We decided to start our final day in Porto early and walk around town taking some photos as the sun was hitting this wonderful city.
With a final breakfast of coffee and Hugh’s new favourite pastry, Nata, we packed our bags, which now included a mandolin case, headed towards the car via the popular ice cream shop, which we thought opened at 10am, but disappointingly opened at 11am!! Oh well, who needs ice cream for breakfast anyway???
Our trip to Santiago De Compestela was estimated to take 3 hours so we were keen to leave Porto by 10am. The drive was uneventful yet relaxing for me, whilst Hugh battled the cars on the freeways cruising at over 120kms
Once checked in we hit the pavement and headed towards the famous Cathedral of Santiago De Compestela, the main reason for our stay in this town. As is always the case when we travel, the front of the Cathedral was covered in scaffolding and really took away from its presence.
The cathedral is the reputed burial-place of Saint James the Great, one of the apostles of Jesus Christ. The cathedral has historically been a place of pilgrimage in the way of Saint James since the early Middle Ages. The building is a Romanesque structure with later Gothic and Baroque additions.
Speaking of pilgrimage, today tens of thousands of Christian pilgrims and many others set out from their front doorsteps or from popular starting points across Europe, to make their way to Santiago de Compostela. Most travel by foot, some by bicycle, many take up this route as a form of spiritual path or retreat for their spiritual growth. For the most dedicated the walk starts in the Pyrenees and takes 6 weeks at least.
The town was thick with them!
With the heat of the day now hitting its peak, what better way to escape it than walk through town in it!!! We lasted an hour before surrendering to the call of our afternoon thirst quencher, the beer. Duly satisfied we soldiered on before heading back to our room for a freshen up before hitting the night life.
We found a quaint little spot overlooking one of the many plazas and proceeded to be serenaded by a man with his guitar and an amplifier that gave him too much volume. His repertoire included the likes of Radiohead, Coldplay, Bob Dylan and many more, which have now been so butchered it will be hard to listen to these artists again without being taken back to this maestro.
As we walked home after dinner we couldn’t get over the fact that at 10.30pm it was still light outside, no wonder the Spanish have dinner so late. With a big drive ahead of us tomorrow it was time to retire.