Anyway, we backtracked and headed to our hotel in Porto, the Castello Santa Catarina.
We found the hotel with the gps and Judy was pretty nervous. It was in a pretty sketchy neighborhood and one a street with a lot of boarded up buildings.
Our room, small but very comfortable
Very modern bath.
A sitting area in the garden
The Chapel for the castle
The Tower being repaired and cleaned
As mentioned, the area seemed a bit sketchy, but the Rua Santa Catarina lead directly into town and became a pedestrian walkway with many restaurants and shops. Kinda touristy but nice. We walked from the hotel a couple of times. We ate dinner at a local place downtown that the nice guy at the hotel desk recommended. The special of the day was, you guessed it, Cod. I think I had turkey.
When we had a little sun, so we took our time on the walk and stopped into a beautiful old church that had one whole outside wall that was tiled with what looked like the history of Portugal.
The next day we planned on the Hop On/Off bus. We got absolutely drenched walking down Rua Santa Catarina. I even bought a 5 euro umbrella on the way to find the bus. When we got on, we realized that all the people were enclosed in the inside of the bus due to the storm(no one on the open air top) and all the windows were totally fogged up. Seats were at a premium and dry seats were impossible to find. We nearly had a major battle between a French woman who said she needed to put her leg up on a free seat and a Portugese woman who said she wanted that free seat.
As we couldn't see a thing out the window, we had no idea where we were in the loop of the city. Once we crossed the river, we had an idea where we were and then soon Hopped Off where we had Hopped On a couple of hours earlier.
Walking back towards the hotel, we stopped in a charming old Cafe, The Majestic, to dry off and have lunch.
The rain let up a bit so we walked to an indoor market, loaded with meat, cheese, fish and vegetable stands.
And this happy lady selling Port wine. I bought a bottle for Jane and Chris B. I hope it makes it all the way back to the states.
From Porto we headed to the small town of Braga on our way to our next stop at the Pousada.
We were just above the church of Santa Luzia. Claire, Judy and I had massages at this spa and enjoyed a nice dinner in the spacious dinning room where the waiter gave Judy a free re-fill on her glass of Champagne.
This is a view from our window with the Atlantic in the background.
When we left the hotel, we road down the windy road to this church but didn't get out of the car because we were in the middle of a hail-storm. After about an inch or more of hail piled up on the windshield, I made the management decision to head down from the higher altitude to sea-level.
The sun came out by the time we came down from the hill, so we stopped to get a good luck at the Atlantic. "The seas were angry that day, by friend."
The bridge (ponte) over the Lima river.
Did I mention we had a lot of rain during the week?
Old town, Ponte de Lima
Ancient Church, one of thousands in the cities and towns of Portugal
Calling to confirm our flight back to Paris...
After lunch in a restaurant crowded with locals, we had our last taste of Codfish and drove back to the airport in Porto and our flight to Paris aboard our favorite airline.