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Igreja Matriz de Barcelos

Best Time to Visit Barcelos

Average Temperatures in Barcelos

  • January 15°C 25
  • February 17°C 21
  • March 19°C 19
  • April 23°C 16
  • May 24°C 11
  • June 26°C 6
  • July 30°C 2
  • August 30°C 2
  • September 28°C 9
  • October 25°C 29
  • November 18°C 26
  • December 16°C 27