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Alfândega da Fé



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Founded by the Arabs (Christian knights added to the original name of Alfandagh the words da Fé, of the Faith), it is however thought the region was inhabited since prehistoric times, as the discovery of several traces, namely the rupestral engravings found at the parish of Quinta de Ridevives, seems to indicate.

Without great monuments (of the 14th-century castle built by king Dinis only what is now known as the Clock Tower is left), Alfândega da Fé is an essentially agricultural zone, but it has some historical and architectural heritage worthy of interest, such as the Mother Church of Sambade (18th century), the church of Cerejais, next to the modern sanctuary in honour of Our Lady, the Chapel of São Bernardino, at Gebelim, and several mansions, such as the Solar de Vilarelhos and the manor-houses of Vilares de Vilariça.

The county's main attraction is its natural patrimony, namely the dazzling white mantle of almond blossom that covers the land in early spring.

The Estevinha dam offers visitors a beautiful and peaceful scenery, water sports and abundant trouts for those who enjoy fishing.

The county of Alfândega da Fé also boasts of an excellent regional gastronomy, including the typical greladas held at old-presses (with roast cod and potatoes and the delicious grelos, spring greens), a good cheese made with ewe's milk and also the local cherries, as Alfândega da Fé has some of the biggest cherry-orchards of the Peninsula and even holds an anual festival and fair in the fruit's honour each June.

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