Fundação Côa Parque
Successful Mix of Paleolithic Art & Contemporary Architecture
Early in the morning we leave the Casa da Cisterna to Vila Nova de Foz Coa: my second visit to the superb Côa Museum of archeology, opened on June 30, 2010. My first visit was in 2010, as part of a reportage on the architecture.
The building designed by two Portuguese architects, Camilo Rebelo and Tiago Pimentel, blends into the mountains covered by terraced fields. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to visit the sites that house the rock art of the Côa and Douro valleys. It’s a must see, so plan enough time during your visit!
In the museum, we discover reproductions of engravings and sculptures of the surrounding sites. Always extremely exciting and impressive to learn a little more about our mysterious past back more than 30,000 years! We can feel so tiny …
A museum to visit. All information here.
Picnic Beside The Douro
Ribeiro do Mosteiro
Our Second Hike : The “Calçada de Alpajares”,
or Calçada do Diabo (: the Devil’s Road!). In the afternoon, we follow the path of a Roman road that crossed the Douro and Mosteiro Rivers. The walk begins in a pleasant “easy” way, a bit bucolic (I’m so naive!), to quickly turn into a succession of steep climbs.
In total, an accumulated climb of 393 m, under 34° Celsius (and some cactus)! Level of difficulty: medium (distance: 8 km). Fortunately, the sky is overcast. I really suffered in the steep climbs, with the stifling heat,
LOL! Thankfully the beauty of landscapes very different from the reserve of Faia Brava, helps to enjoy the walk ; ))
Back to Casa da Cisterna in early evening, barely time to shower as we leave for a surprise dinner organized by Ana Berliner, the owner! The only clue: we have to keep our walking shoes … While we take a track through the countryside (the real one!), speculations are rife. But none of us guessed right.
We get off the car atop one hill, lost in the middle of nowhere. Glowing light, golden brown ruins of a small chapel … and I discover hidden by small trees, an elegant dinner table facing the mountains! Gorgeous! Cinematographic view of the sunset, I think of Visconti. Panoramic sequence … Nature, nothing but nature, all around!
Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés
Many thanks for this beautiful invitation to Visit Portugal, TCP/ARPT Centro de Portugal et TAP. Thanks to Manuel Franco and Ana Berliner and the team of Casa Cisterna for this amazing dinner on a hilltop. As always these are my opinions.