Towns and Villages
Porto Covo continues to be the friendly fishing village full of small white houses that was rebuilt by the Marquês de Pombal shortly after the 1755 earthquake.
Some of the greatest attractions for visitors are the many beautiful beaches sheltered by sheer cliffs that are hidden here and there all the way along the coast. During the summer, many holidaymakers come to this area to rest and recover their strength, finding here the peace and tranquillity that has somehow become lost in time.
Roughly 250 metres off the coast near Porto Covo is the abandoned Ilha do Pessegueiro, an island that has long been a great source of inspiration for poets. Here are to be found some remains of its occupation by the Carthaginians during the third century BC, as well as clear evidence of the island's Roman occupation, particularly its fish-salting tanks. However, tradition and our fertile imagination tells us that it also acted for many centuries as a refuge for pirates.
Nowadays, it is possible to see the ruins of a fort that was built there in the seventeenth century and which, operating in tandem with an identical fortress in Porto Covo, defended this part of the coast. The more courageous visitors might like to venture across to the island, but they should be warned that there are no organised trips.