The destination on everyone’s lips for Summer 2017 is Porto, a coastal city in Northwest Portugal known for incredible architecture and delicious port wine. Amber Rose Pretorius, the Lead Designer at Superbalist.com, recently visited the Portuguese island and it seems Porto lives up to the hype: ‘My travels started last year, visiting Berlin, Prague, Vienna, and Budapest – but Porto was something special.’ We asked Amber to tell us everything there is to know.
Favourite thing about Porto?
Porto is beautiful, in all its ways. The architecture, the streets. The tiles on the building. If I had to pick one thing – being able to pick up our wine in the evening and head to the small crack of stairs we found, just off the Ribeira, and overlooking it all.
Where did you stay and would you recommend it?
Eckart and I stayed in an Airbnb (ORM Ribeira Apartment) literally a sweet walk away from the Ribeira itself. Our hosts were great too. They even helped me book activities I wanted to do for Eckart’s birthday as well as get a fresh breakfast delivered to our door. (It was so fresh, the coffee was still in the pot!)
We were as central as you could get – a handful of dinner spots, a liquor store that never seemed to close, curio shops, a market store, the São Bento station, the list goes on. A definite spot to pick!
3 things we have to see?
Cais da Ribeira. It’s basically the main strip of the city and all those houses you’ll see when you type ‘Porto’ into Google.
São Bento station.
Serralves. The most intriguing museum I have been to. The art was relevant, arbitrary and unique. The installations had you involved. The architecture you wanted to be a part of. A minimalist’s dream!
2 things we have to eat?
Porto’s food didn’t make me want to switch careers, but they did have something we couldn’t not order every time we ate. Bolinhos de Bacalhau!
They’re basically a mixture of potatoes, bacalhau (codfish), eggs, parsley, and onion – deep-fried.
Another item on Porto’s small menu, (I say ‘small’ because every restaurant seems to share recipes and menu boards, on the regular) is a Francesinha. It’s terrible, trust me. But you’ll read about it before you travel, you’ll see it on every corner, you’ll be so convinced you don’t need to try it but you’ll end up eating it anyway.
1 thing we have to know before going?
Here’s 10. Walk everywhere. Touch the tiles on the walls. Walk up those side streets. Eat a ton of bolinhos. Cross the bridge. Explore Gaia. Sit in the sun. Eat the damn francesinha. Get on a boat. And then, just don’t forget, just don’t forget to taste some Port!