RUN IN PORTO, CITY ELECTED AS THE BEST EUROPEAN DESTINY 2017
Northern Portugal, Porto is now the second largest city in the country. It has a reputation as an entrepreneurial, mercantile and, more recently, tourist city!
Next to the Atlantic Ocean and limited to the south by the Douro river, it has a stable coastal climate, with a minimum of 10C in winter and maximum of 30C in summer.
In the last 10 years the city has been reborn and offers unforgettable experiences of gastronomy, winemaking and even sports, with a beautiful marathon near the sea and the river, every year in November. Elected European Best Destination 2017, often hosts conferences, music shows and will stage the Red Bull Air Race in the end of summer.
On June 24th it has its biggest popular party, the celebration of São João, with neighborhood parties all over the city, illuminated by paper balloons launched at night and the smell of roasted sardines and basil in the air.
Porto, old 'Portus Cale', was in the genesis of the Portucalense county and Portugal as a country, in the 12th century. Fast forward some centuries, the city gained relevance with a very active trade with Porto wine, produced in the valley of the Alto Douro and driven by English, Dutch, German and also Portuguese traders, settled in the city. These bourgeois and the people of Porto in general always challenged the installed powers, be they religious or of the various monarchs, throughout the centuries. However, they always chose to support those who were at their side: it was the case of the support of D. Pedro IV (Pedro I of Brazil), when he returned to Portugal with 7500 men to liberate the nation from the yoke of his brother D. Miguel and plant Its seed of freedom. The siege of Porto, an episode in which the small troops of D. Pedro were confined to the walls of the Porto City for about a year, is today immortalized in the History of Portugal and in the names of the streets of Porto, whether by the feelings – Joy Street, Heroism Street, Firmness Street – or by the names of many of the illustrious characters who intervened in it. The motto of 'Mui Nobre e Semper Leal Cidade do Porto' was complemented by the term 'Invicta' by order of the daughter of D. Pedro, Queen D. Maria II, just after the end of the military siege and the victory of the liberal ideals in Portugal.
Most Popular Tourist Attractions
Porto is known for its pictures of the Douro River, the iron bridges that exist on it, the rabelos boats that transported the wine from the Douro valley and the Ribeira neighborhood, a multi-colored house from the river to the ancient tower of the Clérigos. But more than just the UNESCO-listed historic center, it is advisable to know both the banks of the river and the Atlantic front, a long avenue that extends to the beautiful city's park, to the north. Downtown is a good place to spend some time to know the gardens of the Crystal Palace (with the best views over the river) and to attend a concert or even dinner at the Casa da Música, a diamond building fallen from the sky next to the Boavista roundabout .
Where to stay
The historic center currently has a varied offer of hotels, hostels and apartments for short stays and for all budgets. Still, you can choose to stay on the South side, in Vila Nova de Gaia, where the Port Wine cellars are located and many lodgings with views of Porto City.
How to get
Porto has Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (OPO) with direct connection to the city by Subway Bus and by road (15 minutes by TAXI or UBER). From Lisbon there is also the direct connection with fast train between the cities or Alfa Pendular (about 2.45)
Suggestions of What to Do Running Suggestions of What to Do Running
You can experience the course of the Porto Marathon running along the ocean front and the margins of the Douro. It is also possible to have an optimal run experience inside the city park, Northwest of Porto, reachable by bike, bus or Subway. For those staying in the historic center of Porto, the best tip is to go to the metal bridge, Luiz I, and run along the river, in either direction or margins. To reach the Atlantic, keep in mind that the course is about 6kms, only one way. Running in the center of town or in the historic area is fantastic but it can be a challenge and will have to be well planned in advance as it is not easy to navigate the narrow streets. However the reward is enormous, as you will have access to small gardens, viewpoints over the river and mysterious nooks that you would not imagine and can not discover while meet sitting on any bus or other transport.
How to meet running
To better enjoy your run and your time, the above options can be visited with a running tour guide of Porto Running Tours, an organization specialized in running tours, working in Porto since 2015.
About the author
Sérgio Miranda is the founder of Porto Running Tours, responsible for guided tours and an entrepreneur in the area of sustainable tourism. Running since 1999, he has enthusiastically embraced the challenge of running and showing the city with this project, creating value for visitors and local partners without any plans to return to his career in multinational and engineering companies.
Contact: +351 965 838 776 - Sérgio Miranda
Porto Running Tours Tours is Member of the Worldwide Community Running Tours.Net. This community brings together organizations that offer Running Tour in various parts of the world. Running Tour is a way to discover the world made especially for runners. Visit Porto with the Porto Running Tours and then choose your next destination at Running Tours.Net
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