History of the city
On the riverside of the Corgo, an affluent of the river Douro, the city of Vila Real rises at 450 m high. It is located on a plateau surrounded by high mountains like Marão and Alvão. It is about 85kms away from the Atlantic Ocean, west, and about 15 kms away of River Douro that runs in the south of the city. To the north, 65kms is the distance to Spain, where lies the region of Galiza.
The city was created through a royal charter granted by King Dinis, who founded this town destined to be the administrative centre of a vast circumscription. The region, however, has been inhabited since very remote times. The Romanisation left here a perennial monument: the Rupestrian Sanctuary of Panóias, a place of worship for the native peoples which was adopted and transformed by the Romans. Vila Real possesses other monuments which are well worth a visit: the Cathedral, the House of Mateus and the New Chapel, the stone pillory and a group of mediaeval buildings including of the House of Diogo Cão. It has numerous buildings of noble proportions, many of which bearing armorial insignia. But best of all is stroll through the streets of the historical zone, enjoying the harmonious groups of façades which reveal, here and there, delightful details.
Vila Real has plenty of reasons to delight the gourmet and wine connaisseur. One dish in its gastronomy stands out, tripas aos molhos (a dish with trips), a specialty unique, and pasties de toucinho-do-céu (tartlet filled with egg yolks and sugar). The wine list is magnificent. The black clay pottery of Bisalhães and the linenware from Agarez are some of the articles of interest produced by the local handicrafts industry.
Cultural events are frequent and highly visible, in particular certain regular events such as the Music Courses by the House of Mateuss, the Luso- Galaic Caricature Show and the Academic Week. Vila Real also springs to life in June during the City Celebrations where two events stand out: saint Antonios Fair and Saint Peters Fair, also called the Fair of the Pucarinhos (small Pots), dedicated to the regions handicrafts. During the same month, there is a solemn religious event that should be mentioned due to its pomp and participation: the Corpus Dei Procession, a clear reminiscence of the mediaeval Corpus Christi.
09 Jun 2013
Trail dos 4 Caminhos
06 Jul 2013
1º Ori'Vila do Conde
(Vila do Conde)