Braga’s mild climate ensures the city remains at a pleasant temperature all year round, with average daily temperatures ranging from 28˚ C in summer to 15˚ C in winter. The city offers plenty of shopping, from high street stores to quirky boutiques, and is also home to the Circuito Vasco Sameiro, a popular venue for enjoying some weekend race-track action. The delights of the Minho district, with its rolling green hills, are ready to be enjoyed just a stone’s throw from the compact city centre while the rolling Atlantic waves of the Costa Verde are just a short drive away to the west.
THE RIGHT NEIGHBOURHOOD FOR YOU
- Family-friendly: As a compact city Braga is very family-friendly, with many amenities accessed on foot or via the efficient bus system. Many families, however, choose to live outside the city limits in the wider Braga district. Opt for village life in one of the settlements towards Briteiros, Vila Verde or Espinho.
- Upmarket: Bom Jesus do Monte is one of Braga’s best-known sights and home to some of the city’s most exclusive accommodation. Set on a towering hill overlooking the city and old town, Bom Jesus do Monte is an ancient pilgrimage church and chapels reached via a zig-zag stairway that gleams in white against the verdant foliage through which it rises to the peak. Luxury, views and exclusivity are the order of the day here.
- Hip & Trendy: The university quarter is the place to head if you are looking for fashionable Braga. Home to thousands of students and young professionals, shops, bars and clubs are all within easy rich of this vibrant, bustling neighbourhood.
- Up & Coming: The parish of Maximinos, Sé e Cividade was created in 2013 through the merger of its two former namesake parishes. Home to some 15,000 in an area of just over 2.5 km2, the traditional buildings of the old town are being rapidly revitalised.
COST OF MOVING
Buying furniture in Portugal is relatively expensive so it is well worth considering taking your own with you when you move. An average 20 ft container will cost in the region of 4,000 Euros from New York, 5,500 Euros from Cape Town and 6,500 Euros from Melbourne.
If you are moving from the European mainland or the UK, transportation by removal truck is the more cost-effective option. There are a number of providers specialising in international removals between European nations and rates are suitably competitive. Do remember to make sure your possessions are insured and that you have complied with any customs requirements if you are shipping from outside the EU.
DAY IN THE LIFE OF LIVING IN BRAGA
The beauty of Braga is its diversity, liveliness, compact centre and beautiful natural surroundings. While it is easy to overlook the tourist attractions of a city once one becomes accustomed to them, Braga boasts stunning historical monuments at every turn adding a sense of wonder to even the most mundane tasks of working, shopping and taking the children to school.
A perfect day in Braga can be spent wandering through the old town, stopping to listen to the birdsong in the open areas of greenery, climbing to the peaks of the surrounding hills for a majestic view over the ancient city or simply running errands in one of the most attractive cities of the Iberian Peninsula. With the attractions of the northern Portuguese coast just a short drive away, Braga really does have everything you could wish for.
With rental prices in Braga relatively low compared to many worldwide destinations, it is possible to live cost-effectively without buying in the city. As a popular university town, there is a wide range of accommodation available in the old town and throughout the city centre, particularly if you are happy to live in an apartment. Accommodation outside the city centre offers more choice, with a range of houses and apartments to meet every taste and budget.
If rural accommodation is your preference, Braga’s compact size and attractive surrounding countryside make it a compelling proposition, and there are a number of villages close by offering a laid-back, rural lifestyle with easy access to amenities.
Overall the cost of living in Portugal is low and Braga is cheaper than certain Portuguese ex-pat destinations. Consumer prices in the city are 8% lower than in Lisbon, and property rental prices are an impressive 50% lower than the capital. Impressive, right? There are many bars and restaurants in the city in which it is possible to eat for as little as 5€ per person, while a three-course meal for two in a mid-range restaurant will cost on average just under 30€. This makes Braga a good option both for those who are intending to work after their arrival and for those who are looking for a cost-effective destination in which to enjoy their retirement years.
Grocery shopping in Braga is cheaper than in many European cities. Expect to pay around 1€ for a loaf of bread, 65 cents for a litre of milk, 1€ for a dozen eggs, 3€ for a mid-range bottle of wine and just 90 cents for a half-litre bottle of Portuguese beer. The city also offers plenty of sporting and leisure facilities, with prices around 6€ for tennis court rental, from 30€ for a monthly membership at a fitness club and 6€ for a cinema ticket to watch a mainstream movie.
Many ex-pats choose to rent a property while they find their feet in Braga. If you wish to rent in the city centre, you will need to budget between 280€ for a one-bedroom apartment and 450€ for a three-bedroom apartment. Outside the city centre, you can expect to pay between 220 and 350€ for apartments of comparable size and quality.
Before your big move to Braga, it’s wise to think about medical cover for when you’re out there.
Click here for more information about getting health care in Malaga.