Aveiro in the north is a unique city. Small canals
cross its streets, bordered by beautiful Art Nouveau buildings, linked by humpbacked
bridges. Here in colourfully painted moliceiro boats seaweed is gathered laboriously
in the saltwater lagoon.
On the west coast, Figueira da Foz is a well-known
seaside resort with sandy beaches and a popular casino.
Further inland you can sample the curative waters of
the elegant thermal spas of Luso and Curia, fashionable since early last century.
If you decide to wander through the forest of Buçaco,
you’ll come to a romantic Palace turned into a hotel.
Put off your golfing for a day to visit Coimbra and its university, one of the
oldest in Europe, and you will catch your breath when you see its magnificent library with
its Baroque gilt carvings. From another period, the Sé Velha (Old Cathedral) is a good
example of the Romanic style.
University of Coimbra
Visit the Museu de Machado de Castro, and not far from the town the Roman ruins
Roman Ruins of Comimbriga
Right in the
middle of the region is a plateau, from where Viseu watches over its surroundings,
with the dignity that made it famous in the 16th century, not only as an
artistic centre but also and in particular, for the works of the renowned painter
Grão Vasco, housed in the museum that bears the same name. This is a city with many
manor houses and churches, but a visit to its spectacular cathedral should not be
No far from
here is Vale do Vouga, next to the popular thermal spa of S. Pedro do Sul.
And as far as the
eyes can see is the high austere mountain range of Serra da Estrela, a natural pine
and chestnut tree forest, spread among jagged boulders where rich pastures provide
the source for manufacturing woollen goods and the delicious Serra Cheese.
Museu Grão Vasco / Viseu Cathedral
the heart of the mountain lies Guarda, at an altitude of 1,000m, with its cathedral
built out of massive granite blocks with lofty pinnacles and gargoyles.
The gastronomic delights of this region are excellent and varied, forming the
best complement to your golf games. Worth a mention are the famous roasted suckling pig (leitão
assado), fish stew (caldeirada de peixes), and boiled lobster (lagosta
suada) washed down with famous Bairrada wines.