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spaceout Gaia - A travel report by VK
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Gaia,  Portugal - flag Portugal -  Porto
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spaceout's travel reports

Port Wine Lodges

  13 votes
Page: 1 2 3 4
Vila Nova de Gaia is a city in itself and is situated South, across the Rio Douro of Porto. It has more population than the city of Porto, yet most work in Porto. Here you'll find most of the Port Wine Lodges for tasting and tours.


View of Gaia from Porto.
View of Gaia from Porto.
Walking, in the evening, along the Cais da Ribeira in Porto you'll see neon signs glowing in the darkness across the water in Vila Nova de Gaia, commonly called Gaia. The names of the port wine lodges are spelled in assorted colors, and dominates the scenery inviting you for tasting and tours to one of their cellars The main port wine manufacturers are : Sanderman (where you can visit the Sanderman museum situated at Largo Miguel Bombarda 3. Phone 223 740 500. Admission about 3 Euros) Calem (situated at Av Diogo Leite 25-42 Phone 223 746 660. The tours a frequent, short yet informative. To get to this more traditional lodge, you'll have a bit of a hike, as it is situated above the hill) Real Vinicola (this is the first Portugese who challenged the British Monopoly in the 19th century. Inside the lodge there is a 6km tunnel which was originally dug for a train link, but due to engineering mistakes was abandoned, and is now used for storage. There are interesting oil paintings from the 18th century on display. It is situated at Azevedo Magalhaes 314. Fone 223 775 100. Call for an appointment. Call ahead and make appointment. Entrance is free, unless otherwise stated) There are many many other port wine lodges, for more information check with the turismo.

Favourite spots:
Sidewalk along the Rio Douro, view of Porto across the water.
Sidewalk along the Rio Douro, view of Porto across the water.
To have a real feel of Gaia, start a walk in the small fishing villages of Afurada and Cabedelo, situated by the Praia do Cabedelo at the entrance of the Rio Douro. Walking along the Cais de Gaia you'll encounter fishermen, and abandoned buildings, but also you'll see boats of assorted size and needs, dominating the Rio Douro for the major export/import of Gaia's port trade. Most streets are narrow cobblestones lanes, hardly large enough for a small car. You'll encounter steep stairs, many cats and dogs, some chickens, friendly people and most interesting are the ceramic covered houses. The houses are meshed tightly together and are separated only by the color of their tiles. The tiles are about 15cm square and cover most front of the house. They usually have a boat and inscription, probably dating from another era, by the front door or on the top corner of the building itself. It must have been used to indicate who lived there and their ranks within the society itself.

What's really great:
Narrow streets and stairs.
Narrow streets and stairs.
Afurada is known for its trade of Bacalhau, but due to the shortage of fish, they now import the fish from other countries. Now, fishermen stand along the Rio Douro and fish for sport. The tour guide commented that the fish they catch is not for eating, they throw it back in the Rio Douro after catching it. It is said that the particular fish tastes so awful that even the cats don't want it.

Sights:
Gaia travelogue picture
From Afurada and Cabedelo you'll have a spectacular view of the entrance of the Rio Douro, the Atlantic ocean and the many boats hugging the coast.

Accommodations:
View of the Atlantic Ocean from the Novotel Hotel.
View of the Atlantic Ocean from the Novotel Hotel.
In Afurada you'll find the Ibis and the Novotel Hotel. They are both quite affordable, clean and comfortable. For more information or reservations you can check my travel tips or www.accordhotels.com

Hangouts:
Ceramic covered houses.
Ceramic covered houses.
There aren't many bars in Gaia, as they are mostly situated in Porto.
But you can always stop at Russky Stol, a Russian bar, with a tiny menu which includes sausages. And there are also a few pubs/bar in Foz do Douro, long the river.

Restaurants:
Buildings along the Rio Douro
Buildings along the Rio Douro
At the Exhibition Park you'll find a Pizza Hut (Ave Ramos Pinto)
If you prefer Portugese specialties including the tripas (tripes) there are cafes, and small restaurants along the Rio Douro
Imar (Ave.Diogo Leite. Phone 223 792 705. They have large portions and outside table)
Dom Luis (Ave Pinto 266. )


Published on Saturday April 9th, 2005


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Tue, Apr 19 2005 - 03:12 PM rating by rangutan

Fantastic!

Tue, Apr 12 2005 - 10:39 AM rating by ravinderkumarsi

nice report indeed

Mon, Apr 11 2005 - 10:01 AM rating by bootlegga

Excellent report agian Vicky!

Sun, Apr 10 2005 - 04:32 AM rating by britman

I completely disagree with davidx - Port is a wonderful drink! So is your report VK - well done again

Cheers, Brit

Sat, Apr 09 2005 - 04:48 PM rating by davidx

I think port is an overrated drink but that doesn't mar the value of this fine report!

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