Braga, Portugal

Braga is the Portuguese capital city of the District of Braga and the sub-region of Cávado (NUT III), belonging to the North region (NUT II).

It is the seat of the Municipality of Braga, which has a total area of 183.40 km2, 193,324 inhabitants in 2021 and a population density of 1,054 inhabitants per km2, subdivided into 37 parishes. The municipality is limited to the north by the municipality of Amares, to the east by Póvoa de Lanhoso, to the southeast by Guimarães, to the south by Vila Nova de Famalicão, to the west by Barcelos and to the northwest by Vila Verde.

Braga has a bimillennial history that began in Ancient Rome, when it was founded in 16 BC. as Bracara Augusta in honor of the Roman emperor Augustus (r. 27 BC–AD 14).

Braga has a vast cultural heritage, whose ex-libris is the Sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Monte, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2012 it was distinguished as European Youth Capital and in 2018 it was European City of Sport. Since 2017 it belongs to the UNESCO Creative Cities network, in the Media Arts category, and in 2021 it was elected Best European Destination of the Year, after having been in 2nd place in 2019.


Getting here

By airplane
The nearest airports are: Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (Porto; 50 km), Portela Airport (Lisbon; 350 km), and in neighboring Spain Vigo Airport (125 km).

PORTO AIRPORT - BRAGA Once you arrive at Porto Airport, you can take the following transport to the center of Braga:

Train/Metro Take the Metro to Campanhã station or São Bento station, then take the train that will take you to Braga railway station. Duration: 2h00 Price (approx.): € 5 MetroComboios

Direct Transfer Bus that connects Braga - Porto Airport and vice versa, operates every day. Duration: 50 min Price: €8 one way - €14 round trip Get Bus

Taxi The taxi rank is located outside the arrivals level at Porto Airport. Duration: 40 min Price (approx.): €60

by train/train
Braga train station is located in Largo da Estação. There are daily Alfa-Pendular connections from Lisbon and Porto. There are also connections to almost every major city in the country.

by bus/coach
Daily regional connections to the entire northwest of Portugal, and daily Expresso and Renex connections to the most important cities in Portugal. Weekly connections to Paris, Bourdeus, Madrid, among others.

By car
The city has a connection to the E1 or IP1 and the IP9. The E1 to the south crosses the Portuguese coast and to the north the Spanish northwest, the IP9 connects the beaches to the west and the interior of the country.


Around the city

by bus/coach
Tub urban transport offers transport to all points of interest. During the summer, the BragaTour also circulates through the city. BragaTour covers the most important monuments in Braga.

By car
The city has a modern urban ring road and several access options. It also has several underground car parks in the city centre.



In the municipality of Braga there are 15 properties classified as National Monuments, 33 as Buildings of Public Interest and 20 in the process of being classified.



Domus de Santiago (Pius XII Museum) — Cividade
Fountain of the Idol — Saint Lazarus
Roman ruins of Carvalheiras — Cathedral
Roman baths of Maximinos — Alto da Cividade
Roman Theater of Alto da Cividade — Cividade
Pre-Roman resort of Bracara — Maximinos
Roman mosaic at the Museum of D. Diogo de Sousa — one of the oldest in Northern Portugal
Insula on the grounds of the Museum of D. Diogo de Sousa
Roman insula under the building of the Escola da Sé — Sé
Roman ruins inserted in the Bibliopolis building
Roman ruins of the "Frigideiras do Cantinho" building
Section of the Lower Empire wall at the base of the Tower of the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Glória
Roman market and paleo-Christian basilica — visible in a crypt, under the chapel of the Cathedral
Section of the Roman wall of Quinta do Fujacal
Roman building of Santo António das Travessas — Municipal Building
Via Romana XVII — originating on the eastern edge of the city and, crossing the Barroso, passing through Acquae Flaviae (Chaves), from where it continues to Astorga — In the process of being classified by IPPAR
Via Romana XVIII or Via Nova (Geira) — located northeast of the city, making the most direct connection with Asturica Augusta (Astorga). National monument and in preparation for candidacy for World Heritage by UNESCO
Via Romana XIX- united the cities of Braga, Ponte de Lima, Tude (Tui), Turoqua (Pontevedra), Aquis Celenis (Caldas de Reis), Iria, Martiae, Lucus Augusti (Lugo) and Asturica Augusta (Astorga).
Basilica of São Martinho de Dume dating from the 6th century
Ruins of the Suevo Palace - Building from the time of the barbarian invasions, located in Santa Marta das Cortiças


Religious architecture

The city of Braga, as one of the oldest Christian cities in the world, has a vast religious heritage. Churches abound in its historic center, similar to Rome. Of its heritage stands out the Sanctuary of Sameiro and, due to its antiquity, the Basilica of São Martinho de Dume (see archeology), dating from the 6th century and the Chapel of São Frutuoso from the Visigothic period, classified as a National Monument. However, it was in the 11th century that the ex-libris of the city was built, the Sé Catedral de Braga. The Cathedral is closely linked to Braga and is part of its history, bringing together a great diversity of architectural styles, the Romanesque style (initial style), the Gothic style (chapel of the Kings), Manueline style (exterior of the transept of the main church), the Renaissance style (Igreja da Misericórdia de Braga), the Baroque style (altars of some chapels and the organs and choir of the main Church), the Neoclassical (cloister), among others of lesser expression. Another multi-architectural urban complex of enormous value is the Paço Episcopal Bracarense, the palace of the Archbishops of Braga located close to the Cathedral. With medieval architecture, the Church of Santa Eulália, the Church of São Sebastião, the Church of São João do Souto and the Chapel of Coimbras also stand out.

In the Renaissance style, the main reference is the Igreja de São Paulo, with a high and sober façade, ending in a triangular pediment, pierced by a single door in a round arch, two windows and an oculus. Still in the same period, Archbishop Diogo de Sousa changed the architecture of the city, with the opening of new urban spaces and the construction of several religious buildings. Due to the fact that many of these buildings were only completed in the following centuries, influences from other styles appeared in their architecture, such as Baroque or Neoclassical, whose works are largely the work of Carlos Amarante and André Soares. Designed by the Architect and Engineer Carlos Amarante are the Convent of Pópulo, the Church of São Vicente, full of Baroque elements, and the Church of São Marcos where the statues of the apostles stand out. The architect André Soares designed the magnificent Convento dos Congregados, "the most moving work" in the words of specialist Robert Smith, and the rocaille-style Church of Santa Maria Madalena.

The Sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Monte, one of the references of the European Baroque and Unesco World Cultural Heritage, is the work of these two great architects from Braga. The current church of the Monastery of Tibães, mother house of the Beniditine Congregation for Portugal and Brazil, and the Church of Santa Cruz in Mannerist baroque style also date from this period. Of the works of the 19th century, the Basílica do Sameiro stands out, central temple of the trio of Sacro-Montes (Bom Jesus-Sameiro-Falperra), of neoclassical style that has in its interior a main altar in polished white granite, and the tabernacle in silver.

Of Braga's great artists of religious art, José de Santo António Vilaça stands out, a great master of gilded carving. His work is marked by personal traits and decorated in gold. Most of the carved ornaments found in Braga's churches are his work. Given the importance of his work, certain figures linked to art support the candidacy of his work to be a World Heritage Site. And Marceliano de Araújo, who worked both wood and stone (Fonte do Pelicano), being known for his work in gilded carving at Penha Church, also famous for its 18th-century tiles by Policarpo de Oliveira Bernardes.

In terms of cruises, the most imposing is the Cruzeiro de Tibães, of erudite Renaissance style, it also has typical features of the other cruises in Braga and has been classified as a National Monument since 1910. das Hortas and Cruzeiro de Sant'Ana, also classified as a National Monument.


