1179-1183: Completing Calvi

1179 – Corniche Road to Porto

Wednesday 29th May 2019

Another day driving roads that were indicated as difficult with the MH.  Actually, except for a narrow bit at the end, we would have been fine in Jez … but very limited parking and unwelcoming No Motorhome signs at our destination Porto.  So a much more relaxing drive in the car.  And what a drive.  Reckon this is the best scenery we’ve seen.  Going south from Porto, the coast is a lot more extreme and rugged, bashed by the wilder west sea.  We took a picnic and a coffee flask and managed great view stops for both.  Porto was really pretty and definitely worth a drive to, unlike Ile Rousse, which on a take it or leave it basis, we would have left it!


Coffee Stop at a viewpoint.


Our shade seeker.


Wooded walk up to further view point.


And our mountain dog admiring the view.  The rocks looked much redder.


Porto beach with a few die hard sun worshipers.


Porto beach’s magnificent back drop.


Crashing waves, watched an idiot wade out paddling and get knocked over twice.  I’d already decided there was no way I attempt any life saving – suicide.

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Boats from Porto to inaccessible by road beaches.

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Would that have been an ice cream???

1180 – Best Walk in Ages

Thursday 30th May 2019

One of the guide books mentioned a walking area, Le Foret de Bonifatu, with views and rock pools, so we headed there.  We had no idea how stunning the scenery and views were going to be.  We actually felt that we got right into the mountains.  Part of this walk is on the GR20 – a number of people follow this crossing from one end of Corsica to the other.   We were both buzzing from what a great walk it had been.


Lunch in the car park so we didn’t have to carry it.  More sensible than we realised as it was a long nonstop way up.


Must I cross this?!


The path up, so many wild flowers.


And more wild lavender.


Above the tree line.


I can be a mountain dog too!

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Rather than balance on this to cross the raging river (note – not a stream!), we had to do this ….

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Corrie, of course bounced back and forwards to show how easy it was, Oscar had to be pulled!

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Not just one steam, but two! Think Corrie is asking what is keeping us!  Are you making a dog’s dinner of that?

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At the Auberge by the car park … I have been a brave boy!

1181 – Wedding Anniversary

Friday 31st May

We’d decided to take it easy, so we played tennis!  For the first time in about 3 years.  We both really enjoyed it, but I was slaughtered.  J may be 72, carrying an additional stone and half from the hormone treatment, but he won 6:1!

We wandered into Calvi and out the other side to a restaurant that figured highly in reviews … so many restaurants all offer the same menu in the town.

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My first Kir of this trip.

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Being a foodie, I love it when I am presented with something new to me.  A goats cheese mousse on a bed of beetroot spaghetti … reckon I could replicate this.

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The chocolate mousse looked more like a boudin noir and lacked flavour, but nice presentation.

1182 – Down Day

Saturday 1st June

Now an odd thing happened.  James fancied a beach day!  This is the man who now seeks to sit in the sun, wanting to get sand where it has no place to be!  Is this an undiscovered side affect of the hormone treatment?  So we had another game of tennis … still slaughtered, but I managed to take two games off him!  Lunch and a doze on the beach.  No swimming, although I did paddle and Oscar did his usual swim out and round me, as if to herd me back to shore.  Off tomorrow to pastures new, so the car was loaded … very solidly!

1183 – The Long Road Out of Calvi

Sunday 2nd June

Unbelievably, we have been a staggering 11 nights in the chalet, 2 nights in the van on this campsite and another 2 nights at another campsite in Calvi.  I think we can safely say that we’ve done Calvi!    As check in was after 5 at our next campsite chalet, we took the slow mountain road.

Muro was dead as a Dodo.  Not even a cafe.  Feliceto gave us a choice of cafe … we opted for the epicerie (old fashioned) with all the locals.  Super large creamy coffee and only EUR5.  Speluncato, which I dubbed Spunkato … you’ll see why in a moment, was also definelty worth a stop.  Had we not a picnic, a lunch in the square would have been appealing.  Lots of winding narrow streets and 360 views.

