Day 65 & 66
20 hours, 4 trains and many kilometers later we had finally arrived in country number 5, Portugal, and we were pumped. Despite being ridiculously tired, sweaty and hungry we were amped to be in the city where our favourite chicken was everywhere, or so we thought.
After following a long list of instructions to get to our place, taking us down a massive hill and then back up, we finally arrived at this old, tiny building with a small sign saying "Steps House" next to the door. Whilst this place had good reviews online, noone we had spoken to had actually heard of it. We were worried.
However as soon as we walked in, all fears melted away, we had scored big time. This place was a big shared house that felt just like home. Couches, Tv, dining room, kitchen and some lovely female company, this place had it all. The only problem we seemed to face was the replacement of toilet paper in the bathroom with a bidet. However after some careful consideration and a bit of googling we were going to the bathroom like pros.
Out we went, down to the river, on the hunt for the chicken we had dreamed of for so long. We searched and searched and searched but unfortunately found none. In the end we settled for roast chicken which didn't even compare and to make matters worse we seemed to sit down right in the area tourists were advised to avoid, due to the extras they slap onto the price.
A strenuous walk back up the hill ended at the tourist office, where we signed up for the most touristy thing possible, a bus around the city. On to the open top bus we went on the first cold day we had experienced on our entire trip. We froze the entire way round, seeing all the sites and getting stuck in all the traffic but luckily for us the rain held off for our journey.
The best part of the trip was actually off the bus, as they took us to one of the Port wine cellars that Porto is famous for. Down into cave like buildings we went, that housed 1000s and 1000s of barrels full of wine. After a walk around and a bit of a talk about the wine we even got to taste some ourselves.
Back home we went, for a bit of a shower and a change, however as we sat down our lack of sleep caught up with us and we were unable to get up from our chair. And so the evening ended in the house with us ordering Pizza and watching a movie. In bed by 12, we were excited to finally grab some decent shuteye for the first time in a while.
Up at 12:30, a good 12 hour shloff, we headed back to the river, this time to catch a boat ride included in our bus ticket. Whilst initially we thought we could just rock up and expect a ride, we got there and ran into massive lines, stopping us from going until 2:30.
To kill time until then we made our way back up the hill once again searching for the elusive peri peri chicken. We scouted out the town, searching high and low but unfortunately still came out empty handed. After hanging around the town a bit more we made our way back down, straight on to the boat to see the 6 bridges the town had to offer.
The trip was exactly as advertised, we saw 6 bridges and not much else. We went up the river, saw 5 bridges, turned around, went past where we started and saw another bridge. I can safely say I now have greater knowledge of bridges in the Porto area.
From there we caught the "Space Elevator" up the hill and grabbed a train headed to the beach. Whilst it was a long 30 minute ride there the beach was definitely worth it being very different to those back home. Wide as Freshy is long, this beach was massive with people lined up all along the sand even when we got there at 4. Despite the water being freezing, a bad first experience it the Atlantic ocean, it was still fun to sprint in and out of the water trying to stay refreshed but warm.
During a walk down the street we came across a giant net it the middle of a roundabout and were completely obsessed with it. Trying to understand what it was doing and why it was there seemed to consume a large amount of time so much so that we sat underneath it and chilled for a while.
To the house we retuned to relax before going out again however that didn't last long. After the hostel manager offered us some drinks that had been left in the fridge, our night quickly picked up a we polished off a bottle of martini mix. From there we headed back to the city to find some dinner and watch Barcelona play Real Madrid, a game everyone in town was out see. Watching the beginning during dinner and the end in a bar it seemed that every place in the city had the game on.
A stroll along the river in search for pubs and clubs ended poorly as we struggled to find any place that actually had people in it on a Wednesday night. After walking around a bit more and just stuffing around by the river we called it a night, finishing up by 3.