Center of Portugal

 

The center of Portugal is a region where you’ll be certainly bewildered. If you want to discover historical monuments, enjoy the beach and the mountains and even visit an island paradise, don’t wait to go on an adventure in the region !

Below is a recommended route from south to north of the center to see a maximum in about 2 weeks.

 

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Peniche, famous for its beaches and surfing, I invit you to take a tour first to the fortress of the city and Cap Carvoeiro. In the city you’ll see indicated a port where you can take a boat to go to the archipelago of Berlengas. Tickets can be purchased on site or online (link below). You need a budget of € 20 round-trip for an adult and € 10 for a child from 5 to 12 years and comfortable shoes. Beware of seasickness on the way but on arrival you think it was worth it ! You can walk dirt tracks and follow the signs to visit the archipelago. There are various caves, hidden places to swim and the most famous attraction, São João Baptista Fort. It’s a beautiful nature reserve to see at least a day. If you want, you can also go camping there.

South of Peniche, you can see Baleal beach or the beach of Almagreira.

More info here for the visit of the Berlengas island.

Travel time: Approx. 1h20 from Lisbon

GPS coordinates N 39°21’37.185″ W 9°23’15.439″

 

Óbidos, a picturesque little town to visit ! You’ll walk in its charming little streets and can go around the city on the fortified walls that surround it. Also taste “a ginja de Óbidos” which is a very famous cherry liqueur. 20min away is the lagoon (lagoa) of Óbidos, ideal to just sit there and watch the sunset or swim.

Don’t forget to visit the magnificent Bacalhôa Buddha Eden garden, which is 15 minutes away.

Time: Approx. 20min

GPS coordinates N 39°21’37.516″ W 9°9’29.525″

 

Nazaré, known for its surfing championships but also for its tradition of 7 skirts worn by women, it’s a place to see especially for its downtown, its Miradouro do Suberco overlooking the sea with some of the city. ​​And when the sea is rough the waves can be very impressive !

Time: Approx. 30min

GPS coordinates N 39°36’4.373 W 9°4’12.356″

 

Batalha, the monastery of Santa Maria da Vitória, known as the Batalha Monastery was built to commemorate the victory of the Portuguese over the Castilians at the Battle of Aljubarrota in 1385. In a Gothic style influenced by Manueline art, the monument has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Time: Approx. 30min

GPS coordinates N 39°39’29.865″ W 8°49’26.847″

 

Fátima, a religious town known for the history of the three young shepherds who have witnessed several times the apparition of the Virgin Mary between May 13 and October 13, 1917, when thousands of people attended the “Miracle of the sun”. These appearances as well as secrets delivered by the Virgin gave birth to the sanctuary of Our Lady of Fátima. Pope Francis went there recently for the pilgrimage. It’s a place full of emotions to see even without being a believer.

Time: Approx. 30min

GPS coordinates N 39°21’37.185″ W 9°23’15.439″

 

Tomar, the castle of Tomar was built by the order of the Temple during the Recapture in the twelfth century. Inside the fortress is the Convent of the Order of Christ in a Manueline style. The castle became in 1334 the seat of the Order of the Knights of Christ and has undergone some modifications. The convent is classified World Heritage by Unesco.

See also: the synagogue and the church of Santa Maria dos Olivais.

Time: Approx. 35min

GPS coordinates N 37°28’57.32″ W 8°47’8.906″

 

Coimbra, one of the oldest university cities in Europe and oldest in the country, this city will enchant you with a multitude of things to see. The advantage is that everything is close and thus facilitates the visit. You can start at the university, then the Joaninha Library, the Cathedral (Sé Velha), the Santa Cruz Church, the São Miguel Chapel, the Santa Clara-a-Nova Convent and finish at the “Portugal dos Pequenitos” Park. The latter, miniature village for children will also delight adults.

Time: Approx. 1 hour

GPS coordinates N 37°28’57.32″ W 8°47’8.906″

 

Piodão, a small village made of shale house that makes all its charm. To visit his church, the museum dedicated to him and nearby, Foz d’Egua (to be done by hiking following the indications)

Time: 1h30

GPS coordinates N 37°28’57.32″ W 8°47’8.906″

 

Serra da Estrela, big ski resort in winter, it’s also from the top of its mountains that you’ll be entitled to an incredible landscape. Go to the side of Loriga then Torre where you’ll be at the highest point (1993 meters).

Note: you can skip this step and go in winter if you prefer to enjoy the snow.

Time: Approx. 1 hour

GPS coordinates N 37°28’57.32″ W 8°47’8.906″

 

Aveiro, considered as the Portuguese Venice, relax with a boat trip, on foot or by bike in the center, visit the city museum, eat typical pastries in the shop “Oficina do doce”, enjoy the beach Costa Nova (Ilhavo, Aveiro) and also go to the São Jacinto dunes.

Time: Approx. 2 hours

GPS coordinates N 37°28’57.32″ W 8°47’8.906″

 

To see also in the Center:

  • Pombal
  • Beach of Osso da Baleia (Pombal)
  • Caves of Mira de Aire
  • Caldas da Rainha
  • Leiria
  • Portas do Rodão
  • Castelo branco
  • Pampilhosa da Serra
  • Monsanto
  • Guarda
  • Belmonte
  • Viseu

 

For any request for additional information, please feel free to contact me I’d be happy to help you !

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