Friday, October 01, 2010


Bridge D. Luis [Porto-Gaia] - Portugal

Porto, also known as Oporto in English, is the second largest city in Portugal. Its administrative limits (an area of 41.66 km²/16 sq.mi) includes a population of 220,000 inhabitants distributed within 15 civil parishes. The urbanized area of Porto, which extends beyond the administrative limits of the city, has a population of 1.1 million in an area of 389 km2 (150 sq mi), making it the second-largest urban area in Portugal. The Porto Metropolitan Area includes approximately 1.3 million people, and is recognized as a Gamma-level global city by the Globalization and World Cities (GaWC) Study Group.

Located along the Douro river estuary in northern Portugal, Porto is one of the oldest European centres, and registered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996. Its settlement dates back several centuries, when it was an outpost of the Roman Empire. Its Latin name, Portus Cale, has been referred to as the origin for the name "Portugal," based on transliteration and oral evolution from Latin. In Portuguese the city is spelled with a definite article as "o Porto" (English: the port). Consequently, its English name evolved from a misinterpretation of the oral pronunciation and referred to as "Oporto" in modern literature and by many speakers.

One of Portugal's internationally famous exports, port wine, is named for Porto, since the metropolitan area, and in particular the adegas of Vila Nova de Gaia, were responsible for the production and export of the fortified wine.

-- from the Wikipedia -- 

A bit of my heart belongs to Porto, where Michel is right now. Of all the cities I know, it's the one whose personality most resembles mine.

Trivia: J. K. Rowling moved to Porto in 1991 to teach English as a foreign language. While there, on 16 October 1992, she married Portuguese television journalist Jorge Arantes. Their one child, Jessica Isabel Rowling Arantes (named after Jessica Mitford), was born on 27 July 1993 in Portugal. They separated in November 1993. In December 1994, Rowling and her daughter moved to be near her sister in Edinburgh, Scotland. During this period Rowling was diagnosed with clinical depression, and contemplated suicide. It was the feeling of her illness which brought her the idea of Dementors, soulless creatures featured in Harry Potter. 


rauf said...

oh, i've heard of Port wine, from Urdu detective Novels. i still remember ladies prefer port. such a shame i never heard of the place where it comes from. i have tasted Champagne once. i didn't like it.
must be some cheap wine Claudia that i tasted. i can't really tell the difference. Very uncouth i am.

a population of 1.1 million males me smile. that is no population.

The pictures make me feel that my vision has improved.

Claudia said...

The one time I had Dom Pérignon champagne I didn't like it, I preferred the cheaper versions. Port, however, was always a favourite (not that I touch it that often anymore).

Porto is a cozy, "townish" city. It's always a bit grey and melancholic, in a charming sort of way. Very proud and busy, though.

Ruth said...

I love tawny port. Especially with lemon curd cheese.

Your photos are glorious, especially with the sail.

I love champagne, though I only drink it a couple times a year.

Ruth said...

That would be lemon Stilton cheese, which has become a favorite for dessert. Heaven with tawny port.

Claudia said...

Yummie, Ruth!