Continuing the route along the Portuguese coast in the municipality of Matosinhos, reaching the end of Freedom Avenue "Avenida da Liberdade" that runs along the Leça da Palmeira boardwalk , we find a sharp curve that takes us to Antunes Guimarães Avenue, next to Leixões seaport "Porto de Leixões".
In this area it´s practically impossible to find a place to park the car, especially during lunchtime due to the influx of people who travel here for lunch at one of the many seafood restaurants that exist around here.
I managed to park right under the movable bridge in Leça, known as "Ponte Móvel de Leça", and it was from this point that I started to trace the route for this photo shoot during lunch time.
The Leça movable bridge located in the Leixões Port, was designed by Architect João Motta Guedes and inaugurated on July 30 2007, with the objective of connecting the Matosinhos bank to the Leça da Palmeira bank, making it easier to cross the Port and simultaneously the crossing of larger ships.
This project won several national and international awards, including the European Steel Design Awards 2007 and ECCS - European Convention for Construction Steelwork.
I didn't come here for the bridge, but the fact that it is the 4th largest movable bridge in the world, behind the movable bridge in Barcelona, Valencia and Miami, is more than enough for the brief reference.
It was also from the top of the bridge that I was able to record some images that wouldn't be possible at the ground level along the Avenue, since this coast is occupied by the entire infrastructure of the Port, and the entrance is forbiden to unauthorized people.
This script was just beginning and I was already recording some very interesting images about the reality of trade that is done by sea and their infrastructures and routines.
Leixões Port is the largest in the North Region and is located about 11 kilometers from the center of Porto, between the towns of Leça da Palmeira and Matosinhos.
This port, one of the most important in the country, has quays, terminals, recreational dock, fishing port and specialized facilities.
Each year, it handles around 14 million tons of goods and about 65 thousand passengers on cruise ships, arriving from various parts of the world, but mainly from Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.
The North Passenger Terminal is where the Passenger Station is located, a space built in wood in the shape of a ship's hull with a capacity for 750 passengers in embarkation and disembarkation situation and considered Architectural and Historical Heritage of Matosinhos city... today I didn't have the opportunity to visit, but I will certainly do it in a next post.
Before arriving at the Matosinhos bank, I returned to the side of Leça da Palmeira to have time to to reach the beginning of the avenue, where it connects with Avenida da Liberdade and where the "Nossa Senhora das Neves" Fort is located. .
Along the way, I had the opportunity to register some architectural models that prevail in this area with fishing roots that have been lost over time with the appearance of the various offices of customs agents that have been installed in the area.
Some of the houses were left abandoned and others were restored for commercial purposes.
Arriving at the beginning of the Avenue, is now visible the Leça da Palmeira Fort as it is also known.
Its construction began under the Philippine Dynasty in 1638 with the aim of defending that port against threats from pirates and corsairs, but according to history, its construction was only completed in 1720, although during all that time it was of great strategic importance for the defense of the port because it was equipped with attack and defense equipment.
During the Liberal Wars, in 1832, some renovations and improvements were made to the Fort, namely in the warehouses, drawbridge, moat stairs and parapets.
In the twentieth century, the Fort was handed over to the Captaincy of the Leixões Port, which erected some buildings in it for the accommodation of personnel, featureless the complex.
When I was preparing to return, started to hear a beep and saw through the railing that a huge cargo ship was entering the port and was heading towards the movable bridge, and when I looked it was still possible to register the two huge trays raised towards the sky in order to allow the ship to pass.
I was still halfway down the avenue to return to the car and the trays had already descended and the movement on the bridge had already started to flow again.
It's a very quick process for such a large structure!
I looked at my watch and I only had time to take a few more photos along the way, get in the car and go to work.
It's amazing how time flies when we're busy doing something we like
And the most amazing...
Although the weather report predicted a day of heavy rains, not a drop of water fell from the sky, even though the clouds were up there, gray and heavy :P
That´s all for today :)
See you soon
Thank you for watching :)