Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Nova de Gaia, Portugal

To the south of Porto, on the other side of the Douro River, is the city of Nova de Gaia.  Simply known as "Gaia", the city has a population of +178,000. 

In 1225, King Alfonso awarded town status to Nova de Gaia.

Krasimir enjoying a glass of port
Although Porto, from where the country Portugal gets its name, is best known for port wine, it really comes from Gaia.

Home of Sandeman Port

Port is a sweet, fortified wine and since the mid-18th century, bottlers and exporters have kept the wine here in lodges until it is properly aged.  The lodges, also called "caves", offer port wine tastings and are big tourist attractions.

"Barcos rabelos" are traditional wooden boats that were once used to move wine casks downriver from Douro port estates.

View of Nova de Gaia from Porto

There are six bridges that unite Gaia and Porto.  We took a 50-minute boat cruise up and down the Douro to check them out.

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