We skirted the Desert des Agriate, but the coast is not accessible unless you are in a 4 wheel drive.  Scenery was different, lower scrub.  We had intended to stop for a coffee (or ice cream) in St Florent, but absolute nowhere to park the car.  It was heaving and looked like a bustling holiday resort … sure we’d have had a choice of coffees (ice creams!).  Then through Patrimonio, with all the vineyards offering tastings … not for us on a driving day!  Across the bottom of the finger that sticks up NE of Corsica, and half way up the eastern side to Pietra Corbara Marina to our next campsite chalet!


Speluncato – the campanile had the extra bit added in the C19 and the guide book described it as a phallic addition.  So not my dirty mind!






Motorhome Repair Update

No news really.  Having been for a week trying the get a quote emailed to us, we were told by phone it would be Tuesday before we would receive it.  But then right at the end of the Friday, the email arrived.  Too late for us to ring the garage … that’ll have to be Monday.

654-660: Porto to Nice, via Shangrila

654 – Saturday 11th March 2016:  Lost a Day in Porto

Afurdada is a sort of suburb of Gaia – but only a few kilometres from Porto and the Louis 1 bridge – and very near our parking. A leisurely stroll for us – public communal laundry building and very public washing lines!  Coffee – of course… and sunshine.

England won – the same thrashing we reported on the wrong day – it doesn’t mean they won twice!  Ireland awaits next week…..


655-656 – Sunday 12th & Monday13th March: Vila do Conde

Adieu to Porto, for now…we will be back. Our favourite city in Portugal.  On to Villa do Conde – 50+ motorhomes on a very windy free seaside parking – rocking and rolling.  Windy walk – any of our cobwebs blown to America, probably.  We moved Jez to a much more sheltered car park just away from the sea – but no rocking now.  The Portuguese motorhomes largely emptied out … a weekend only excursion for them!  

Town perambulation – huge monastery – supposed to be a future conversion to a Pousada – no sign of this happening…  Lunch – with(?)  no vino – two meals with drinks, soup – for £7.50!  Lidl shopping – we like VilldoCondeburgh for relaxing, but very little happening or to see on a Monday.

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Our sheltered car parking for two nights.

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View along the river up to the once Monastery.  Used for some years as a reformatory for unruly boys … a bit smart for them surely!

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Lots of life sized statues, quite recent.

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Vila do Conde is also well known for its bobbin lace making.  We visited the museum in Peniche to see samples of work.  Lace making earned monty whilst men out fishing.

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999 arches on the viaduct to the Monastery … we did not verify the number … we had better things to do ….

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… such as non alcoholic lunch! 

657 – Tuesday 14th March

Pont de Lima – turned out to be a stunning little town – we could buy a very decent house here for <£250k….. thinking about it.  Definitely requires further investigation.

A lovely free parking beside the river and brand new services – just one other van for company – plenty of Oscar walking space.  We met a young Dutch back packer cyclist with a young German girl for company – they just met – later we saw him with a different girl… a lady in every Ponte?  Beautiful Botanic Garden – a future Shangri-La for family Jez?  

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Adjacent to our parking … sleeping to the sound of the water.

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The long lane of Plane trees.

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More large statues.

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Ajuelos on one of the old tower walls.  The first King, Alfonso Henrique was about to engage Moors in battle, one when of his Knights said “They’re goats m’lud!”

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Rude not to!

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Two codgers leaning against the even more ancient olive tree … we like the laid back vibe here.

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The oldest bridge in Portugal.  The far end is Roman.

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… Crossing the River Lima.

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Odd statue, amazed it’s not been dragged away in floods.

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The Botanic Gardens.

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Even had a relica Roman garden.

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No dogs allowed, so we took turns.  I used my waiting time wisely!

