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Volunteering in Portugal – Making Connections in Porto

Volunteer in Portugal – Porto Hospitality Internship
Porto, Portugal

What can I say about my time volunteering in Porto? Amazing! I will be honest and say that I didn’t know this city existed before I signed up with GoEco, which is hard to think about now that Porto is so close to my heart. I didn’t know what to expect, but it exceeded my expectations. The architecture, the natural beauty, the history, and the people were all humbling.

A GoEco volunteer and friend at the Music Festival in downtown Porto...a new lifetime friend
Andy and I at the Music Festival in downtown Porto…a new lifetime friend

The Porto Hospitality project was one of the most fun internships I’ve ever had. The hostel life was one that I was easily able to get used to. The tasks were easy to handle, and the hostel itself was one of the nicest I have ever been in. The staff was also a huge part of making the experience more enjoyable.
I arrived late summer and stayed into fall/winter time, but either way there was always something going on in Porto, whether it was a vintage flea market downtown, a music festival, or an autumn festival at the park.

Angela from Switzerland and a GoEco volunteer hanging out at the hostel
Angela from Switzerland and I hanging out at the hostel

I was able to explore the city without getting bored (tired feet, yes), but the adventures were well worth the trek. I stayed for a total of 11 weeks volunteering in Portugal, and spent most of the first month meeting new people and getting to know the city. The remainder of the time I got to spend traveling to surrounding cities and actually feeling like a Porto local, seeing the same people I had seen previous days walking around. It was a great feeling!

A woman a GoEco volunteer found hustling at the local market
A woman I found hustling at the local market

Spending time in a country you have never been to, you are susceptible to experiencing not only shocking views of never-before-seen beauty, but emotions that come with that. Not to mention, the feeling of acceptance and comfort meeting people you never thought would exist.

The last night together as this GoEco volunteer bartended at a Hostel.
Our last night together as I bartended at a Hostel.

Making connections with not only new friends, but with the environment itself and embracing the fact that you are outside of your comfort zone is truly special. This volunteer project (although not my first choice) opened my eyes to the world we as individuals know so little about- and this I am forever grateful for. – Gaby

Get involved and begin the journey of your lifetime! Click here for more details about the Porto Hospitality Internship!

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