Posts Tagged ‘Europe’

International Park “Gerês”-“Xurés”

July 31, 2014

Today I stumbled on this great video on Youtube about the Nature Conservation Park located in both Northern Portugal  and the Spanish region of Galicia.

On the Portuguese side one of the doors to the Park is actually in “Lamas de Mouro” – Melgaço if you drive around 20 minutes up mountain from the town.

As you can see it in the video it is a beatiful place with ancient ruins from “Stone Age”  dolmens to Roman bridges.

Check a list and GPS coordinates HERE (new tab).

The mountais are covered with giant round shaped rocks some of them famous for their curious shape. There is also a lot of small rivers, waterfals from many sizes and small lakes.

Wild animals include wild flurry horses (video 0:46) and deers. There are wolves too but don’t expect to see them as they are scarce nowadays and the ones that are left are intelligent enough to avoid humans.

Now that I moved to Hungary I’ve had the chance to explore quite a few European Conservation Parks and usual mountain/forest destinations in Austria, Hungary, Croacia and  Slovenia, so I can make you comparison with this places.

The first difference is that “Gerês” is not such a popular place. For some strange reason it seems that the European tourists usually don’t travel West by car. Last year I was in Slovenia and I had never seen so many German, French and Italian cars parked together. So if you want to explore on your own and prefer under-the-radar places this is a plus.

The second difference are Ticks. As crazy as it may sound, yes, ticks – those blood sucking parasites are a plague for forest-travelers in most of Central Europe. Everyone who lives here always packs a tick-removal tool for their travels, take B-vitamin or use some repelent spray. This was something completly new for someone used to hike in Portugal.

The third and last difference is in fact a disadvantage for the non-popularity of this place. While there are tourist oportunities for radical sports, hiking, rent-a-bike, rent-a-boat and others, you should search online and take notes of what you want to do and where before traveling.

Enjoy the video!

Blitzwood @Spotify

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Porto filmed with a drone

April 1, 2014

Here’s a really nice video from Porto filmed with camera-equiped-drone. I need to buy something like this!

 

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Blitzwood

Porto: Foz – 6th Jan. 2014

January 7, 2014

Last year in January I went to the mouth of the Douro River (Foz) to check the agitated winter waves. I was quite happy with the photos and the walk:

Last year's waves

Last year’s waves

Last year's waves

Last year’s waves

Sunset at Foz - Porto

Sunset at Foz – Porto

This year I would had taken completely different pictures, I wasn’t there (unfortunatly I’m not even in Portugal) but check out the video someone posted in Youtube:

Curious if someone filmed from the top of that Tourist Bus you can see in the video.

 

“The Boston Global” article about Porto

November 12, 2013

The Boston Globe journalist Christopher Muther has published an article about his visit to Porto. He planned to stay just one day, he ended up staying 4 nights.

What I found … was a series of charming old stone buildings, church squares, and open-air markets. There’s a river that glistens as it snakes through a city that clings precariously to cliffs and a night-life scene that rivals any European hot spot on a summer night.”

“I’m not one to take pictures of my food at restaurants. I usually feel that food is meant to be digested and not shared on Facebook. But I took out my camera, the good one no less, and photographed my steak tartare and the beautiful presentation of the truffle-style alheira (a meat and flour-based sausage) on a bed of toasted bread, bacon, and almonds.

Porto’s “Ribeira”

Read the article at:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/travel/2013/11/09/porto-sophisticated-new-edge/Qo25mGhnY4HaRTUzdKGpJM/story.html

 

Dear readers…

September 28, 2012

 

University of Debrecen

I have moved to Debrecen in Hungary. I think there was still a lot to tell about the places I lived like Oporto and Melgaço and I think I still have material in my hard drive for some more posts. But I don’t intend to end the blog, maybe I’ll be adding Debrecen to my list of destinations instead.

 

Discover Portugal: In Facebook

June 25, 2012

If you want to see some really amazing photos from Portugal don’t miss the “Descobrir Portugal” (Discover Portugal) group in Facebook! There’s a bit of everything and a bit from everywhere in the photos shared by the community. Just go to http://www.facebook.com/absolutportugal . Here are some examples:

Matosinhos: “Piscinas das Marés”

June 21, 2012

Piscina das Marés

It seems the ocean-water-swimming pools in Matosinhos are re-opening for the Summer this day 23. Looks like a nice option for this next weekend. The swimming pool was designed by famous portuguese architect Siza Vieira (Wikipedia). More photos in: http://www.getportugal.com/en/poi-piscinas-das-mares-leca-da-palmeira-20985

Spotify

Down to Lisbon: Lisbon!

June 17, 2012

Lisbon from Airplane window

After our one day trip we finally arrived to Lisbon. I think it has a different feel from any other capital in Europe. In one hand there’s of course the good Southern Europe weather and sunlight illuminating it on the other hand there’s historical reasons.

Recent history has been kind in the looks of the city. While other countries were deep into World War II, Portugal remained neutral in the conflict saving monuments from bullet marks, bombing, rebuilding and other tragedies. The last time Lisbon had to undergo a major reconstruction was in the 1755 earthquake. Then it got the shape of a modern city with straight, large parallel streets downtown facing the river.

History also gave the city a cosmopolitan feeling. Lisbon was the center of a maritime Empire with colonies in America, Africa and Asia and you can see influences from distant lands in many landmarks, museums and in trees that don’t seem to belong in Europe.

Due to our errands we didn’t have so much time for sightseeing so I included some photos I took another time I was here in October 2010.

There’s plenty of photos and information on Lisbon in the internet but feel free to check our photos. There’s a photo I took from an airplane window arriving to Lisbon Airport showing the “25th of April” Bridge and the Cristo Redentor (a similar statue to that existing in Rio de Janeiro – Brazil).

Down to Lisbon: 3-A detour to Sintra

May 1, 2012

The plan was never to go straight from Porto to Lisbon. We left with enough time to stop somewhere for lunch (it turned out to be Nazaré) and before arriving to Lisbon we decided to stop again. We turned West to a different highway towards a quite famous tourist location – Sintra.

There are many landmarks concentrated in such a small area: A Moorish Castle, the Pena Palace, the Monserrate Palace… And we only had the time to visit one of them so it was a difficult choice. We went to Monserrate: a beautiful palace and gardens from the eighteen hundreds by a millionaire Englishman.

The gardens were beautiful even if it wasn’t spring yet (29th Feb). There are plants there from many origins around the world and it gives you the feeling you are inside some story or magical fable. There are small water paths everywhere and a lake decorating the landscape and you can see the Atlantic Ocean in the background. You can also find the ruins of a chapel which apparently was engulfed by Nature.

The mansion is quite unique too and is currently under repair works. I can’t imagine living in a house with so much details everywhere, from a simple door to the corridor with a fountain in the middle.

Judge by yourself from our photos:

Down to Lisbon: 2-The Road

March 16, 2012

Óbidos

Map

We left from Porto a bit late considering out schedule. We noticed the progressive landscape change, from the North mountains of Portugal to the Hills of the West. It was a bit unfortunate that we didn’t pick the camera until after Aveiro because we saw interesting stuff on the way. It’s a pity but I can’t show something like 10 consecutive stork nests built on the traffic signs in the highway, it was quite unexpected. I guess there’s a lot of babies there.

But we could get some interesting photos either on the move or on the occasional service area stop. The focus isn’t always right when you travel but I really like some of this photos. There’s the view of Óbidos from the highway; the contrast between the old traditional windmills and the new electric turbines and even some curious mini-camping-houses near Nazaré.


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