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658 – Wednesday 15th March

K ran – both showered – courtesy of free site water.  Slight (?) change of future route (you know us) – from Ponte de Lima to – Nice, France!!!  A mere bagatelle of 1500 km…… To see daughter Sarah and granddaughter Jade…  275 miles today (Km 400) – motorway travel – very busy aire. But fabulous mountain scenery on the first non-motorway stretch, Braga to Chaves.  Another come back too.

SatNavColin took us to a free overnight parking – quiet spot expected. On arrival – medium sized car park – 7:00 pm – packed to the gunnels with more than 50 motorhomes – obviously a super-busy transit stop – we squeezed in barely – a French van had no choice but to park parallel to ours…

659 – Thursday 16th March

K and O running (am I slowing up?) along the canal – stunning parkside with swans.  Off again – for 600+ km – 9 hours…  Jez is performing magnificently. Campsite stop – in La Belle France for Euro 8.50!  At Bessnes Roquefort.  Guardien came to lift the height barrier – and food from the freezer, followed by zzzzzs.  

660 – Friday 17th March

Yeaahh!  St Patricks Day – an omen for tomorrow – Ireland v England in Dublin?  Another 600 km – and arrival near Nice – our favourite place in France – Promenade des Anglais, Baie d’Anges…

Campsite at Villeneuve Loubet – nice site – good manoeuvring onto pitch no need for electric hook up as – sunshine all around!  K Haute Cuisine from the freezer and rest – the 3 day trip was absolutely splendid and without any problems…






















650-654: Rugby but not on the Beach

650 – Tuesday 7th March 2017: Costa Nova Beach

Young Robyn (and Kensey) had left for seaside parking – and gave us the ‘cooperativenates’ so we could coordinate our ‘operativemates’!  In other words, James – so we could get there!  Why use 1 word – when 3 will suffice?  Fantastic seaside, wide white sand dunes, boardwalks, Oscarkenseywalks – and peace…  What else could any motorhomer ask for?  En route, we used the Intermarche laundry – for Euro 18 – 2 full loads of washing (2 sets of bedding towels and clothes for nigh on 2 weeks) … several hours later – neither of us dares to put a single pair of knickers in the now empty laundry bag! 

Beach perambulating – and sunset – what comes with setsun? Sundowners, of course…in our Cosy Nostril beach setting…


Wide white sandy beaches 🙂



Sorry Robyn, not the most flattering of you (or me!) but comic as this is James’ best effort at pulling a ‘silly’ face!



651 – Wednesday 8th March:  A Beach Day 

An am run – too nice to waste the sea and landscape – easy running… R and K walked to have coffee nearby, taking vannydogs with. Beach sitting, K piknitting (not the other similar word). Later, feeling mellow, we retired all of 200 metres to a bar – for dunsowners – a cheeky white wine. Robyn kindly cooked for us – and a lovely chatty evening… in a very lovely chilled place.  


The houses in the main street are mostly striped – either painted or tiles.  We did spot a candy pink one, which must have been a bit of a drug induced colour pick.




My boys.

652 – Thursday 9th March:  Aveiro and back to Porto

Excitement all round – all of us onto Porto – our third visit?  We stopped off at Alveiro – mini Venice – lovely and sunny – coffee, of course. Services at Esmoriz Intermarche: free, clean and welcoming – UK Asda and Tesco please take note!  Porto lovely free parking on the Duoro, again.  Off to see a performance of Fado (Portuguese folk music) in town – and some port tasting… Fado is melancholic and sad – maybe a tad too sad for us?  But, I wish I could play guitar like that – maybe the 10,000 hours practice rule? 


Aveiro… lots of canals and really laid back.  Could happily have had a lingering lunch here.  Another trip.


Sun hat for J and sun lotion for O on his bald bit of snout.

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The Fado guitar is on the left.  Not as melancholic as we’d expected, but we were served a glass of port in the interval.

