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
Ponte 516 Arouca - Maior Ponte Pedonal Suspensa do Mundo
It is the the world's longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the world, located in Arouca, next to the Paiva Walkways (Passadiços do Paiva). The name "516 Arouca" is a reference to its extension in meters and the municipality where it is located. Access to the bridge can be made through the entrance of Passadiços do Paiva, in Aguieiras, where you …
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 …
Passadiços do Paiva
Pedestrian walk on the bank of the river Paiva. You can start the course in Espiunca or Areinho. The route comprises a distance of 8 kilometers. At certain times of the year, it is also possible to participate in radical activities.
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.
Museu das Trilobites - 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.
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.
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.
A unique phenomenon in Portugal, quite rare in the world, that consists of rocks that grow and set free from the "mother-rock", hence the name of "pedras parideiras".
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.
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.
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 …
Parque Municipal de Arouca
A park with abundant vegetation, flowerbeeds and lakes. There is a picnic area.
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.
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 …
Up to date tourist information about the city's top attractions
The 10 Best Walkways in Portugal to Explore Nature
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Where to eat in Arouca
A restaurant that serves Portuguese dishes. Some dishes have to be pre-ordered, namely the "cabidel…
Located in the centre of Arouca, this large restaurant features a fine regional cuisine. Varied win…
A space that serves economic meals from Tuesday to Friday at lunch. Its specialities are based on t…
A large restaurant that serves Portuguese and regional dishes. It has a party salon for large event…
A regional restaurant. One of its specialities is the Alvarenga steak.
Where to sleep in Arouca
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