Civil architecture

Porta Nova Arch by André Soares, classified as a National Monument since 1910. — Sé
Bank of Portugal building, by architect Moura Coutinho.
Bom Jesus Elevator — In the process of being classified by IPPAR and preparing to apply for World Heritage status by UNESCO
House of Infias or House of Vale de Flores — São Vicente
House of Santa Cruz do Igo — Under classification by IPPAR
Coimbatore House.
Casa dos Crivos or Casa das Gelosias — São João do Souto
Casa dos Paivas or Roda, Renaissance building from the 16th century.
House and Quinta de São Brás da Torre including chapel, garden and woods — Under classification by IPPAR
Casa Grande das Hortas or Palácio das Hortas.
Rolão House
Braga Public Library Buildings
Braga City Hall Building — Sé
Santa Maria Madalena or Converted Retreat Building - Under classification by IPPAR
1.º de Maio Stadium — In the classification phase by IPPAR
Braga Municipal Stadium, by the architect Eduardo Souto de Moura - In the classification phase by IPPAR
Building of the Brito Pharmacy, by the architect Moura Coutinho- Avenida da Liberdade
Palacete dos Vilhenas Coutinhos (former court)
Palace of Raio, by André Soares.
Biscainhos Palace
Prado Bridge — Sao Paio de Merelim
port bridge
Rua de São Geraldo and Former Convent of the Nuns — Under classification by IPPAR
Seven Fountains of S. Victor — Collection System of the 18th century Water System — São Vítor
Theatro Circo, by architect Moura Coutinho.


Military architecture

Braga Castle and the medieval walls are the city's greatest military architectural expressions. The keep of the old Castle of Braga, which was ingloriously demolished in 1906, is the main remnant of this construction erected under the reign of D. Dinis. Square in plan, this tower in Gothic style rises approximately thirty meters high, internally divided into three floors. At the top, a semi-detached window and boulders at the corners. At the top is a crown of battlements. On the tower and on the west elevation, the coat of arms of King Dinis. Also noteworthy is the huge number of symbols inscribed on the faces of the internal and external walls. These symbols, according to medieval people, would protect the city from invaders. Of the medieval wall consisting of nine towers, there are still three towers, the Tower of Santiago, the Tower of São Sebastião and the Tower of Porta Nova.

Castelo do Bom Jesus and Castelo da D. Chica are palatial buildings with some military architectural influence, with eclectic features in a romantic style. The Castle of D. Chica, designed by the architect Ernesto Korrodi, is an example inspired by the Bavarian palace castles.


Culture spaces


The two-thousand-year-old city of Braga, which has gone through different eras, has a rich and varied heritage of secular traditions and customs, ancient arts, profoundly marked by the presence of the clergy. Part of this collection is on display in museums, and is the result of years of research and preservation.

The D. Diogo de Sousa Regional Museum of Archeology and the Pio XII Museum have an enormous archaeological collection. The vast majority of collections come from excavations carried out in Braga, in accordance with current scientific criteria. At the D. Diogo de Sousa Regional Archeology Museum, the collection of "miliarios" stands out, considered the best in all of Europe. There are also museum nuclei (with the aim of exposing archaeological ruins), among which the Museological Nucleus of Lamas, the Fonte do Ídolo or the Roman Baths of Maximinos are examples of this (see Archeology section).

The museums Museu Pio XII, Treasure-Museum of the Cathedral and Museum of the Monastery of Tibães are mixed museums. These museums of religious origin generally expose the religious, archaeological, historical, cultural and artistic heritage of the region.

The Palácio dos Biscaínhos, converted into a museum, is a space where you can appreciate the daily life of the 18th century nobility.

The arts, over the last few decades, have been the main theme for opening new museums in the city. The Nogueira da Silva Museum, managed by the University of Minho, holds various art collections. The Medina Museum exhibits the largest collection of works, over a hundred, by Henrique Medina. The Cordophone Museum is linked to the art of chordophones. In the field of photography, the Image Museum brings together a vast collection inherited from the old photographic houses in the city of Braga and has regular exhibitions by renowned photographers. The Theatro Circo, recently rebuilt, also has a museum area.

The city of Braga has a heritage of incalculable value, but only part of it can be found in its museums. During the 20th century, with the extinction of several convents, manor houses, among others by the government of the time, this collection from Braga was relocated to several museums in Lisbon. According to the government at the time: "Braga did not have the conditions to receive and preserve this legacy, but if it did in the future, it would be returned to the city". Currently, the city already has equipment to welcome him and it is unanimous among the people of Braga that he should return to Braga.


Concert halls

Theatro Circo, inaugurated in 1911, is the most prestigious theater in Braga. The main room of Theatro Circo, in Italian style, has 1,000 seats and one of the best sound systems in Europe.[36] Espaço Alternativo, a theater by Portugal Telecom, and Teatro de bolso do TUM (Teatro da Universidade do Minho) are also concert halls linked to the theatre.

Over the last few decades, given the growth of the city, several auditoriums were built. These modern multipurpose theaters have a great impact on society in Braga, not only as cultural spaces, but also as suitable spaces for holding conferences, congresses, lectures and presentations. Of the large auditoriums in Braga, the Grande Auditorio do PEB (Braga Exhibition Park) stands out with 1200 seats, the Auditorium of Estádio Municipal de Braga and the Auditorium A1 of the University of Minho. There are also other auditoriums in the city, which although smaller in size, have a great deal of cultural activity, such as the auditorium of the Lúcio Craveiro da Silva Library, the Galécia Municipal Auditorium, the Instituto Português da Juventude Auditorium, the Adelina Caravana Auditorium of the Conservatório de Música Calouste Gulbenkian, the Auditorium of the D. Diogo de Sousa Museum and the various auditoriums of the University of Minho and the Catholic University.

Cinema São Geraldo, inaugurated on June 1, 1950, one of the first cinemas in the country, with an exclusive vocation for film projection, was for decades the cinema of Braga. This mythical room is closed. The old cinema will be renovated. The works should start in April 2016 and the space will have an urban market, a hotel and an area that will be able to accommodate the services of the Parish Council of São Lázaro.

Nowadays, the spaces operating in the city are the Cinemax cinemas with seven projection rooms and the Lusomundo cinemas with nine. There is also the GoldCenter cinema, but it only has one room.


Urban spaces

Squares, gardens and squares
Campo das Hortas
Campo Novo (Mouzinho de Albuquerque Square)
Santa Barbara Garden
Mount Nª Srª da Consolação - Nogueró
Gardens of Bom Jesus
Senhora-A-Branca Square
Largo do Paço
Largo S. João do Souto
Largo de Sao Paulo (Braga)
bridge park
Republic square
Town Square
Rossio da Sé
Conde de Agrolongo Square (Campo da Vinha)
Railway Station Square


Commemorative statues and monuments

See also List of statues in Braga
Conde de Agrolongo — Bust at Conde de Agrolongo Square (Campo da Vinha)
D. João Peculiar — Statue on Lake São Paulo
Domingos Pereira — Bust in Largo de Infias.
Francisco Sanches — Statue by the sculptor Salvador Barata Feyo, inaugurated in March 1955, in Largo São João do Souto.
Santos da Cunha — Statue in the Constable Square.
Roby Brothers — Commemorative monument in granite by the sculptor Zeferino Couto (in the shape of the map of Africa) with high bronze reliefs of the two brothers, on Avenida Central, inaugurated on July 3, 1955.
João Penha — Commemorative monument with bust, in Largo João Penha (Largo do Rechicho).
Marchal Gomes da Costa — Statue by the sculptor Salvador Barata Feyo, inaugurated on May 28, 1966, at Praça Conde de Agrolongo (Campo da Vinha).
Pope Pius XII — Statue in Largo da Senhora-a-Branca. Inaugurated on May 15, 1957. Sculpture by Raul Xavier.
D. Pedro V — Statue in Praça de Mouzinho de Albuquerque (Campo Novo) by sculptor Teixeira Lopes, Sr.
Monument evocative of the Holiness Pope John Paul II — Located on Avenida Central, it marks the arrival of the Pope to Braga in 1982. It consists of three elements: a circular plaque, a wall that means the line of sight, and the crypt made up of three pyramids which means the three sacred hills of Braga (Bom Jesus, Sameiro and Falperra).
Monument evocative of the 25th of April — Celebrates freedom and democracy. It is located at the entrance to Parque da Ponte.
Bimillenary monument of Braga — Commemoration of two thousand years of the city of Braga.
Monument to Santa Maria de Braga — Located on Avenida Porfírio da Silva, the monument consists of the image embedded in a kind of chapel, and the coats of arms of the municipalities of the Archdiocese of Braga.
Monument to the Archbishops of Braga — Located in Rossio da Sé.
Monument evocative of the Portuguese Air Force — Monument offered by the Portuguese Air Force to the city of Braga, in the commemorations of the institution's 54th anniversary held in Braga (2006). The monument was conceived on the motto "The want to fly", and symbolically "institutional eagle and the three fundamental axes of life: sky, sea and land". Located on Avenida General Carrilho da Silva Pinto, General Carrilho da Silva Pinto was a soldier from Braga of great honor in the Portuguese Air Force.
Monument evocative of the six Roman roads that came out of Bracara Augusta - Located in the square of Santiago, next to the Pio XII Museum. Inaugurated on May 30, 2008. The monument is a replica of a milestone, in corten steel, produced by the architect Pedro Nogueira.