653 – Friday 10th March:  Rugby

To opticians to collect D4 eye test form – up steep hill – narrow street and mega clutch usage … black smoke billowing – we could taste and smell the outcome.  Appointment later at hospital near parking for JamesMedTest to complete the D4 form for the 70 year old 3.5 tons plus driving license.  More later on my unfamous perambunavating!  K Haute Cuisine for all – and vinoque too…  K here ...As Robyn and I ate, we received a phone call from J as he left the hospital … how do I get back to you?  The phone navigation had been set for the way to the hospital, so J had technical assistance on the outward route!  We worried about him.  Had a glass of wine.  Concerned he’s lost alone on the south bank.  Another glass of wine.  We tried ‘Find Friends’ on the phone to pin point his position … no good, so we just had another glass of wine!  He eventually turned up in time for the walk to the pub showing the rugby.

Irish bars get everywhere and have their uses.  Post early supper off we trotted.  “Fawlty Towers” – “don’t mention the war” quote. Well – “don’t mention the weekend rugby” is apt. OK, Ireland lost and England won by a record 40 points – is that enough said, my darling Katherine? No?  Bugger.  Pride swallowed with bromide – Ireland played as well as Wales allowed them and England played as World Champions could – there’s something stuck in my craw – a goalpost?  

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We don’t often get out at night (sigh), so a treat to see Porto all lit up.  Shaky camera shot and on the way to the pub!  Glasses of wine?

654 – Saturday 11th March:  Afurada and Rugby

In the cold light of day, I (somewhat shamefacedly) admitted to getting a taxi for the last part of my gravigation back from the hospital. Nuff said. K here again:  Quite!  No Comment!!!  New nick name – Henry JAMES the Navigator!  We will do the D4 form at home in April – but lovely people at the hospital – refunded my money when they realised it was not possible to process my examination – even though I took up 45 minutes of their time!  How lovely are the Portuegese people?   

A sad adieu to Robyn and Kensey – they will travel along the Duoro east – we will certainly meet again….

A walk to Alfurada fishing village west of our parking – buzzing, public laundry, marina, market.  The local menfolk all dressed in their Saturday finery, in and out of the bars.  Women scrubbing in the public hand laundry.  Men mending nets.  Restaurants had large BBQ’s going outside on the street to grill the freshly caught fish.  A pukka fishing village with local traditions still in force, despite the close proximity to the second largest Portuguese city. Our coffee and cakes came with – cheese pieces – luncheon.

Another foray into Porto and the Irish pub.  Funny – the barmaid seems to consider us locals on a second visit!  K:  Did J mention the England Scotland score???  I made it till 8.30 and then collapsed into bed.  All this excitement!

Tomorrow – north – to the seaside – for chill down time – and sun? Maybe… 


Washing drying outside the public laundry … blankets, towels and rugs (as well as bigus knickers) all hand washed.

Oscar’s Diary

Oscar’ere again….Flushed with my recent success (but not with the ladies – more later), I have put paw to keyboard once more. Life is good and sunny – the billet is fine, food arrives pretty much when it should – and the owners are behaving – like good ‘uns.  Now then, we have hooked up with Robyn and her K9 Kensey. Kensey is a looker – and Robyn is also very good in the glampartment…   I haven’t had stirrings in the – ahem – manly department for a long time (of course I’ve some flings in my time) and Kensey is – how shall I say – a strickpease (or something like that) – I hope this is being read after the naughtyshed at 9:00 pm…  She puts her paw out to inveigle me in closer – and I respond by nosing the old whotsits – and knock me down with a feather boa – she barks at me and runs off!!!  Now, what’s a fellow to do?  I play the old aloof game and hard to get – but not a whisker from young K (Kensey that is).  I’m going to go on t’internet and look up those cycleogical wallahs for advice – it’s called ‘doggyline’, I think…   She did it a few times – I’m resorting to cold showers (or is it cold turkey?) – I do like being rubbed down by Katherine when I’m wet but, I’d much prefer a rubadubdub from Kensey – not to be.  

