Nightlife in Coimbra. The best bars, pubs, clubs and night-time entertainment
The particular character of city population composed of current residents and university students, delivers a very curious, entertaining and funny nightlife. In Coimbra the settings of the nocturnal divertimento changes from discreet, elegant and romantic to fashionable, trendy and wild, it is always relies on the place the visitor selects to spend his/her time.
Day and Night
For those seeking an oasis in the city, they can try Ocean´s Bar, with a very trendy decoration, and a peaceful air to take a rest while having a glass of wine or a beer. Ocean´s bar is located a few meters from Mondego Bay and Santa Clara Monastery. Not far from there, there is Galeria Bar Santa Clara, a charming small place which offers the chance to sip coffee or tea while watching the city from its terrace. Both are nice pubs to spend a lazy afternoon, planning what to do in the evening. Prices are moderate and service is very nice.
Coimbra´s youngest face
Coimbra night life is tagged as intense: you can find clubs and bars that are open five days a week; some of them can cater their patrons the entire week, night after night, with music, drinks and live show. It is something you can expect from a city that has an important university nestled in its old, medieval quarter. Students are everywhere during the afternoon and the evening. They supply action and intense vibe to the mood of the nightlife, attracting young poeple from the rest of Europe to party here.
Close to Sé Velha, the city old cathedral, there is a very popular bar called Bigornia. A place bubbling up with young people, drinks, music and always prone to party. The shots are cheap and the personal is friendly. This place is highly recommendable for staying there, partying all night.
Dining with music
For someone searching for a calmer, relaxed ambient, there are some chances of having a drink or enjoy dining in an old building that once had been a church and now serves as a trendy restaurant and mini concert hall. Coimbra has two places of that kind ( Café Santa Cruz, with an excellent acoustic, and Feito Conceito), they are really appreciate for music and art lovers, and supported for visitors that want to enjoy intimacy and small talk in a fashionable environment. You can dine or just have a drink in those sites. Prices are slightly high there but it is compensated with elegance and intimacy.
Fado is the popular native music of Portugal. Fado has influenced many musical currents around the world; the most famous of all them is tango. Here in the streets of Coimbra, Fado stills rules and people can enjoy the experience of listening Fado live while having a glass of Portuguese wine ( Port, for example). A glass of wine or any other spirituous drink can cost € 10 or more. Some places include the drink with the price of the admission ticket. You can enjoy Portugal’s native music in Fado ao Centro mini auditorium, Feito Conceito, Noites Longas ( good music and cheap drinks) and Diligencia Bar. About this last one, the general opinion is that the site reflects the authentic spirit of Fado. Diligencia Bar is almost a secluded pub, far from the main street, where most of the audience is local.
A particular place to know is Aqui Base Tango, a restaurant and cultural center , ideal for socializing. This building held a police station once, now it is one of the nicest places to know people and share quality time with friends. The building has several floors, each one decorated extravagantly, and allowing visitors to choose their “environment” and participate in events or to play social games like Ping-Pong, cards, and many more.
More to do in Coimbra
There are four cinemas in Coimbra, one of them in the right side of the city and the rest in the left part, the old quarter, where the University is located. They are open until 3 a.m.; the exception is Caminho Do Cinema Portugués, which is theater dedicated to show exclusively Portuguese cinema and to hold cinema festivals and cultural activities during certain periods of the year. For the lovers of the stage, Coimbra has some medium and small sized rooms, with interesting proposal, The main halls are Teatro da Cerca de São Bernardo, Escola Da Noite, Teatro Académico Gil Vicente and Locoumotiva.
That seems to be the motto for living the night in Coimbra: good traditional music, good music everywhere, excellent food and when the visitor wishes, a pause to tasting drinks and relax