So my best friend and I visited Porto a few days ago for a few hours and obviously the first place we went to was the Livraria Lello because I wasn’t able to visit the last time I was there, so I sent my mother pictures of the place as soon as I was done with Porto and headed back to Lisbon and the first thing she said was “leh, tu eni door bookshop vekhan gai si” 😑
Porto- honestly, the city just seems so unreal to me because walking around those streets and along the Douro feels like going back in time. If I could move there, I would do so in a heartbeat. Since I had lectures going on at the time, I could only visit Porto for a day but I managed to see most of what I wanted to in those few hours (I walked a lot, my legs are still aching because of it – a sign that I should probably go to a gym at some point, but nah). It was certainly worth it, because getting lost in those old, charming streets made me appreciate that beautiful city even more. Some buildings were so old that they seemed like they would collapse at any moment, but these are the ones that added to the charm of the city.
So, like i said, we started of our visit at the Livraria Lello, which is the most beautiful bookstore in the world, a store that served as an inspiration for J.K.Rowling’s Harry Potter saga. Since i am a die-hard Harry Potter fan, i could easily spot the similarities between the Livraria Lello and the Flourish and Blotts bookstore! If you love HP just as much as i do, you must visit this store while you are in Porto!
After the store we headed down to Rua de Santa Catarina, which is probably where she found her inspiration for Diagon Alley, i can certainly see the resemblance! The feel, the buildings, the random university students walking around in their uniforms. They certainly added to the “magical feel” of the city, if you will.
However, the Ribeira do Porto was by far my favorite place in Porto. I mean, look at this view? How is this not amazing?
It was crowded but the noise wasn’t deafening at all, in fact, it was quite charming as many were singing, playing musical instruments, and sitting around chatting while enjoying some coffee or ice cream next to the Douro. The bridge certainly adds to the beauty of the scenery, being there around sunset was definitely a bonus, even though the sun was setting on the other side of the buildings.
All in all, Porto is just something else entirely, probably the most beautiful city i have visited thusfar. If you’re heading to Portugal anytime soon, make sure that Porto is on your itinerary and trust me you will not regret it.
If you would like to see some more pictures, just visit my Instagram page @chaiandtravel
Here are a list of places one of my friends Angela recommended to me, they are certainly a great starting point if you aren’t sure of where to go while you are there:
Venham mais 5
Piolho(The oldest university bar in porto)
Casa da Avó
Galerias de Paris( A street with several bars)
Pimenta Rosa (Inside Miguel Bombarda mall- Perfect for lunch or tea time )
places to visit:
Avenida dos Aliados
Estacao Sao Bento
Cais de Gaia
Torre dos Clérigos
Palácio de Cristal
Rua Santa Catarina
Mercado do Bolhão
Miguel Bombarda street and mall
Casa da Música
Parque da Cidade