Coimbra

The University is the oldest in the country and one of the oldest in Europe and it is what converted Coimbra to the "Students' Town". However, in historical terms, the city is home to one of the most beautiful and tragic love stories of our monarchy. The romantic encounters between king D. Pedro and D. Inês are part of the Portuguese history and are linked to sights such as the Quinta das Lágrimas or the Sé Velha (old cathedral). The Mondego river is the town's companion, which reveals medieval streets and historical corners, as the Arco de Almedina arch - a very well preserved structure of the ancient wall. The Queima das Fitas (Burning of the Faculty Ribbons) is one of the most emblematic feasts of the city, in which students come out into the street in celebration, parading and followed by floats that satirize current themes. The student spirit can be discovered and felt in every corner where they meet, wearing dark clothes, and perform serenades. It is also very typical and common to hear fado coimbrão in the most typical cafés and restaurants or even on the streets of the city. A visit to the historic center reveals Baixinha, where the traditional trade is located. Pastéis de Santa Clara (sweets with egg and almond filling) and capelos (doctoral cap-shaped sweets with egg and fruit filling) are the most traditional sweets and they can be tasted in the citys' pastry shops. In addition to the Sé Nova and the Sé Velha, there are many more monuments that Coimbra hosts, such as the convents of Santa Clara-a-Nova and Santa Clara-a-Velha. Recently awarded as one of the best European museums, it is in this town that the Museu da Ciência da Universidade de Coimbra (Museum of Science of the University of Coimbra) has been built. One of the unavoidable sites, and especially for those travelling with children, is the Portugal dos Pequenitos.

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