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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Porto, Portugal

Dec 4, 2012 - Heading south into a new country

In the last week we have waded around the streets of Santiago de Compostela in the November monsoon, given up on northern Spain (for this year) and headed south into Portugal for sun and warmer air. We have hiked in the Serra do Geres National Park and seen some ancient Roman mile posts, spent some time at the beach resort of Estrela and ended the week in the historic city of Porto. We have found this to be one of our favourite spots and is a crusty “in your face” fishing port, despite signs of the economic austerity measures and recession...

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Nov 8, 2012 - Porto

Today turned out to be a bit of a mixed up day. We set out walking down to the Palacio da Bolsa. This building is the old stock exchange and commercial centre of Porto. A bit like the Chamber of Commerce perhaps. We had a guided tour that showed us some of the rooms and gave us a potted history of the building. The nicest room was the Arabic room that looked like something from the Alhambra in Granada but was very ornate and new looking from around 1890. We left there and went for a tram ride along the river - just about 30 minutes along...

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Trip Journal


exploring Portugal

Nov 7, 2012 - Porto

Today we had a cool, cloudy day exploring Porto. We headed first to the area of City Hall on Av. dos Aliados (Allies) named for an alliance created in 1387 when the King married an English Princess. More churches followed and a visit to the station with beautiful tile walls. One lovely experience was to the Lello and Irmao bookstore a 1906 Art Nouveau interior, one of the most lovely we have ever seen. It's worth a Google as we were not allowed to take photos inside. From there we wandered off down to the river again and over the bridge to...

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Trip Journal


exploring Portugal

Nov 6, 2012 - Porto

Braga to Porto was an easy train ride that took one hour and cost 3.5 euro or $4.50 incredible but then most things here in Portugal are much cheaper than other parts of Europe. We had dinner last night with Beverly, dinner for three plus a bottle of wine and desserts $26.00, an exception but it can be done and it was very good local Portuguese food. Here in Porto we have been down to the river Douro and took a boat trip under the six bridges, then stopped by a Port store to sample a number of different ports and could not resist buying a...

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Trip Journal


exploring Portugal

Aug 14, 2012 - Porto in the Rain

We woke to rain this morning. This is the first we have seen of any significance since we left Scotland. We had breakfast and decided what we should do today. Most of the things we still wanted to see were inside, but you still had to get from one to the other. We left to visit first the house of Henry the Navigator, the prince whose push for exploration started the discovery of much of the then unknown world. This house is where he was supposed to have been born, though apparently the evidence is slim. In seeking verification of the claim,...

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Aug 13, 2012 - Exploring Porto

We had a leisurely time getting ready and having breakfast this morning. It seems a long while since there were just the two of us getting ready for things. The breakfast was a work of art, prepared by the owner who has an artistic flair. We set off and walked a short distance to the funicular that takes you up the steep river embankment to the upper level of the city. We walked to the bus station to book our tickets for the next stage of the journey to Nazare, a beach town about two thirds of the way to Lisbon. There was a line up of...

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Aug 12, 2012 - Sad Farewells and back to Portugal

We were up and ready for breakfast and said our tearful goodbyes to Darcy, Fiona and the grandchildren as they set off to London to meet Graeme. David, Dawn and ourselves got our excess baggage stored as arranged at the hotel and caught the shuttle bus to the North Terminal of the airport. We joined the long line of people checking in and got through security, which was much improved from our last experience at the South Terminal. As we waited for our gate to be announced, we were dismayed to see the sign change to "Please Wait". Our flight...

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May 3, 2012 - Ciudad Rodrigo to Oporto, Portugal

After breakfast, put our new destination into the GPS and headed to Porto, Portugal. Arrived early afternoon and found the apartment we are staying in (thank god for GPS!) We are here for four nights and the apartment is exactly what we want - 3 levels with two bedrooms,good kitchen, separate living area, outside balconies overlooking the city, internet, cable tv. Going to have to drag ourselves away to go site seeing.. First up we went to local supermarket to stock up, and then in the afternoon went for a walk to see some local sites, we...

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Trip Journal


2012 Driving Europe

Oct 13, 2011 - Povoa de Varzim to Leixoes (near Porto)

13 Oct: After a leisurely morning in Povoa, we set off mid afternoon for a short sail to Leixoes. We saw dolphins again briefly and lots of gannets diving into the sea all around us so there must be schools of fish around. We anchored in Leixoes (near Porto) for the night after sailing 16 nautical miles in three hours. We decided to anchor in a bay inside the breakwater but outside the harbour and commercial port because we thought it would be quieter and there was very little wind overnight. It was definitely quieter, but we got rocked...

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Oct 8, 2011 - Portugal - Povoa de Varzim & dolphins on the way

8 Oct: We left the Vigo estuary early and with good winds again today we made good progress south. We saw common dolphins twice during the day – once in the morning when 4-5 swam alongside for a few minutes and then in the early afternoon we saw a couple surfing the rollers and then about 15 came and rode our bow waves for 20 minutes or so. The water was so clear that we got a fantastic view of them in the sunshine. We entered Portuguese waters at about 14:00 – the Rio Mino marks the border with Spain. The challenge around here seems to be...

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Oct 25, 2010 - Porto

@@@@@@@ Background The Rio Douro is the gateway to the best-known vineyards in all of Portugal. The steep hillsides along the upper stretches of the river are one of the earth’s oldest grape-growing regions and Porto, located near the mouth of the river, has based its economy on the vineyards for centuries. The wealth generated by the export of the wines funded the building of vast churches, monasteries, and grand houses. The historical center of Porto is a UNESCO World Heritage district known as Ribeira, and it is filled with winding...

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Oct 11, 2010 - A 'do nothing' day

Absolutely nToday we did nothing but enjoy the sound of the ocean. Mark has received sad news that his brother is very ill. After breakfast, we walked for about 7 Kilometers down a boardwalk that runs north paralleling the ocean. The local dog pack (the leader is a scruffy shepherd that owns the Praiagolfe Hotel) gathered at dawn and trotted off down to a place on the sand where they hang out till the tourists gather on the promenade and give them handouts – a bunch of jolly rogues. We go to the local Mailbox store to check on sending a...

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