Coimbra and Aveiro Tour from Lisbon a different day with the visit to the Temple of Knowledge in Portugal, the Coimbra University one of the oldest universities in Europe, and a visit to the Portuguese Venice, Aveiro where you can take a boat trip on its canals.
Hotel / Apartment, Lisbon
Without a doubt the highlight of the visit to Coimbra will be the University of Coimbra, created in 1290 by the Portuguese king D. Dinis, the University is the oldest in Portugal and one of the oldest in Europe, often transferred between Coimbra and Lisbon until 1537, when D. João III fixed it definitively in Coimbra. Today, the University of Coimbra has eight Faculties (Literature, Law, Medicine, Science and Technology, Pharmacy, Economics, Psychology and Educational Sciences, Sports Sciences and Physical Education), and about 22,000 students.
Aveiro was elevated to City by the Portuguese King D. Jose, at the end of the 16th century, the instability of vital communication between the “Ria” ( saltwater river ) and the sea led to the closure of the canal, preventing the use of the port and creating unsanitary conditions, caused by the stagnation of the which caused a great decrease in the number of inhabitants – many of whom emigrated, creating fishing grounds along the Portuguese coast – and, consequently, they were the basis of a great economic and social crisis.
After two hours driving from Lisbon e get to Coimbra University, the “Paço das Escolas” the architectural complex composed of several buildings, whose history dates back to the founding of Portugal. Before the University of Coimbra operated here, it was the first Royal Palace of Portugal, where many of the Kings of the first dynasty were born.
From the reign of D. Dinis the Palace began to be progressively abandoned until the sixteenth century, where it would be extensively renovated, housing the University of Coimbra.
When visiting the University of Coimbra, the Joanina Library is obligatory. Founded in the 18th century, it has a distinctively baroque style, being one of the most spectacular in the World. With three floors, it is the top floor that surprises and the one that is worth the visit, constructed in wood to better preserve the literary collection, the chinoiserie decoration has Asian influence.
Centro Historico extends over almost the entire city, Coimbra has an urban center in its central area that has buildings dating back to the twelfth century, being one of its main riches, Baixa de Coimbra, from afar times, a space for trade and activities artisans In it is still, today, traditional stores and other more recent businesses, besides history and patrimony.
There the Royal Hospital was founded, founded in 1508 by the Portuguese King D. Manuel I, with the cloister, chapel and other dependencies occupied by commercial houses, at one end of the square is the church of S. Tiago, a Romanesque building from the end of the 12th century, and in another the church of S. Bartolomeu, which dates back to the 10th century but was remodeled in the 12th and 18th centuries.
In this region our suggestion for lunch will be in the region of Mealhada, locality famous for the piglet roasted in the oven of prferencia with a gasified wine of the same region.
Bairrada is the most famous place in Portugal in this type of dishes, baked in a wood-fired oven for over two hours.
A must will be a ride on a “Moliceiro” typical boat used on ancient times for transport of salt and “moliça” ( seaweed ) to get to know the 3 kilometers of canals that supported the city.
The Aveiro market a construction in wrought iron and glass but by Gustavo Eiffel and to the innumerable buildings Art New all cataloged what they reveal the importance and even the wealth of this city.
In Century XV Salt of Aveiro was enough commercialized in Galicia, in Asturias and in all the national territory.
The humidity around 13% of Aveiro makes it a salt with high quality for the conservation of food, and fishing and cod drying gave a great relief to the Salt of this region. This was a major product in the development of one of the largest and most important regional economies.
In the 60’s there were records of about 270 saltworks in Aveiro. In 1994, only 49 salinas remained in full operation. Today there are only 9 salinas to operate. Many of them have dedicated themselves to tourist activities as a complement to the salt harvest.