Due to its location Portugal is a seafaring nation. Since the Discoveries time, initiated in the 1400s, the Portuguese have always been closely connected to the sea. But it is on dry land that much of the magic of this “Little garden by the sea” happens. In the country’s hinterland there are scores of tiny villages, towns and places that make this country a genuine enchanted paradise. Just like walking into the middle of a fairy tale…
Piodão, in Arganil, appears in the middle of the range of hills like an enchanted waterfall. The typical shale and slate houses on the hill look like they just came out of a nativity scene. The blue wooden windows and doors make the brown of the houses stand out and make the village look like no other.
The village is recognised as a place of refuge and isolation with a very small population. The settlement, which would later lend its name to the village, dates from the 13th century and needed to move around the valley in order to diversify its production of cereal. Today, this location is therefore a place for rest and holidays, with very few inhabitants.
The surrounding nature is almost in a pure state, with diverse species of fauna and flora throughout the region. The village probably developed from an old Lusitanian castle, the “Casal de Piodam”, which was used as terrace farming, and is now in ruins. The architectonic group and very characteristic layout of the village are Piówdão’s greatest attribute. One of the village’s most striking buildings is a white church dating from the 17th century. PiЧdЛo’s Museum, which houses an exhibition of the village’s customs and traditions, together with the “river beach” and its rural tourism are some of the attractions capturing the attention of many inquisitive tourists.
Village of Mysteries
As is common in Portugal, the village is shrouded in mysteries. Legend has it that one of Queen InРs de Castro’s killers took refuge in the village. Diogo Lopes Pacheco was sought by King Pedro (who wanted to avenge his lover’s death) and by the King of Castille. In Portuguese history this episode represents one of the most popular and tragic love stories. Whether this is true or not, the truth is that the silence in the medieval street is intense. Situated in the AНor Hills, in the district of Coimbra, this village is considered World Heritage by UNESCO.