en train à Guimarães

by sacremaja

Portuguese vineyards seen from the train.


1 mars 2012

Guimarães is a strange town indeed…medieval and very cute if you find the city center, but there aren’t many resources for tourists, despite it being one of the 41 places to visit in 2011 (according to the NY Times) and its status as a UNESCO WH site.  They should work on getting a couple of brochures at the train station, or at least a little mapski.  The people were very friendly, though.  We stopped in a little shop and chatted a bit with the woman working.  She spoke a little English and was very enthusiastic, so we asked her what there was to see in the town.  “Ohh, the palace of course, and you can heat very well!”  “Oh, thanks!  Could you recommend a restaurant?  Where do you like to eat?”  She looked shocked and then a bit dark, and shook her head and said, “oh no, not me…I live in a town next to and eat at home!”

This alone is a bit perplexing, but the most interesting thing about it is that the town is completely littered with tiny little Portuguese pâtisseries and the only thing you can find to eat is the same few yellow spongy pastries everywhere you go.  We literally were not able to find a single restaurant other than some little Autogrill-type joint where I got a suspicious serving of Russian salad (that I ate anyway) and Christa ordered a small mountain of profiteroles for 1 Euro.  (Success!)