Holy Week - The Holy Week festivities are the tourist attraction of the city. They include several solemn processions, and their main itinerary is Rua do Souto. The parades receive a special touch from the barefoot penitents playing rattles.
The Festival in Honor of the Divine Espírito Santo - One of the oldest festivals in the city of Braga, held in the Chapel of the Divine Espírito Santo located in the parish of Nogueira.
Noite Branca - NOITE BRANCA is a cultural and leisure initiative that aims to celebrate the city, its infrastructures, culture. It is an event open to the community and visitors.
Braga Romana - The event “Braga Romana” aims to commemorate the early days of Bracara Augusta.
S. João - Popular saint of the city of Braga.

A stroll along Rua do Souto - Reserved for pedestrians. It is located between Campo das Hortas and Avenida Central. Here, the main moments of the Holy Week festivities take place. Here is the traditional Café Brasileira.



Rua do Souto - Between Campo das Hortas and Avenida Central, this is the most commercial street in Braga. There are many old stores, but there is also a large concentration of prestigious establishments and brands.
Comercial centers:
Braga Shopping;
Braga Park.

Old stores
A Negrita, 177, Avenida Central. (lat=41.551739, long=-8.418951). House founded in 1948, selling coffee (and a little tea).
Correaria Moderna, 135, Rua dos Chãos (lat=41.553585, long= -8.423792). Sale of belts, bags and others since 1914.
Mercado de S. João, 5, Rua de São João (lat=41.550122, longitude=-8.426278). Grocery store since 1894.


Where to eat

Frigideiras do Cantinho (Largo de S. João do Souto, 1; Tel.: (+351) 253 263 991) - Famous for its "Frigideiras" (puff pastries with meat) and for its Roman cake.
Inácio (Campo das Hortas, 4; Phone: (+351) 253 613 235).
São Frutuoso (Rua Costa Gomes, 168; Tel.: (+351) 253 613 235).
Restaurante O Camponês (Rua Monsenhor Airosa, 62; Tel.: (+351) 253 275 149).
Valentine's Bira Rua D. Gonçalo Pereira, 85, 253 039 571 ✆. Burger restaurant · Music venue · Bar
DeGema Hamburgaria Artesanal Rua Dr. Justino da Cruz, 90, 4700-314 Braga, 253687262 ✆, Ice cream parlor · Burger restaurant
Taberna Belga, Rua Cónego Luciano Afonso dos Santos, store 1A, São Vicente Braga, 253625098 ✆. Restaurant · Brewery · Tavern

Bem-me-Quer (Campo das Hortas, 5; Tel.: (+351) 253 262 095).
Ristorante Mammamia, Praceta Amândio Ferreira Pinto nº 8 – 10 Gualta, (+351) 253 281 232 ✆, Pizzeria Italian Restaurant



A Brasileira - together with Vianna is one of the most traditional coffees in Braga.
Spirito Cupcakes & Coffee - an alternative to traditional coffee, typical cakes and industrial ice cream.
Colinatrum - located in a quieter area of the city
Mirante Bar - Bar, Fun, Lounge



Hotel Ibis Braga, Rua do Carmo 38, (+351)253 204 800 ✆.
Basic Braga by Axis, Largo da Estação - Maximinos, 253 148 000 ✆,

Pousada de Braga - São Vicente, Charming Hotel Largo de Infias 4710-299 Braga, (+351) 253 209 500 ✆, fax: (+351) 253 209 500,
Hotel Turismo Braga, Praceta João XXI, (+351)253 206 000 ✆, fax: (351) 253 206 010,

Pousada de Santa Maria do Bouro Santa Maria do Bouro, Amares, (+351) 253 371 970 ✆, fax: (+351) 253 371 976,
Hotel do Parque ****, Parque do Bom Jesus do Monte, Braga, (+351) 253 603 470 ✆, fax: 232 723 047,


Keep in touch

The telephone code for the Braga city area is 253.



Braga, in general, is a very safe city. However, you should be careful with your belongings; do not leave them in sight.

GNR (Guarda Nacional Republicana), Tel: +351253689820, Fax: +351253689828, e-mail:
PSP (Public Security Police), Tel: +351253200420
PJ (Judiciary Police), Tel: +351253255000, Fax: +351253255001, e-mail:
PM (Military Police), Tel: +351253609740, Fax: +351253609747, e-mail:



Braga Hospital
Hospital de Braga, +351 253 027 000 ✆, 24h/24h.
Hospital Privado de Braga, Tel: +351 253 680 200


Short trips

Not far from Braga is the city of Barcelos, famous above all for its handicrafts and its monuments. Another option close by is Caldelas, well known for its hot springs, which are still open today. São Bartolomeu do Mar is another good option, setting for one of the most famous pilgrimages in Portugal (in August).

In Rendufe, 9 km from Amares, it is worth visiting the church and the ruins of the Benedictine monastery.

On the outskirts of Braga there is also the Monastery of Tibães (mother house of the Benedictine order in Portugal and Brazil in the 16th century), the Ponte do Porto (a medieval bridge that crosses the river Cávado), the Monastery of Santa Maria do Bouro ( now an inn), the Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora da Abadia and the Church of Abade de Neiva, in the homonymous locality, and the Church of São Frutuoso de Montélios (a Visigothic church near Braga).

30 minutes from Braga (either via Amares or the road to Chaves) are Caldas do Gerês and Caniçada, one of the gateways to the Peneda-Gerês National Park. Here you can find beautiful landscapes and traditional villages.



Traces of human presence in the region date back thousands of years, as evidenced by various findings. One of the oldest is Mamoa de Lamas, a megalithic monument built in the Neolithic period. However, it is only possible to prove the existence of population clusters in Braga in the Bronze Age. They are characterized by pits and pottery found in Alto da Cividade, where there would have been a settlement, and by a necropolis that would have existed in the Granjinhos area.

In the Iron Age, the so-called "castros" were developed. These were characteristic of villages that occupied high relief places. The Celts were its inhabitants and, in this particular region, inhabited the Brácaros (in Latin: Bracari), who would give name to the city, after its foundation and the Romans forced the populations to descend to the valley.


Bracara Augusta

During the 2nd century BC, the region was traversed by the Roman legions. After the definitive conquest of the peninsular northwest by Emperor Augustus, he ordered the construction of the city of Braga in 16 BC, with the designation of Bracara Augusta, in honor of the alliance between the Roman emperor Augustus (r. 27 BC–14 AD) and the people indigenous to the Bracari. The city would become the capital of the province of Galécia and would integrate the three convents of the peninsular Northwest and part of the Convent of Clúnia, with a population of approximately 285,000 free tributaries in the 24 cities in the year 25.

From this time also dates the creation of the bishopric of Bracara Augusta, according to legend, São Pedro de Rates was the first bishop of Braga between the years 45 and 60, ordained by the apostle Santiago Maior who would have come from the Holy Land and was martyred when he converted adhering peoples to the Roman religion in the northwest of the Iberian Peninsula. But it was only in the year 385 that Pope Siricius made reference to the metropolitan of Bracara Augusta.


