The Penafiel Manor House

Penafiel, Porto, Douro & Minho, Portugal
Book from GBP Book from £102 per night

The Penafiel Manor House

Penafiel, Porto, Douro & Minho, Portugal

A charming and elegant manor house in a historic country town, 30 minutes from Porto (sleeps 8-20)

A charming and elegant manor house in a historic country town, 30 minutes from Porto (sleeps 8-20)

If you’re after Portuguese authenticity combined with historic charm, book a boutique break - with a group of friends or 2-3 families – in this handsome house outside Porto. Named after the tutor of the first king of Portugal – a typically quirky touch. The house comes in 2 parts – the original manor (with 6 bedrooms) and a new wing (with 4 bedrooms) – connected by a glass atrium; so you can book one part or both, depending on your group size. Interiors are light, airy and serene, touched with whimsical art and elegant detail. You'll feel spoiled here, that's for sure.

It stands on the outskirts of small town of Penafiel. You have the town on one side, the valley below, and the river Sousa flowing into the Douro a few miles down. Catch the train to Porto for day trips, or set off for the beautiful Parque Natural do Alvao. Less well-known than the Park Natural Peneda-Geres, it stands 260m above sea level with incredible views and bird watching. If you like history, follow the ‘Romanesque Route’ – 8km by bike; the Paco da Sousa Church and the Igreja de São Gens are highlights. Return to home-made ‘petiscos’ (tapas) and vinho verde in the garden, and lazy swims in the pool.

Highs

  • We love the look of the shady gardens, with the private pool and play area for kids
  • A tranquil retreat set among fruit trees, and a perfect base for exploring northern Portugal's natural parks and history, including the Paiva Walkways
  • Great value, whether using 4 bedrooms or more
  • A rare minimum stay of 2-3 nights means you could book it for a (long) weekend
  • Just 30 minutes from Porto and its airport

Lows

  • Bear in mind this is a self-catering rental: the owners and team (though super-friendly and helpful) are not on site
  • The house used to operate as a hotel, and you can still see traces of that in the furniture and layout
  • No great views: the area is a suburb of Penafiel

Best time to go

Springs are glorious, when the vines and the valleys burst with green. Summers can be extremely hot and autumns are stunning. September is wine harvest time - take a trip to the vineyards and tread the grapes.

Our top tips

Allow time for one or more day trips into Porto (half an hour by car or train). Explore the steep cobbled Ribeira, starting with the Romanesque cathedral; Lello, one of the world’s most beautiful bookshops; and Casa da Música, the city's boldest icon, with an eclectic programme of music and a cool café. For traditonal bacalao (traditional cod dishes) in a modern setting, head for Traça; for francesinha (the king of sandwiches!), Bufete Fase is where the locals go.

Great for...

Cheap & Chic
Family
Great Outdoors
  • House Rental
  • 4-10 bedrooms
  • Self-catering
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • Beach Nearby
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Car not necessary
  • Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • WiFi
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Towels & Bedlinen
  • Barbecue
  • Games room
Room: Superior Double

Rooms

Rooms in both parts of the house are immaculate, with upholstered bedheads, contemporary bathrooms and gleaming wood floors. In the old house, the style is somewhat grander (they dub the rooms 'Superior Doubles'), with exposed stone walls, and a private sitting area and veranda in one room ('Junior Suite'). There are also 2 Family Rooms.

In the newer, single-storey wing, the 4 rooms are a little simpler: clean and bright, with some folk-art touches. We've heard that these rooms are less well soundproofed. All rooms have ensuite bathrooms with beach- and bath towels provided.

Inspirational words and feel-good quotations adorn many of the walls; we liked it, but if that sort of thing irks you, stay elsewhere. Each bedroom has its own TV and WiFi is strong across the whole property.

Features include:

  • Hairdryer
  • WiFi

Eating

This is a self-catered rental, with a small welcome basket (and a large welcome!) to get you started; after that you're left to your own devices - although there is the option to have fresh bread dropped at your door every day.

The kitchen is well equipped - it used to operate as a B&B - so you'll find all you need for preparing lunches and suppers.

If you're interested in wines, ask the owner about organised tastings, accompanied by ‘petiscos’ (meats, olives, cheeses, ‘caldo verde’ and vegetables).

The nearest excellent restaurant, for lunch or dinner, is Wine Bar Casa da Viuva in the medieval hamlet of Quintandona (7km). It's authentic, atmospheric, and an easy drive (though not so easy to find!).

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner by arrangement
  • Room service
Eating: Dining room
Activity:

Activities

  • Penafiel is a pretty town once you get in to the historic centre, with shops to browse and bodegas to sample Ribera del Duero wines
  • Drive (or take the train) into Porto for the day - it's a wonderful second city full of art and history, with river and Atlantic coast to bind it
  • Go walking in the pristine Parque Natural do Alvao, home to one of Europe's largest waterfalls and crystal-clear wild swimming holes. Keep your eyes peeled for peregrine falcons and golden eagles
  • The spectacular Paiva Walkways is an 8km adventure along wooden paths over the Paiva River and its river beaches
  • Set off by bike for the Quinta da Aveleda: gorgeous gardens dotted with swans, goats and hens, and bookable wine tours
  • Or pedal along Penafiel's Romanesque Route (8km long) to admire historical architecture; the Paco da Sousa Church and the Igreja de São Gens are highlights
  • Relax in the thermal baths of nearby São Vicente
  • Take the EN222 to Pinhão (one of the most beautiful roads in the world) and chug down the Duoro river on a traditional rabelo wooden boat, Instagramming tumbling vineyards on the way
  • You’re 5 minutes from the motorway for day trips to Unesco-listed Guimaraes (52km), medieval Braga (71km) and colourful, canal-lined Aveiro (96km)

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Cycling
  • Table tennis

Kids

Children of all ages are welcome; the house considers itself to be "very family friendly." However, children aged 2-12 years requiring an extra bed will incur an extra fee. Toys and games are available, and there's a pool and play area. Babysitting on request.

Best for:

All ages

Family friendly accommodation:

There are 2 Family Rooms, each a good size, with a sofabed that sleeps 2 children under 12. The house has a games room with table football and ping-pong.

Families Should Know:

The pool is unfenced.

Distances:

  • Airport: 30 mins' drive (Oporto)
  • Shops: 5 mins' drive
Kid Friendly:

Location

The house is on the edge of the small town of Penafiel in northern Portugal, a 30-minute drive from Porto (Oporto).

By Air:
Fly into Porto's Francisco Sá Carneiro airport, a 30-minute drive. From here we'd recommend hiring a car, although you could take a taxi or book a transfer with the hotel.

Detailed directions will be sent when you book through i-escape.com.

Airports:

  • Porto (Oporto) 35.0 km OPO

Other:

  • Beach 35.0 km
  • Shops 2.0 km
  • Restaurant 2.0 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 1 independent review from i-escape guests

10/10
Room
10/10
Service
10/10
Value
10/10
Overall

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Rates for The Penafiel Manor House

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