The town lying at the mouth of the River Lima has a history linked with the sea. In the 15th Century it gained importance as the port from which explorers set sail. From here sailed Jo?o Velho who was to chart the Congo, and Jo?o ?lvares Fagundes who charted the rich fishing grounds off Newfoundland. An enterprising English community settled here prior to 1580 for the export of local wine. The Spanish invasion of that year drove them further south but by 1700 they had re-established their flourishing business in the City only to move back to Porto due to the growth in the Port wine trade.
Almost at the end of the Avenida da Praia Norte you can find the higher School of Technology and Management of the Polytechnic Institute of Viana do Castelo on the right, surrounded by wide green spaces. Continuing the trail you reach Praia Norte, with its large pedestrian’s areas, cafés and terraces, which invite us to stop and watch the sea and the beach. As we continue, we keep to the beach as far as the Fortim da Areosa (Areosa Fort).
Viana do Castelo
Viana do Castelo is a nice city just at some 75 kms. away from Porto, so that, it's a perfect destination for a day trip.
I'd say that all the important sights, except Templo de Santa Luzia, are in the city centre, unless stated.
Monumento a Viana do Castelo, between the Castelo Santiago da Barra and Lima river.
Branco's new Viana do Castelo Page
Viana do Castelo is a town founded 1258, but it also had a pre-roman occupation before the city foundation. The evidence of that occupation is in the ruins of a city at the top of Santa Luzia hill.
In the modern town, which has grown near the river Lima, you will find old streets.
Look for the Cathedral (15 th century) and the surrounding streets, look for the Misericórdia (16 th century) and the Old Town Hall right in the main old square. And obviously, dont miss the neo-Byzantine Church of Santa Luzia, located on top of the Santa Luzia hill and with an astonishing view of Viana do Castelo, the river estuary and the sea.