Portugal
Vila Nova de Gaia

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  • Day36

    Porto tour with Peter's Beetle

    October 9, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 14 °C

    Ian saw this tour advertised on Airbnb and thought it looked like fun, so we booked it, and it was absolutely brilliant and lots of fun. Rui, our tour guide, had set up this company about a year ago. He inherited his grandfather’s VW Beetle and decided to fix it up, and when he would drive it around town he was often stopped by people asking if the car was for hire - this gave him the idea to start this tour. It operates out of a jewellery store that he and his wife own, which was just two minutes walk from our apartment.

    We were driven around in the back seat of a convertible beetle (ours was red, there is also a blue one). Rui took us to many of the sites of Porto, and provided us with a great overview of the city and the layout so we could then decide where we wanted to return to. Rui is very knowledgeable and passionate about Porto. He was born here as were his parents, his mother on one side of the river and his father on the other. We also had the opportunity to stop a number of times and take photos, plus Rui took several photos of us, which turned out really well.

    Rui even offered to drop us off at a different spot to where we started the tour - Livraria Lello - the bookstore that inspired JK Rowling to write the Harry Potter novels, when she was living in Porto and working as an English teacher! Not only did Rui drop us at the bookstore, he took us to the ticket office and got us fast track entry for 5 Euro, less than it would have cost us to book ourselves, and we jumped the huge queue waiting to get in.

    The tour took us through the Riberia neighbourhood, down one of the oldest streets in Porto, the bookstore, the Old Prison, the Carmo Church, the Sé Cathedral, Torre dos Clérigos, Palàcio Bolsa, Santo António hospital (the old and new), Praça Da Cordoaria, and the Old Market that is being renovated and should be completed by 2021 at a cost of approximately 33 million Euros! We also went to the Town Hall, Palàcio das Artes, Estacãco são Bento, Capella das Alma’s, and we crossed a couple of bridges - Ponte do Infante to get over the river and Ponte de D. Luís I to cross back. Finally, he drove us along the Rio Douro to where it meets the sea, and along the Atlantic Ocean coastline for a bit through a lovely little village called Foz Do Douro. It had such a nice feel about it, and it didn’t feel like Porto was only 15 minutes away.

    We had a fabulous time and Rui was so generous with his time and information. He also gave us a number of restaurant recommendations - we have made reservations at two of them.
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  • Day35

    Porto - first impressions

    October 8, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Love it, love it, love it. This place is gorgeous, full of life and colour and history, and the tiles, the tiles are magnificent. I used to love an old or interesting door, but I think the tiles of Portugal, and particularly Porto, have captured my attention more so.

    After unpacking and admiring the view from our balcony for a while, we went out to explore the local area. We walked along the waterfront, took detours down winding and narrow streets, and just enjoyed the ambience of the area. We decided to get a Porto Card, which includes a transport card, so we headed off to find the Tourist Information Centre with the ’assistance’ of google maps! The only down side of our location is that most places you go on foot involve steep inclines and steps, and we encountered much of both as we weaved our way up, down and around - sometimes Google maps seems to take you on the most difficult and indirect route possible. We eventually made it to the Tourist office (located in about the highest spot in Porto), bought our tickets and, I must admit, we were afforded some wonderful views as the sun was setting over Porto.

    We ended up stopping at a restaurant on the way back to the apartment called Português de Gema - projeto de economia social, which was a restaurant that is not for profit social project that reintegrated people from the street back into society, by providing them with the opportunity to gain skills either front of house or in the kitchen. We had a lovely meal. The restaurant has nice simple decor, and there is a lovely little terrace. It felt good to support this type of concern that is trying to make a difference.
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  • Day39

    Last dinner in Portugal

    October 12, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    For our last dinner in Porto we went to the third restaurant that was recommended by Rui our guide from earlier in the week. Again, the staff were lovely and engaging and we had a delicious dinner once more. I had octopus and Ian had the grilled Sea Bass - both very fresh - but no dessert as we had been spoilt by the desserts at TapaBento.Read more

  • Day38

    Dinner at Adega S. Nicolau

    October 11, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 15 °C

    Again, this is a recommendation from Rui. Every evening when we pass by this place there is a huge line of people waiting, to avoid this we made a reservation. We had some Cod croquettes to start and then I had the grilled tiger prawns and Ian chose a veal dish. We also chose a nice red from the Douro to accompany our meal. We had a lovely evening and had a really good waiter who was interesting and spoke to us about wines from the area.Read more

  • Day100

    One day in Porto!

    June 27, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Our next stop was Porto, I need to say that we liked it a lot, more than Lisbon. It is more cosy and relaxed, we stayed just one day so we would like to visit it again sometime.
    It was a full program, we had a nice dinner, b-boy show and a "concert" close to the river.

  • Day3

    Von anderen Ufer

    April 29, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    Am schönsten wirkt Porto von anderen Ufer aus gesehen. Da befinden sich auch die Keller, in den Portwein gelagert wird. Unter den langen Dächer liegen tausende Fässer mit Port, deren Preise schwindelerregende Höhe erreichen können.

    Najpiękniej wygląda Porto z drugiej strony rzeki. Tam znajdują się piwnice, w których leżakuje portwein. Pod tymi długimi dachami przechowywane są tysiące beczek z portem, którego ceny osiągają nieprawdopodobne wysokości.Read more

  • Day26

    PORTO.

    August 14, 2018 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Walked all the way down the hill this morning to the riverbank to visit the old area a bit more. Quite touristy but a lovely walk along the river bank. Caught the river taxi to the other side of the banks where all of the port cellars are.

  • Day15

    Porto Pics

    May 16, 2018 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    After a rest from travelling and an earlier walk, we headed back into Porto for some Vegan (yay for veges) and a stroll through the town. Porto has grown since the last time we were here (5yrs ago) but some of our old haunts (foodie related) are still there and are just as good!

  • Day15

    Alcobaça Monestary is a must

    May 16, 2018 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

    In 1153, King Henrique gifted 44 hectares to the Monks and construction began in 1178-the monks moved in 1223. Built over a river - you can see the river flowing through the kitchen where they caught fish and cleaned the huge chopping tables! The king and his lost love Ines are buried here.

  • Day8

    Sardinen bei Graham's

    October 5, 2016 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Hab Heidi versprochen zu Hause Port Wein von Graham's im Internet zu kaufen. Aber Achtung: Die Bezahlbaren (kein Vintage) sind nur begrenzt im Kühlschrank haltbar. Eine Flasche (süßen) Portwein an einem Abend? Das geht gar nicht. Die Roten werden immer nach dem Essen mit Käse genossen.Die wenigen Weißen evt. auch als Apperativ.Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Vila Nova de Gaia, Βίλα Νόβα ντε Γκάια, Вила-Нова-де-Гайя

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