Belonging to Aveiro' district, but with Porto as the city of reference at all levels, Arouca lived and developed in its monastery's shadow. Built in the 10th century, the monastery lived times of splendor after the inclusion in D. Mafalda, daughter of King Sancho I, religious community, who was later, in the 18th century, beatified. For centuries it was the main pole of economic dynamism in the region, but there are many more places of interest. Rich in worldwide recognized geological and archaeological goods, there are several must-see locations in the county: the Frecha da Mizarela, the Serra da Freita waterfalls and river beaches of the Paiva river, the parideiras stones, the trilobites fossils in Ordovician, the Roman remains of the mining extraction and a number of picturesque villages that are a delight for the eyes and for the soul, such as Albergaria, Mizarela, Castanheira, Tebilhão, Drave and Regoufe, among others. And to better enjoy the visit, there is a network of 13 hiking routes, covering the various areas of historic interest and scenic heritage, at your disposal. Irresistible is also the traditional gastronomy of the region. The arouquesa meat from animals reared in freedom, on the Serra da Gralheira slopes, and fed with natural vegetation without recourse to rations, makes all the difference and provides a superior quality to the local dishes. The veal and lamb recipes are the most typical dishes, always accompanied, of course, by the typical vinho verde wine! And if this meat is a temptation, so are the conventual sweets, an inheritance of the nuns who inhabited the monastery for centuries. Sweet chestnuts, manjar de língua (sweet made with cow tongue), roscas (kind of sweet bread) e charutos de amêndoa (cigar-shaped sweets filled with eggs and almonds), barrigas de freira (kind of mousse made with bread, eggs and almonds), morcelas doces (sausage-shaped fried sweets) e bola de S. Bernardo (cake made with bread) are some examples of the richness of Aroucas' conventual sweets.
What to do in Arouca
Mosteiro de Arouca
Its initial use was as a feminine Monastery under the Cistercian rule and it is where Dona Mafalda tomb is placed. IT has a roman classicist style with baroque features by the gold carving.
The Arouca Geopark covers the administrative area of Arouca municipality, which has been stated by his exceptionally located geological heritage of international relevance recognized by European and Global Network of Geoparks of UNESCO since April 2009. The valuable and unique geological heritage inventoried covers a total of 41geossítios especially the famous Parideiras Stones in the village of Castanheira (Serra da …
Centro de Interpretação Geológica de Canelas
A space that shows fossils of pre-historic invertebrate animals that are 465 millions of years old and quite rare in the entire world.
Museu de Arte Sacra de Arouca
A space by the monastery, with a varied collection, composed mostly of art works that used to belong to the monastery. It features painting, sculpture, tapestry, furniture and other collections in several rooms.
Casa no Campo
The restaurant Casa no Campo is located in the Espinheiro village, in an old barn that was remodelled and reconverted into a typical restaurant.
Located in the centre of Arouca, this large restaurant features a fine regional cuisine. Varied wine list.
Casa de Cela
18TH century historic house, with large gardens, swimming pool and tennis court. Has nine comfortable rooms. The rural land, walled, stimulate readings, walks and leisure in total privacy. Under the agreement, it is possible to have lunch or dinner in …
Hotel Rural Quinta de Novais
In an old farm, with approximately 2 hectares and spread over five restored buildings in the primitive moth sec. XVIII is installed, turned to the serra da Freita, Hotel Rural Quinta de Novais. Offers 16 rooms, regional restaurant, gym, outdoor …
Percurso Pedestre Nas Escarpas da Mizarela (PR7)
This walk lasts 3 hours and a half along rather sinuous paths. It starts at the leisure park by the Merujal camping park and follows a route that leads to Mizarela. After a long walk, one arrives at the village …
Praia Fluvial do Areinho
A beach on the Paiva river, with parking for 30 vehicles. It is the departure point for several sports activities on the river.
Calvário de Arouca
Calvary of Mannerist style in that the cruises feature geometric motifs on the base. All in granite, is composed of several crosses and is topped by an interesting pulpit dated 1643. Classified as Property in the public interest, have for …
Capela da Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Arouca
Chapel built in 1612, very rich in its iconographic programme, where are represented Evangelists, Apostles, scenes from the Birth, Life and Passion of Christ, among others. The interior consists of a very simple altar and the ship's all covered with …
Carreira dos Moinhos
It is assumed that this asset is set only in the country, by the way the 17 windmills are arranged in career. Located in the parish of Alvarenga, windmills, built in schist and slate-covered are fine examples of traditional architecture …
Igreja São Miguel de Urrô
This church was built on the XVII century and it is incorporated in the mannerism style presenting the most naïf elements from the popular architecture. It has a granite campanile.
Memorial de Santo António do Burgo
This granite arcade marks out the location where the daughter of D. Sancho I, Infanta D. Mafalda body was deposited on the 13th century.
Frecha da Mizarela
A well known waterfall that falls, at an altitude of 60 metres, from the top of the Freita Hill. It is located between Vale de Cambra and Arouca.
Torre dos Mouros
Also called Medieval Tower, Moorish Tower or Torre de Lourosa field. Stately tower with Gothic elements and military defensive features. Is a unique building in the municipality and is in good condition.
Up to date tourist information about the city's top attractions
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Where to eat in Arouca
Where to sleep in Arouca
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