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PENEDA-GERES NATIONAL PARK TOURISM GUIDE

Green Magnificence


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Peneda-Geres 
National Park Covering an area of 700sq km (270sq miles), the magnificent Peneda-Gerês National Park is a wild and dramatic place consisting of two main mountain ranges with rural villages scattered around. The most interesting and popular with visitors is Soajo, known for its collection of strange espigueiros, huge communal stone granaries topped with crosses.

Similar espigueiros can be found beneath the 13th century castle of the village of Lindoso, where they resemble tombstones in a graveyard.

Other villages of interest are Peneda, Espigueiros 
in Soajo home to a remarkable sanctuary modeled after Bom Jesus in Braga with a long flight of steps adorned with fourteen chapels depicting major events of the life of Christ, and Portela do Homem, known for its Roman milestones. It has the largest number of the kind in the Iberian peninsula, with inscriptions indicating their position and the name of the emperor that ruled when they were erected. An even more distant past is found all around the park, in the 5,000-year-old prehistoric dolmens.

Peneda 
Sanctuary To the south of the park is Caldas do Gerês, an attractive spa village that can provide information about the rest of the park.

The valleys, rocky summits, streams, and cascades make this an ideal hiking destination, with wild ponies, deer, cattle, and golden eagles for company.

The plant life shows unusual variety, with many plants that have disappeared from the rest of Europe.

One of the highlights of the park is driving around it, with every turn presenting an even more extraordinary view. Lindoso is best reached from Ponte da Barca and Caldas do Gerês from Braga.

Those who wish to stay can find accommodation in Caldas do Gerês or in renovated village houses for rent in Soajo and Lindoso. There is also a beautifully situated pousada with panoramic views.

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Places Nearby

Braga - The city of Baroque; the Portuguese Episcopal capital; a monumental staircase
Ponte de Lima - Manor houses; a mythical festival
Ponte da Barca - A lovely setting; a Roman bridge
Viana Do Castelo - Elegant architecture; folklore
Barcelos - One of Europe's largest markets; birthplace of a national symbol
Guimarães - A medieval World Heritage center; a fascinating Celtic archeological site



CITIES, TOWNS AND VILLAGES IN PORTUGAL
AROUND LISBON
AND TAGUS VALLEY
Alcobaça
Arrábida
Azeitão
Batalha
Cascais
Ericeira
Estoril
Fatima
Leiria
Mafra
Nazaré
Obidos
Palmela
Peniche
Queluz
Santarém
Sesimbra
Setubal
Sintra
Tomar
ALENTEJO
Beja
Castelo de Vide
Elvas
Estremoz
Evora
Marvão
Mértola
Monsaraz
Vila Viçosa

ALGARVE
Albufeira
Faro
Lagos
Sagres
Silves
Tavira
Vila Real de Santo António
Vilamoura
BEIRAS (CENTRAL PORTUGAL)
Aveiro
Belmonte
Buçaco
Coimbra
Conimbriga
Figueira da Foz
Guarda
Monsanto
Piodão
Serra da Estrela
Viseu

PORTO AND DOURO
Amarante
Lamego
Porto
MINHO
Barcelos
Braga
Gerês National Park
Guimarães
Ponte de Lima
Ponte da Barca
Viana do Castelo

TRAS-OS-MONTES
Bragança
Chaves
Vila Real

THE ISLANDS
Azores
Madeira