Off the Beaten Path in Porto / Hiking in Portugal National  Park

Off the Beaten Path in Porto / Hiking in Portugal National Park

This could be another one of the thousand million articles about traveling, but it is not, it won’t be.

Lately, traveling has become trendy. Every newspaper has its own section of where to go and what to do.Magazines are promoting it. Brands are using it as publicity. It’s in the movies, books, art shows, concerts… traveling is cool, admit it! It sells and who wants to be fashionable is doing it and if you are not, you should start thinking about it. That’s good, I am not complaining. Don’t get me wrong! Traveling is amazing and I think that everyone should really do it. Still, as in everything, this traveling boom highlights a dark side.

I am the type of traveller who believes that you can have a real trip to Paris without seeing the Eiffel Tower.

Since traveling became kind of a product, people started to handle it as if it was one. They make lists of things to do in Porto, as they do when they go to the supermarket...

I have no problems with organization; I know that is the best way to prepare a trip. I have problems understanding why people always choose the same tourist things to do and do not take the risk of doing something different.

For me traveling is much more than seeing things or being in places.

Traveling is never about the images, the stamps on your passport or the lovely pictures on the postcards….It is much more than that! It’s about becoming richer, not in money (give me a good restaurant with some nice beers and money will disappear), but in life, experience, things that will stick with you for the rest of your days.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably planning to come to Porto. Great! If you agree with my way of traveling, accept my suggestion on discovering Peneda – Gerês National Park during your trip to Porto.
This photo was taken during the Gerês Tour when the locals shared with our travelers the lunch in Pedra Bela View Point... It was hilarious!!

If you think that Gerês is only for nature lovers you are wrong, trust me: it’s one of the most authentic and cultural experiences that you can have in Porto. Gerês is the heart of a country that is slowly getting old and disappearing.

You’ll find neither English speakers, nor sightseeing buses over there. However, you will surely see the humble smile of a shepherd that crosses your way, or you’ll be invited by an old woman to enter her house and show you her family.

I am a man that lives in a city. The first time I went to Gerês, I was traveling in my own country. The people, the food, the views, the place itself got into me and ever since, I didn’t want that trip to end. That’s why I started to work here. So let me share it with you, let me be the 6th thing to do in a 5 point-list and prove to you that the only thing a real traveller MUST DO in Porto is to leave a blank space in every list for surprises.

I hope to see you soon. It will be a pleasure driving you to the off the beaten path in Porto and around.

Author: Rui Coelho
(Oporto Adventure Tours guide)
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