Another breathtaking trip I did was a trip to Porto. I went to visit my friend who was there on Erasmus and got enchanted by this beautiful city. Firstly, if you travel from the Czech Republic like me, there is no direct flight with acceptable price. So I and my friend had to take flight through London where we have to change. None the less, almost 12 hours of traveling deffo worth!
Because we didn´t know how trains or buses in Porto works, we booked a shuttle bus from the airport to the city center. Porto´s airport is small and there is everything easy to find. But, in the beginning, we were a little bit confused where is what. After a little confusion, we finally found our driver and went to the city center! 😊
We choose our center stop Aliados. It is a pretty square, where at the top is a church and the municipal hall. Down there is a statue of some guy on horse 😀 hahaha. Around the square, you can find lots of interesting buildings and if you are a fan of Harry Potter you can find here something more. As an example, there is a building which looks a little bit like the Gringotts’s bank. Yeah, maybe I should mention, that Porto was one of the inspiration for Rowling´s Harry Potter. Also during the evening, you can meet groups of young students who look like students from the Hogwarts. No need for panic, this is a tradition of students from the university. Also, this was an inspiration for Rowling and Harry Potter.
Things you have to do when you are in Porto
When you say or hear Porto, the first thing you probably think of is probably Porto wine. You are right, but there is much more about Porto and Portuguese! Portuguese people are very sweet, very helpful and most importantly they can speak English! So communication with them is not that complicated.
There are few tips what to do when you are in Porto 😉
- Bridge of King Luis
Because we lived up there, we had to cross this bridge every day. But even if you are not living in Vila Nova de Gaia it is worth to climb up there and see that breathtaking view of Porto (Douro river and Ribeira) which you gonna love it immediately. Only thing: there is windy where you crossing 😀
It is the heart of the city. Buildings along the square have beautiful architecture. Some of the buildings can remind you buildings from Harry Potter as J.K. Rowling got lots of inspiration from here. At the top, there is a town hall and a church which describes the historical relationship between the church and politics. It is a very nice place with bars and restaurants around.
Ribeira Is beautiful part on the side of the River. You will see it as a part of the view from the bridge. There are many beautiful buildings, restaurant, street artists and Great atmosphere to spend an evening or afternoon there. During the evenings there is a live music, which only supports the friendly atmosphere of Portugal!!
Choose any small alley and get lost on your way to the city center!!
- The cathedral Sé
To be frank, the interior of churches, including cathedral is not very nice. The combination of several styles which do not match together no matter what!! I am not an expert but this…
- The train station
Portugal and Porto especially are known by azulejos.
This is means painted tin-glazed ceramic tilework. You can find them all around the city. The most spectacular and known is the train station in Porto. Even if it is small is covered or made by azulejoz. The vestibule of the Sao Bento station is made by azulejos, created by Jorge Colaco.
6. Livraria Lello
This is must do for all lovers of Harry Potter!!! Because this is the place where J.K. Rowling was writing the story about the young wizard. Furthermore, the interior is amazing!! Really cute!! And as a bonus, they are selling books various types of genres in Portuguese as well as in English! 😉
7. Have a tour of the tower and church
It will take few steps to go up but the view is amazing!!! 🙂
If you take a tram/metro and go approx 20 mins you gonna reach
the beach and the sea!!! Unfortunately, the weather was quite cold for swimming but Porto is very well known for surfing! Hopefully, I will come back and try that!! ❤
What to eat? Main specialties in Porto.
Wherever you go in the Porto, you’ll see in almost every shop cans with sardines. This is a good type of souvenir to bring home. Right next to the Tower in the center you’ll find a very cute shop called
Another food you’ll deffo have to try is any kind of the seafood!! Me, as a lover the seafood can fully recommend mussels. It is beautiful and along the river, you will find several places. If you want a nice view you will go to Ribeira but if you do not need that, you can walk further. Also, the prices are not that bad. Usually, the portion is quite big so you can share with a friend.
Another food typical for Porto is Franceschina. This food is very fatty and probably it is the killer of people with heart problems hahaha. And deffo it is not a food for someone who tries to lose weight.
Porto is a nice place for a low-cost trip, there are lots of things to see and to do. You can take a train and go around and see another beautiful villages and towns. Porto is one of the kind, it is a city you will love immediately!! It is the combination of the best what you can imagine! The atmosphere, those people, the weather, the food and drinks, that architecture and nature!!! If you decide to visit Porto I believe you gonna love it as well!! ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