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Vila Nova de Poiares

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Vila Nova de Poiares

Located in a region of great beauty, Vila Nova de Poiares doesn't boast of great monuments or historical sites, but its natural patrimony compensates this absence and offers unforgettable sceneries.

The Carvalho, Bidueiro and Soutelo mountains frame the county, crossed by the fresh waters of the rivers Mondego, Alva and Ceira, displaying banks surrounded by verdant fields.

Typical houses with porches and wood balconies may still be seen rising on the rural landscape, together with windmills, chapels and churches that deserve to be admired, such as the Mother Church of Vila Nova de Poiares (18th-century), the Saint Mary Church of Arrifana (18th-19th centuries) or the Mother Church of São Miguel de Poiares (17th century, with two towers).

Other interesting sites are the Mucela Bridge (of Roman origin, rebuilt in the 12th century) and the São Pedro Dias Dolmen (a megalithic monument in ruins, but still preserving part of the chamber).

The county is also proud of its rich tradition in handicrafts, offering a great variety of objects, from the famous local black pottery to works in wood, basketry, mats and other artefacts, besides quaint ornamental toothpicks with carved designs: initially created by the nuns who came to live at the neighbouring Monastery of Lorvão in 1200 to decorate cakes and sweets, they began later to be made at several villages.

At table, Vila Nova de Poiares boasts of two specialities with strong rural flavours; chanfana (goat stew with red wine) and arroz de bucho (stuffed pork's belly with rice).


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