Arnaud and I have been walking around Porto all day, most of which it wasn’t raining too bad, but right now it is kinda pouring out. Arnaud still wanted to walk around, so I said have fun, see you back at the apartment. While we have yet to do a tour of wine shops here (that is tomorrow), we have walked all over town, have seen a lot of buildings inside and out, and even went to the very interesting modern art museum designed by Alvaro Siza. So far here are my impressions of Porto:
– It is a beautiful city, but has nothing on Lisbon.
– It is quite run down in the center, historic city. Many buildings are crumbling or abandoned.
– Unlike most cities in Europe, the wealthy seem to live more in the suburbs, which seem to be in better physical shape than the old city, but lacking much of the charm.
– The food here has been quite a bit more expensive than in Lisbon, but perhaps because we are going to more touristy or better places. Come to think of it, maybe the cost also explains why the quality has been better than Lisbon for most meals.
I will reserve judgement until after tomorrow’s wine tasting and other-side-of-the-river viewing, but so far I think if you came to Portugal and could only choose one city to visit, Lisbon would win hands down over Porto.