Hotel Apartamentos Dabarca, 3 nights in a 1 bedroom apartment, an easy walk to the old town – Basically a good stay.
Tip: The TV channels are Spanish dubbed over English, but on some channels you can use the remote to change the language to VO and Voila! You get the original English language version of that channel not Spanish. That came in handy because the WIFI only worked the 1st night of our 3 night stay.
We got to the apartment a little earlier than check in, but the room was ready so we dumped the luggage and dashed off to the Pontevedra Museum – it closes at 2 on Sundays. Too rushed of a visit to really appreciate the collection – one thing we noticed immediately was that the paintings were extremely dark. A shame, particularly since we had just recently seen so many stunningly bright renovated masters in the Museum of Fine Arts in Bilbao.
The map from the Tourist Info in Pontevedra is a great way to get to know the town. A terrific walk through charming plazas from site to site.
Pontevedra was a great change of pace after busy, busy Santiago de Compostela – there were very few tourists around the last week of May. Terrific time and place to relax.
Great Eats: Restaurant Loaira in Plaza da Lena – Tacos Atun – these aren’t tacos, it’s the BEST seared Ahi tuna I’ve ever tasted! Great place for a romantic meal upstairs.
Driving and hiking tour – North of Pontevedra
Parque Natural de Carreiron
Lucky with the weather again, we set out on a driving and hiking tour, the destination – a hike on Illa de Arousa. Beautiful scenic hike for an hour and a half or so. We planned on tapas in Cambados and had overpriced and the tiniest dime-sized clams I’d ever seen. Enjoyed the Albarino wine though, a specialty in this region. The next stop was to see the resort island of A Toxa and the shell church, then on around the coast, stopping on the whim.
Tip: Parque Natural de Carreiron – No problem parking at the end of the road at the start of the trail.
Driving tour – South of Pontevedra
The drive south wasn’t all that formed, we drove through Marin then along a lovely coast road. Saw a petroglyph sign and went to find it, not a big deal so I wouldn’t bother searching it out. Eventually we stopped for a break at a cafe at busy Cangas, looking out over the water toward Vigo. That’s when we decided to carry on to Baiona and visit the former fort turned Parador.
Terrific stop – it was a fort, what’s not to like? When we’d finished, it was only a 40 minute drive on the highway and toll road back to our little apartment in Pontevedra.
Leaving Pontevedra for Porto
Pontevedra was a great base, we loved walking to the old town for dinner and the calm plazas this time of year. Our last night we had a long leisurely meal outside under the protection of the awning at Borona Restaurant/Bar.
Travel: Spain is an hour ahead of Portugual, and the drive from Pontevedra to Porto under 2 hours. Enough time for a relaxing morning and a view and cafe break at Viano do Castelo before turning in the rental car in Porto. 28 days and 4,250 Kilometers (2,264 miles) with the VW Polo, it was the perfect size of car for the 2 of us – just big enough cargo space for our 2 carry ons and 2 big laptop bags plus some groceries. We were lucky too, Europcar didn’t have stickers on it to brand it as a rental.
Next up: Back to Portugal for 3 nights in Porto