From Late Antiquity to Islamization

The city was described as prosperous by the poet Ausonius in the 4th century. Between 402 and 470 the Germanic Invasions of the Iberian Peninsula took place, and the area was conquered by the Suevi, Germanic people from Central Europe. According to records, the city was protected by a wall, in use since the 3rd century, and the old Roman amphitheater was reused for the construction of a fortress. In 410, the Suevi established a kingdom that encompassed the extinct region of Galécia (today Galicia, northern Portugal, part of Asturias and the provinces of León and Zamora, and extended to the Tagus River) and made Bracara their capital. This kingdom was founded by Hermeric and lasted over 150 years. However, the departure of the Vandals and the arrival of the Visigoths brought new instability to the region. Between 419 and 422, Braga was threatened by the Vandals and began to prepare for a siege, closing its gates and refusing to open them; this led to the destruction of surrounding fields. However, between 429 and 455, the Suevi regained their military strength, strengthening their dominance in Galécia and Lusitania. In 455, while the Visigoth king Theodoric II sacked Braga, completely destroying many historical and archaeological records, the Suevi king Requiário I escaped the city, wounded, to Porto. We still have records of a list of dioceses and parishes in Braga, made in 570, however. Around 584, the Visigoths took permanent control of Galécia from the Suevi, and Braga became only a provincial capital, being dominated by the Visigothic Kingdom for 130 years.

Historical records so far show that the first known bishop of Braga was named Paternus, who lived at the end of the 4th century, and we also have records of a bishop named Balconius (415-447), who was present when the Iberian clergy received , in 435, a Germanic priest from Arabia Petreia accompanied by several Greeks with news of the Council of Ephesus (431). Balconius was also a contemporary and correspondent of Pope Leo I. Tradition, however, holds that Saint Peter of Rates was the first bishop of Braga.

Braga played an important role in the Christianization of the Iberian Peninsula. In the early 5th century, Paulus Orosius (a friend of Augustine of Hippo) wrote several theological works that expounded the Christian faith. While thanks to the work of São Martinho de Braga, the Suebi of the Iberian Peninsula renounced the Arian and Priscillian heresies during two synods held here in the 6th century. It is also worth noting that Rechiarius, the Swabian king, was also the first Germanic king in Europe to convert to Chalcedonian Christianity, predating the conversion of Clovis of the Franks. By order of King Ariamiro, the council of Braga was held between 1 May 561 to 563, chaired by Lucretius, titular bishop of Bracara. Followed in 572, in the kingdom of Miro, by the second council of Braga, presided over by São Martinho de Dume, bishop of Dume and Braga. These councils resulted in major reforms, mainly in the ecclesiastical and linguistic world, highlighting the creation of the Braga ritual and the abolition of pagan linguistic elements, such as the days of the week Lunae dies, Martis dies, Mercurii dies, Jovis dies, Veneris dies, Saturni dies and Solis dies, by Feria secunda, Feria tertia, Feria fourth, Feria quinta, Feria sexta, Sabbatum, Dominica Dies, from which the modern days in Portuguese and Galician language derive.

The transition from the Visigothic reigns to the Muslim conquest of the Iberian Peninsula was very obscure, representing a period of decline for the city. The Moors briefly captured Braga in the early 8th century, but were repulsed by Christian forces under Alfonso III of Asturias in 868 with intermittent attacks until 1040, when they were finally expelled by Ferdinand I of León and Castile. As a consequence, the bishopric was restored in 1070: the first new bishop Peter, began to rebuild the Cathedral (which was modified many times during the following centuries).


From Islamization to the Reconquest (8th to 10th century)

The Moors entered the Peninsula with the landing in Gibraltar on April 27, 711 of Tárique - general of the governor of Tangiers (Muça ibn Noçáir) - leading an army of 9,000 men. Four years later, in 715, the Moors reached and took over Braga, causing great destruction, given its religious importance. According to scholar Adalberto Alves, probably the Arabic name for Braga was Saquiate (Arabic: ساقية; Romaniz.: Sâqiyât). After some advances and setbacks, the diocese of Braga was transferred to Lugo. Christian resistance retreated more permanently until it was confined to a small mountainous area of Asturias.

In the year 868, with the king of Asturias Afonso III, the process of the Christian reconquest gained new impetus and the city of Braga was integrated for a few years into the Kingdom of Asturias, just like Porto and later - in 878 - Coimbra. When, after his death, Alfonso III the Great of the Kingdom of Asturias divided his kingdom among his sons in 908, he assigned the Kingdom of Galicia to Ordonho of Galicia, who established his capital at Braga. The following century is marked, after a period of peace, by several bloody destructions by Almançor, the Moorish governor of Córdoba, in an attempt to reverse the advance of the Christian reconquest to Coimbra and Toledo. There is a vast Muslim destruction, in 985, by Almançor and his army, who razed to the foundations and plundered the cities, and other territories, of Porto and Braga, withdrawing to the south of the Douro in that year, a raid similar to those carried out in the entire north of the Peninsula, and which included the destruction and occupation for several months of Barcelona, Leon, Astorga, and then Santiago de Compostela in 997, this one with thousands of slaves, forced to carry on foot the large bells of the demolished basilica, placed later as lamps in the mosque of Córdoba. It was at this time that Christian rule became more permanent in the north of the current Portuguese territory, closing the page of Islamization.


Medieval Braga to Contemporary Braga

In the 11th century, the city was reorganized, probably under the new name of "Braga". Construction of the city wall and the Cathedral begins, by order of Bishop D. Pedro de Braga, on the remains of an ancient Roman temple dedicated to the goddess Isis, which would later have been converted into a Christian church. The city develops around the Cathedral, being restricted to the walled perimeter.

At the foundation of the second Portucalense County, Braga was offered as a dowry by Afonso VI of León and Castile to his daughter D. Teresa, on her marriage to D. Henrique de Burgonha. The latter were lords of the city between 1096 and 1112. In 1112, they donated the city to the Archbishops. This donation was later reiterated when D. Afonso Henriques thanks Archbishop D. Paio Mendes for his diplomatic support in the Vatican, with Pope Alexander III, which led to the promulgation of the Bull Manifestis Probatum, in 1179, recognizing Portugal as an independent Kingdom.

In this way, the new king granted great privileges to the city of Braga, handing it over to the direct control of the Church, basically making it a personal fief of the Archbishop. This legal particularism gave great independence to the city, and, in practice, the city belonged to the Primatial See but legally the question whether or not the city was subject to royal correction remained unresolved until the 1st Republic. For example, when the Philippine Ordinances abolished the Office of Notaries General, it was made clear that there was an exception in Braga, leaving the notary in Braga under the control of the Archbishopric.

With the elevation of Braga's bishopric to archbishopric, the city regains enormous importance at an Iberian level. Archbishop Diego Gelmírez de Santiago de Compostela, afraid of the rise of the Cathedral of Braga, steals the relics of the saints from Braga, including the body of S. Frutuoso, in an attempt to diminish the religious importance of the city, the relics only returned to Braga in the 20th century. Oral tradition has it that Gelmírez left the city at night in a cart driven by a donkey.

Under the reign of D. Dinis, the city wall was renovated, starting the construction of the keep. Later, nine quadrangular towers were added to the existing wall, and Braga Castle was also completed around the existing keep. During the reign of D. João I, a meeting of the Cortes Gerais of the Kingdom was held in the city in 1387, where general sisas were instituted throughout the kingdom to cover expenses with the war against Castile and explained the form of payment of the tax. This monarch was the last to reclassify the wall, although there were still several modifications over time, namely when several new doors were torn into the city culminating in the 7 doors that remained until the wall was demolished.

In the 16th century, the Archbishop of Braga D. Diogo de Sousa profoundly modified the city, introducing streets, squares, new buildings, also causing it to grow beyond the walled perimeter. From the 16th to the 18th century, through the intermediary of several archbishops, the medieval buildings were erased and replaced by buildings of religious architecture of the time. D. Luís de Sousa was another main archbishop who, among other merits, ordered the rebuilding of the Parish Church of São Victor, ordered the expansion of Campo de S. Ana, the rebuilding of the Church of S. Ana and the construction of the Igreja dos Congregados that would later be monumentalized into the current version of the Basilica dos Congregados. Likewise, under the auspices of this diplomat archbishop, the canon of the Cabido de Braga, João Meira Carrilho, ordered the construction of the Chapel of the Congregation of the Oratory that existed inside Campo de S. Ana. The ancient fortress built on top of the Roman amphitheater still existed in the 18th century, in the southern part of Maximinos, but time has taken its toll and the above ground remains have disappeared and it is now an archaeological site.

