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.

Endless pine forests, quiet beaches and Roman excavations

North of Nazaré and Sítio you can explore endless pine forests and quiet beaches: Praia do Norte, Praia da Légua, Vale Furado. Some beaches are guarded in the summer season, so you can safely swim there when the sea behaves itself. On the other beaches swimming is prohibited, because of the steeply sloping sand banks and the strong undertow in the ocean. South of Nazaré there is another beach, the vast Praia do Salgado.

North and south of Nazaré and Sitio there are two marked hiking trails, that take you to beaches, forests and rocks.

On the east side, between Nazaré and Valado dos Frades, in the middle of the woods, you will find a lookout on Mount São Bartlomeu (S. Brás), from where you can see the whole area.

Along the road from Valado dos Frades to Alcobaça, you will find on your left the porcelain factory of SPAL. At the factory outlet you can buy Portuguese porcelain with decorations from very simple to very exuberant, all at reasonable prices.

On the right side of this road, at the village Bárrio, you can find the archaeological site Parreitas. Here are for instance the foundations of an ancient Roman villa.

 

Beautiful gardens with baroque structures

In Mafra you can visit the beautiful Cerco gardens. They offer a combination of baroque structures and wonderful gardens and water features. The wide paths give every visitor the opportunity to enjoy the gardens to the max.

www.cm-mafra.pt

Portugues sentimental song full of melancholy

Fado is the most popular folk music in Portugal. This Portuguese of way singing about life can be traced back to early 19th century. It originates from the poor districts of Lisbon. Fado literally means “fate” (from the Latin word “fatum”), and fado is part of every Portuguese person’s life.
The songs are about things that happen in life, melancholy, sadness, nostalgia for what no longer exists, but also about happiness and feasts. The Portuguese word for these feelings is “saudade”. This is such a typical Portuguese word, in other languages there is no translation for it.

There are two varieties of fado, namely those of the cities of Lisbon and Coimbra. The Lisbon style is the most popular, and was orginally sung by women only. Coimbra's fado has a more academic character, and is exclusively sung by men.

Since the revival of fado in the nineties of the 20th century, fado gets more and more famous internationally, and reaches more people every day. Amalia Rodrigues is considered to be one of the most important and influential fadistas ever.

In both Lisbon and Coimbra there are some fado restaurants where (professional) fadistas (fado singers) perform their songs. Lisbon’s districts Bairro Alto, Alfama and Mouraria, are very well known for their fado restaurants.
Also in the Costa de Prata, several restaurants offer a complete night out, with diner and music. Prebookings are usually mandatory.

In November 2011 the Portuguese Fado was added to Unesco’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

An example...

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.

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