Hello painters and welcome back to SU, the place where we talk about something new every week! If you are a long time reader of this blog, you may have noticed the sudden rise of travel logs. However, we are forgetting about something very important. Porto, our city, is very rich in tourism and it is exactly what we will talk about today: I will give a little tour through SOME iconic places of our big city.
So, the first stop of this journey was Torre dos Clérigos! It is a huge tower that is a part of the church and it houses the bells of said church. It was created by the italian architect Nicolau Nasoni and it is now a very important landmark. You can go to the top of it and it is really cheap to do so! The view is amazing form atop of it and every person that lives in Porto should climb it at least once.
After the first stop I went down Rua das Flores (Flower Street, it has no flowers whatsoever). It is a very pretty street that has been through a lot of repairs recently, now it is a nest of coffee shops and restaurants with very good menus and very calm ambient. If you ever come to Porto then you should eat at least once in this street! After going down Rua das Flores I end up right next to Palácio da Bolsa; this palace was built for the rich merchants to debate about their businesses. However, it is now open to tourists and has a lot to see inside. (I didn’t go inside unfortunately but I do have a picture of one of the main halls!).
I kept going down the streets of this part of the city (this is the oldest part of Porto!) and ended up in Ribeira; this is the frontier between Porto and Gaia and here we can find 5 different bridges, a lot of restaurants both on Porto’s side and Gaia’s and of course, the river. This river is called Rio D’ouro and it comes all the way from Spain! We can ride boats up the river or across it and our New Year’s Eve takes place in here where we can see a looong time of amazing fireworks with music!
Fortunately, we now have a lift that goes all the way up a hill and that puts us very close to the best street in all of Porto: Santa Catarina (Saint Catherine). This street is like a huge mall without a roof! Every single house in here is some kind of store that sells something different than the rest of the other ones so you can find a lot of cool things around here; it also has a lot of handcrafted bags and bracelets, all of them in leather! And a lot of street performers. If you don’t like malls, then come here and you will be fine.
My last stop (but not the last for a tourist by far!) is simply my favourite place ever. I spent my childhood here and, although some parts of it are impossible to access now (the hill where this place was constructed collapsed a bit/are in danger of doing so), it is still the best place ever. It is called Palácio de Cristal; this place is HUGE and houses a lot of events, for example the book fair takes place here and at the time I wrote this post there was also a mini market and a rock festival! This garden has a direct view to Rio D’ouro, huge forests, mazes, fountains and pounds everywhere and some important buildings like the city’s library, a pavillion and at some point it also had a small zoo. If this is not enough for you to say ”Wow that place is amazing” then I should also add that there are FREAKING PEACOCKS EVERYWHERE. AND DUCKS, LOTS OF DUCKS.
This was the end of my journey! However, keep in mind that I only showed a few places from a small part of town. There are a lot of events, coffee shops, stores and monuments to visit and all of them will put a smile on your face! See you next time painters!