The Best Hotels in Braga, Portugal, for Every Traveller

Amid the elegant, narrow streets, Braga is home to chic boutiques, upscale restaurants and plazas with lively cafes
Amid the elegant, narrow streets, Braga is home to chic boutiques, upscale restaurants and plazas with lively cafes | © Marek Stepan / Alamy Stock Photo
Mary Lussiana

“In Porto they work, in Braga they pray, and in Lisbon they play,” goes the old saying. But in among the baroque churches in the third-largest city in Portugal, its elegant, narrow streets also host chic boutiques, upscale restaurants and plazas that buzz with lively cafes. Don’t miss a visit to the oldest cathedral in the country, or the magnificent Bom Jesus do Monte sanctuary before worshipping at these hotels in Braga – bookable on Culture Trip.

1. Meliá Braga Hotel and Spa

Hotel, Spa Hotel

The outdoor free-form pool and poolside dining at Meliá Braga Hotel & Spa
Courtesy of Meliá Braga Hotel and Spa / Expedia

The modern architecture and clean contemporary lines of this hotel stand out against the baroque architecture in Braga. There’s a good-size spa with a wide range of treatments available, a sinuous outdoor pool set amid the olive trees and the El Olivo restaurant offering Portuguese favourites, such as pumpkin soup and bacalhau (salt cod) with chickpeas. Rooms are bright and light-filled, and the executive suites come with kitchenettes, too.

2. Hotel Moon and Sun Braga

Hotel, Boutique Hotel

The glass-fronted ground-level exterior with black awnings at the Hotel Moon & Sun Braga
Courtesy of Hotel Moon and Sun Braga / Expedia

Overlooking the beautiful 17th-century Church of the Third Order of Saint Francis, this 25-room architecturally arresting hotel in Braga offers modern interiors with large balconies from which to survey the city. The neon-lit, street-spying Moon & Sun Tapas Bar offers both sharing plates and a wide range of bite-size Portuguese tapas dishes. Even the corridors look good here – like they should be in an art gallery – but it’s the bespoke concierge that really makes it stand out, offering the inside scoop on the best city sights, on and off the tourist map.

3. Burgus Tribute and Design Hotel

Hotel, Independent Hotel, Boutique Hotel

Carved decorative discs adorn a wall behind a red-coloured sitting area at the Burgus Tribute & Design Hotel
Courtesy of Burgus Tribute and Design Hotel / Expedia

This comfortable 14-room hotel is in the Old Town of Braga, just a short walk from the city cathedral – a national monument that’s well worth visiting for its mix of Moorish, gothic, baroque and Romanesque elements. The “tribute” in the hotel’s name nods to the theme of referencing the area’s founding fathers and foremost sites in its rooms. At restaurant Mi A Mi, you can dine on specialities of fish and lobster soup, followed by roasted octopus with crushed potatoes.

4. Mercure Braga Centro

Hotel, Chain Hotel

A guest room with mustard-yellow and aubergine accents at the Mercure Braga Centro
Courtesy of Mercure Braga Centro / Expedia

This clean-lined, modern hotel in Braga is near the cathedral. Regional specialities are served in the restaurant, which draws on the area’s rich bounty; think hearty stews and soups, sausages and codfish accompanied by vinho verde from the local vineyards. Work it all off at the fitness club or by taking a dip in the outdoor pool.

5. Villa Garden Braga

Hotel, Boutique Hotel

A sitting area with a green tufted sofa, a painting of a bird and tile flooring at the Villa Garden Braga
Courtesy of Villa Garden Braga / Expedia

Housed in an elegant villa dating back to the 19th century, this hotel makes an excellent base from which to explore Braga, with bikes to rent from reception. The gardens are peaceful and inset with a swimming pool. The restaurant serves traditional Portuguese cuisine and a good list of local wines. The 26 bedrooms, split between the old mansion and the more modern part, are simply but comfortably furnished with wood floors and free toiletries.

6. Vila Gale Collection Braga

Hotel, Chain Hotel, Boutique Hotel

The 16th-century facade with multiple statues adorning the roofline at the Vila Gale Collection Braga
Courtesy of Vila Gale Collection Braga / Expedia

Originally a hospital dating back to the early 16th century, this beautifully restored building, complete with cloisters (a nod to the convent that stood here before), now houses 123 rooms that preserve many original features, such as vaulted ceilings. The Foundation Restaurant serves Portuguese cuisine at tables between thick old stone pillars, while Bracara Augusta delivers a gastronomic interpretation of the local kitchen.

7. Casa do Juncal

Boutique Hotel, Hotel

A white-and-grey two-level suite at Casa do Juncal
Courtesy of Casa do Juncal / Expedia
An alternative, equally interesting city in which to base yourself, just 20 minutes away from Braga, is the Unesco World Heritage site of Guimarães. The 18th-century Casa do Juncal is within the old city walls and houses just six suites, which skilfully mix old exposed walls and wooden floors with stylish contemporary furnishings, woven together with white-on-white decor. The Italian Flavours restaurant, set outside in a beautiful plant- and flower-filled courtyard, is seasonal, opening from spring. Affordable spa treatments (from facials to full-body massages) are on offer, and picnic baskets and guided tours can also be arranged on request.

8. Hotel do Parque

Chain Hotel, Hotel

A neutral guest room with a fireplace at Hotel do Parque
Courtesy of Hotel do Parque

Neighbouring the pilgrimage site of Bom Jesus do Monte, with its impressive baroque stairway that rises 116m (380ft), this 44-room hotel is housed in a 19th-century building that lies within the lush Bom Jesus Natural Park, surrounded by attractive gardens. Explore the vinho verde wines from the Minho region at the on-site Panoramic Restaurant before a game of billiards in the game room.

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