Now they’ve gone to other places – along the Duoro river – but I’m sure we’ll meet again (is that a Gracie Fields song? – showing James’ age again…) and I will have some new tictacs – go on the forward paw – the Sicilian Defence in chess – all out attack – like Ireland forgot to do at the weekend…  I’ll get her in a ruck, somehow – and make sure she won’t release the ball (oops, is that a bit rude?).  Maybe poetry?  James tries that on Katherine – and she goes all doe-eyed – then – K’noodles occur…  

There’s nowt so queer as folks – or K9s – back to the gnawingboard – head in paws…

I’ll get over it…

Ciao xxx









633-642: Porto with Roberto!

633-634 – Sunday 19th February 2017 & Monday 20th:  Chores and Catching Breath

Such a lot seems to have happened in the past week or so – these posts may be a little truncated…  In advance of our friend Robert (from Brizzle) arriving, we repaired to a campsite for 2 nights – jobs – laundry, cleaning Jez – and resting, our team..


635-636 – Tuesday 21st & Wednesday 22nd February:  Robert and Porto

Tuesday – ‘Robert’ day.  Always a bit worried about taking our van into an airport (we got really stuck in a narrow car park in Chardonnay at Bordeaux Airport) – it was a relief to find an adjacent parking with a wide access and loads of space.  Easyjet bang on time – and off we headed to Porto Centro-ish. Robert had come from cold and Drizzle Brizzle – to Porto in blazing sunshine and 19C!  Our identified free overnight parking was fairly central – just along the river Douro.  The last road down to it was narrow – and with 2-way traffic – nervy stuff – but safe. Truly excellent parking with about 10 vans. Lunch on board (KHCS) – ‘K Haute Cuisine Soup’ – and the perambulations began.  Only 3 km to the bridge.  

We passed a queue for a river cruise – instant decision to go – but dog friendly?  ‘Si’ – the owner had dogs and we assured him that the boys were placid – Robert, James and Oscar!    Stunning tour – Porto has 6 river bridges – different designs – one steel arch truss railway bridge designed by Gustav Eiffel’ colleague whilst working with Eiffel et Cie.  And the double decker iconic one, by the same architect, but by this time he had parted company from Eiffel.  We passed by all the Port establishments (didn’t sample) – wandered the streets – and took wine – Robert is a Bass beer man and sampled the local Brock Super lager.  He late developed quite a taste for white port.

Wednesday, our intrepid tour guide K had us booked on a 9:20 am (!) free walking tour – an hours walk from the van!  Brekkie was in the middle of the night, it seemed (our guest doesn’t normally rise early either).  The walk to the start included loads of steps – uphill…. We made it in time and drew breath….we were told the walk would be 3.5 hours long!  All told, this amounts to about 6 hours on foot…. we were now members of the Royal Porto Light Infantry (or RIPL – well, it scans better…).  Our guide was Eugenia and we had 2 other girls (German and French) for company.  Porto is quite something – Libraria Lello e Irmao (and worldwide famous bookshop) cathedral, buildings, squares – even the MacDonalds is a listed building with Art Deco and Art Nuveau interior.  I could see Hercule Poirot scoffing a MacPortoDeco sandwich!  

We rested for very welcome coffee and cake – which attached itself to my beard (as usual) – and visited a famous guitar maker – they explained about Porto and Coimbra Fado guitars. “Fado” is the folk music of Portugal – haunting, sad and very beautiful – Eugenia played us some of the music.  The old railways station has the most amazing tiled murals – all telling a separate story.

One of the bridges is 2 level – car traffic below – and Metro rail on top – with pedestrians wandering along the rail tracks!  Health and Safety?   

Lunch – Eugenia recommended a restaurant and the local ‘sandwich’ a “Francesina”.  It’s a cliche to call a meal ‘a heart attack waiting to happen’ – this so-called sandwich is enormous – with ham, sausage, cheese,bread and all ‘cooked’ in a homogenous cube with fried egg, sauce and chips!  Just look at Robert’s expression in the restaurant!  He ate it though – I managed half – and K sensibly had a small sausage.

