Estádio do Bessa or Estádio do Bessa XXI is a purpose built football stadium located in the Boavista neighbourhood of Porto. Dating back to 1911, the ground was completely rebuilt in preparation for the Euro 2004 Portugal hosted tournament resulting in a modern, 28,263 capacity arena which is used today by Primeira Liga side Boavista F.C.
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Football has been played at the location of today’s Estádio do Bessa since at least 1911 with the original ‘Campo do Bessa’ bearing little today’s multi-million pound stadium and even the 1972 renovated version. Home to Boavista F.C who are regarded as the second club in the city of Porto, behind European giants FC Porto, Estádio do Bessa is one of the most English looking grounds in Portugal, consisting of four individual stands.
Contrary to what some may assume, Estádio do Bessa was actually rebuilt from scratch between 1999 – 2003 independent of Portugal’s bid to host the Euro 2004 Championships.
Constructed over a four year period, by the time work had began on the stadium, the country was yet to be awarded the right to host the tournament with only around €7.8 million euros of the total €45 million cost coming from the state’s coffers.
Designated to host three matches of Euro 2004, Boavista’s ground hosted a single match for Groups A, D, and C. The first match featured tournament Champions, Greece, who drew 1-1 with 2008 Champions Spain, the second featured Latvia and Germany with the third match being a Scandinavian derby between Denmark and Sweden which resulted in an entertaining 2-2 draw.
As for the future of the stadium, don’t expect any renovations to be forthcoming with the club plunging into serious debt after building the beautiful black and white chequered ground. The club were relegated to the third tier of Portuguese football and only returned to the Primeira Liga during the 2014/2015 season.
Below is a seating plan of Boavista's Estádio do Bessa Século XXI:
Estadio do Bessa is comprised of four stands: North, East, South and West.
Click the thumbnails above to enlarge an image of each stand and to read a more detailed description of each part of the stadium.
The Matchday Experience
We can’t currently find any information relating to the location of away fans inside the stadium. Sorry.
The fan shop at the stadium is guaranteed to be open for at least a few hours before kick-off. Generally it is also open between 2.00pm and 6.00pm on non-match days.
Neither Boavista F.C or the local municipal currently offer stadium tours of the facilities at Estádio do Bessa. Instead you may wish to learn a bit more about the club by attending a match and visiting the museum.
Tickets to see Boavista F.C can be either be obtained online from the official website and then printed out at home or purchased on the day of the match before kick-off.
Prices can fluctuate depending on who the opposition is however for most matches you can expect to get a decent seat from a pick of the stands for around €20.00
Estádio do Bessa XXI is located within the Boavista district less than 1.6 km west of Porto’s historical centre in a prime location which is arguably much better than FC Porto’s Estadio do Dragao.
The stadium’s address for satnav is as follows:
- Estádio do Bessa Século XXI, R. O 1º de Janeiro, 4100 Porto, Portugal
The ground lacks its own parking facilities which means you will have to contend with making your own parking arrangements within the wider residential neighbourhood.
The closest metro station to FC Boavista’s stadium is Francos 1.1 km north and it is only one road away from Avenue do Bessa where the stadium lies.
Porto is blessed with two major railway stations: São Bento south central which is for suburban and commuter services and Campanhã to the east which is regarded as the city’s main station due to its intercity services around Portugal.
Airports and Flying
Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport is located 13 km north of Porto’s city centre, and is the main international flight hub for not only the city but the wider Norte region.
It is the second busiest airport in Portugal behind Lisbon Portela Airport in terms of passenger numbers.
The closest hotel to the stadium is undoubtedly BessaHotel Boavista however it may not be easy to book due to its proximity and within everyone’s price range as it is rated four stars.
With the excellent metro system the entire city of Porto is practically open up to you so don’t feel as if you need to limit yourself to anywhere in particular. Having said that the area around São Bento Train Station is particularly buzzing with places to stay such as the Hotel Ibis.