Porto from Above


Finding a spot from which to enjoy Porto from above is relatively easy, considering the fact that the city is built on such steep inclines.


As a matter of fact, I was having a bit of a lazy couple of days and didn’t even attempt to climb the Torre dos Clérigos, which is the viewpoint in the city, easily visible from… basically everywhere.


Still, to get a good view of Porto, you don’t have to climb any towers. What you do have to do, however, is leave Porto.


Yep, this view is actually not from Porto. You see, if you’re on the north side of the Douro, you’re in Porto. But if you’re on the south? Welcome to Vila Nova de Gaia.


I was able to cheat further by the fact that in order to reach this spot I took the metro to the Jardim do Morro station, from where all I had to do was climb this, albeit steep, single hill in order to reach the Mosteiro da Serra do Pilar. The square/parking lot in front of this monastery has a lookout where you get these views.


What you see here is the Ponte Dom Luís I, built in 1881-1887 by Théophile Seyrig, who founded Eiffel and Company with Gustave Eiffel, although he actually beat Eiffel in the competition to build it, as he was at the time working for the Belgian firm Société Willebroeck. The top level of the bridge is shared by pedestrians and the tramway, and you get really gorgeous views from it, both of Porto and of Vila Nova de Gaia.


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