Porto

Portugal is one of the countries in Europe it took me almost 18 months to visit, which I finally did with my fab flatmate Katharine just before my birthday.

Our trip to Porto was focused around a few key things. Port (obviously), food, architecture and history. We started our adventure by wandering from our hostel towards the famous bookshop, stopping off to admire the beautiful and iconic Sao Bento railway station on the way. After the bookshop, we wandered our way through the winding downhill streets, admiring the colourful buildings until we made it to the Ribeira Neighbourhood and the Douro River.

After wandering along the river and admiring the Ponte Luis I bridge, we crossed over to discover some port. Unfortunately we were too late for this, but booked a session for the following night and enjoyed some Port cocktails overlooking the river at sunset instead. Next we ventured back to the Sao Bento area for a delicious dinner and local wine before bed.

Our second day we had a quick sleep in before heading to explore the Clerigos Church and climb the narrow stairs of the church tower. The view were spectacular, however it was very windy and cold up there. Our next adventure was to the Casa de Musica where Katharine got her Architecture geek on as we admired the impressive and unusual modern architecture. Pre-lunch we made our way back to explore the Se de Porto Cathedral, before having a lunch break and then exploring Paco Episocal do Porto, also known as the palace of the Bishops of Porto.

By this time the temperature had soared to 28 degrees which was a bit hot for us in our jeans. The best option was Sangria and shade by the river, before heading to our Port tasting and Fado evening at the famous Salem Port House. We followed this with a fabulous traditional meal of Porto specialties and local wine, before rolling our way home.

Our last morning we ventured to Museu Serralves to check our the modern art and gardens. The Art was definitely interesting and the gardens were quite beautiful, but then it was time to head to the airport for our flight home to London.

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