Top 10 Things to See and Do in Alentejo, Portugal
Alentejo is a region in the southern part of Portugal, known for its rustic landscapes, unspoiled beaches, and ancient heritage. Here are the top 10 things you must see and do when in Alentejo:
1. Visit Évora’s Historic Center
Évora is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with plenty of historic monuments, such as the Roman Temple, the Cathedral, the Chapel of Bones, and the Palace of the Dukes of Cadaval. Wander the narrow streets, absorb the ambiance, and sample the delicious local cuisine.
2. Explore Alqueva Lake
Alqueva Lake is Europe’s largest artificial lake, situated on the Guadiana River. Relax in the sun, go for a swim, fish for local species, or enjoy a boat trip around the lake. It’s an excellent spot for a picnic.
3. Enjoy the Namorados Beach
Namorados Beach is a secluded paradise, hidden between cliffs and sand dunes. The crystal-clear waters and golden sands are perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and beach sports. The area is ideal for nature lovers too.
4. Discover Beja’s Castle
Beja’s Castle is a magnificent fortress that dates back to the 13th-century. Climb the towers, explore the underground passages, and admire the breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.
5. Go Wine Tasting in Alentejo
Alentejo is renowned for its wine, which is considered one of the best in Portugal. Visit wineries, vineyards, and tasting rooms to savor the flavors and aromas of the region’s red, white, and rose wines.
6. Visit the Cromeleque dos Almendres
The Cromeleque dos Almendres is a prehistoric-era megalithic monument made of 95 standing stones arranged in a circular pattern. It’s one of the oldest and most remarkable archeological sites in Europe, dating back to 4,500 BC.
7. Learn About Arraiolos’ Carpets
Arraiolos is a small town famous for its handmade woolen carpets. Visit the museum, shop for souvenirs, and witness the local artisans at work. The stunning colors, patterns, and textures of the carpets are a must-see.
8. Explore Sines’ Fishing Port
Sines is a charming town that used to be a major port for trade and exploration during Portugal’s Age of Discoveries. Visit the Castle, the Church, and the Museum, and then head to the fishing port to witness the daily hustle and bustle of the local fishermen.
9. Admire the Vila Viçosa Ducal Palace
Vila Viçosa is a beautiful town known as the Marble Capital of Portugal. The Ducal Palace is a magnificent masterpiece of 16th-century architecture, exhibiting several art collections, furniture, tapestries, and azulejos.
10. Go Bird Watching in the Sao Pedro do Corval Lake
Sao Pedro do Corval Lake is a serene ecosystem that supports an array of bird species, such as the Purple Heron, the White Stork, the Little Egret, and the Glossy Ibis. A bird watching tour is both educational and fun, and a great way to relax amidst nature.
In conclusion, Alentejo is a wonderful region that offers endless possibilities for adventure, exploration, and relaxation. From historic monuments to pristine beaches, from delicious cuisine to fine wine, from megalithic sites to artisanal crafts, Alentejo has it all. Come and discover this magical place for yourself, and you won’t regret it.