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Picture Perfect Ōbidos

storm 22 °C

We are wending our way south as we try to keep ahead of winter but there could be some stormy times over the next few days. Residents of west coast communities know well the unpredictability of a marine environment, but Portugal has had more than a tempestuous climate to contend with in the past two thousand years. Invasions by Romans, Visigoths, Vandals, Teutons and Moors led to repeated destruction of the infrastructure and culture until the 14th century when a united Portugal was born. But civil wars and conflicts with neighbouring Spain continued, and many of the cities were destroyed or badly damaged by a cataclysmic earthquake in 1755. Napoleon’s soldiers only made matters worse when they ravaged this region in the early 1800s. It is therefore surprising that any ancient monuments survive, although many, like the fortified city of Ōbidos, have been significantly reconstructed in more recent centuries...
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Ōbidos dates from 1148, although it was built by the Moors on the site of an earlier settlement. It is a Lilliputian city of perfectly proportioned stone houses lining narrow cobblestone streets…
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It has an impressive entrance gate decorated with 17th century glazed tiles…
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And it is topped off with a fairytale castle…
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Every café and trinket shop in Ōbidos offers local cherry liqueur, called ginja, served in Lilliputian cups made of chocolate. At only one euro a shot it was definitely worth a try…
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Beyond the city walls is the stone aqueduct of Amoreira built in 1575 on the orders of Queen Catherine of Austria to bring clean water into the city. It’s market day in Ōbidos and the locals see no reason not to set up there stalls in the shade of the 438 year old structure as they have done for generations...
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This little girl was helping her mum sell chestnuts…
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It’s chestnut time in Southern Europe and the plump, hairy-skinned little critters are just falling out of the trees. Chestnut roasters are doing a roaring trade on city streets and in the markets, but there is no need to buy them: country roads and footpaths are just littered with chestnut road kill.

Posted by Hawkson 06:45 Archived in Portugal

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Comments

now that is the kind of road kill I like.
Very pretty city. It makes me want to paint it
love Jean

by Jean McLaren

How lovely to be surrounding with this old architecture. With the houses built so close together I wonder how well the neighbours got on.

by Janet

Good timing for your visit..port, cherry liquor in chocolate cups, and chestnuts. One wonderful event after another. Such a different contrast to our stand alone homes.

by Sue Fitzwilson

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