What’s Cool about Central Portugal – Day 3 and 4

Portugal Confidential - What's Cool about Central Portugal Road Trip | 27-30 March 2012 with Turismo Centro de Portugal ( )

Day 3 - Castelo Rodrigo and Serra da Estrela (yesterday)
Olá Amigos – well, we are finally able to sit down for a moment and write about the road trip so far. Two situations have prevented us from updating: 1) limited Internet connection in the cool spots ...of Marialva ...and Castelo Rodrigo; and, 2) Silvia at Centro de Portugal has a jam-packed itinerary. So much to see and do….
First, we have to say a special thanks to Paulo at Casas do Cõro in Marialva. He played host to an amazing six course, fireside dinner at the Casas do Côro restaurant last night. Casas do Côro is a rural tourism hotel made from rehabilitated houses of the historic village of Marialva. It is tres chic, very relxing and MUITO FIXE. We will write more about Casas do Côro soon.
Day 3 started out with a trip to the new(-ish) Côa Museum. This cultural space is a contemporary structure built on top of the mountain in next to the Côa River. The museum provides information on the ancient rock engravings found in the region. After visiting the exhibits…tours are available of the actual rock engravings. You choose the route…and you decide if you want to walk or cycle.
After Côa, we visited the historic Castelo Rodrigo. Awesome mountaintop ruins of a castle that had been occupied by the Portuguese…and the Spanish. Surrounding the castle ruins is a very quaint village with cute cafes and shops.
Also at Castelo Rodrigo is Casa da Cisterna, a completely modern rural tourism hotel made from the village structures. Ana, the owner and manager gave us a tour. We’ll be writing more–and making reservations–soon.
Right now, we are on the mountain top of Serra da Estrela, staying at Casa das Penhas Douradas. Have to run now…João the owner is going to provide a tour….
Até logo

Day 4 - Santar and Coimbra
Bom dia! Day four begins with sunrise at Pehnas Douradas in Serra da Estrela. A gorgeous, sunny, cool windy morning in the moutains. We will start the day with breakfast at the restaurant in Casas das Penhas Douradas, then take a quick walk around the grounds to see the cool contemporary architecture in the morning sun.
Then, we head straight down the hill to the town of Manteigas. Here we will visit the factory where they make Burel. If you’re a shepherd, you’ll know that burel is a dense wool fabric that Portuguese mountain residents used to weave for clothing to stay warm and dry. Most burel factories are closed. however, Isabel Dias da Costa has revived the traditional fabric weaving…added a huge dose of color with some sophisticated modern design…to create very contemporary household products (e.g. carpets, blankets, pillows and more). More on this in future posts….
After our factory tour, we go back up the mountain and down the other side to vist the the wine tourism estate of Paço dos Cunhas de Santar. Portugal Confidential adores wine toursim, so this should be fun.
And, finally, back to Coimbra for one last look at the city for this roadtrip before we head back to Portugal Confidential Worldwide Headquarters in Vilamoura. We’ve seen A LOT in Central Portugal. We have many interesting stories and places to add to the website. We hope you’ll join return to see our progress. And, we hope to see everyone back in central Portugal very soon…
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