Costa de Prata

Worth-seeing

Too much to mention!

Maybe the main reason why the Costa de Prata is so renowned, is the huge number and quality of things to see and do.

The vast beaches, remarkable nature, special museums, historic cities and monastries, picturesque villages. It's really too much to mention but we try anyway.

Sub categories

World Heritages

World Heritages

No Less than 6 Portuguese World Hertitage sites are located in this region

  1. Monastry of Alcobaça
  2. Monastry of Batalha
  3. Cultural landscape of Sintra
  4. Convent of Christ in Tomar
  5. University of Coimbra
  6. Royal Building of Mafra (Palace, Basilica, Convent, Garden and Hunting Park)
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Exciting caves

Exciting caves

Spectacular caves

In the nature park of Serra de Aire e dos Candeeiros you can visit several caves. All three give you a spectacular view below the surface of the earth. Some locations look extra special because of the stunning lighting. On a regular basis exhibitions are organised inside the caves.

These are the caves:

  • Grutas Alvados/ San Antonio
  • Grutas da Moeda
  • Grutas Mira d’Aire


The latter won the price 'Natural wonder of Portugal'.

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Special museums

Special museums

From Buddha to Dino

Not only the Costa de Prata offers many historical buildings, there are also lots of interesting museums and sculpture parks. Often surprisingly modern and multimedial.

Indoor museums, open air exhibitions, excavations, you name it and its there. How about dinossaur footprints or the impressive Buddha Eden park?

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Cosy markets

Cosy markets

A unforgettable experience

Going to a market in the Silver Coast is a experience not easy to forget; a big difference with the markets in the UK is that you can buy almost anything you want. Clothes (casual but also costumes) and shoes till tools, rugs, distilling kettles, horse saddles and living animals like chickens, rabbits and puppies.  

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Nature and Culture

Nature and Culture

To enjoy!

Both nature- and culture lovers won´t miss a thing in this region. Naturepark Serra d’Aire e Candeeiros for instance is 400 km2 large and a real paradise for hikers and mountain-bikers. The large amount of historical buildings and cities, de farmers markets, the (fado) concerts and museums making the Portuguese culture palpable.

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The history of the monastry, a lovestory

The Real Abadia (royal abbey) de Santa Maria is in many ways the heart of Alcobaça.

It all started when King Afons I promised to give some land to saint Bernard if he would succeed in conquering the city of Santarém from the Moors. He succeeded in 1147, and in 1178 the Cistercians started building the monastry, and finished it some 45 years later. Soon it became the most important cistercian monastry in Portugal. Both church and monastry are originally gothic buildings. Later new parts were added to the monastry in different styles, like the 2 baroque towers.

Originally the complex was much bigger, but the earthquake of 1755, and the occupation by the French early 19th century, destroyed large parts of the monastry. What remained however is still a large complex, partly open to the public. A visit is certainly worthwhile, you can see things like the cloisters, the lavatory, the impressive kitchen, the dormitory, etc.

A lovestory

In the church lie the remains of Pedro I and Inês de Castro, each in their own tomb. Their love story is the most famous story in Portugal.
Pedro, son of Afonso IV, was about to marry the galician Constança. She arrived at the Portuguese court together with her maid of honour Inês. Pedro and Inês fell totally in love with eachother. This worried Afonso IV so much he decided to send Inês back to Burgos. Pedro and Constança got married, but Pedro could not forget Inês.

When Constança died in 1345, Pedro and Inês reunited, and the secretly got married. Together they hd 4 children. Afonso IV however still could not accept their love, and ordered Inês to be killed in 1355: she was decapitated by hitmen. Pedro was furious and wanted revenche. After his accession to the throne in 1357 he immediately ordered the hitman, who fled to Galicia, to be extradicted. After they arrived in Santarém Pedro demanded them to be tortured until death, and put their bodies on display afterwards.

In 1361 Pedro ordered Inês' body to be balmed, dressed as a queen, and put her on a throne next to him at the cathedral. All members of the nobility and the assembly were forced to kiss her hand, and by that Inês was posthumously crowned. Then her royal body was brought to Alcobaça and placed in a sarcophagus. On Pedro's command his own sarcophagus was put opposite of Inês so that when they both rise on judgment day, the first thing they see will be each other.

Life in the monastry of Alcobaça

Enter...

www.mosteiroalcobaca.pt

Water feature

When it rains the water is cascading over a carpet of large granite blocks and is collected in a huge basin.

The water is filtered in a natural way in the stomach and lead to a public fountain for the people of Mendiga. (2480 Porto de Mós)

In the park you find a educative model of the water mining. There is also a children playground, a public bbq and toilets.

In Coimbra you can visit Portugal dos Pequenitos, or Portugal for the Little Ones. It is a recreational-educational park intended primarily for children.

The park has thematic areas, like Monumental Portugal (miniatures of the country’s main monuments), Portuguese-speaking countries (representation of a.o. African countries, Brazil, Macau), The Islands (main monuments of Madeira and Azores), Coimbra, and Regional Houses.

You can also visit the Dress museum, that has around 300 miniature outfits on display from the 16th to the 20th century. Everything was handmade, and donated to the museum in 1950.

There is also a Barbie museum, the collection on display is the largest in Portugal and possibly one of the biggest in Europe, is composed of over 300 dolls. It includes the original Barbie of 1959, the Barbies of the world, the Hollywood collection, Barbies dressed by couturiers of international reputation, and many more.

Portugal dos Pequenitos also stands out as a high-quality display of sculptures and architectural art, the miniature size and detail of which continues to charm children and adults.

Weekly markets

•    Sunday mornings Santana market near Benedita; and in Pataias, north of Nazaré
•    Mondays in Caldas da Rainha (at McDonalds turn left to Rio Maior, the market is at the 3rd roundabout)
•    Mondays in Alcobaça (next to Continente supermarket), and Batalha
•    Thursdays in Malveira
•    Fridays in Nazaré
•    Saturdays in Leiria (near football stadium) and in Marinha Grande

Daily markets

•    Vegetables / fruit market in Caldas da Rainha (Praça da República)
•    Vegetables / fruit / fish market in São Martinho do Porto

Fish market in Caldas da Rainha

Jumble- and antique markets

•    1st Saturday of the month in Peniche
•    2nd Saturday in Leiria
•    4th Saturday in Marinha Grande
•    1st Sunday of the month in Óbidos
•    2nd Sunday in the park at Caldas da Rainha
•    3rd Sunday in Alcobaça, next to the monastry
•    4th Sunday in São Martinho do Porto, at the Avenida Marginal

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