Monday, April 22, 2019

2 Days in Porto, Portugal (2018) - Part 2

When comes to talking about Portugal, the first city will instantly hit one's mind is none other than Lisbon. But then, have you ever heard of Porto before? Neither do I. I never knew about Porto until Mytravelmatez shared with me about this coastal city and he said I should make a visit there. And so here I am in Porto for another new discovery and adventures together with my mom and cousin all the way from London after spending three days three nights there.



























FLYING WITH RYANAIR TO PORTO FROM LONDON STANSTED
First time with RyanAir. I heard so much about RyanAir but never have I ever experienced it eventhough visited Europe couple of times, not until this trip. One way trip from London Stansted to Porto can be so cheap - it's like £17 (approx. to RM94) but after all those add-on such as baggage fee and seat selection, ended up in average we paid £46 per pax. Wondering why we rather pay for the seats instead of waiting for the time to check-in? Read below:


RyanAir London to Porto
#1: Got to experience flying with another new airlines again - RyanAir

Under the strict new rules starting May 2018, any passenger who arrives at the airport without having checked in beforehand will subject to a fee of £55. And even if you have checked in but arrive at the airport without your boarding pass, again you will being charged a boarding card reissue fee of £20. Bear in mind, you can only do web check-in and print your boarding pass within 72 hours from your scheduled departure time. This mean that anyone on a holiday of longer than three days, you might need to access the internet and the more hassle is you need a printer to print the boarding pass, which may not be easy abroad. To avoid all these hassle, I rather reserve and pay the seats and print in Malaysia rather than wasting my time trying to look for a printer in London. 

FROM PORTO AIRPORT TO CITY CENTRE
There is a metro line heading straight to the city centre from Porto Airport. The ticket can be purchased at the machine in the station. But because there was no one to guide us, I bought the wrong ticket. Luckily just one instead of three. The ticket is known as Andante and it's rechargeable ticket for the price of €0.60. As for the fare of the travel card, it depends on which zone you are travel to. Since the airport is consider in Zone 4, therefore a single trip cost €2. 

2018 Portugal Porto 00 - Porto Airport 01
#2: Aeroporto do Porto (Porto Airport)

WHERE TO STAY IN PORTO
If you are looking for an excellent and ideal location, probably you can take these two into considerations; somewhere close to Trindade or Bolhão stations. And I chosen the first one where I booked a short-rental apartment not far away from Trindade station.

2018 Portugal Porto HM - Bonjardim Duplex Charming Apartment 01
#3: Our two nights crib in Porto

Speaking about the apartment I booked in Porto, we kinda enjoy it cause it has almost everything - there's a kitchen for us to cook, two comfy beds for us to have a good night sleep, a clean and chic bathroom with basic amenities, excellent and great location within short walking distance to majority of the attractions. However, there's one and only major issue why I didn't give full rating is because there's no elevator. Imagine that the property is located on 4th floor and with our two huge luggage bags - it was absolutely like steps to hell while carrying our bags up.

HM - Bonjardim Duplex Charming Apartment
Date Stayed: 9 October - 11 October 2018 (2 nights)
Room Rate: €80 per night and it's fit perfectly for three guests (approx. to RM132 per person per night). Booked from Booking.com

EXPLORING & DISCOVERING PORTO 
Oh well! On the first day in Porto, we decided not to do any sightseeing but just walked over to nearby supermarkets to buy some groceries. The good part of travelling with mom is that she will prepare and cook a hearty meal for you so you won't feel homesick.

2018 Portugal Porto A Homecook Dinner
#4: A hearty dinner for three. Thanks mom!

Since we had adequate of rest the day before (more than enough), it's time for us to dress up, get out for another new adventures - exploring and discovering the second largest city of Portugal.

1) Mercado do Bolhão - Known as Bolhão Market, it's a traditional market where the local get their fresh vegetables, meat, fish and flowers from. The market is very close to where we stayed but unfortunately during our visit, the market was temporary closed for renovation. So close, yet so far. I guess my mom will be very excited if she get to experience the "angmo" market but what to do, luck wasn't on our side.

2018 Portugal Porto Bolhão Market

2) Livraria Lello - One of the oldest bookstore in the world, Livraria Lello is often described by visitors to be the most beautiful bookshop in the world with its stunning neo-Gothic architecture. It's rumoured that this bookstore was a direct inspiration for the world-famous author, J.K. Rowling and her Harry Potter book series. I thought it's free to enter into this bookstore but I was wrong - one have to purchase ticket before entering and it costs €5. You can purchase the ticket online here

2018 Portugal Porto Livraria Lello 01

2018 Portugal Porto Livraria Lello 02

3) Igreja do Carmo - Not far away from Livraria Lello is The Church of Our Lady of Carmo. Obviously I was attracted by its remarkable large blue and white mural ceramic-tiled wall. 