On our way back to Jez, we couldn’t help but notice how stunning the river looks by night – with the reflections.  Doggydinner was late – whoops, sorry, Oscar…. we may have stopped for a small port on the way home!

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The Ponte de Dom Luis 1, completed in 1886.  A very clever design with an upper and lower deck.  The arches reach 172m hight, is 385m long and all that wrought iron weighs over 3000 tons.

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Hooray – Oscar looked calm and was allowed on board.

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The old Eiffel Maria Pia railway bridge 1876 with the new one behind.  Only closed in 1991.  I would not have fancied being in a train crossing in wind … it is very narrow with open sleepers.

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Ribeira: a warren of winding lanes with bars and restaurants.

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Some of the port lodge flags in Vila Nova de Gaia …. we recognised most of them!

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Outside the cathedral – a lovely Manueline Pillory, still with its hooks.

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Aah!  No wonder Porto keeps being voted best city destination and is getting very popular.


Lello e Irmao bookshop 1906:  apparently it is so popular that there is now an EUR4 entry fee.  It is considered to be one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world.  Our guide told us that there were lots of Porto links with JK Rowling, as she had been briefly married to a local chap here, until his physical abuse drove her back to the UK.  Porto claims that many of the design features for Hogwarts came from the bookshop.  Salazar Slitherin is named after the Dictator.


Igreza dos Clerigos … we’d just climbed for an hour to get up here, no need to climb the tower too!


To complete with Lisbon, Porto built the Avenida dos Aliados in early 1900’s.  It has a French Boulevard feeling with some super art deco and art nouveau buildings.


The McDonalds complete with its art deco features … Robert really did not want to be photo’d in front of a McDs!  But he did not purchase, honest!


Sao Bento railway station 1916 and a feast of tiles telling the story of transport and historic scenes.


Transport above, history in blue.


Fado guitars with 10-12 strings.  The Lisbon and Coimbra versions.


Our walking tour took us onto the upper deck of the Ponte Dom Luis – we shared the space with the Metro!  Apparently if gets so crowded in summer that Porto is thinking they will have to encase the pedestrians for their own safety.


View off the bridge looking down onto Vila Nova de Gaia, where all the port lodges are.


Ribeira … looks like unsteady cardboard structures.


Inside the old town wall.  Isn’t it lunchtime yet?


The Francesina – wood oven baked.


637 -Thursday 23rd:  Barcelos Market

We went to Barcelos – for the market – well it’s the biggest in Portugal – everything – except meat and fish – which we wanted…  Lots of ‘headed’ chickens (as opposed to headless ones) – Oscar didn’t much fancy the crowds.  Directional signs – to everywhere – except the meat and fish – well, we could probably get meat and fish in London, Paris and Las Vegas – but it wasn’t really convenient, just then…

We has a nice run before market time along the riverside…..

Now, to Braga…and a nice secluded campsite for 2 nights.

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I’ll take two!  Could have picked up some pretty song birds too.

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Where next then?  Check out those matching stripes!


Braga municipal campsite … EUR15 per night with 16 amp.  BBQ night.


638-639 – Friday 24th and Saturday 25th:  Braga & Bom Jesus

It’s Carnival time in Portugal these days – lots of children in lovely outfits on the streets. She wouldn’t sit still, but we spotted a toddler as a little chick, thankfully Not on the way to market.

Sharp-eyed Robert noticed a sign – for a – walking tour (after Porto, he might have learned better) – and we ‘coffee’d’ whilst awaiting the guide. But, the start was actually about 1km away, we observed late….  Olympic-style walk racing was now a priority – with K and O in the vanguard.  Just in time, we greeted Paolo -a young Masters graduate from the city.  A 2 hour tour was promised – and he introduced the history of Braga first – the mixture of Moors, Spanish, Gothic and Manuelian influences…

Saturday – Bom Jesus (“Good Jesus”) – the star attraction of the Braga area. The Stations of the Cross paved the way to a Cathedral on the top of – the most gigantic set of steps. – everything in reflective white.  Visually a huge impact with views of Braga and the surrounding countryside on all sides… 

Coffee and ice-cream before descending – to Jez again.


