Thursday, October 31, 2013

Walking Discoveries and Map of Porto Centre

Porto is a lovely, old and rough-hewn city and I have very much enjoyed my visit here last March. The city centre is easily walkable which I adore. I am a great fan of walking. Walking is actually what I do best when travelling, I walk from one square to attraction to another, and it is no secret that I indulge in food, thus after sampling different types of local delicacies, it makes me feel good that those calories are going somewhere else other than to my (bulging) stomach and (flabby) arms. However, if you are mobility challenged, there are the old world trams and modern sightseeing buses to bring you around.

Map of Porto Centre
Information: Porto Tourism Website

Right click on the map and open in a different window and click on the map to zoom in.

In this trip, I have walked sooo much. I may not have covered every nook and cranny of Porto but I have discovered many places worthy to be seen and experienced. Below are some of the major places in Porto that you will encounter when you visit the city, and I have as well included links of previous blog entries of their nearby attractions.

Liberdade Square and Aliados by Day

This is the core centre of Porto.

Nearby on the corner of Praca da Liberdade is the beautiful blue-tiled interior Sao Bento Train Station, and on the other corner of the Praca is the street, Rua dos Clerigos that will bring you to the Clerigos Street Market, Harry Potter bookstore: Livraria Lello & Irmao, and further ahead is the lively Carlos Alberto Square where the quirky slash arty slash vintage Porto Belo Market is held.

From this square as well you can see the alley to my hotel, Grande Hotel de Paris Anno 1887 which I fondly call the Museum Hotel because it is the oldest hotel in Porto and showcases museum-worthy pieces and news articles about the hotel.

Monument to King Peter IV on Liberdade Square (Liberty/Freedom Square).

Infante Dom Henrique Square

Located in the southern part of the centre, you will get to this green square, the Infante Dom Henrique Square just before reaching the Cais da Ribiera (river boulevard) where you can sample the beautiful views to Vila Nova de Gaia while relishing the city’s celebrated calorific sandwich, Francesinha.

One of my regrets was not having visited Palacio da Bolsa. Beside the palace you can find the Old Tram 1 that will bring you along the coast to the mouth of the Douro River.

This is actually a market hall for theater arts, workshop and music.

Rua 31 de Janeiro and Igreja del Santo Ildefonso

The church is located in the western part of Porto beside Praca Batalha intersecting the popular shopping street Rua de Santa Catarina. This street is a great place for shopaholic women to spend half a day swiping their cards and drowning in credit.

I have also discovered 2 cafes that I feel affection for. ‘Il Café di Roma’ (beautiful interior) at Rua de Sa da Bandeira and the touristy and pretty ‘Majestic Café’ on Rua de Santa Catarina. If you are a foodie, there is also the Bolhao farmer’s market nearby.

On the corner of Rua 31 de Janeiro and Rua de Santa Catarina, you will find this Art Deco style facades of buildings.

Igreja del Santo Ildefonso.

There is always something to see and do in Porto!

Travel Period: March 2013
Destination: Porto (Grande Porto), Portugal

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Happy Travels! Enjoy Life =)

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