A journey through the churches and chapels of Portimão

On your next visit to the Algarve, come to Portimão, taste some local gastronomy, stroll along the streets, relax  in the riverside area and discover the city’s religious heritage. You’ll appreciate it!

With the Easter religious time still in mind, we decided to present to you a small itinerary that will take you to discover the churches and chapels of the beautiful city of Portimão, in the Algarve.

The religious heritage in Portimão, is not vast, but quite interesting and worth a visit.

Starting from Manuel Teixeira Gomes Square, with the city map in your hands, go towards the old bridge, attentive to the architectural details and look for the secular Chapel of St. Joseph. Then, get lost in the streets and alleys towards the Igreja Matriz, the main church of Portimão and end this part of the journey, in the Church of the College of the Jesuits.

Teixeira Gomes
Manuel Teixeira Gomes Square

From here, you can go to Rua do Comércio to see the latest fashion trends and to the Rua Direita to taste some regional products at Mercearia do Algarve, discover some tasteful typically Portuguese gifts at the Tradição Portuguesa shop, indulge yourself with a regional sweet at Casa da Isabel or a tidbit at  Maria do Mar. After this relaxing moments, it is time for a longer walk along the riverside, crossing the interior of the city, to discover the Chapel of Nossa Senhora do Amparo. 

Bordalo
Portuguese gifts

Chapel of St. Joseph

This centenary chapel, located next to the old bridge of Portimão, was built in the 17th century. For several years, it was a place of worship for St. Joseph, patron of the naval carpenters who worked in the shipyards near to this place. Inside, some baroque traces. The tiled flooring enhances the gold-framed frame with the image of Christ crucified. The exterior is a little run down. It is closed to the public, opening only for Eucharistic celebrations, on Sundays at 5:00 p.m.

Capela Sao Jose
Chapel of St. Joseph

Main Church of Portimão

Dated from 15th century, the main church of Portimão is located in the highest part of the city, inside the old walls.

Igreja Matriz
Main Church of Portimão

The late-Gothic portal is inspired by the most imposing monument of the time, the Monastery of Batalha and in it are identified fine sculptures of musicians and women in frame. Various styles, such as Baroque, Rococo and Manueline styles, are the fruit of the various phases of reconstruction and artistic enrichment of the temple.

Interior
Interior of the Igreja Matriz de Portimão

Church of the College of the Jesuits 

Located in the Alameda da Praça da República the Church and the Jesuit College was built at the end of the 17th century by order of D. Diogo Gonçalves – whose mausoleum remains in the main chapel – as gratitude for having found in Portimão a good port of refuge, after a strong storm at sea.

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College of the Jesuits 

Unlike the Jesuit buildings, this building fully assumed the Baroque style. With the earthquake of 1755 the building suffered some damage, highlighting the vaults, which contributed for a refurbishment of the main facade.

The austerity and simplicity of the architecture of the Restoration are present within the Church-Hall.

Interior
Interior of the church of the College of the Jesuits

The Church of the College of the Jesuits was even chosen by the Marquês de Pombal to set up in the region of Portimão a new Algarve Cathedral (Diocese), a project that did not happen in the end.

Chapel of Nossa Senhora do Amparo

This simple chapel, of Arab origin, was christianized and dedicated to Our Lady of Amparo, also known by Our Lady of the Milk, well represented in a screen behind the altar, breastfeeding her baby. Here the pregnant women went to receive their blessing. The chapel was built in the likeness of the ancient Islamic marabouts, having been restored 30 years ago.

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Church of Our Lady of the Milk

On your next visit to the Algarve, come to Portimão, taste some local gastronomy, stroll along Rua das Comércio and Rua Direita, relax  in the riverside area and discover the city’s religious heritage. You’ll appreciate it!

Um roteiro pelas igrejas e capelas de Portimão

Na sua próxima visita ao Algarve, passe por Portimão, prove a gastronomia local, passeie pela Rua das Comércio, Rua Direita, zona ribeirinha e descubra o património religioso da cidade. Vai de certo apreciar!

Tendo ainda presente a época religiosa da Páscoa, decidimos dar-lhe a conhecer um pequeno roteiro que o levará a descobrir as igrejas e capelas da bonita cidade de Portimão.

