Welcome to the second post of this beautiful country. Today we come near the beautiful city of Leiria and we go around it. Remember the ways you can travel inside Portugal and enjoy your deserved vacation, Erasmus student.
Coimbra is a city full of amazing stories. From the university to the amazing views and history, Coimbra is a place you can’t miss. You can go shopping, you can go check the university or you can do a walking tour. If you want to check the city on foot, please don’t miss the farm where happened the most well known Portuguese love story.
Also, be sure to visit the city in the second semester, because they host Queima das Fitas every year. It’s like our Academic Week but way bigger!
Piódão is a historic village in Portugal. It’s built in a slope so the terrain it’s very uneven. The schist in the houses invites you to a type of tourism that you don’t normally see (rural tourism). Between narrow winding streets, you can find a local villager or a tourist like you. Do you dare visit this village?
Mountain of Estrela
Mountain (Serra) of Estrela is the highest mountain of continental Portugal (the highest one in Portugal is in Pico island). For a 99% guarantee of natural snow, you can visit the mountain in March or April to ski down the mountain. In other months you will have snow produced by machines. Be sure to visit the small city of Covilhã to check the local food and cheese. Top tip: Please be careful driving in the mountain. You might have to put chains in the tires to gain traction. Please take some days to go there, because the roads might be closed due to the heavy snow.
São Simão it’s another place that is hidden from major tourism. It’s another schist village but this one is way more special. If you go down the mountain you will reach the beach. A beach in the middle of a mountain? Ok, it’s a river beach. After walking down you will see amazing places carved by nature and, of course, a house or two on top, right near the margin. Unfortunately, you don’t get mobile signal there so you can’t share breathtaking pictures in your social media.
From the city center up to the Templar castle, Tomar is a hidden gem in the center of Portugal. The city is small and everything is within walking distance. Personally, one of the best things to do in this city is just to get lost in the city. You will find amazing places near the river that surrounds the city. If you get lost correctly, you might get to Sete Montes woods! You can also check the Templar castle and the Match museum.
Mira de Aire Caves
The mountain of Mira de Aire is amazing in every corner. There is so much to visit around here! You can choose between two caves to visit – Mira de Aire or the Coin Caves. They both have amazing views and hidden secrets, so check online (or in person) for details.
After the caves you can go to a national park made after a bear who drank from a natural sink – Pia do Urso. This park is adapted to the blind and it was totally rebuilt. It’s totally free to go there and spend some time enjoying the landscape.
After that you always have the Almonda water source. Unfortunately, there is almost no information regarding this water source so don’t get sad if you can’t find it. The water source might also be dried up, depending on the season.
Can you wait for Part three?