In the 18th century, Braga, through the artistic inspiration of André Soares, became the Ex-Libris of the Baroque in Portugal. At the end of this century, the Neoclassical with Carlos Amarante appears in several buildings. Once again, through the intermediary of several archbishops, mainly D. Rodrigo de Moura Teles, the religious buildings were again altered with the introduction of the Baroque and Neoclassical styles and the construction of the Sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Monte began in 1722.

In 1758, Braga, like many other places, was included in the census requested by the monarchy, under the 1st Marquis of Pombal. These records are known as Parish Memories which can be consulted through various sources.

In the hundred years that follow, conflicts erupt due to the French invasions and liberal struggles. On March 20, 1809, the city was the scene of the Battle of Carvalho d'Este and the victim of several lootings carried out by Napoleonic troops. The city would be reoccupied on April 5 by General José António Botelho de Sousa, commander of the Portuguese forces in Minho. In 1834, with the end of the liberal struggles, several religious orders were expelled from Braga, leaving their assets to the city. As a result of the Maria da Fonte Revolt in Póvoa de Lanhoso, an area under the jurisdiction of the Braga military headquarters, the city is the scene of important clashes between the people and the authorities. At the end of the 19th century, the city center leaves the Sé de Braga area and moves to Avenida Central. In 1875, King D. Luís inaugurated the Braga train line and station.

In the 20th century, the transport and basic infrastructure revolution takes place, Avenida da Liberdade is reformulated, from which the Theatro Circo and the buildings on the east side stand out. On May 28, 1926, General Gomes da Costa started the Revolution of May 28, 1926 in this city. Finally, at the end of this century, Braga underwent a great development and grew at a very high pace. It is also known by many as the Capital of Minho.



Located in the heart of Minho, the city of Braga is located in a region of transitions from East to West, between mountains, forests and windrows to large valleys, plains and green fields. Lands built by nature and shaped by Man.

Physically it is located at 41° 32' N 08° 25' W, in the northwest of the Iberian Peninsula, precisely between the Douro River and the Minho River. Occupying 183.51 km², and ranging from 20 to 572 meters in altitude, the municipality is quite diverse. The terrain to the north, located on the left bank of the River Cávado, is semi-flat, thanks to the large valley of the River Cávado. The east part is characterized by mountains, such as Serra do Carvalho (479 m), Serra dos Picos (566 m), Monte do Sameiro (572 m) and Monte Sta Marta (562 m). Between Serra do Carvalho and Serra dos Picos, the River Este rises, forming the Este valley, while to the south of Serra dos Picos, the Sobreposta-Pedralva plateau develops. To the south, as to the west, the terrain is a mixture of mountains, hills and medium valleys. The city center is located at the top of the hill of Cividade (215 m), extending to the valley of the Rio Cávado to the north and west, and to the valley of the Rio Este to the east and south.

The territory of Braga belongs to two river basins, the Cávado river basin to the north and the river Ave basin to the south. The river Cávado, of medium flow, is the predominant hydrographic element in the North, and there are also several streams that flow into it. The territory to the south is marked by the Este River and its various tributaries, such as the Veiga River, all of which have a small flow. The soil, as it belongs to the Gerês mountain system and its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, is quite rich in water.

The municipality is predominantly urban, mainly around the city. The rural areas that once predominated are now confined to the limits of the municipality. It should also be noted that the highest hills and mountains are covered by forest patches, despite urban pressure and the forest fires that have occurred in recent years.



The climate in Braga, as it is located between the mountains and the Atlantic Ocean, is typically temperate Atlantic, that is, with four well-defined seasons. Winters are mild and rainy, and generally with moderate southwesterly winds. The wind can also blow from the North, usually strong, which generally causes a large drop in temperature, these winds are called Northwinds. In cold years there is snowfall, with average minimum temperatures of -3°C. The last snowfall in the city was on January 9, 2009. Springs are typically mild, with wide openings and light winds. Morning breezes occur more frequently, particularly at higher altitudes. In the Cávado valley, at low altitude, morning fog is normal. It should be noted that the month of May is quite conducive to thunderstorms, due to the heating of humid air with the arrival of summer. Summers are hot and sunny with gentle east winds. On cooler days, short-term rains can occur spontaneously, these rains are very important for the vegetation of the region, as it replenishes the water table, which makes the region rich in vegetation throughout the year, for which it is known as Verde Minho. . Autumns are mild and rainy, generally with moderate winds. The highest and lowest temperatures recorded in Braga in the period 1971-2000 were 39.4 °C and -4.1 °C. However, there are records of -6.3 °C in 2001 and 41.3 °C in 1943 (source: Instituto de Meteorologia). As the temperature drops, rainfall increases. There is a higher frequency of fog, mainly in the Cávado valley where the densest morning fogs occur.



Foreign population (2021) in the municipality of Braga: 12,718 (6.57% of the population).

Countries of origin: Brazil: 7 773; Italy: 980; Ukraine: 443.

The municipality is densely populated, with 989.6 inhabitants/km² and 193,349 inhabitants (2021), it is one of the most populous in Portugal and one of the youngest in Europe. Most of the population is concentrated in the urban area, where the density reaches around 10,000 inhabitants/km².

Braga's population consists of 78,954 males and 85,238 females. The age group from 0 to 25 years old represented 35% of the total population, while 54% of the population was between 26 to 64 years old, the elderly age group represented 11%. The population is mostly Portuguese, but there are also immigrant communities, namely Brazilians, Africans mainly from the former Portuguese colonies, Chinese and Eastern Europeans.

With regard to housing, in Braga there are 70,268 dwellings (2001 Census), a surplus value if we take into account the classic concept of family (51,173 households).

However, these 19,095 remaining houses are not all excessive in reality, many of them are intended for temporary residence, usually associated with students, temporary workers and foreigners who carry out their professional activity in the city. There is also a large number of homes belonging to citizens residing abroad who use them when they periodically return to Portugal. The constant population growth and the increase in individual housing associated with the non-constitution of a classic family are also realities that justify this fact in Braga's society.

The 19,095 dwellings mentioned above represent, on average, a capacity for 60,000 individuals, which means that the real population of Braga is close to an intermediate value situated between 174,000 individuals and 230,000 individuals.

The municipality grew 16.2% between 1991 and 2001, the highest growth was registered in the former suburban parishes (today urban), for example: Nogueira 124.6%, Frossos 68.4%, Real 59.8%, Lamaçães 50 .9%. Forecasts point to Braga being one of the municipalities with the highest growth in the coming years.


Municipality and administrative organization

Administratively, the municipality of Braga, administrative code 03 03, is in the district of Braga, administrative code 03, and is its capital. It is limited to the north by the municipality of Amares, to the east by Póvoa de Lanhoso, to the southeast by Guimarães, to the south by Vila Nova de Famalicão, to the west by Barcelos and to the northwest by Vila Verde.

It has a City Council, chaired by Ricardo Rio since 2013. The City Council is composed, in addition to the president, by nine councillors. There is a Municipal Assembly which is the legislative body of the municipality, consisting of a president and two secretaries, sixty-three deputies and the presidents of parish councils.




Braga's handicraft has long since crossed the country's borders. In music, the cavaquinhos, violas, guitars (namely the Viola Braguesa). It is interesting to note that it was this instrument that gave rise to the famous ukelele when Portuguese emigrants took it to Hawaii. In Sacred Art, biblical representations and the Votive Candle of Braga are the ex-libris. Although these four are famous, Braga's handicraft is more diversified, linen articles (cloths, bedspreads, curtains...), embroidery, basketry, wooden miniatures, farricocos [(also in wax)], costume jewelry, wrought iron ( bells, miniatures, material for agriculture...), the colorful and attractively shaped typical Braga crockery, among others, are traditional items that are easily found in the streets, alleyways or in the surrounding countryside.



Braga, like the rest of Minho, has a very rich gastronomy. Cod is assumed to be the favorite fish dish, the city is famous for its numerous cod recipes (cod à Narcisa, cod à Minhota (Braga), cod à moda de Braga…). Pato rice, sarrabulho porridge with rojões, floured tripe, farinhotes, blood sausages, goat in Braga style, Cantinho or Sé frying pans, Minho rojões, chicken " pica no ground", green wine, Pudding Abade de Priscos, bacon from heaven, bolo rei escanlhado, fidalguinhos, flints, torture, patience, among many others, make Braga a city of flavours.


