Nazaré beach

Erected following the Atlantic coast in the centre of Portugal, 100 km from Lisbon and 230 Km from Oporto, Nazaré is one of the most typical villages of our country.

Surrounded by cliffs, beaches and pinewoods, Nazaré, originally dependent on fishery, preserves an important connection to the sea now translating into a dynamic associated to tourism, emphasizing the relevance of the extensive iodine rich sandy beach, the thermal activity or the traditions related to traditional fishery.

A peculiar legend assigns the name Nazaré to an image of the Virgin from Nazareth, in the Palestine, that a Greek monk would have brought in the 4th century. In the 8th century, the runaway King D. Rodrigo, the last Visigoth king of the Iberian Peninsula, would have arrived at the Monastery after his defeat, facing the Moors, in Guadalete. There he would have found Friar Romano who followed him in his escape, bringing with him the image of the Virgin and a box with relics from St Brás and St Bartolomeu. Before his death, Friar Romano would have hidden the image in a small grotto, in Sítio, where it remained for four centuries, being afterwards found by shepherds who passed by to worship.

D. Fuas Roupinho, knight of Castelo de Porto de Mós, used to hunt in such area. The legend states that he also found the image and worshiped it as well. Some time after, on a foggy morning, on 14th September, 1182, D. Fuas was pursuing a fine deer when he saw it disappear in the cliff. Alarmed by the fear, D. Fuas asked the Virgin for help and the horse immediately stopped thus saving the knights life.

Worshiped since then, the image would have granted its name to the place – Sítio de Nossa Senhora de Nazaré.

More recently, Nazaré became worldwide renowned when Garrett McNamara broke the world record, surfing a wave of over 30-meter high, in Praia do Norte.

Waves of this size are frequent during the winter due to the "Canhão da Nazaré", an underwater canyon that begins about 500 meters off the coast of Praia da Nazaré, next to the headland of Sítio, reaching a depth of over 5000 meters it is the largest in Europe and one of the largest in the world.

Part of the municipality of Nazaré in included in the designated Pinhal de Leiria, the greatest reserve of Pinus pinaster in the Iberian Peninsula. It is inside this ecological reserve, of over 12.000 ha, that Vale Paraíso is situated.

Its natural beauties, mild climate, friendly and welcoming inhabitants, light, art, traditions and legends have made Nazaré the inspiring Muse of artists from all over the world.

Nazaré belongs to the Tourism Region of the Centre of Portugal, filled with history, heritage, gastronomy and natural beauties, it is the ideal place for unforgettable vacations.

Lisbon

PARQUE DAS NAÇÕES  
Lisbon is a city filled with light. The river Tagus and the sun, almost always present, transform the Portuguese capital into a mirror of colours where the beauty and architectural singularity don’t go unnoticed.

In Lisbon, there is always so many things to see and do, providing every visitor with a world of possibilities with the most diverse experiences: Walking through a city like Lisbon with a thousand years of history, rich in monuments, typical boroughs where the city was born and remains so real. Visiting Lisbon on the banks of Tagus river, devoted to leisure and connecting the monumental area of Belém to the modern Parque das Nações.

Beaches

The Western region is known by its beaches, being Nazaré one of the greatest expression of this kind. To the North and to the South, there is a multitude of beaches that suit all tastes: the beautiful cove of Nazaré, a beach by the typical village, has been displaying the blue flag, year after year.

To the North, we have great beaches for the practice of surfing and body board, almost wild beaches for those who enjoy sun tanning in a relaxed environment.

To the South, besides the persistent waves, there are also beaches that distinguish themselves for other qualities, naturist beaches, beaches that are excellent for fishing, beaches with ideal wind conditions for radical sports.

