Porto, Portugal

Trip Start May 14, 2006
Trip End Sep 29, 2006

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Thursday, June 29, 2006

Portugal is great because it is so cheap. The first thing we noticed after our terrible early morning train ride from Salamanca was the amazingly cheap prices. For example, I had a croissant and coffee con leche for breakfast and it cost me a whole 1.25 Euro. You could live here on practically nothing. With that said, other than the cheap prices, Porto(or Oporto in Portugese) is really cool. It is the second biggest city in Portugal but you can walk every where you want to go. Racheal and I had a seperate hotel while Eric was in a hostel down the street. Racheal and I went to take a nap the first thing when we arrived. We were going to do some laundry, but apparently their are no laundrymats anywhere in all of Portugal. It is really frustrating because businesses in Europe close at really odd times. For example, the one(and I mean only one) laundromat in Porto was closed on a wednesday afternoon....how annoying is it to walk across town with a backpack to find something is closed at that time. Grrrr, another day of smelly socks and dirty underwear.

After our nap, we all walked around Porto to get acclamated to the new city. The town is built on the side of hill and there are narrow streets everywhere with people just hanging out there windows. It is great just walking around and seeing the life that real locals live. We explored the one big cathedral which was dedicated to St Francis of Assisi and was filled with nothing but guilded woodwork. It was extremely impressive and I would have posted 50 pictures but they didnt let you take any.....so I cant. We then did the one thing that people come to Porto for, the Port Wine. Across the river from the town are about 30 Port Wine companies and we choose one to take a tour of and taste. I dont really like Port wine but it was worth the 2 Euros for the 30 minute tour and to get to know about the wine. Plus, how many times can you say you tried Port in Oporto.

After the wine tasting, we went to a small restaurant that didnt speak any english and got the local specialties. Just recently I have had some of the craziest food. I have eaten beef face meatballs, ox tail, octopus, grilled gilthead(fish), sardine skewers, and now Tripes which is beef stomach lining. It was actually pretty good and I was happy to get to try some of these local specialties. I dont know if I would ever order it again, but I wouldnt have said it was bad.

ps - This computer is extremely slow, so I will load up pictures from Porto and Lisbon later.
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