Traditions and Festivities

Feast of São João in Braga — The first records of São João de Braga date back to 1515, the date on which the City Council assumed its realization for the first time, but which added many proven older elements, such as the Procession of Saints of the Month of June, where traditionally appears the car with the Dance of King David, which despite the name, is of Mozarabic inspiration. Also noteworthy is the presence of "lavradeiras" bearing the Votive Candles of Braga (following the tradition of offering it to São João for the grace granted). These festivities are repeated annually in the month of June.
Holy Week — Easter — During this entire week, the altars of the Churches, each invoking a scene from the Passion of Christ, are decorated with flowers and candles. This week attracts many tourists to the city. Visitors are essentially looking for the big night processions that are characterized by hundreds of extras. On Wednesdays, the traditional Donkey Procession takes place, on Thursdays, the Ecce Homo procession and, on Good Friday, the solemn Theophoric Procession of the Burial of the Lord. In all of them, pictures of religious history are recreated. On Saturday night, a fireworks display is usual, where a figure of a man bursts, symbolizing the suicidal Judas, who had betrayed Jesus. After the Easter Vigil at dawn on Easter Sunday, groups of people leave all the churches in the city to announce the Resurrection of Jesus to all houses, giving residents a specially decorated Cross to kiss.
City Day — It is celebrated on the day of São Geraldo, patron saint of the city of Braga, on the 5th of December. It is an official celebration, with a solemn session and delivery of city medals, with no popular festival. Also noteworthy is the special decoration of the Chapel of São Geraldo in the Cathedral, which on this day is adorned with fruit.
Feasts of Patrons — Throughout the city, each parish celebrates the feast of its patron saint. Particularly well known are those of São Vicente and 'Cónega' (the name given to the area at the end of Campo da Vinha and Rua da Boavista), as well as those of Nogueiró and Nogueira, with significant festivities and customs, such as the “moletinhos” on the day of São Vicente and São José (of São Lázaro), on the 22nd of January and the 19th of March, respectively.
Enterro da Gata Academic Festivities — The first reference in the press regarding the "Enterro da Gata" takes us back to the distant year of 1889 and is published in the newspaper "Aurora do Minho" with the pompous title of "Burial Schist". There it is told how a group of students "to celebrate the end of the year and bury the cat" made a "schist and new burial of the species". Braga's academy was then represented by the students of the Liceu Nacional (today Escola Secundária Sá de Miranda), which was headquartered in the Convento dos Congregados. In the study requested in 1989 by the Academic Association of the University of Minho to the director of the Public Library of Braga, Dr. Henrique Barreto Nunes, it was concluded that the 1st Burial of the Cat had taken place in May 1889. Thus, and exactly 100 years after her birth, the tradition was resumed, now in the hands of the students of the young University of Minho . The "cat" represents unwanted school failure. A wake is held in which the "Gata" is transported through the city's arteries followed by an entourage that does not stop crying the "deceased". The festivities last for a week and take place every year at the beginning of May.
Academic Festivities of the 1st of December — the Students of the City of Braga in 1640, with the intention of commemorating the restoration of independence, took to the streets. In the middle of the revelry, these young people robbed chicken coops and celebrated the event by drinking and eating a typical chicken dish, “Pica No Chão" (commonly known as cabidela). city, along with a recital with the participation of the Cultural Groups of the University of Minho.
Passos Procession —The Passos Procession, organized annually on Palm Sunday by the Brotherhood of Santa Cruz, is the first major ceremonial of Holy Week in Braga. Established in 1597 by Archbishop D. Friar Agostinho de Jesus, it is plausibly the second oldest of its kind in Portugal. The purpose of this procession is to reconstruct the path (steps) of Jesus Christ from the Praetorium to Calvary. For this very reason, even today, the procession follows the itinerary of the Passos (calvaries) scattered in the historic center. The high point occurs when the procession reaches Largo Carlos Amarante, in front of the church of Santa Cruz, where the sermon of the Meeting is pronounced, a catechetical-devotional moment introduced in 1946. After this staging, the procession continues its march, now with the Our Lady of Soledade walker incorporated. In the not too distant past, the procession was preceded by groups of farricocos, dressed in purple tunics, and hordes of penitents who flagellated themselves in public. In memory of these figures, a farricoco opens the procession, carrying a trumpet. It takes place in: Real (third Sunday before Easter), Celeirós (second Sunday before Easter), Cabreiros (third Sunday of Lent) and Braga (Palm Sunday).
Procession of the Body of God — The first public "manifestation" is a way of publicly affirming their belief in the Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist, that is, that the bread and wine are effectively transubstantiated into the Body and Blood of Christ. It is, therefore, a procession different from the others: here there are no explanatory pictures of the religious history, only the expression of the cult of the Blessed Sacrament, carried by the Archbishop. It was in this procession in Braga that, in 1923, the Scouts of the Corpo Nacional de Escutas were shown to the public for the first time, so it is traditional that in this procession the Scouts only constitute a participatory body, instead of just contributing to its organization as in the Holy Week.
Braga Romana - In these festivities, invented in the 21st century, which take place annually at the beginning of June, some aspects of life in the time of the Roman Republic are recreated, with varied representations and simulations.
Pilgrimages to Sameiro — Held on the first Sunday of June, the last Sunday of August and the 8th of December.
Festival in Honor of the Divine Espírito Santo - One of the oldest festivals in the city of Braga, held in the parish of Nogueira.
Pilgrimage to Mrs. da Cabeça — Mire de Tibães (second Sunday in July)
Pilgrimage of Santa Marta — Held in Montes da Falperra and Santa Marta, on the twenty-ninth of July.
Festivals and cultural events are an almost weekly occurrence throughout the region and Braga is no exception to this, with the noise of bells, rockets and music signaling the nearest party.



Over the centuries, music in Braga has been deeply influenced by popular music, folklore and religious or sacred music. In 1961, the installation of the Calouste Gulbenkian Conservatory of Music opened the city's musical horizons. The following decades witnessed a musical expansion, which continues to grow today with the emergence of the Degree in Music at the University of Minho. In the city there are also several institutions of reference, namely the Câmara do Minho Orchestra, Câmara de Braga Orchestra, the Braga Philharmonic Orchestra, the Calouste Gulbenkian Conservatory of Braga, the Orfeão de Braga, the Coro da Sé de Braga, the Coro de Pais do Braga Calouste Gulbenkian Conservatory, the Braga Gregorian Choir, the S. Miguel de Cabreiros Musical Band, the Academic Choir of the University of Minho, the Bomfim Conservatory music school, around 23 folkloric groups, among others.

Braga, has also asserted itself in the panorama of modern Portuguese music with the emergence since the 1980s of several reference bands. As an incentive for this type of music, the Municipality of Braga created several rehearsal rooms in the 1.º de Maio stadium. At the same time, there are also numerous musical competitions, such as the "Contest of Amateur Bands" at Braga Parque.



Braga in Roman times was known for being the city with the most roads on the Peninsula. At that time, it had a road with the characteristics of a motorway, the Geira, designed to be a fast route and without major differences in level, it had several tolls along the route, hostels and a horse exchange (genuine service stations). Many centuries later, the city was once again at the forefront with the inauguration in 1875, by King D. Luís, of the railway line and station in Braga. Seven years later, on March 25, 1882, the Bom Jesus Elevator was also inaugurated, which together with a line of a small steam train connected the elevator to the Central Avenue in the city. At that time the American Car was also introduced. Later, on October 5, 1914, both the small steam train line and the Carro Americano were replaced by the Trams of Braga.

Today, on a road level, the city has a set of wide avenues that dilute traffic in various directions, it is worth mentioning the Highway (Praça do Condestável, Avenida da Imaculada Conceição, Avenida João XXI, Avenida João Paulo II) that crosses the city of Oeste for this. Braga also has an important ring road that distributes city traffic. The ring connects important roads: the Prado highway (variant to the EN101) connects the populations to the north, Prado and Vila Verde, the Fojo variant connects the east zone and later on the EN103 to Póvoa de Lanhoso and Vieira do Minho, to the south it connects the variant to the EN14 which connects to the A11 to Guimarães (and subsequently the entire Ave valley, Sousa valley and Terras de Basto) and to the A3 to Vila Nova de Famalicão and Porto, to the west it connects the A11 to Barcelos and Apúlia (Esposende) and the A3 to Valença and Galicia. Also planned is the Cávado bypass that will link the populations of the Northwest and Amares, and the Gualtar bypass that will link the city's new hospital to the east zone and Póvoa de Lanhoso. Thousands of cars circulate daily on the urban ring road and access roads to the city, which results in some traffic jams, especially at peak hours.

