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  • Feb22

    Coimbra - First Impressions

    February 22 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Easy peasy 1 1/2 hour train ride from Aveiro to Coimbra with hardly anyone on the train. A few students. There are two train stops in Coimbra - Stations A and B. One is outside of the city and the other is in the city. So, that’s where we got off.

    So what were our first impressions?

    It seems like it is a pretty city. Pastel-coloured houses going up a high hill located beside a big river.

    It is hilly. Oh yes, very hilly. Great for getting lots of exercise – bad for people carrying backpacks and getting lost going up the hills. Great for views on every corner – bad for carrying our food and too many books over any distance over a few hundred metres! But without the bags, it is great for seeing new vistas around every corner!

    It has a beautiful university situated on top of a hill. Tourists come here to explore the historical buildings, visit the museums and check out the views. From its narrow, ancient streets to its imposing religious buildings, there’s plenty to see on campus.

    There are a lot of musicians playing saxophones, guitars and drums on the wonderful, main pedestrian street. We even saw a man playing an accordion while his wee little dog sat on a stool with a little bucket in his mouth, collecting change. So funny.

    It is a very clean city and people are nice.

    Laundry hangs out on balconies high up on five storey buildings and cats sit in windowsills. A bit of graffiti and cobblestone streets.

    Every fifth store is a bakery or a cafe. We will have to run up those steep hills on a daily basis in order to burn the calories from the pastries that we will want to eat.

    The history! Oh my.

    The city definitely has a lot of character and we are looking forward to exploring it.
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