Following our weekend in Porto, and I’ll take you with me on our last day trip. The program is doing in the South to the river that runs through the city, the Douro.
This morning of the second day in Porto, we took the subway to Trindade station that we playing to call the local Châtelet-Les Halles because it is in this station we saw the most people, not to mention that the station is great! From this stop, we headed South for an amble. Along the way, we crossed the Town Hall (plus it was election day) and the Church of São Francisco before our boat trip along the Douro river and spend under five huge bridges of the city.
It’s by chance that we are crossed City hall of Porto and all around it’s very nice for sunny days. Unfortunately for us, it was raining and it was frankly sad but otherwise the buildings around are really beautiful even if some are abandoned or poorly maintained …
Praça General Humberto Delgado
After walking for a while and be passed back to São Bento, we continued towards the Douro but before reaching the shore, we stopped at São Francisco Church. Dated from XV century, this tourist monument is composed of several buildings. The visit to the church costs € 3.50 and gives access to the museum and catacombs.
At the entrance of the church, a security guard / doorman will tell you that the ticket is purchased in the building facing the entrance of the church. As the cash register is in the same building as the museum and the catacombs are kindly invited us to start there. Down the stairs, we reached the catacombs and here are some pictures. I do not deny that the atmosphere is quite heavy with this very orange light.
The museum is is very very small and has only a few rooms.
We didn’t stay there much longer and we wanted to take fresh air quickly. As it was raining, we continue with a visit of the Church of São Francisco. And there was « Wow » but like « whaou they managed to do more! ». Here the decor was very loaded but I think in a much more higher lever than other churches visited! All wooden parts are covered with gold leaf and there are so numerous that … I’ll let you see for yourself!
Rua do Infante D. Henrique
To finish this ride, we went to the Ribeira districtwhich is the historic center of Porto. This is where you go to see the crowd, restaurants, bars, and especially the famous colorful facades.
The day before, we bought our tickets for a boat trip to discover some of the great bridges of Porto. We could have make the purchase on the docks but as we were placed right next to the tourist office, which is located a few meters from São Bento station, we bought them at the tourist office. If I remember correctly, the ticket cost € 10 for a 1 hour ride which passes within 5 bridges. The ticket was coupled with a free visit to a cellar.
Once again we swere unluchy because it started raining and during the trip we had to take shelter inside … And that’s a shame because the banks really worth a look and bridges of Porto are just awesome compared to those of Paris!
After the boat ride,we ambled along the Cais Ribeira before crossing the bridge Dom Luizi which offers a superb view of the banks. As it was raining a little, we had not had the courage to make the crossing to the higher level. But even through the lower level, the view is great!
The outh shore banks of the Douro, is a bit like the North Shore since it is quite animated by a lots of bars but we really feel that if we leave the banks, there is nothing and we clearly saw it when we went to visit the cellar.
Well, the cellar which we had free entries was frankly nothing special but there was a free tasting with the ticket. We have therefore installed on the floor of the building to enjoy the wines. As we were 4, we asked for a glass of each to taste everything.
And voila! After tasting, we crossed the bridge in the other direction. The day was well underway, we started to get hungry so we decided to eat a little in the middle of the afternoon. The rain became stronger so we quickly made the decision to return to the hotel to enjoy the SPA at the Sheraton! In the following, no new tourist places to discover, but a review of what we eat.