travel diary – back in porto; a very wet afternoon (day 1)

…. after leaving the market hall – I realised very quickly that I had to invest in an umbrella – had only a top on. Found a tartan one for 3€ in a couple of minutes. 

Gladly the shopping mall was only a short walk away. I was lucky they weren’t busy so I got a stylist at once. Not the best day to spend money on the hair with pouring rain waiting outside. 

“Jean Louis David” Salon, I came in contact with in Warsaw during my first visit … and after that always use them if they have a salon at my destination.  They are originally French – today they have salons all over the world (only in Moscow they have 5) – none in Sweden yet. 378 salons in France (for 227 franchisees) and around 700 worldwide. I found them very good, brilliant stylists and fantastic service – in Poland they are very reasonable priced .. in Porto I paid 55€ for a wash, cut and styling … plus they always give you a great head massage. They have 3 salons in Porto, the one at the shopping mall (ViaCatarina Shopping) is the most central one.

The shopping mall is not massive … and have “normal” shops, not any big exclusive brands … but still loads of temptations, I promise.

The weather hadn’t become any better during my hour at the hairdresser – it had increased, so happy over my investment in the umbrella

Of course, there was a queue … always a queue. Their big parasols gave good shelter while waiting, didn’t have to wait that long for a table, 10 min … max.  “Cafe Majestic” is a must when visiting Porto.

Majestic Café is the most beautiful cafe in Porto. Actually, it’s in the Top 10 of the most beautiful cafes in the world. It dates back to 1921 under the name of Elite. It’s located on Santa Catarina Street, the main pedestrian walkway in the city. You can’t miss it. The façade is gorgeous but as you go inside your mouth opens and the sound “WoOOoOow” comes out!

Time took its toll and the place was neglected. The glamour of “la belle époque” gave in to carelessness and Majestic Café was no longer majestic! In 1994, the Majestic re-opened after two years of reconstruction work to bring back the glamour from the 20s and give the cafe back to Porto!

There’s a small terrace on the back of the cafe where you can go and read a book while having a glass of port wine or having a cup of coffee and enjoying a piece of chocolate cake.

They are always busy … only been there for lunch. 

Because I had eaten loads for fresh fruit and had a big cup of delicious fresh juice at the market … I wasn’t that hungry, so I ordered their French Toast and cappuccino, they serve breakfast the whole day. I should have taken a double portion. It was so delicious. 

After my delightful visit at Majestic Cafe, I made my way back to the apartment… WALKING (it was all downhill).

I stopped at “Bella Roma”  to buy a couple of Pastel de Nata (egg tart pastry), hard to resist. “Pastéis de nata” were created before the 18th century by Catholic monks at the Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon.

Then I decided to locate a restaurant that I had booked for later on … and it meant getting up the Rua dos Clérigos to the Clérigos Church, uphill again!!!!!!!

Found the restaurant, a bit confusing because there is two with the same name “All in Porto” – on the same street; one a wine bar and the other a restaurant. I was booked in at the wine bar. 

After that, it was only downhill on wet and slippery back streets. It was very difficult to handle both Oscar and the umbrella.

“The best thing one can do when it’s raining
is to let it rain.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

16 thoughts on “travel diary – back in porto; a very wet afternoon (day 1)

      • Sue, there is cruises that can take you to … Porto. In all honesty do I think that you will struggle with every street – no flat streets at all .. accept the riverfront. There is quite a hill from the riverfront up back up to the apartment. And the pavements are not in good conditions. So sorry, because I know you would love it so much as I do.

      • There is a hotel (4*) on the riverfront and there is loads of nice building around that area – but everything else is uphill from the riverfront and steep. Good luck, I would be very happy for you if you have a chance to visit Porto.

    • Mrs. Jones … I have missed this comment of yours! So, sorry … you’re right. It’s a MUST when visiting Porto. Have never needed to wait for a table very long. Great play for atmosphere and people watch … and the food of course.

  1. *laughing … I’m a tourist with a mission!! The Majestic, a fantastic place, the buzz .. the food … the interior … and atmosphere.

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