22.1.16 – 24.1.16
We did dig our passports out just in case, but other than a small sign at the side of the road we wouldn’t have known we had crossed over into another country. If we’d have blinked we’d have even missed that!
Valenca Do Minho
Weather some rain, cloudy 12 degrees
Our rough guide told us that Valenca was worth a stop off – I think what it actually said was its a MUST SEE historic sight. That was good enough for us & I’m glad to say they weren’t wrong. The walls and ramparts are something special and you can walk around them with great views (to be fair they wouldn’t have been very good fortifications if the views weren’t good would they!). We were a little unsure about finding a parking space for Boris as he has a very large rear end, but after a little drive around found a scrap of land that suited our purpose so we risked it. By the time we got back there was another camper and 3 vans parked there!!! The town was a 2 min stroll so we were proud of getting free parking so close (we’re easily pleased these days). The town itself has a plethora of tourists shops (which on any other type of holiday I would be in like a shot probably buying oven gloves and tea towels that eventually get thrown when we move house, but with space being short I restrained myself) and a good few restaurants.
Our route from Valenca took us high into the hills (You need to register for the electronic tolls in Portugal and as we hadn’t yet done this we had to take the non toll roads) this also took us up into the clouds. It was what is known as a “pea-souper” up there, we had some trouble trying to find where to switch the fog lights on on Boris but eventually found them. No photos I’m afraid as I daren’t take my hands off the arms of the passenger seat during the white knuckle ride!!!
Our overnight stopover was to be at Esposende, there were 2 free parking spots to choose from. We chose one next to the sea and lighthouse, but quickly moved on as the lighthouse was letting out a loud noisy fog warning every 60 seconds and wee didn’t think it would bode well for a good nights sleep. On driving along the esplanade we saw a couple of other motorhomes pulled into a parking spot right on the estuary and 2 mins walk to the town centre so we joined them. We went in search of internet to try and get the toll sorted to try and at least avoid the pea soup type situation again. The tourist office obliged with free wifi and after about 45 mins of faffing around registering for the toll and trying to buy a toll card we gave up and asked where the post office was as that’s one of the places you can also purchase them. Half hour later we had card in hand – now to suss how we activate it!
Having shopped in Spain on our way through on tonight’s menu was a sardine type fish (of which we bought a kilo of for just 2.50 euro) with yet more garlic. Thanks Dee for the wonderful smelly candles without them it would smell worse than Camembert permanently in here!!!
Tomorrow we are off to a proper campsite – that means long hot showers, washing machines and electric hook up (yay use of a hairdryer).
Mileage 283 kms 177 miles
Love to all
Andi & Paul x