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Porto cruise and Sandeman cellars

Posted by on Oct 9, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

There is much to see in the small but rich port wine mecca that is Porto.   A classy way to enjoy the beauty of the city is by boat.   Cruising the Douro river, you get to see all crossing bridges of Porto and to enjoy a windy yet sunny ride.   We made use of a combined ticket deal, we partly used to sightsee the day before.   The wind was especially strong when we were facing the direction of the ocean. Only competing with the sun.   Only a dam was keeping the crazy ocean waves  away.   Some creatures got through.   Other than that, the ride is rather harmonious.          Pretty Porto.             There are many wooden barcas lining the pier, which are the long old boats, once carrying barrels with...

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More Port(o)!

Posted by on Aug 4, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Porto did not only give its name to Portugal but to its famous wine – the port. Port is not everyone’s cup of wine. Some call it sickly sweet or an old ladies drink. Turns out I am a fan of sickly sweet and pushing ahead to be a proud old lady, which is probably why I really really liked port.  It is not as bitter as wine and there is a lot more appreciation for the sweet flavour of the grape. It is stronger than wine, yet I find port a lot tastier. Port is often served for desert and that just speaks for itself. The place to taste the best Port wine in Porto is beautiful Gaia, the part of Porto housing some world renowned wineries with a long history. Today we were introduced to Port –...

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Norte – my favourite mall in Porto

Posted by on Jul 26, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Shopping malls make for a great break inbetween sightseeing. Especially if it’s raining. Because the perfect solution to a rainy day – or any day – is a shopping mall. Preferably the biggest one with a decent food court. That lead us to Norte Shopping in Porto. Location: Rua Sara Afonso 105-117, 4460-841 Senhora da Hora, Porto.  Open from 10 a.m. to midnight. We got there using Porto’s public transport, that is, the new tram lines. You can take Line A (blue),  Line B (red), Line C (green) or Line E (purple) to Sete Bicas Station. It is still short 5 min walk from here. Norte Shopping is a fine and huge shopping mall in Porto which looks a bit out dated from the outside but is really pleasant inside. A wide variety of shops and entertainment is geared...

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Some magnificence of Porto

Posted by on Jul 23, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

The riches Portugal acquired during the age of discoveries is beyond decency. Noble, majestic and imposing. This would about summarise the sights we have seen in Porto this day. Impressions are similar to the magnificence Lisbon has offered. Splendid architecture and regal treasures. In today’s less flashy times Portugal lives off the past. Together with a stagnating economy,  many of the past riches could do with a financial boost. European Union aided projects are a blessing and the restoration of Porto’s stock exchange palace is one of those. Palacio da Bolsa The Portuguese stock exchange is a 19th century beauty. One room has huge oil paintings of the royal family. A testament to Portugal’s prosperous reign which came to an end when all royal descendants fled Portugal during the 1910 October revolution. The last king died in exile in...

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Popular restaurants in Porto

Posted by on Jul 2, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Tourists got to eat. Like everyone else, yes, except that we are more dependant on good food outside our temporary homes. Tourist menus are designed for tourists and hence not the muito excelente of Portuguese cuisine. Which is why we tried one overly recommended local restaurant and another one, frequented by locals a lot and just opposite our doorstep in Porto. These two places are loved by locals. Actually a good sign. But unfortunately no guarantee, that service or food will be as superfluous as expected. Just in case, you like to try your own luck with those, there we go.    At Restaurante Postigo do Carvao Location: Restaurante Postigo do Carvao, Rua da Fonde Taurina 24 a 34, Porto. For dinner we went to what must be the most popular restaurant in whole Porto. Once we arrived, it already...

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Foz in Porto – where we met the ocean

Posted by on Jul 1, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Facing the Atlantic at Foz, Porto’s seaside and beach area, leaves a long lasting memory.   There are various ways to get there but for me, riding the old tram was the greatest fun in Portugal.     The number 1 tram in Porto took us all the way along the Douro river to Foz.   How to get to Foz Electrico number 1 at the Infante Dom Henrique de Rua to the port of Foz (runs along the Douro river with pretty views) Bus 500 from Sao Bento (Loios – Matosinhos, also drives along the Douro but the bus aircons smell mouldy)   Take the tram!   The tickets were 2,50 for a one way ride which was more than what we usually paid for a normal ride. We were surprised that the driver told us not to...

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Nata Cafe with Mazagran and Fernando Pessoa

Posted by on Jun 30, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Nata is a combination of a bar, café and pastry shop in Porto. This place gave us good quality food for very reasonable prices. We found it as we were looking for a café serving Portuguese Easter food but luck wasn’t on our side. Or was. While everything had closed during Easter, Nata served us a good lunch. Their flexible opening hours are another great feature. It is frequented by students and locals but tourists seem to pass it by.   Location: Rua Santa Catarina 499, Porto, Portugal.   While Nata didn’t have special Easter snacks, we were offered some simple, good quality Portuguese lunch snacks by extremely friendly staff.    You can get anything from a toasted sandwich to the popular egg tarts, which are served appealingly warm. The thing to try at Nata is their Mazagran, the...

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Home rental and home life in Porto

Posted by on Jun 29, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

If you are planning to go abroad and like to travel more independently, think about renting an apartment. We have been doing this a while now and it is the most comfortable way to get a home away from home. Two years on the road and we have hardly seen a hotel room!       Our apartment rental in Porto We stayed 13 days and paid 65 Euros a night including airbnb fees (for the three of us – mum was travelling along).  If you are thinking about renting a home, you can get a referral bonus when booking through us, which is 25 $ that can be spend on any apartment of choice on airbnb. Airbnb is the web-portal we mainly use to find homes on our travels. No strings attached. As usual, location is a key...

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Hello Porto!

Posted by on Jun 25, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Porto gave Portugal its name. We are going to explore how this northern and second-biggest city after Lisbon has earned the honour. The journey to Porto from Lisbon began rather shaky. After being stood up by a taxi we had ordered the night before, The One had to hunt down a cab in the deserted neighbourhood. Miraculously, we made it well ahead of time. To the most intriguing train station I have seen. Entrecampos. It is so incredibly ugly, it passed the label fascinating. If you have too much time in Lisbon on your hands, take a look. The train tickets (for one way Lisbon-Porto) were 30,30 Euors per person. Now Porto! We arrived punctual, after two hours and forty minutes. I slept well on the train and noticed that I like sleeping when in motion, being softly rocked...

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Portuguese Easter Eats

Posted by on May 17, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 0 comments

Easter is a big thing in Catholic and miracle-abuzzed Portugal. If you come to Portugal during Easter, like we did and like to try out some edible Portuguese traditions,  like we would have liked to do… …but couldn’t because on Easter Sunday stores were closed, commemorating Jesus Christ’s resurrection from death, rather than filling the stomachs of those dying of hunger… …the traditional Portuguese Easter munchies are: pão de ló  and folar de pascoa. Pão de ló is airy textured sponge cake made with an awful lot of eggs. Folar de pascoa is Portuguese Easter bread, sometimes stuffed with ham and adorned with hard boiled eggs. Eggs feature heavily in Portugal’s pastry-bakeries. Not only on Easter. Folar de pascoa. Fresh and fluffy pão de ló cake. And smelling of raw eggs. Plain version. Chocolate version. Where to buy Easter...

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