O património religioso em Portimão, não é vasto, mas, bastante interessante e vale mesmo uma visita.

Partindo da Praça Manuel Teixeira Gomes, munido do mapa da cidade, vá em direcção à Ponte antiga atento aos pormenores arquitectónicos e procure a Capela de São José. A seguir, perca-se nas ruas e ruelas em direcção à Igreja Matriz de Portimão e por fim, a Igreja do Colégio dos Jesuítas. Daqui, pode aproveitar e dar um salto à Rua do Comércio para ver as últimas tendências da moda e à Rua Direita para umas compras de produtos regionais na Mercearia do Algarve, deliciar-se com um doce regional na Casa da Isabel, ou um petisco na Maria do Mar.  Depois dos petiscos, é hora de uma caminhada mais longa junto à zona ribeirinha, atravessando depois o interior da cidade, até à Capela da Nossa Senhora do Amparo.

Teixeira Gomes
Praça Manuel Teixeira Gomes

Capela de São José

Esta capela centenária, situada junto à Ponte antiga de Portimão, foi erigida no século XVII. Durante vários anos, foi lugar de culto a São José, padroeiro dos carpinteiros navais que trabalhavam em estaleiros próximos deste lugar. No interior, alguns traços de barroco. O revestimento em azulejos, realça a moldura em talha dourada com a imagem de Cristo crucificado. Está fechada ao público, abrindo somente para celebrações de Eucaristia, aos domingos às 17h:00.

Capela Sao Jose
Capela de São José

Igreja Matriz de Portimão

Datada do sec. XV, a Igreja Matriz de Portimão situa-se na zona mais elevada da cidade, no interior das antigas muralhas.

Igreja Matriz
Igreja Matriz de Portimão

O portal tardo-gótico é inspirado no mais imponente monumento da época, o Mosteiro da Batalha e nele se identificam finas esculturas de músicos e mulheres em moldura. Aqui convivem diversos estilos, como o barroco, o rococó e o manuelino, fruto das várias fases de reconstrução e enriquecimento artístico do templo.

Interior
Interior da Igreja Matriz de Portimão

Igreja do Colégio dos Jesuítas

Situada na Alameda da Praça da República, em Portimão, a Igreja e o Colégio dos Jesuítas foi construída em finais do séc. XVII por ordem de D. Diogo Gonçalves – cujo mausoléu permanece na capela-mor – como agradecimento por ter encontrado em Portimão um bom porto de abrigo, depois de uma forte tempestade no mar.

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Igreja do Colégio dos Jesuitas

Ao contrário das construções Jesuíticas, este edifício assumia plenamente o Barroco. . Com o terramoto de 1755 sofreu alguns danos, destacando as abóbadas, o que contribui para uma refeitura da fachada principal.

A austeridade e a simplicidade da arquitetura da Res­tauração estão presentes no interior da Igreja-Salão.

Interior
Interior da Igreja do Colégio das Jesuitas

A Igreja do Colégio dos Jesuítas chegou a ser escolhida pelo Marquês de Pombal para fixar na região de Portimão uma nova Sé algarvia (Diocese), projeto que não se concretizou.

Capela da Nossa Senhora do Amparo

Esta capela simples, de origem árabe, foi cristianizada e dedicada a Nossa Senhora do Amparo, também conhecida por Nossa Senhora do Leite, e aqui bem representada numa tela atrás do altar, amamentando o seu bebé. Aqui se dirigiam as grávidas para receberem a sua bênção. A Capela foi construída à semelhança dos antigos morabitos islâmicos, tendo sido restaurada há 30 anos.

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Capela da Nossa Senhora do Amparo

Na sua próxima visita ao Algarve, passe por Portimão, prove a gastronomia local, passeie pela Rua das Comércio, zona ribeirinha e descubra o património religioso da cidade. Vai de certo apreciar!

The rebirth of the Algarve Wines

Next time you are on holidays in the Algarve, instead of drinking, try tasting an Algarve wine – look at it, smell it and finally, taste it. You will probably be savoring a prized wine, appreciated by renowned oenophiles and your senses will love the experience! BIKE MY SIDE AND ENJOY THE RIDE | TRAVEL AND LEISURE BLOG PORTUGAL

Who has been on holidays in the Algarve probably knows that good quality wines are produced here and has probably, tasted some.

