Great European destination, what not to forget
Portugal's second largest city lies along the steep banks of the Douro River. It is on the UNESCO list and in 2012 it was declared the best European destination. The proximity of the Atlantic means not only beaches, but also more rainfall. There are many interesting buildings, museums, places for lovers of Port wine, restaurants and most importantly favorable prices.
Outside the main season (2018) there is no direct air connection from Prague, so we use the cheapest offers and travel via Amsterdam. You could wait for another flight even longer, there is something to look at.
Francisco Sa Carneiro Airport
We're a little detoured in Porto. For us, it is a destination, but the airport is a natural transfer station, for example, for those traveling to the Azores.
From the airport, which is north of the city, we take the subway. The chip card costs 0.80 EUR (2018) and can be recharged in vending machines according to the number of zones and rides we need to complete. The metro has a total of 6 lines and it reminds me a bit of a tram. All lines meet at Trindade station.
Some buildings are not in the best condition. But it has a very interesting atmosphere. We roam around the Marqués metro station and find a number of interesting places.
There are many of them and they all have an interesting and nice interior. Sacral buildings are definitely worth a visit.
Avenida dos Aliados
It's a good landmark. Above the long square, in the upper part, is the Church of the Holy Trinity with a tall white tower, there is also the town hall. From the bottom it is just a short walk to another landmark, Almeida Garrett Square with Sao Bento Train Station.
Sao Bento train station
It is known for its typically Portuguese tile decoration (azulejos). From here, there are regional connections, such as to Aveira, called Venice in Portugal, or to the Douro Valley.
The tangle of narrow streets of the city center offers a plethora of shops, restaurants, interesting meetings and you do not have to overcome everything on foot.
Rua de Ferreira Borgese
From the narrow streets we start to fall steeply. We pass the Institute of Port Wine, the statue of Estatua Infante D Henrique, our goal is the right bank of the Douro River.
Ribeira's seafront is an attractive part of the city overlooking the monumental Ponte Dom Luís I bridge. You can take a river trip with one of the moored boats.
This symbol of Porto was completed in 1886 by a pupil of Gustav Eiffel. The upper bridge deck is intended for pedestrians and one of the metro lines. Cars drive along the lower bridge deck and there are narrow sidewalks for pedestrians. Behind the bridge is the Villa de Gaia, which houses the most famous port wine houses.
Villa de Gaia
Wandering this part of Porto will spend the whole day, especially because you can visit a number of wineries and taste great Port wines. However, Villa de Gaia is also interesting for its architecture.
Terreiro da Sé
The 12th- and 13th-century Sé de Porto Cathedral is just a 5-minute walk from Sao Bento Train Station. There is a nice view of the city and a pleasant walk through the narrow streets to the Douro River.
Porto is also a city of wine and Portugal is a major producer of cork, a cork oak whose forests are typical of the rolling countryside of the province of Alentejo. They make corks in this shop and you can buy a hundred „plugs“ for 6.50 EUR.
There are also tram lines in Porto, along which beautiful historical machines run. One such line runs from Rua Nova da Alfa ndega to Foz do Douro. In less than half an hour and for 3 EUR (there are no pre-sale metro tickets for the line), we reach the Atlantic coast.
Foz do Douro
The Douro River concludes its pilgrimage and encounters ocean waves. The endless sandy beach is a place of relaxation and fun. The waters of the ocean are pretty wild here at this low season and a walk to the lighthouse is almost an adrenaline experience.
This part of Porto rises steeply from the river and offers many small shops and family taverns. After returning from Foz to the Douro, we get out of the historic wagon and walk through the narrow streets. It's time to taste the local specialties. For example, there is a „francesinha“, a sandwich stuffed with beef, sausage, ham and cheese, topped with white wine and beer sauce, served with french fries and bull's eye. Another typical dish is „alheira con ovo“, a sausage with an egg.
Torre dos Clérigos
After lunch it is difficult to climb a steep hill. As if that wasn't enough, our goal is the 76 meter high Torre dos Clérigos tower. From this national monument there are really fantastic views of the whole area around Porto.
Immediately below the Clérigos Tower, towards the river, lies the Jewish Quarter. The streets are a place to meet interesting people.
Portuguese Photography Center
The former prison is now a place for exhibitions of photographers and the history of photographic technology. Sensation, among the exhibited devices I also find our Flexaret.
In many buildings, entire walls are covered with tiles with various ornaments or images. We end the tour of Porto by taking a look at the training of football players of the local famous club.
Have you been there? Contribute a good advice to travelers who want to go to this area or add places to your visited list.
Do you want to go there? There is nothing easier than having to deal with others and go on a trip or get tips on where you want to go.
Have you been there? Write a review of this place
Already rated by 2 travelers