Just come and make your choice…

Alcobaça

MOSTEIRO SANTA MARIA DE ALCOBAÇA
The Mosteiro de Santa Maria de Alcobaça, also known as Real Abadia de Santa Maria de Alcobaça or just as Mosteiro de Alcobaça, is the first Gothic building in Portugal. The building of the monastery began in 1178 by Cistercian monks. It is classified as World Heritage by UNESCO and National Monument, since 1910, IPPAR.

Address: Praça 25 de Abril 2460 - 018 Alcobaça
Telephone: +351 262 505 120
Fax: +351 262 505 130
www.mosteiroalcobaca.pt


CONVENTO DE CÓS
The Mosteiro de Santa Maria de Cós, also known as Convento de Cós, is situated in Coz, in the municipality of Alcobaça. Its origins go back to the 12th century, time when the Mosteiro de Alcobaça acquires property in Cós. It would be D. Fernando, Abbot of Alcobaça, who would build the convent, initially meant for widows that wished to lead a religious life.

OPENING HOURS
Working days: 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM | 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM
Weekend: pre-booking for groups of 8 people or more

Telephone: 262 544 155

 

Crafts

The local crafts express the relationship between the town and the ocean, being the typical dolls and miniature boats the most relevant pieces of handcraft. 

Batalha

MOSTEIRO DA BATALHA 
The Mosteiro de Santa Maria da Vitória, better known as Mosteiro da Batalha, is situated in Batalha. This Dominican monastery was built over the course of two centuries and it is an example of late Portuguese Gothic architecture or Manueline. It is considered World Heritage by UNESCO.

Location: Vila da Batalha
Construction period: 16th century (1514-1532)

 

OPENING HOURS
Summer (April to September): 9:00 AM-6:00 PM
Winter (October to March) 9:00 AM-5:00 PM
Free admission on Sundays and holidays until 2:00 PM

Telephone: 244 765 497
Fax: 244 767 184
www.mosteirobatalha.pt

Giant waves

The Vale Paraíso Camping - Nazaré is surrounded by a group of beaches, from which Praia do Norte stands out and has recently been recognized as the beach with the largest wave in the world, surfed several times by Garret McNamara.

Fátima

SANTUÁRIO DE FÁTIMA  
The Santuário de Fátima, located in Cova da Iria, parish of Fátima, is one of the most important Marian shrines of the world. Over the years, the shrine has been extended, and at the moment, there is a Basilica and a great church, thus increasing the capacity of welcoming pilgrims under one roof.

Folklore

The originality of Nazaré folklore comes mainly from the strong character that characterizes the people. They dance the “Vira”, an original dance from the North of Portugal, which gained new and original rhythmic characteristics and movements, but also the “corridinho” (a traditional dance from the Algarve transformed by the rhythm of Nazaré), such an energetic dance that leaves both dancers and public breathless.

Grutas da Moeda

SÃO MAMEDE GRUTAS DA MOEDA
São Mamede is situated in Serra de Aires e Candeeiros, where the Grutas da Moeda can be found. These are one of the main references in the region, considered an historical and patrimonial legacy of worldwide recognition.

The caves were discovered in 1971 by two hunters who were hunting a fox. Filled with curiosity, they began exploring it and were initially surprised by the so called “Sala do Pastor”, filled with limestone formations, which ended up revealing the remaining halls and galleries that nowadays constitute what can be visited. Later on, geologists and other experts made the tourist attraction that exists today viable, being strictly preserved in its characteristics, including the surrounding mountain landscape.

The beauty of Grutas da Moeda is guaranteed by the diversity of clayey materials and calcites. The names of the halls suggest the images that each one has on the visitor: "Presépio" (nativity scene), "Pastor" (shepherd), "Cascata" (waterfall), "Virgem" (Virgin), "Cúpula Vermelha" (red dome), "Marítima" (maritime), "Capela Imperfeita" (imperfect chapel), "Bolo de Noiva" (wedding cake), "Abóbada Vermelha" (red vault) and "Fonte das Lágrimas" (tear fountain).

