Braga hitchhiking and transport tips
Estação Ferroviária de Braga (Braga Train Station; Largo da Estação) is centrally located and lays at the end of branch line 9. Taking a train from Braga to Porto is very easy and very cheap because Braga is within Porto’s suburbano network meaning commuter trains travel ever hour or so (3.20€, about 1 hour). There are also Alfa Pendular (AP) trains that travel to Lisbon (27-33€, about 4 hours) and Coimbra (16-20€, about 2½ hours). Be warned though as taking the AP train to Porto from Braga is a lot more expensive, take the suburbano!
Estação Rodoviária (Braga Bus Station; Praça da Estação Rodoviária) is located a little north of the old town and is serviced by a number of companies offering routes spanning the length and breadth of Portugal. Empresa Hoteleira de Gerês runs the line to Campo de Gerês (every 45 mins weekdays, a lot fewer at the weekends). Rede Expressos run numerous services including Lisbon (20€, 4½ hours), Porto (6€, about 1 hour) and Coimbra (14€, around 2½ hours). Arriva lays on more local services such as Barcelos (2.30€, 1 hour) and Guimarães (2.75€, 50mins) but do offer over 8 buses a day to Porto (4.50€ about 1 hour).
The IP-1 Porto – Vigo, Spain motorway runs north to south, close to Braga’s western edges. The A-11 Portuguese Coast – Guimarães motorway also passes east–west, just south of the city. To the north and east there is a dense network of scarcely used national and country roads.
Braga Hitchhiking Out
The decision whether to hitchhike out of Braga was a tricky one. On the one hand we wanted to stay true to our hitchhiking ethics, on the other hand, our next destination was Porto. Taking the train was a lot quicker, more comfortable and in the long run cheaper, as we wouldn’t have to buy food from the expensive motorway service stations. The train was very comfortable, yes. Thanks for asking.
South towards Porto, Coimbra & Lisbon
On the road to Porto & Barcelos, there is a petrol station from where you can attempt to hitch. To reach it simply cross the motorway by walking over Avenida de São Pedro de Maximinos, which is located a short walk south of the train station, or east of the city centre depending on your location and then following the motorway until reaching the CEPSA garage.
North towards Peneda-Gerês National Park & Spain (Vigo, Santiago de Compostela)
Take any of the following buses 3, 28, 29, 41, 44, 45, 46, 49, 51, 67, 72, 73 or 81 to the roundabout Largo de Infias which is located to the north of the city centre. A little further on, there is a nice little spot onto the National Roads which span off north, north-east and north-west.
Written by: Jon