Central Portugal – Off the Tourist Trail

Unofficial tour guide

1 Comment

Last week I drove to Porto airport to pick up mum and dad, who were coming out for a holiday. We spent a couple of days sight-seeing in Porto, before heading back to Central Portugal, and I found an apartment just off Praca Batalha, which was handy for shops,bars, cafes, and the market at Bolhao. The only down side was it was a bit noisy at night, as it was above a bar, but that did not bother my parents, whose hearing is not as good as it was, and I bought some ear plugs.

However to walk anywhere off the main shopping street of Rua Santa Catarina meant steep hills, and so sight-seeing by foot and public transport was not possible.

So after a wander up and down the high street, and a few stops for tea and cakes, we bought a ticket on one of the sight-seeing buses.

There was the Red, Blue or Yellow bus companies, which were all similar in price, and itinerary, and all picked up in Praca Batalha.
We chose the historical sites and river Douro tour on the Yellow bus. For 12 euros it was possible to hop on and off along the route as much as you liked,or stay on for the round tour, which we did.

The double-decker bus was open-topped, with a covered front section. We had seats at the very front, and in the shade, which I was happy about as it was about 38 degrees in the sun !
We were given ear phones, to listen to the commentary, but they were a bit fiddly for my parents, so I relayed the information whist they took in the views.
Although I am more of an independent tourist, the bus tour was a perfect way for my parents.
It is a cheap and easy way to travel around the city, and I would recommend it if you have a limited time to see Porto, can’t/ don’t like walking, or are bad at reading maps and metro/ bus timetables.
Using the hop on and off option, It is possible to see and do a lot in one or two days.
Here are some snaps I took from our bus.

If we had another day,I would have bought a two-day ticket for 15€ and hopped off at one of the Port lodges, for a tipple.
Maybe next year !


Author: portugalholidayguide

I love making and creating , and trying out new ideas .

One thought on “Unofficial tour guide

  1. Thanks for sharing your experience of the bus tours. Like you, I prefer to be more independent so I don’t know what they’re like. I put my mum on the Coimbra one when she visited and I was at work. She said she enjoyed it but she didn’t bother getting off at any stage.

    It sounds like reasonable value for money, especially the two day ticket, if you can’t be bothered with public transport / haven’t got the fitness required for the hills and just want to get to the major sights without any hassle.

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