In the area of mass transport, the municipality is served by TUB public transport. TUB has a fleet of 116 blue and white vehicles. The network covers the entire municipality with 1553 stops, and 277.6 km on 76 lines where 5,089 million kilometers are traveled annually with 22,556 million passengers. It is planned in the short term to expand this network to the neighboring municipalities of Vila Verde and Amares. Braga also has a trucking center next to the urban ring road, where there are daily regional connections throughout Minho, west of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro, and Douro Litoral. At the center you can also find daily connections via the Expresso and Renex network throughout the country and weekly connections to Europe.

In terms of air transport, it has an airfield, consisting of a helipad and a runway (950x25 meters) used by planes with a maximum capacity of 25 passengers. The nearest international airports are: Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (50 km), Portela Airport (350 km), and in neighboring Galicia Vigo Airport (125 km)

The two major seaports nearby are Porto de Viana (50 km) and Porto de Leixões (50 km).

In terms of rail transport, there are three passenger stations, the main station with six lines in Maximinos, the Tadim station and the Arentim station, both double-line; and a Goods Terminal in Aveleda. Passenger stations provide connections between themselves and to Porto by urban train (tram), the rest of the Minho line is by regional train (diesel). The main station also provides daily connections on Alfa Pendular to various cities in Portugal. The High Speed Railway Network has confirmed the installation of a TGV station in the city, which will make direct connections to Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport and Vigo in Galicia, also connecting the cities of Porto and Lisbon and the future Lisbon-Madrid line.



Braga is an extremely dynamic city, with intense economic activity in the areas of commerce and services, teaching and research, civil construction, IT and new technologies, tourism and various branches of industry and crafts.

The economically active population in 2001 was 51.9%, that is, 85,194 individuals. Distributed in the following sectors: 893 individuals in the primary sector, 31 374 secondary sector, 47 031 tertiary sector of which 24655 individuals were linked to economic activities.

The primary sector has gradually declined due to urban expansion. Today there are still vinicultures, floriculture, companies linked to the forest and stone extraction, traditional agriculture is something on the verge of extinction, since it is limited to being a homemade activity and is maintained essentially by people of advanced age.

The secondary sector is quite diversified, but is marked by companies linked to technology, the metallurgical industry, civil construction and wood processing. The software industry is the new industrial force in Braga, considered by many to be the Portuguese Silicon Valley. This success is especially due to the University of Minho, which since 1976 trains professionals in this area. Industries linked to religion are also important, Braga is an important producer of images of saints, vestments and bells. The bells of Braga are spread all over the world, from all these places, for example, the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris stands out.

There are several industrial parks and business centers on the outskirts of the city, such as the Grundig/Blaupunkt Complex, Ferreiros business center, Frossos business center and industrial park, Celeirós business center and industrial park and Adaúfe industrial park. With the construction in Braga of the International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory (INL) (see Investigation & Technology) and the implementation of the Instituto de Desenvolvimento Empresarial do Atlântico, an Ideia Atlântico venture, where several dozen technology-based companies are installed, it is expected a great impulse in the growth of this sector in Braga's economy.

The tertiary sector is the strongest economic sector, which is why Braga is designated as the capital of commerce in Portugal. Traffic has been removed from its Historic Center and you can enjoy the largest pedestrian area in the country, where terraces, services, local commerce and the stores of the major international chains coexist side by side, forming a giant shopping center. outdoors. On the outskirts of the city there is a huge variety of shopping areas, ranging from the common hypermarkets and stores, to music and film mega-stores, electrical appliances, DIY and construction, among others. The Braga Region Supply Market (MARB) is also located in Celeirós.

The Commercial Association of Braga and the Industrial Association of Minho (AIM) based in Braga, are vital bodies for the support and development of companies from Braga and companies in the Minho region. PME Portugal (Association of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises of Portugal) is an association based in Braga that supports micro, small and medium-sized enterprises at national level. The Braga Exhibition Park (PEB) with 45 000 m² offers infrastructure for fairs, exhibitions and congresses at national and international level.

With a modern urban ring around its perimeter and "torn" by wide Avenues, Braga has all the conditions to continue to be one of the reference cities in the Portuguese-Galatian economic context.


Research & Technology

Research and technology are rapidly developing areas in the city of Braga. Since the creation of the University of Minho, an institution that has stood out for its youth and innovation, the city of Braga has gone from being a conservative city to a dynamic, creative and technological city. This fact forced the creation of large support infrastructures, namely fiber optic networks (Braga currently has the most extensive fiber optic network in the country) and technology parks. As the TechValley project is in the implementation phase, which includes the construction of a technological park of excellence for Braga, in the region there are plans for two more parks in the vicinity of this city, the Innovation and Knowledge Park (Vila Verde) to the north, and the AvePark (Caldas das Taipas) to the south, all in partnership with the University of Minho.

From the TechValley project, the Instituto de Desenvolvimento Empresarial do Atlântico, a venture by Ideia Atlântico, located in Variante do Fojo, which contains several valences, including an Incubation Centre, a Business Centre, an Office infrastructure Virtual and a space where several dozens of Technological Base companies are housed. The Portuguese Investment Agency classified it as a Project of National Interest (PIN), the first in the region.

Braga's university teaching institutions are great research structures. The University of Minho has several centres, nuclei and research institutes in the areas of Informatics, Health Sciences, Biomedical, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Engineering, Archeology and socio-cultural sciences in areas such as Law, Child Studies, among others. . The Catholic University of Portugal also has, on its campuses, several Research Units in the field of socio-cultural sciences.

The city of Braga is considered by many to be the Portuguese Silicon Valley due to the countless companies related to software, some of them of great renown such as Primavera Software (Portuguese company leader in the production of software in Portugal and among the 500 European companies with greater potential for growth), Mobicomp (leading Portuguese company in the development of business solutions based on computing technologies and mobile communications) or Edigma (leading Portuguese company in the management of digital projects and interactivity). There are also large technological and research centers in other areas, BOSCH CM Portugal, which is the largest factory for the production of car radios, navigation systems and derivatives in Europe, is among the ten largest national export companies, is also a large center of electronic engineering research and development. This BOSCH CM unit develops all its products from the prototype to the final product, that is, from the layout of the printed circuit board (PCB) to product design. Cachapuz, part of the Bilanciai Group, is also a company of excellence in terms of development and innovation. The Bilanciai Group is the world's largest group of scales and weighing systems. The largest Portuguese aluminum group, the Navarra Group, named after the parish that saw the company grow, is an important group that is committed to research and technological progress in its sector. These companies, like many others, are the engine of technology and private investigation in the city of Braga.

The most recent investment in the area of research in Braga is the International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory (INL), also known as the Iberian Institute of Research and Development. The implementation of this mega institute was due to the unique characteristics of the city, mentioned above, and is the result of a cooperation agreement between the Portuguese and Spanish governments in the area of research and technology. With an annual investment of 30 million euros, this structure will be dedicated to research in the area of nanotechnology and will have several workshops, laboratories, a library, auditoriums and a space to accommodate short-term visitors. It will also be equipped with a live science center so that the population can be shown the work that will be carried out there.



The average level of education in the city of Braga is higher than the national level. In 2001, 44% of the population had at least the ninth grade (compulsory minimum schooling). With higher education level there were 23 660 individuals (14%), with a female superiority. The percentage with less than 9 years of schooling was 64%, it should be remembered that 19% of the population was less than fourteen years old. Illiteracy in 2001 was 5% (8 286 individuals), 1.9% less than in 1991. Illiteracy in Braga is mostly female, 6007 individuals.

