[Dec. 2021] On the second day in Oporto, a town in northern Portugal, we booked a tuk-tuk tour around the town.
This is the second time to have a tuk-tuk tour after Lisbon a few years ago.
Since the tour started in the afternoon, we went to the supermarket for shopping in the morning.
It was a lovely morning walk with a deep blue sky.
At the supermarket, we bought fish and shellfish for dinner, wine, toothpaste, detergent and so on.
Experiencing the everyday life is a part of the enjoyment of this kind of stay-type holiday.
In Oporto, most people were wearing masks in the town, so I also wore a mask on my way home.
The meeting place for the tuk-tuk tour from 1:30 was on the side of the cathedral near our Airbnb.
We arrived a little early, so I went up the stairs to take a picture of the cathedral azulejo, and I was surprised to find some homeless people sleeping behind the fence.
Is the church giving them the space?
At 1:30, a young man named Leandro, who wanted to be an actor, came with the tuk-tuk, which was a little old.
Often, guides aspire to be actors, don’t they.
Before getting on the tuk-tuk, we overlooked the town from outside the cathedral on the hill and listened to the explanation of the town’s history, from the fact that the town of Oporto began in Gaia on the other side of the Douro River, until the dictator of the 20th century, the Salazar era.
There used to be a lot of houses around the cathedral, but Salazar removed them all and made the cathedral on the hill stand out.
And the monument there was decorated like a rope on a gallows and scared people.
Salazar seems to have been an avid Catholic, though.
Well, once we got on the tuk-tuk, his voice facing forward was hard to hear for us sitting behind, and it also shook, so it was difficult to take pictures, which was a shame.
Still, we learned some interesting things.
For example, about a sandwich called Francesinha, the typical street food of Porto.
Meat (ham, roasted meat, sausage, etc.) + cheese + eggs are covered with spicy sauce.
The original is from a restaurant called Cafe Santiago, and we passed by it.
After all, we didn’t have a chance to eat it, though.
And for beer, you should definitely drink Super Bock in Porto.
In Portugal, Super Bock and Sagres are the two biggest beer brands, but Sagres is the southern beer.
Apparently, there is a sense of rivalry in the north and south.
Then, we went to Carmo Church, a church with a beautiful azulejo that we had seen when we visited this town 12 years ago.
The azulejos cover the side wall, but when viewed from the front, the church looked like a large stone building.
However, the Carmo Church is on the right side and the left side is another church called the Carmelita Church.
The Carmo Church was a church for monks, and the Carmelita Church was a church for nuns.
According to the Vatican rules, two churches were not allowed to share one wall, so in between they built one of the narrowest house in the world.
Certainly, when you look at it, there is a rectangular flat part with windows lined up and down.
Apparently, a priest lived here.
These two churches face Praca Gomes Teixeira, and in one corner there was a test site for the Covid-19, where great many people were lined up.
According to Leandro, not only do you need a negative test result to enter the restaurant during the New Year holidays, but you also have a negative proof to watch the football match between the local team and the Lisbon team on that day.
That was why so many people were queuing.
From here, we moved around and headed for the riverside.