026 – Top things to do in Vila Nova de Cerveira – PT

We are back at the northern frontier, between Portugal and Spain, We are separated by the Minho River and we are here because Google said so.

This is what we will be seen in this article:

Click on the map or here to get a better view

From Wikipedia:

“Once upon a time… there was a stag (deer) that was chosen by the Gods of Olympos to become a King. And so, the stag decided to move, together with other stags, to this uninhabited territory that began to be known as “Terras de Cervaria” (Land of the Stags).

026.01 Miradoiro do Cervo

Many years flew past. Fights, skirmishes, and disasters gradually devastated the colony until only the King Stag was left.

026.02 Art showcase

According to the legend, when the noblemen from Asturias came down during the Reconquest to conquer what was to become the Condado Portucalense (Portugal), a young noblemen challenged the King Stag to a face-to-face duel.

026.03 Fishing nets out in the sun

And the old Lord accepted. The duel took place among the trees and weeds on a trenched site.

026.04 Frontier guard ship

And, so the legend tells, the King Stag swept to victory! He kept the nobleman’s flag that turned to be the King’s coat of arms. But the Gods deceived the old King. He wouldn’t be immortal… Tired of living and ill, the old Lord died in the loneliness of the crags and with him disappeared for good the Terra da Cervaria.”

026.05 The old city and the Stag monument

To be honest I was not drawn to Vila Nova de Cerveira because of the legends but for a more childish reason. I found on Google that in this town, there is a cinema. Cerveira is a lot closer than Braga (there I knew already that there is at least one cinema, but is a lot more far away), so we came here to see a movie and why not, visit.

026.06 Knitted decoration on the doors

026.07 Detail of the door.

Turns out there is no cinema, so we went with plan B: sightseeing.

As it turns out the trip here was worth it as I never saw a more beautiful door decoration till that moment.

026.08 Another knitted decoration

026.09 Wood decoration and green ceramics

Other than those beautiful turquoise doors and delicious green ceramic tiles, I also saw the most weird art form that I did not understand at all but was very awful to be seen in a children’s park (you probably saw it too as you were scrolling down the article).

Also I really loved the stags, both in the town, up on the hills and as concrete statues. But you already saw those pictures so I won’t show again.

Right next to that park (actually the whole river side is one huge park), there was a RV parking site, quite empty at the time of year of my visit. There some guys were dirt racing with radio controlled cars so I took out my zoom lens and tried to catch that speed and ferociousness. Joke aside, it seemed really fun to be able to do this in a huge empty parking space. They even had a drone to capture the moments.

026.10 RC in the dirt

Vila Nova de Cerveira stuck in my mind also because of this beautiful bronze statue of a Stag, the stag from the Legends. When I first saw it I knew this will be the front image of the article, and that I will try to make my version of it in 3D. But while looking on images on the internet of 3D stags, I remembered about Bambi from Disney. So I did in Blender a model of cute little deer instead of the majestic stag that we see here:

026.11 The stag in front of the Amphitheatre.

Like most settlements near a river, Vila Nova de Cerveira is also incredibly old. The castle dates as back as the XIVth century. I would show more pictures of it, but there are tons of cranes and scaffolds, because of renovations. At least they do this outside of the tourists visiting period.

026.12 The wall of the Castle and the hills

026.13 Bell on the entrance to the Castle

026.14 Street in the old town

026.15 Classic White & Grey architecture with bright orange ceramics

The town is quiet and gets more tourists as the temperatures allow for a pleasant walk along the river. There is even a fairly modern open-air amphitheater that I am sure is pretty active during the spring/summer. I took some pictures of it but what is more interesting than that, is the spherical dome of the Municipal Pools:

026.16 The dome of the Piscinas Municipais

And since we are back to Minho River, and the park, here is a photo of both Portugal and Spain:

026.17 Minho River, Portugal, Spain and a boat

During the past 26 articles we took quite a journey in Portugal, starting from Valenca, also in the north, also at the edge of the River Minho.

Then we descended south to Lisbon where the Tagus river is meeting the Atlantic Ocean, and then back north. We are again next to Minho, next to the last bridge that connects Spain with Portugal, before the river meets the Atlantic Ocean.

026.18 The last bridge before the Ocean: Ponte da Amizade

I hope that you enjoyed this trip in Portugal, and I hope we made you curious or that we answered some of your questions.

I shall not say goodbye to Portugal just yet, as Minho river will be visited again, and I will share some photos of Portugal once more.

But until then, thank you for viewing our website!

MiDe

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