2018 Portugal Porto 01

2018 Portugal Porto 02

2018 Portugal Porto 03

4) Ribeira - Tucked on the riverbank of Douro, it's one of the oldest neighbourhood and the most important historic centre of Porto. Here, you get to see a row of colourful and vibrant townhouses which making this place another Insta-worthy spot. Ribeira is lined up with plenty of traditional restaurants where you can savour some of Portugal's typical dishes which I will share more later. 

2018 Portugal Porto 08

2018 Portugal Porto 06

2018 Portugal Porto 05

5) Gaia - Just across Dom Luís I Bridge on foot whether in the bottom or the upper platforms to reach the other side in case you want to witness the picturesque neighbourhood of Ribeira, like what we did. But we walked through the bottom platforms cause the upper one not for the weakheart. And if you are looking for wineries and vineyards, Gaia is famous for it. 

2018 Portugal Porto 07

2018 Portugal Porto 09

6) Via Catarina Shopping - Before leaving Porto permanently, a trip without shopping is incomplete, especially for my mom. And so I found a shopping street located not far away from where we stayed - less than 10 minutes walk. We spotted a shopping mall with a pink facade attached in front of the building. The mall might be small but at least my mom managed to leave with something that catch her heart. She's happy, I also happy lor...

2018 Portugal Porto Via Catarina Shopping 01

2018 Portugal Porto Tram With Blue Tiles

FOOD IN PORTO

1) Pastel de Nata - This traditional Portuguese egg custard tart is obviously the most iconic pastry in Portugal and certainly there's no reason you could miss out cause it's everywhere across the city. We got ours from Manteigaria Bakery - the shop is nearby the Bolhão Market because some locals said this is as good as the famous one in Lisbon. One creamy custard tart costs €1.
2018 Portugal Porto Manteigaria Egg Tart

2018 Portugal Porto Manteigaria Egg Tart 01

2) Francesinha - One of Porto's most iconic dishes which you shouldn't miss. Francesinha is a Portuguese sandwich with steak, ham, fresh sausage, spiced smoke sausage and cheese in the middle covered with melted cheese and hot thick tomato and beer sauce. This mouthwatering sandwich will make you crave for more and no wonder it's being listed to be one of the 10 best sandwiches in the world. 
2018 Portugal Porto Francesinha

3) Bacalhau - It's a Portuguese word for salted cod fish. Since it's very popular in Portugal, hence we gave a try for it but frankly speaking, I don't really into it. I tend to eat the potatoes more than the main meal itself. 
2018 Portugal Porto Bacalhau

LEAVING PORTO TO LISBON
Guess my friend was right. Porto is indeed one charming and fascinating city that anyone shouldn't miss when comes to visit Portugal. Even my mom and cousin love this vibrant city too. Two nights might seem short but it's time to move to another city - Lisbon. To get to Lisbon, I decided to take the train simply because I love train ride more than bus. In Porto, the city is served by two major train stations; São Bento and Campanha station. Both stations will lead you to Lisbon but then if you are taking train from São Bento, you need to alight at Campanha station and change to another platform. Well, at least we didn't make the wrong choice for departing from São Bento station cause the station itself is such a beautiful sight to behold. As for my train ticket, I bought it online here and you may check the timetable and fare too.

2018 Portugal Porto São Bento Station 02

TOTAL SPENDING IN PORTO 

PARTICULARS
AMOUNT
£/€
RM
Airfare
RyanAir London Stansted to Porto

Accommodation
HM - Bonjardim Duplex Charming Apartment (2 nights)
Add: City Tax

Transportation
Andante Single Trip
Andante 24 hours
Train Porto to Lisbon

Admission Fee
Livraria Lello

Food and drinks (In Average After Divide 3)
Lunch – 1st day 
Groceries and fruits for dinner
Manteigaria Pastel de Nata
Lunch – 2nd day

Others
Postcards and stamp
Magnet
Shopping – Ipanema Sandal

£46


-
 €4.00


€2.60
€4.75
€18.50


€5.00


€12.63
€8.36
€1.00
€11.00


€6.00
€1.50
€19.90

249


264
19


13
23
90


24


61
40
5
53


29
7
97

TOTAL
974
Note: Exchange rate&nbsp €1 = RM4.86 as at October 2018

The official currency in Portugal is the Euro (€).

Before I end my post, do you know that Porto has the world's most beautiful McDonald's? Seriously no one told me about this until I accidentally bumped into the signboard reflected about this. Just by looking at the entrance of this McDonald's Imperial, there's a giant bronze eagle instead of the typical huge yellow "M" word. And when I stepped into the restaurant, I was amazed with the colourful stained glass window behind the counter. It's really impressive and mind-blowing - not like the McDonald's I used to know.

2018 Portugal Porto Most Beautiful McDonald 01

2018 Portugal Porto Most Beautiful McDonald 02

With this, now you don't have any excuse for not to include Porto into your Portugal's list cause trust me, there are more things to do and see waiting for you to discover in Porto. 

1 comment:

  1. If the entrance did not show the word of " McDonald's", i will think of it is a 5 star hotel. Haha..

    ReplyDelete

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