No matter the season, day of the week, duration or the reason for there are reasons to visit Portugal. Its landscapes, cities, coasts, villages, forests and mountains, offer a small sample of this incredible country kissed by the sea.
Upon my studies in Portugal, I got to discover the many perks f living in one of the prettiest places in Europe (yeah, of course I have a special love for it). Being a small country, it’s easy to travel through it, since the transportation and directions are always very clear.
Upon a Portuguese lesson school trip, we went to Leiria & San Pedro de Moel, a beautiful castle with an amazing history and a beach location with amazing waters!
Coming from the city, the tourist enters the Leiria Castle by Port Albacara. Inside the defensive enclosure, very well maintained, you will find many interesting sites: the Church of Our Lady of Pena, the former Paços Reais, Donjon and above all the beautiful view of the surrounding landscape.
Leiria was very difficult to conquer by the Islamic moors. D. Afonso Henriques was still not recognized as king (1143) in 1135, having erect a castle from the very foundations. He handed it to Paio Mendes, but he lost it two years later again to the Muslim reign.
Far from its original function, the castle returned to matter in the city’s history at the beginning of the century. XX, when it was the target of an innovative restoration by Ernesto Korrodi, whose initiatives have shaped the urban landscape of Leiria. Struggling to regain the medieval imagination, Korrodi advocated the return of the historic grandeur of the monument.
Currently, the walled enclosure is a nice walk space that has become the ex-libris of Leiria, “noting” the top of the hill the city’s evolution.
Sao Pedro de Moel a beach to envy!
Located between the pine forest and sea, São Pedro de Moel is a splendid beach, with blazing sun and incredible lemonades.
It is ideal for those who love outdoor sports: beach volleyball, surfing, which can be practiced throughout the year, or sport fishing and spearfishing. There’s a lot of people in the summer, so you may find it a little crowded.
It is a perfect place for camping, or if you are more into the daytrip idea, it is a perfect place to sit in one of the sea-sided restaurant terraces and enjoy some fresh fish! And if you are a vegetarian, there are also a million options in Portuguese diet including potatoes, mushroom, onions, olives… All things Mediterranean.
Overall, it’s a place you won’t regret visiting. It’s plagued with history and fun, so if you are likely to have a knack for these things, you will probably enjoy a day trip here.
Now, the travelling tips:
- As always, the key is comfortable shoes.
- Bring your own water bottle (preferably cold), because the weather is hot. Once you are in the castle, you won’t find any beverages.
- Be careful. When being in the castle, there are no restrictions. You can climb, sit, hike or look over the castle. Make sure you don’t fall over.
- When going to the beach, bring your swimsuit and a towel, there are no rentals around.
- Watch your stuff. Even when you are in the water, keep an eye at all times.