Próxima estación: Porto

It has been a few weeks since me and my Estonian friend took a spur-of-the-moment decision to go for a weekend to Porto. It was my second time in Portugal, however, I had a chance to see it from a different angle.

We spent three days in Porto and were hosted by a fantastic Couchsurfing host Fernando. Thanks to him we could see all the places that are not usually shown to the tourists and pay little to eat in good restaurants.

Talking about food, there is a famous dish with Porto origins called francesinha. Basically, it consists of several slices of meat (steak, sausage, ham) between two slices of bread, all of it covered with melted cheese and served with tomato sauce and chips. It does not seem to be a sophisticated dish, however, it is deliciouuus! The photo of francesinha we ate:

We met other Couchsurfers in Fernando’s house: Bok, a Korean guy doing a student exchange in Barcelona and Michell, a crazy French traveller who has been on the journey for two years now and is going to live like this at least three years more. When we went for a dinner, we had a stand with mini-flags of our countries:

I must say that thanks to wonderful people we met, our experience of Porto was unique! The only pity is that it was my last trip while on Erasmus.

Regarding tourist attractions, if you are in Porto you should not miss:

  • The Imperial McDonalds
  • Train station
  • Port wine cellars located on the other side of the river (we saw Croft’s and Taylor’s ones, usually the entrance and tasting are free of charge)

Miscellaneous facts:

• It is legal to drink alcohol beverages on the street (whereas in Spain it is not).

• Smoking in public places is banned (whereas in Spain it is not).

• The other side of the river is called by locals (or at least by my host and his friends) Morocco. Moreover, Lisboa is called a capital of Morocco (that is the way people from Porto mock those from Lisboa).

The weather was quite OK while we were there. I even managed to swim in the ocean (I was not the only bonkers one swimming, however, I cannot say that the beach was full of people either).

To be honest, since our trip to Porto the weather in Salamanca has been awful. It’s raining almost everyday and quite windy. And then you hear “I reckon you are on the beach all the time” (especially that there is no beach in Salamanca, but it is just a negligible detail). Anyway, I am having a good time in Salamanca. Well, the streets are less crowded as most of the students are studying for their exams but it will change soon…

Categories: Salamanca, SpainTags: , ,

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