What is probably less known is that the major Algarve towns lend their names to the four main wines regions, the so called DOCs “Demarcated Regions”: Lagos, Portimão, Lagoa and Tavira – and that the Algarve wine tradition come from ancient times.

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Vinhos do Algarve official website

It is uncertain when the mythical Mediterranean drink – the wine – reached the Algarve.

The first news of contact with wine, revealed by archaeological remains, suggest for more than two thousand years ago, what is comprehensive, considering the nature of the soil and the climate of the south of Portugal.

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Algarve Vineyard

In fact, the importance of the vineyards in this region dates back to the Arab presence in the Algarve, a time when grapes were already grown and wines of good quality were exported.

Recently and for many years, due to several reasons, it seemed however that the Algarve wine would be a tradition to be lost. But, in recent years the trend has been reversed with the appearance of new producers who have given a new breath of fresh air to the Algarve wines.

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Quinta dos Vales – Estômbar

In 2017, the Algarve wines have won their place among the best in the main international and national competitions, often surpassing the most optimistic expectations, with the region obtaining, for example, in 14 international competitions (such as the International Wine Challenge 2017, Mundus Vini Spring Tasting 2017, Mundus Vini Summer Tasting 2017, AWC Vienna 2017, the Wine Masters Challenge 2017, just to name a few), 73 distinctions or medals (gold, silver or bronze) in white, red and rosé wines, from 17 Algarve producers.

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Quinta João Clara – Alcantarilha

The outlook for 2018 is very optimistic with a significant increase of the wine production in the 2017/18 wine year, in values above 50%, which makes the Algarve, the wine growing region that has grown the most in Portugal.

Vineyard on the west coast of Portugal
Casa Santos Lima – Present in 5 Portuguese regions including the Algarve, Tavira

Next time you are on holidays in the Algarve, instead of drinking, try tasting an Algarve wine – look at it, smell it and finally, taste it. You will probably be savoring a prized wine, appreciated by renowned oenophiles and your senses will love the experience!

squid and wine in algarve
This is also the Algarve – delicious food and award winning wines

Here you can see the list of Wines from Algarve awarded in International Competitions in 2017. And the winners are…

Bike my Side wine and tapas tour
Bike my Side prepared an experience where you can taste some awarded wines while touring

 

Aguardente de Medronho, the nectar of the gods of the Algarve

With the autumn and the first rains, it begins in the Algarve, the harvesting season of the arbutus, the fruit from which the famous Aguardente de Medronho is made.
BIKE MY SIDE AND ENJOY THE RIDE | TRAVEL AND LEISURE BLOG PORTUGAL

With the autumn and the first rains – which have been slow to fall this year – it begins in the Algarve, when the branches of the arbutus are filled with red and orange fruits, the harvesting season of the arbutus, the fruit from which the famous Aguardente de Medronho is made.

The arbutus is a spontaneous plant typical of the mountains of the Algarve and the south of the Mediterranean.

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Its fruits, yellow, orange and red, appear in mid-October and November and look like wild strawberries, although rounder and rough in texture.

Those of red colour already mature are sweet and edible and even quite healthy because they have an antioxidant action.

The use of the fruit of the arbutus for fermentation and distillation or for the confection of jams is a practice that dates back many centuries throughout the mountainous area of ​​the Algarve.

The distillation technique with stills originates in the Egyptian and Greek civilizations and usually takes place in mid-February.

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The fruits are carefully collected, fermented in wooden kettles, after which, after some time, they are distilled in copper stills.

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The quality of the fruit, its harvest, the care with the fermentation, the distillation and its time of duration, are some of the secrets of each producer. Secrets that are transmitted from generation to generation, so that the final product – the Aguardente de Medronho from the Algarve – is unique throughout the world and of unparalleled flavour.

A true gods’ nectar from the mountains of the Algarve, which you cannot fail to prove next time in the Algarve!

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If you want to know a little more about the stages of the arbutus – picking, fermentation, distillation and bottling, just look here.

