Nazaré is a typical Portuguese village located in an outstanding place. Laying down in front of a sandy and curvy beach, it is 100 kilometres far from the North of Lisbon and 230 from Porto.
Considered by many as the most typical village in the country, its natural beauty will make you fall in love with it.
Nazaré’s weather is pleasant and the village is inhabited by cheerful and hospitable people. As well, the picturesque village has become a muse for painters and artists all over the world.
Its location makes Nazaré the ideal place to spend your holidays in, it is an area with great heritage and history. The village has, approximately, 10,000 inhabitants and it is divided into 3 populations: Praia, Sítio and Pederneira.
The origins of the city are linked to a fascinating story about D. Fuas Roupinho, the mayor of the city. The legend tells us Fuas Roupinho was hunting on Pederneira’s forest, by the end of 1182. All of a sudden, a deer, running away, appeared on his way heading towards the cliff. Fuas then followed him and suddenly realised he had no time to stop his horse of the way to the cliff, so he decided to commend himself to the Virgin. Right on the brink of the abyss his horse stopped and both of them, miraculously, saved their lives. Thus, to express his gratitude he promised to raise a chapel on the cliff, creating Nazaré.
Visiting Nazaré means learning about its history, people, traditions, cuisine, monuments, beaches, and much more.
The low city, geometrically shaped, surrounds Praia de Banhos Beach, a large fine-grained sand beach. Here you will find numerous hotels, gift shops, and good fish restaurants.
Here is located the fishermen neighbourhood, full of perpendicular streets to the sea, with whitewashed houses and where you can find a lively market every Friday.
Located in the south of the beach and sheltering the fishing boats, Praia’s port stands out as well. After fishing, a great amount of the captures is sold in the market.
It is interesting to know its origins are recent. Until the 17th century, the sea occupied nearly all the present-days hamlet’s area. But, over the years the sea retreated.
Located at the top of the hill, Sítio is a religiousness and peregrination place since the 13th century, associated with Nossa Senhora de Nazaré and the Marian cult.
Access can be gained by car or walking through a stairway. However, the cable car is the most appealing option, since it offers lovely views of the low city and the ocean.
Miradouro do Suberco Viewpoint is 110 metres in altitude, offering one of the best maritime views of Portugal.
In Sítio, don’t miss the chance to visit Capela da Memoria Chapel, Nossa Sanhora da Nazaré Sanctuary, Miradouro do Suberco Viewpoint, Etnographic and Archeaologic Museum, Dr. Joaquim Manso Museum and São Miguel Arcanjo Fort with its famous lighthouse. In addition, Praia do Norte Beach, surrounded by a pine and dunes forest turns out to be the perfect place for surfing big waves and sports fishing.
Pederneira raises over a cliff in the East of Praia being the cradle of the city. It is worth visiting Igreja da Misericórdia Church and admiring the old council and its symbolic Pelourinho. It is also recommendable to have a walk and enjoy the views offered by Pederneira Viewpoint. São Brás Hill and Aguieira Dunes beautify the natural landscape.
Nazaré’s cuisine is characterised by dishes of diverse fish and seafood species, as well as different ways of cooking them. On it stands out the Caldeirada (a stew made of different fishes), the fresh roasted or grilled fish, and the Massa de Peixe (fish soup with noodles). Seafood rice and the Açorda of seafood (garlic soup with seafood), arroz de tamboril (monkfish rice) and the cataplanas de peixe and/or seafood are also very typical tasty meals.
Regarding to sweets, the most famous ones are the Támares, sweet sardinhas and nazarenos.
Nazaré is the perfect place to visit during the summer, especially on 8th September, when the festivities of Nossa Senhora de Nazaré are celebrated.Thousands of pilgrims celebrate the salvation of Fuas Roupinho in 1182 then. Besides the religious celebrations takes place the event “Nazaré em Festa”, with a large cultural programme enclosing cuisine, fun, spectacles, and craftwork during 10 days.
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