We’d seen aisles of costumes in supermarkets … seriously ALL the children join in.


The new gate with the coat of arms of the very powerful bishop … Braga is the Canterbury of Portugal …


… with the oldest cathedral – design styles are Romanesque and Manueline, with a Gothic porch.


You little devil!


The grooves show where a revolving door used to be – for unwanted babies to be placed in the Monastery.


Braga has lots of squares with fountains … can’t remember all the symbolism on this one….


This one has a phoenix who has stabbed her heart with her beak to feed her children.


A marmite building.  I loved the blue tiles and balconies … someone else who shall remain nameless … Robert, thought it was OTT.  The Palacia do Raio now houses the museum.



At the bottom of the steps up to Bom Jesus – conceived in 1722 by the very small Bishop … we saw his minuscule shoes – 4’1” tall.



About a third of the way up … there are three sections built at different times.  The lower has 14 chapels with the stations of the cross.  The middle the Five Senses and finally the Three Virtues.  And yes we did feel virtuous!  Especially me as this is my third visit … as a grumbling teen when I could not understand why my parents had not forked out for the funiculare.  And then, it slowly dawned on me that we all came again abut 5 years ago when we were in Portugal to celebrate the Aged P’s 50th wedding anniversary!



That orange bowl goes everywhere … O needed a drink …


… and so did we.


Grotty!  Sorry, grotto!


Saturday 25th cont…  Guimeraes

An initial free parking (possibly overnight – with a faint possibility of seeing 6-Nations rugby? The self-appointed parking attendant (Portuguese) greeted us in fluent Yorkshire dialect! He had lived in UK for some years in Yorkshire/Lincolnshire and talked about returning as an ‘illegal’ – what happened to ‘EU free movement of workers across the continent?  

The town search for a rugby bar was fruitless – but the wine was good in the square with lots of bars…..  Eventually, K took O back to the van and young Robert and I supped a bit more…

Our ‘Yorkshire’ friend had advised K to move car parks for the overnight – party night and ‘Carnaval’ – wisely, she piloted the van to higher ground and more space – just as R and I arrived back from non-rugby bar – I then followed the game (Ireland v France) by Internet text – a victory for the Irish keeps their Championship hopes alive. To keep the balance, England overcame a spirited Italian side on Sunday – it’s all boiling up nicely indeed…


Guimaraes was the first Portuguese capital, when Alfonso Henrique proclaimed himself king in 1139.  It is beautifuly medieval with lots of overhanging buildings and squares.



The cap in the doorway was singing along LOUDLY to his music.  A rather nice red … I managed two before ….


… Oscar and I both felt cold so had to have a cuddle!

641-642 – Sunday 26th & Monday 27th:  Along the Duoro before it floods to the Atlantic

On being asked what he fancied seeing next, Robert responded with the Atlantic.  We plotted a route along the Duro to just S of Porto.  We’d planned to stop at a town for late morning coffee but ‘P’ Poor Planning and lack of obvious parking for our big beastie meant we just kept going to Campsite at Parque Seguiresos – plain site – price Eur 16 for 2 nights – 3 peeps and 1 doggo!!!  Plus 10 amp electric, which we managed to blow a couple of times!  OK – plain adequate facilities…. close to the beach for a couple of wet dog walks … K and R!  James, where were you?

Pouring rain, and more teeming rain, and more stair rods of rain for Monday.  Just as it started to abate, we headed off for a farewell good lunch.  Doggy bags of both some starters and mains and no room for pud!

The week with Robert has flown by – nights of Crib with K, all sorts of medium loud rock music from 60s to 80s – especially the Eagles – the last night doing Crosswords – R – you are so sharp especially at anagrams – what’s an anagram of anagram?  Grannymarg?  Mannymarg? Grabagranny?  Over to you, Robert.  And i know he’ll proof read this and find numerous spelling errors and unnecessary explanation marks!