Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Porto - Barcelona Day 4 Let's cycle to Furaduoro, Ovar

Day 4 was a challenging day, the day we will take on the road for a long haul and was expected to take a longer time to reach our destination due to the raining condition. Nevertheless all of us were ready and set to go.
The rain didn't seem to be stopping anytime sooner, we just had to step out and start cycling.
Starting with Douro River by the side as we headed to Lius I Bridge for the turning towards the coastline.
The morning traffic was heavy with lot of vehicles crossing the narrow bridge at the lower tier. Fortunately there is a side pavement for us to cross the bridge.
Bye bye Porto and we have entered into the territory of Gaia for our journey to Ovar.
Our colourful raincoats and bag covers were striking and attractive.
Due to the narrow road condition we illegally used the timber boardway, cycling is not allowed, it is only meant for jogging or walking.
The red carpeted cycling lane started to appear and we were very happy seeing it.
The sound of North Atlantic Ocean was loud and clear as we reached the estuary of Douro. That was after 9km of ride. 
It was friendly all the way on the red bicycle lane the only complaint I had was it was still drizzling and making us wet all the way.
A toilet stop at GPS : 41.089174, -8.656295 , it was a cafe who was kind enough to allow us to use the washroom.
All were kind of soaked and a hot coffee with something to bite would be great. We saw an eatery and ventured into the shop for a pitstop after clocking only 19km from the start.
It was cold out there everyone agreed to have a bowl of hot soup.
The hot soup was indeed our favourite, it was hot and good especially on a cold wet day. Fortunately the portion of the soup was a big enough to ensure full satisfaction was achieved. The snacks and sandwiches were equally delicious.
Jo & Lynn decided to call for an Uber and happily both of them escaped the cold ride. Surprisingly it was not difficult to call for an e-hailing service. The cost of the Uber ride was RM128.00 (27€) for a distance of about 31km to our homestay at Ovar.
By the way the name of the shop is O Rei dos Croissants located at Av. Infante Sagres 783, Valadares, GPS : 41.084716, -8.655428
And the ride continued on the red path with 2 members less this time.
Praia da Granja GPS : 41.039354, -8.649562 at an extended space for car park and also a good viewing platform. The waves were strong hitting onto the steps at the wall. 
Breaking away from the monotonous ride at Praia da Granja. We stopped for a while for some photo shooting.
Then came the amazing long stretches of timber boardway, it starts immediately after a pizza shop called Ristorante Pizzeria S. Martino Granja
Av. República 2757, Vila Nova de Gaia, GPS : 41.033772, -8.646549
The boardway stretches for about 3km before we could see civilisation.
  Then we found ourselves out of the timber boardway back to some hard surfaces with a tall signage that shows "ESPINHO" at GPS : 41.014756, -8.643775. Apparently this place used to be a small fishing village which has turned into beach resort with its sandy golden beach with its other attraction.  
And back to the boardway after a short coverage of Espinho municipality.
A beautiful scenery of a small community of a fishing village with traditional timber boats that are colourful and sitting on the sandy shore.
After passing by a little unique chapel by the sea which I missed taking a picture of it instead we stopped for another photo shoot here.
Another popular beach resort coupled with a few buildings for food & beverages at Rua do Mar GPS : 40.977884, -8.648596
This time we reached another interesting nature reserve and the place is called Barrinha de Esmoriz. It is a huge lagoon with timber boardway crossing the lagoon and it has a different feeling cycling amidst the wetland.
It was totally quiet and serene and the only hope I had was that we can not afford to be at the wrong direction as we have already cycled endlessly on the boardway.
An arch suddenly became visible after a long monotonous timber board way. It is really a good eco-tourism with its flora and fauna found in the lagoon.
One for the album of this nature reserve of the Barrinha de Esmoriz, a place we will forever remember for its amazing scenery and character.
We finally came back and joined the road traffic, no more timber boardway as we pedaled on.
Next was a 9km of forest reserve ride and only seeing the dense timber trees in a quiet moist atmosphere. Photo credit : Anne Cheong.
I was wondering how soon will we be arriving at our destination it seemed to be a long ride.
Finally we completed the ride, it was a long 51km ride to Cool and Sea Beach House located at R. dos Arrais 7, Furadouro GPS : 40.870104, -8.675591. Furadouro is on the outskirt of Ovar. Lynn and Jo were already comfortably at home and we were told that the Uber driver was very kind and helpful locating for the place.
The town of Furadouro we visited was dead quiet during the evening (it was kind of a curfew time) we were told it was currently off season. We visited a convenience store and a shoe shop.
I bought this pair of made in Portugal rubber shoes (used for gardening) from the shoes shop. These shoes shall be my cycling shoes during this wet time. 
On the bright side we managed to locate Cantinho do Valente located at Av. da República GPS : 40.869535, -8.677174. We love the food here it was simply delicious and unique.
We started with some bread and pate before having a good range of seafood. Together with the local red wine everything just fitted finely for a wonderful dinner.
Nothing being undeniably satisfied with a wonderful meal which resulted Anne banging her table. Photo credit : Anne Cheong.
The route we took which was generally along the coastline of Portugal and it was flat and easy to ride on.

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