Arrabida Sesimbra and Setubal Tour an extremely eclectic tour with visits and wine tastings, the beautiful view from Serra da Arrabida park, a visit to a traditional tile factory, the fishing village of Sesimbra and the port city of Setubal, all of it in a single day
One of the traditional activities typical of the Arrabida Park area is its famous cheese the Azeitao cheese which has a characteristic and highly appreciated flavor, its climate and the limestone nature of the soil makes it so diferente then others in Portugal.
Produced from raw sheep’s milk, to which only thistle and salt are added a very particular and appreciated organoleptic characteristics are closely linked to the pasture flora of the Serra da Arrabida and to the use of spontaneous Cynara cardunculus thistle in the south of the country for milk coagulation.
Another reason to visit this park is its Moscatel wine, maintaining great importance throughout the region, constituting an essential variety in the region of Palmela and Setubal, associated with the production of white wines and the generous wines such the Moscatel de Setubal, a generous wine whose production area has been delimited since 1907, despite its production being quite previous.
Another famous product in the Arrabida Park its honey with a velvety flavor and very characteristic, is well-known due to the floristic richness of this mountain range.
The abundance of aromatic plants such as rosemary Rosmarinus officinalis, myrtle Myrtus communis, Cistus ladanifer, Lavandula.
Our Arrabida Sesimbra and Setubal Tour will start by crossing the 25th of April bridge on the way to Sesimbra, starting by visit its its Castle, on the hillside north of the village, this fortress was classified as a national monument in 1910, and is today one of the most visited sites in the county.
Built in the 9th century, still under Islamic occupation, its role throughout history has always been land and maritime defense of the region.
In the bay, you will find the Maritime Museum of Sesimbra where you will know the connection of this Portuguese village to the sea and fishing art, from the history of the local fishermen, how they traveled and the utensils they used, to maritime devotions, there are several rooms to explore.
The ex-libris of this museum is a 3D movie that takes you on a journey back to the time of prehistory and medieval times, ending in a return to the ocean and the future of Sesimbra.
Arrabida Natural Park a deep contrast between the whitish shades of limestone cliffs, the blue of the waters, and the green of the vegetal mantle that covers the saw this conjugation of colors could only result a unique picture, that is painted according to the seasons of the year, a string of beaches, which is the most beautiful, each with its attributes and charms between them; Figueirinha, Portinho da Arrabida, Galapos or Galapinhos that was elected, the best European destination in 2017.
Setubal and the sea, the fishermen´s, there boats, the river and the sea are inseparable and Setubal identity, demonstrated and colored by the hundreds of boats anchored along the riverfront contrasting with the bronze tanned skin of men of toil, real people of the sea, accustomed to overcome all different challenges, with a peculiar wisdom and humour, able to paint pictures with words that make anyone mesmerized.
In Setubal downtown you find stores for every taste, from some of the most recognized global brands, mingle with others from older times, where one can discover some rarities and less conventional products, culture peeks around every turn, where buildings are living testimonies of a city that grew, which is modernized, all without forgetting its sea roots.
Most of the streets converge to “Praça do Bocage” Setubal´s meeting point of the locals, full of esplanades and dedicated to one of the greatest figures of Portuguese poetry, his statue with his eyes fixed on the sea, is the landmark of this busiest square.
Being in Portugal it is impossible to be indifferent to the churches, palaces and other buildings lined with tiles, it is true that they have Muslim roots, but they had become a symbol of the Portuguese culture, to visit a traditional tile factory is an authentic jewel for lovers and collectors, in this factory will find European, Islamic and Chinese drawings of the most different types, whether painted or relief, in the Hispano-Arabic style of the 15th and 16th century.
A true lesson on the various stages of the manufacturing process, from the “making”, through the glazing and finishing in the painting, you can still live on the skin the experience of painting your own tile.
The region of Azeitão has been linked to wine culture for many centuries, a truly secular passion, here we produce the richest table wines and Moscatels in Portugal and in the World, making an important contribution to the image and prestige of Portuguese wines.
One of the most prestigious wine producing states in this region is the well-known Jose Maria da Fonseca, here we will visit the property and its Museum as well as know and taste its wines especially its muscatel.
The return to Lisbon will be donde trough the Vasco da Gama Bridge was inaugurated on 29 March 1998, the longest in Europe and is currently the ninth most extensive in the world, with its almost 18 km long, of which 12 are on the waters of the estuary of the Tagus river.
During its construction, special care was taken with the environmental impact, as it crosses the Tagus Estuary Natural Park, an important European-wide area for feeding and nesting waterfowl.