At the top level, the city has two major universities:
Catholic University of Portugal — This university was born in Braga in 1967 and was the first non-state Higher School to grant academic degrees of licenciatura and doctorate in Portugal. Braga was also the seat of the first private school in the territory that was to be Portugal. As early as 1072, according to Avelino de Jesus da Costa, there was a schoolmaster to teach students who wanted to attend the Cabido School that operated next to the Cathedral of Braga. It is in this tradition that the most prestigious private institution of higher education in Portugal is placed.
University of Minho — It was founded in Braga in 1973 and began its academic activity in 1975/76. It is one of the so-called "New Universities", which profoundly changed the scenario of Portuguese higher education. This institution has distinguished itself throughout its history also for the uniqueness of its academic traditions. Students at this university wear their own academic attire, called a "tricorn" (named after the hat it belongs to). Of 17th century origins, this costume is portrayed on tile panels about student life in Braga, in the building that currently houses the UM rectory, in Largo do Paço in Braga. The privilege of its use was granted at the time by the King, to the students of the extinct Colégio S. Paulo de Braga. These garments are composed of flat black shoes, black socks, shorts, shirt, coat, cape and tricorn hat.
Braga Superior School of Sport — Approved on the 24th of September 2010 by the Council of Ministers, the Braga Superior School of Sport was a private institution, of "public interest", which would operate in the Municipal Park of Exhibitions and Sports of Braga and will use various municipal facilities, namely the 1.º de Maio Stadium, the Indoor Athletics Track, the Swimming Pool Complex, and the Municipal Sports Pavilion, among others. The Declaration of public interest approved by the Council of Ministers was not confirmed by the Ministry of Higher Education, so the school will not open there.

The city has a long tradition of training aircraft pilots. The Aero Club de Braga, since its foundation in 1935, trains aircraft pilots and paratroopers. It is an institution with a long history and a great contribution to aviation in Portugal. In 2012, the Aeronautical Sciences Academy of the University of Minho (UMASA) is created, a higher education academy, with international recognition, which aims at training, research and development in aeronautical sciences.

At the level of basic, secondary and professional education, several prestigious institutions also stand out:

Academia Bracarense is a nationally renowned fashion school. The academy participates in various fairs, championships, international fashion salons, such as the Salon Prêt a Porter in Paris (the largest and most prestigious fashion fair in the world) or the Mondial Coiffure Beauté in Paris (the largest world championship in hairdressing and beauty).

The Liceu Nacional Sá de Miranda, which marked secondary education in the 20th century, today designated as Escola Secundária Sá de Miranda, was for most of the nineties the largest school in the country, with more than six thousand students. The city has a total of seven public secondary schools and a few private schools.

There are also several Professional Schools supervised by the Ministry of Education, the EsproMinho-Escola Profissional do Minho, the Professional School Profitecla, the European Professional School and the Professional School of Braga.

In terms of equipment supervised by the IEFP (Institute of Employment and Professional Training), the Professional Training Center of Braga, better known as Mazagão, stands out.

In terms of basic education equipment, the municipality is also strategically well equipped. It has thirteen EB 2.3 schools, ninety-one primary schools and sixty-three pre-school education establishments.

In terms of private education, the best known schools are Colégio João Paulo II, Externato Infante D. Henrique, Colégio Dom Diogo de Sousa, Colégio Luso-Internacional de Braga - CLIB and Externato Paulo VI.

The Municipality of Braga also has the following educational equipment available to the population:

Road Education School — The Braga Road School was created with the aim of making young people aware of the dangers of accidents, in the preventive and training areas.
Quinta Pedagógica de Braga — The Quinta Pedagógica de Braga is an old traditional Minho farm, with about two and a half hectares, which was restructured with the aim of reinforcing environmental education and the consequent contact of Man with nature. This structure has equipment in the areas of livestock, traditional agriculture and wine. It also has a forest, a picnic area, a food preparation area and a laboratory for environmental experiments.


Famous people from Braga

Born in Braga
Almeno Gonçalves, Portuguese actor and director.
André Soares is considered the greatest Portuguese architect in Rococo.
António Eduardo Vilaça, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Navy and Overseas
Carlos Amarante was an engineer and architect. Author of the church of Bom Jesus.
João Antunes was an important architect believed to be the main introducer of the Baroque in Portugal. Author of the Sacristy of the Cathedral of Braga and the Church of Santa Engrácia (National Pantheon) in Lisbon.
Iva Domingues, Portuguese television presenter.
Diogo Dalot, Portuguese footballer.
Domingos Pereira, was a Portuguese politician. He was appointed three times president of the Ministry (Prime Minister) of Portugal.
Elísio de Moura was a Portuguese psychiatrist and the first chairman of the Portuguese Medical Association.
Francisco Sanches was an illustrious physician, philosopher and mathematician.
Gabriel Pereira de Castro was a Portuguese writer.
Sister Maria Estrela Divina was a tertiary religious, born on the 4th of August 1904 and died on the 5th of October 1961. She is buried in the Cathedral of Braga.
Roby Brothers were two brothers who died in the African pacification campaigns of the early 20th century.
João Penha was a Portuguese poet.
Jorge Miranda, emeritus professor.
José de Santo António Vilaça was a Benedictine sculptor from the 18th century.
Maria Ondina Braga was a Portuguese writer.
Paulo Orósio was a historian, theologian and Christian apologist.
Tomaz de Figueiredo is considered by many to be one of the most notable Portuguese writers of the 20th century.
Sebastião Alba (aka Dinis Albano) was a Portuguese/Mozambican poet who was born and lived most of his life in Braga.
Afonso Gomes de Lira, who was Mayor of Braga.
António Variações, Fiscal, Amares, was a singer and composer.
João Peres de Aboim, Aboim da Nóbrega, Vila Verde, troubadour and one of the most prominent political figures at the time of King Afonso III, whose valet he was. He was sub-signifer from 1250 to 1255, butler to the queen from 1254 to 1259, major butler between 1264 and 1279, lieutenant of Ponte de Lima in 1259, and of Évora or the Alentejo from 1270 to 1284.
Gualdim Pais, Amares, Grand Master of the Knights Templar in Portugal, in the time of Afonso Henriques, founded the city of Tomar, the Castles of Almourol, Idanha, Monsanto and Pombal.
Egas Fafes de Lanhoso, Ponte (Vila Verde), Rico-Homem and confirmer of royal diplomas, between 1146 and 1160, by Dom Afonso I.
Gonçalo Viegas, Ponte (Vila Verde), son of the preceding, and first Grand Master of the Order of São Bento de Avis
Estêvão Soares da Silva, grandson of Egas Fafes, and Archbishop of Braga.
Francisco de Campos de Azevedo Soares, Coucieiro, Vila Verde, was a Portuguese politician and judge. Mayor of Braga (1856 to 1857), Civil Governor of the District in 1862, Counselor of His Majesty was raised to Greatness, as 1st Count of Carcavelos in 1889.

Not born in Braga, but with emphasis in the city of Braga
Count D. Henrique de Burgonha and his wife Teresa de Leão buried in the Cathedral of Braga.
Francisco de Sá de Miranda, poet who died in 1558 in Amares.
Caetano Brandão
Count of Agrolongo
Canon Luciano Afonso dos Santos
Diogo de Sousa
Friar Bartolomeu dos Mártires
Gaspar from Bragança
São Geraldo de Moissac, Archbishop and patron saint of the city of Braga.
John Peculiar
São Martinho de Dume, Bishop of Dume and Braga.
Moura Coutinho
Pope John XXI
Andrea Cristina
António Nogueira da Silva, a philanthropic merchant, was made an honorary citizen of the city. Among other things, he financed the renovation and completion of works on the Basilica dos Congregados and was a co-founder of the Catholic University. After his death, his house, along with his vast collection of possessions, became the Casa Museu Nogueira da Silva.
Gonçalo Martins de Abreu founder of the house of Abreus, and general in the Arcos de Valdevez Tournament.
Orlando Costa, Portuguese actor.



Some of the main sports clubs in Braga are Sporting Clube de Braga, Hóquei Clube de Braga and Académico Basket Clube. Internationally, Braga is known for the Sporting de Braga football team, due to the team's constant participation in European competitions. In addition to this, Braga also has other football clubs, but smaller. Braga's amateur football team won the UEFA Regions' Cup in 2011, thus joining the 2007 Intertoto Cup won by Sporting de Braga in the set of international titles won by football teams in the municipality. The city also has the Football Association of Braga.

In addition to football, Braga has teams and associations for other sports such as hockey, basketball, handball, athletics, among others.