Aveiro is on an estuary between the land and sea. The city is a maze of canals where the coloured prows of the moliceiros (seaweed boats) glide along.
For your first encounter of the city and its estuary, take a trip in one of these slender boats, a masterpiece of design. Sail through the canals that run the length of this unique landscape, and see the light reflected in hundreds of white cones of crystallised salt on the shore.
The blue tiled panels that line the railway station explain the history and customs of this region. As does the city’s museum, housed in a former convent where the Infanta Dona Joana sheltered, daughter of King Afonso V. Here you can take a “Journey through the baroque” that includes the Infanta Dona Joana’s tomb.
Made of tiny pieces of multicoloured inlaid marble, it is one of the most beautiful examples in Portugal.
On the Central Canal you’ll see a row of buildings in the Arte Nova style. In one of these it’s recommended that you sample the delicious “ovos moles” a speciality egg-based dessert made in Aveiro. You’ll enjoy seeing the busy fish market too, plus the Senhor das Barrocas chapel in all its baroque grandeur, and the beautiful doorway of the Church of the Misericórdia. A trip on the lake in the romantic Infante Dom Pedro Park is another great city attraction.
And to see some contemporary Portuguese architecture, visit the surprising collection of buildings that make up the campus of the University of Aveiro.