Impressions of Coimbra

October 11, 2007
This weekend I visited Coimbra, a student city where Nathalie is studying. I had a really great time there. Coimbra is a very different city than Lisbon is. You can compare it with Leuven in Belgium. Too bad I was in such a hurry I forgot to take my camera with me. (I'll try to update this post with pictures Nathalie took)

The student city

Friday I took a train from Orient station in Lisbon to the Coimbra-b station. The Intercidade (IC) train takes 2 hours to get there and costs 15 euro's. A bus then took me to Praça da Republica where Nathalie picked me up. She lives in a flat with 13 other girls (my god, not easy!) , but most of the time she's at the hostel down the street. The Grande Hostel de Coimbra is run by some amazing young people (an artist, an architect, a doctor and a lawyer). It has a design interior, wooden floors, good kitchen, playstation(!) and a wonderful garden with BBQ and sitting bags. Now I understand why liefken works there. Go there if you want to visit Coimbra!I had a really nice time walking through the town with Nathalie. It was very relaxing. There's this calm and easy atmosphere in the city, but this was probably because most of the students leave during weekends.The population of Coimbra consists mostly of students, it is home to one of Europe's oldest universities. The hill where the university is built on offers some breathtaking views of the city. We had the luck to see a gorgeous sunset. I hope Nathalie uploads her pictures soon. Very romantic.

Mondego River

Saturday was one of the hottest days since I've been in Portugal: 32°, so we searched for some refreshment near the river. The Mondego river is much nicer than the Tejo in Lisbon. You can sit in a park by the river bank and enjoy a good meal while you hear the water flowing. (well almost). Nathalie dropped my knife in the river while we were eating: that was fun :-) luckily the waiter didn't notice it was missing. Great sopa do dia & hamburger with fresh fries.After 21:00 the restaurant where we ate transformed into a lounge bar. I had a caipirinha (which wasn't as good as the 2euro ones from Lisbon).Sunday we spend most of the day chilling in the garden of the hostel with Nathalie's friends. They are really nice people. I had a good time. Nathalie made a delicious carbonara to please our stomachs: the weekend was perfect. Too bad I had to get back to Lisbon that evening because I had classes on monday.Thanks liefje for a wonderful weekend!

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