Visitors to the Alto Minho may fly into one of the 2 nearest airports: Oporto, in Portugal or Vigo, in Spain. Viana is about 70 Km from the centre of Oporto and 95Km from Vigo.
After arrival in Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, Porto, please take the Subway (METRO) to Estação de Comboios de Campanhã (Campanhã Railway Station) in Oporto city. Once there, you need to take a train to Viana do Castelo (the travel to Viana will lasts from one to two hours).
If your flight is to Lisbon (Portela Airport), you can use either the train or the direct bus to Viana do Castelo.
Under the following web sites you can have information about train and bus connections to Viana do Castelo:
AVIC/TURILIS Buses (You can take a taxi from the airport in Lisbon to Gare do Oriente and once here can cash a bus in the Bus Company named AVIC/TURILIS – the bus ticket from Lisbon to Viana do Castelo is around 20 EUR).
The Alto Minho region
The Polytechnic and its Schools are located in the Alto Minho, also known as the Green Coast, the north-west region of Portugal. The Alto Minho is a region rich in cultural heritage. The Minho River, after which the region was named, forms the natural border between Portugal and the Spanish province of Galicia. Its population density is above the national average (about 300/Km2). The population is also significantly younger than in the rest of Portugal.
Viana do Castelo
Viana do Castelo is the most northern North Atlantic City in Portugal, 25 minutes from Oporto's International airport. Served by major highways and a sea port, it is easily reached.
Visitors can taste the remarkable quality of life enjoyed by its inhabitants in safety and tranquility, as well as the richness of its natural, monumental and historic heritage, and its excellent cultural, sporting and social facilities.
Viana's diverse landscape, including river, mountain and sea, dazzles the senses and offers a healthy and pleasant environment for a variety of leisure pursuits.
Its historic centre, especially the medieval heart, is enriched by numerous and precious monuments of the most diverse architectural styles, giving testimony to the many centuries of its history.
The centre has been recently improved making the streets and squares even more inviting. Over four kilometers of walks and urban cycle lanes were completed, with green areas expanded and access for the disabled made easier.
The urban transportation network which includes small electric buses traversing the streets of the medieval centre is designed to reduce the need for private cars and thus protection the environment.
Along a circular route surrounding the oldest part of the town are several underground car parks which, while reducing unsightly surface car parks that would otherwise scar the nobler part of town, also make for better access by foot, and walking more pleasurable.
Viana do Castelo's hotels offer capacity and quality that is rapidly growing to cater not only for tourism but also conferences, seminars, and gatherings of all kinds, whether social or professional.
A number of modern and versatile cultural spaces - theatres, cinemas, libraries, museums and auditoriums - offer the perfect surroundings for the cultural enrichment of inhabitants and visitors alike.
Viana do Castelo's legendary relationship with the sea not only shapes its character but infuses the practice of all types of water sports. The riverside also offers excellent mooring facilities for recreational craft.
Several of Viana do Castelo's beaches have been awarded a "Blue Flag", not only for their water quality, diversity of geology and ecosystems, but also for environmental awareness and safety. The city of Viana do Castelo is like a living museum, with countless monuments and mansions of different periods and styles. But it is also the capital of the rich Minho folklore, with an important handicrafts industry and animated festivals.
The City's Festivities in August and the richness and uniqueness of Viana's ethnographic traditions make it the capital of Portuguese folklore. The creativity of its handicrafts, in particular ceramics, jewellery and embroidery, is another attribute that make this town especially attractive to tourists.
It is worth living in Viana do Castelo!