Porto is a city of the Atlantic Ocean in northern Portugal. The city enjoys the cold winds of the ocean, and as a result, the climate in the city is milder than in most other Portuguese cities. Never called. Certainly, the hottest months are hot, but it is not common for the temperature to exceed 40 degrees. Porto stands by the north bank of the Duoro river. Residents are about X thousand. At the southern bank of the river, the city is Gaia with its 250 thousand inhabitants. A total of one and a half million inhabitants live in both cities and in the immediate vicinity. The reason we were doing this in November was the annual holiday trip of the financial year 200. - XNUM. November. It would now be nice to invite my staff on such a trip, but I would probably be in a hurry.
We stayed at Hotel Heroismo. The hotel is part of the Eurostar hotel chain and proved to have better hotels we have stayed at. However, please note the bathroom design because the bathroom is framed with a glass wall! We consider such designs to be fully private for the essentials of the bathroom. We landed at the airport in Porto around noon so we had a good time to look around. In fact, we went straight to Rua de Santa Catarina, the main shopping street in Porto. There we started to collect money from the merchants of the city. This sounds like a bargain has hit us, but it wasn't quite like that. Still, if there is a need to shop for clothes and shoes then Porto is the place to go. The price in Porto is the better in Europe.
The photo is taken from the bank of the Duoro River Gaiamegin. The Luis I Bridge works on the right side of the picture. The bridge is on two floors and can be walked over on both floors.
An example of the decoration of the tile decoration. Unfortunately we have no pictures from the station. The reason is that I messed up something when I transferred the pictures from the camera to the computer and lost most of the pictures we took on the trip.
The Saturday started a walk around the city center. On that walk, guides shared a great deal of information that is mostly forgotten when it is written. The greatest attention was given to the house decorations. In Porto, it is obviously a tiled house outside with azulejo tiles. This custom arrives in Portugal in the fifteenth century from Seville, Spain, where it fights with the Mares, which then ruled the Iberian peninsula. The name of the tile, azulejo, is derived from the arbitrary word over the ground stone. Usually, the tiles are blue and white, but it is not universal. Sometimes they are in all colors. During the hike, it was widely possible to see such tile decorations. The most memorable is the das Almas chapel and the Sao Bento station with its 20 thousand tiles with pictures of various events in Portuguese history along with pictures from the daily lives of people in northern Portugal.
The hike then ended in Porto Calem, one of 60's vineyards under the shady slope of the Duoro's south bank. There we learned about the port wine production that takes place in the Douro valley and in the wine estates at the mouth of the river. The beginning of the port wine can be traced to the British thirst for wine and the lack of red wine when their importation from France was prohibited at XNUM. century in one of the many quarrels they faced with France. They then relocated red wine to the UK from Portugal and some thought it was a good idea to mix some brandy into the red wine to maintain its quality in the transport. Port wine is a sweet wine that has been fortified with strong brandy (17%). The reason for the sweetness is that the brandy stops the fermentation so that less of the sugar turns into an alkali and consequently the wines become sweeter. Port wine is either aged in oak barrels or bottles. Xin percent of all port wine comes from oak barrels. The youngest wines and the most accessible are called Ruby, which is a reference to their dark red color. There is a strong scent of fruit and plums in them, along with chocolate and spices. This wine needs to drink within a week after opening the bottle. The other type is called Tawny. The main difference between them is the time the wine is aged in the oak barrels. The Ruby wines are three years in the oak barrels but the Tawny wines in six years. This causes their color to be less dull and less flavors of fruit than flavors of oak, nuts, caramel and dried fruit. The tawny wines are sweeter than the Ruby wines. Then there is a clearer type of port wine that is made from green grapes in the same way as the Ruby wine. Of course we got to taste both white and red and wonder why Icelanders say port wine but not port wine. Is it a Danish contempt?
After the wine announcement, we crossed the Ponte de Dom Luis I or Luis I bridge along with Guggu and Stefán. This bridge is one of six bridges that connect their cities on either side of the Duoro River. This bridge is often called the Eiffel Bridge, despite being designed by another man, Théophile Seyrig. The Seyrig was a collaborator or an Eiffel trainee and his architectural style is clear. We had lunch at a great restaurant, Portomegin by the river, and enjoyed sitting outside in the weather. That evening, the annual festival was held in one of the wine estates. She started a port wine show and of course the aperitif was port wine. I now have to admit that this heavenly drink is not so heavenly in my eyes. It then applies whether the wine is white or red. Gudrun, however, was more enthusiastic and bought a bottle of 20 age old wine and three smaller varieties.
The owl of their journalist Portobua.
An evening of Luis I bridge over the river bank where the wine houses are in Gaia.
An example of a well-preserved medieval house in the town of Guimares.
The day after the annual celebration, we sat around the city and looked at what is significant. The environment down at the Douro River is fun, but there was nothing terribly interesting in history. Surely, Porto has a rich history, but we were not in those reflections. Just thawed and enjoyed not being cheated by the cold and the draft, but rain came that day. In many places of Porto we saw abandoned and miserable houses. Obviously, the residents of Porto do not have much money to keep the houses at their end, as the country is the poorest in Western Europe. We heard one name more often in this trip. Antónío Salazar. This Salazar was a dictator in Potugal for forty years. He controlled with typical methods of fascism. With a threat and he kept the almighty poorly educated end to well-educated people to ask uncomfortable questions.
We wonder if we should have used Monday to shop for Christmas gifts. It would have been ideal because prices are low in Porto but then we would have missed out on exploring the town of Guimares. We chose to explore the town. Guimares is a UNESCO World Heritage List and is often referred to as Portugal's Cradle. There was born the first king of the united Portuguese, Alfonso I. Alfonso who defeated his mother's army and her lover in 1128. The Portuguese look to this day as the first day of independent Portugal. The town center houses are exceptionally well-preserved medieval houses. The lower floor of the houses is cast but the upper floor is made of timber typical of the building style at this time.