Gastronomy

Nazaré's typical gastronomy is characterized by fish and shellfish dishes of different kinds and methods of preparation. The “caldeirada” (fish stew), the grilled fish (sardines, mackerel, seabream, snapper, sea bass, etc.) In terms of sweets, the tamares, sardines (sweet) and nazarenos are the most important sweets that can be appreciated in many pastry shops and other shops in Nazaré.

Óbidos

Castelo de Óbidos (Óbidos castle) is located in the town with the same name, Santa Maria parish, Óbidos municipality, Leiria district. Example of Portuguese medieval fortification, erected on a small hill, once by the sea, it dominates the surrounding plain ad Arnóia river, East side.

The result of numerous architectural interventions over the centuries, it integrates the town group, which preserves its medieval characteristic in an almost theatrical way.

Recreation of the “arte Xávega”

Every year, during May and June, on every Saturday afternoon at 4 o´clock, the Nazaré beach recovers the art of traditional fishing - the "arte Xávega". Fishermen, women wearing the traditional costume and whoever wants to help, pull the fishing nets from the sea, in a choreography filled with strength and colour.

Summer in Nazaré

Summer in Nazaré is always fun. During the day, the sun, the sea and the beach, beach sports, walks to observe the nature and pedagogical and environmental activities for every age until the end of the day. In the evening, there are all kinds of entertainment activities: live music, folk dances, dance performances, etc. The streets and pubs are always open and crowded.

Summer brings popular festivals and also Bullfighting every Saturday evening. The Jazz BigBand and Festivals are also part of the summer entertainment offer.

Surf and body board

Nazaré and its neighbour beaches provide excellent conditions for the practice of surf, body board and other water sports.

PRAIA DO NORTE
The famous Praia do Norte and its Canyon do not produce only 30-meter waves that we all enjoy seeing, most of the year the waves produced are near to perfection and for every taste, being the ideal practicing spot, as it is proved by the recent results of Nazaré.

PRAIA DA VILA
Off Nazaré coast, known by the surfers as "Praia da Vila", the sea produces a wave by the coast that is ideal for surfing and body boarding beginners. There are 2 surfing schools to choose from, all you have to do is put on the wetsuit and start paddle.
By the rocks of the headland, when the ideal conditions are met, a right wave, highly appreciated by surfers and photographers emerges. Besides being a challenge, it is also a wave that produces great pictures with Nazaré’s headland as background.

PRAIA DO SUL
South from Nazaré and its safe haven, is “Praia do Sul” which offers a different wave, specially appreciated by body boarders.

North from Nazaré, along the Atlantic road, there are several beaches that produce good frequent waves, such as Polvoeira, Vale Furado, Paredes da Vitória and São Pedro.

 

CHECK THE CONDITIONS
FOR THE NEXT SAYS

      

READ THE ARTICLE ON NAZARÉ
IN TRAVELER MAGAZINE

Pedestrian routes

Surrounded by the greatest area of Pinus pinaster of the Iberian Peninsula, fabulous beaches, some of them almost in wild state and by a land marked uneven landscape, Vale Paraíso has every condition for every kind of activity in harmony with nature, from which we highlight the following:

PEDESTRIAN ROUTES (see link)

 

Bicycle lane

Surrounded by the greatest area of Pinus pinaster of the Iberian Peninsula, fabulous beaches, some of them almost in wild state and by a land marked uneven landscape, Vale Paraíso has every condition for every kind of activity in harmony with nature, from which we highlight the following:

23 km bicycle lane with the Atlantic Ocean and the Pinhal de Leiria as background. 

ATLANTIC BICYCLE TRACK (see link)

VALE PARAÍSO NATUR PARK
Estrada Nacional 242 . 2450-138 Nazaré
GPS: N 39.620355 W 9.056278

T. +351 262 561 800 / 931 623 592
info@valeparaiso-naturpark.com

Co-financed by:
 

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