This ancient city, hidden in the mountains, represents two periods of time. Moors and Christians fought ferocious battles over it. However, in 1057, Fernando Magno, great grandfather to the first king of Portugal, definitively took it for Christianity. This era survives in the tall castle tower, where on foggy days the soul of a Moorish princess is said to return to weep.
Outside, walk up the steep streets where houses emerge out of the medieval walls.
Get your strength back with a little smoked Lamego ham before returning to the centre. The façade of the church of Almacave, in front of which founding king Afonso Henriques would gather his warrior knights, is a genuine example of Romanesque art. The tower adjoining the Se dates from the same period. And when the great bell was being cast, Bishop António Telles de Menezes poured a sack of gold coins into the mould to ensure that its sound would be the richest of all cities.
The interior of the Se however is not as Gothically austere as the façade. The colour and lightness of paintings by Italian artist Nicolau Nasoni leap out at you. He also designed the Sanctuary dedicated to Nossa Senhora dos Remédios.
This beautiful monument is a symbol of religious devotion and admiration. Take a look at the fantastic gold leaf carvings and the stories told across the church’s tiles.
And a visit to the museum is a must - it is one of the best in the country. Make sure this Douro city, birthplace of the fine wine that was to become Port, features on your itinerary.