A very strange journey from Ponte de Lima to Porto. We always have the sat nav set to avoid toll roads (not because we are penny pinching, we just want to see more of the country than you see from a motorway). Anyway, the sat nav – which knows the length, width, height and weight of the mothership – took us through the middle of a town where there was not enough room for two vehicles abreast and some corners were bloody tight around sticky-out buildings and balconies. On top of that, we did 20km of cobbled back roads and although they look great and we are sure that are really hard-wearing, the mothership rattles and shakes and anything over 20kmh risks losing fillings. So we were a mobile roadblock for a while down cobbled country lanes with a 50kmh speed limit and us doing 20.
On arrival at Porto, things got hairy again – we blindly followed the satnav down a 3 metre wide two way road with various twists and turns and down a 15% gradient to the camping stop. We looked it up afterwards only to find that Sally was right – this was the main road down to the riverside! Eeek!
Anyway, the camping stop was on the banks of the river Douras about 2km from Novo Porto. It’s a free site with no facilities at all – in fact it’s just a piece of disused land with an abandoned building overlooking it. It would have been another great drone shot but there is a heliport just over the river – so not a great idea! Relax and beer….
Next day and it was a very long day out in Porto exploring the town, including – shock – horror – an evening meal out on the town – T had codfish and S had lamb. Great meal, then a slightly wobbly cycle back to mothership.
Next day and it was out exploring again, this time sticking to the south side of the river. Cable car to the top of the hill and a slow walk back down and an evening at Sandemans touring and sampling the port *hic*. Another meal out and a slow walk back to mothership. The weather is on the change properly now and it was a cold and windy stroll back to the ‘ship.
The following morning we were determined to find a better route out of town so we drove down to the coast along the Douro river road and we found a great route back to the main road south. Next stop is a hilltop village on the way to the famous Paiva walkways.