8 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Lisbon

Lisbon is the city of Fado, with a mythical and romantic light that enchants who visits it, Here are 8 interesting facts that will certainly sharpen your interest in getting to know the capital of Portugal.
BIKE MY SIDE & ENJOY THE RIDE | TRAVEL AND LEISURE BLOG PORTUGAL

Lisbon, the city of Fado, with a mythical and romantic light that enchants who visits it, has so much to visit and to show beyond the obvious. There is so much to discover and here are just some interesting facts that will certainly sharpen your interest in getting to know the capital of Portugal. In the meantime, you can always make a good impression on your friends with these fun facts!

1 – Lisbon is known as the city of the seven hills (Castelo, Graça, Monte, Penha de França, São Pedro de Alcântara, Santa Catarina and Estrela). This designation goes back to the time of the Roman occupation, in which it is affirmed that Lisbon would have been founded under seven hills, like Rome. In each hill, we can find several belvederes with unique and magnificent views of the romantic capital of Portugal.

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2 – The Lisboetas are known as “alfacinhas” because in the time of the Arabs, the “alfaces” (lettuces) were cultivated abundantly in Lisbon. In fact, the word “alface” is of Arabic origin.

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3 – In the basement of Lisbon there are the enigmatic Roman Galleries of Baixa, unknown by the tourists and only open to the public for three days a year. The visits this year, will be held on 22, 23 and 24 of September and are already sold out!

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4 –  The statue of Christ the King on the left bank of the river Tejo is a copy of Christ the Redeemer of Rio de Janeiro, has a height of 28 meters and the monument in total reaches 100 meters in height.

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5 – The Belém area has two buildings classified by UNESCO as World Heritage: the Jeronimos Monastery and the Torre de Belém – formerly guarding the entrance of the boats on the river Tejo.

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Mosteiro dos jeronimos

6 – Lisbon it’s home to the oldest bookstore in the world. The Bertrand Bookshop has been around since 1732. It is located in Lisbon’s Bairro Alto neighborhood. The bookstore was destroyed in the 1755 earthquake that ruined the city, but was moved to the same location you can find it today and since 1773. And so it came to Guinness as the oldest bookshop in the world still in business.

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7 – Lisbon is older than Rome. Lisbon has been around four centuries longer than Rome and Portugal has maintained its original borders since 1139, making it the oldest country in Europe.

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8 –  The Vasco da Gama Bridge, inaugurated in 1998, is the longest bridge in Europe and one of the longest in the world, 17.3 km long, 12 km of which are on the waters of the Tejo river estuary.

ponte vasco da gama

Visiting Lisbon is in fashion and it conquers more and more tourists every year…It is easy to see why!

The wonders of Lagoa do Algarve

10 Wonders of Lagoa do Algarve will be in competition. Start your discovery here and pick your 5 favorites until August 31st. BIKE MY SIDE AND ENJOY THE RIDE | TRAVEL AND LEISURE BLOG | PORTUGAL

Lagoa is already well known for its beautiful beaches, crafts and wine. But there is much more to discover … Historical places, breathtaking natural landscapes, secular churches, intimate convents, among other sites and monuments, revealing the culture, history and traditions of this Algarve county, undoubtedly worthy of a visit.

Now, 10 of these wonders will be in competition to elect the last five “Wonders of the Patrimony of Lagoa”. The voting takes place until 31 August and the winners will be announced on 2 September.

Here is the list of wonders to contest so that you can visit and make your choice.

1. Natural Coastal Landscape – Algar de Benagil, Praia da Marinha, Algar Seco

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2. Promontory of Senhora da Rocha

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3. Nossa Senhora da Encarnação Church (Porches)

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4. S. José Convent (Lagoa)

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5. Nossa Senhora da Luz Church (Lagoa)

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6. São Tiago Church (Estômbar)

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7. Misericórdia Churches: Lagoa and Estômbar

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8. Sítio das Fontes Natural Park

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9. Santo António Chapel (Mexilhoeira da Carregação)

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10. Traditional urban hull of Ferragudo

Bike my Side Algarve in Ferragudo

You still have time to discover these wonders of the Algarve. Then, just leave your vote here. The invitation to participate in the selection of the “5 Wonders of the Municipality of Lagoa” is extended to all citizens, Portuguese and foreign residents in the county or not.

By the way, do not forget to share the photos of your experience in our Instagram and Facebook! #bikemyside_tours

Good rides through the lands of Lagoa do Algarve!