Afurada is a wonderful fishermen village just outside Porto which is still not damaged by tourism, so it’s a great place to spend an afternoon during your break in the city.
Top things to do in Afurada
1. Have lunch at one of the restaurants
That’s precisely where you want to be! Pick any restaurant that is packed with locals and go for a grilled fresh fish or a beautiful seafood stew, accompanied with a chilled green wine. It is absolutely superb!
2. Visit the Interpretive Center of Afurada
The Interpretive Center of Afurada is not really a museum, but more like a tribute gallery to the people of this fishermen village. Most of the objects on display were donated by former fishermen, fishmongers and washers, and have proper English explanation of its use on cardboards.
It also has interactive panels that explain the various crafts of the people of this fishermen village, the evolution of the parish and well known Portuguese feelings like longing, faith, nostalgia, but unfortunately those are only in Portuguese. Admission is free and it’s worth to take a quick visit!
3. Take a look at the ancient washing tanks and clothes’ ropes
Luckily there were two ladies, D. Palmira and D. Maria, washing vigorously. “We have washing machines at home, of course. But I prefer to wash a few things here, such as sheets and carpets. They are better washed, aerate better under the sun… it’s better.”
It was a strong lesson about humility – sometimes, we just need to sit down and listen to the reasoning behind the “odd” habits of other people, instead of simply looking at it as a picturesque picture.
Outside, there was an apparent confusion of ropes and clothes flapping in the wind. Each lady has “her” rope where she hangs her clothes, “but we’re not savages, we will not take the clothes away if someone puts them hanging on our rope.” The clothes hang for a day or two, if the weather allows it, fluttering under maritime sun without being stolen. A small daily miracle in Afurada.
4. Go for a bike ride on the cycle lanes
As I told you on a previous post on cycle friendly places in Porto, in Afurada starts a bike lane that will lead you all the way to Espinho, almost always along the seafront. You will pass through the Douro Estuary Natural Reserve and the Chapel of Senhor da Pedra, which is the most mysterious chapels I know, built directly on the sand. It’s really, really worth taking this bike walk.
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How do I get to Afurada?
- The funniest way to go to Afurada is by taking the boat “Flor de Gás” on the deck of “Lordelo do Ouro”. It you leave you in front of the restaurant “A Margem”). I made you map – the blue pinpoints show you exactly where to take Flor de Gás on both Porto and Gaia’s sides. It is possible to take your bike on the boat. The trip lasts a few minutes, it is very cheap and the schedules are:
Mon – Sat 6am – 9pm, Sun 8am – 9pm
- From Ribeira, cross the D. Luis I bridge and then go all the way riverside until you reach Afurada. It’s about 6km (20min drive, about 1h30 walk or 30 minutes by bike).
- From Arrábida bridge, take the first exit that says Gaia (Afurada), and immediately follow the exit that says Afurada / Canidelo. Go down through a narrow street, and when you reach the river, turn left and you’ll be in Afurada in no time.