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"...Explore the Castle at your leisure. Enter by way of the Porta da Vila (Town Gate), next to the Casa da Guarda (Guardhouse) and, with some care climb up the steps to the Torre do Rel?gio (Clock Tower). From this point on the walls you have a unique view of the ruins of the Pa?o das Alcaides which served as lodgings for various monarchs and where the Court used to meet..."
I'll soon update this info with my own text. Thank you.
Written Feb 9, 2004
This is a tradicional bar, with some tables on the outside. Good for staying all night long drinking and chating about things that, soon, will make no sense. Or maybe not ...
Afte some beers will end up seing like this.
Dress Code: No jackets required. Go as you are...
Written Aug 3, 2004
Every second weekend of May, Montemor-o-Novo pays homage to the wonder of bread and the delights of pastries in the annual Feira do Pão e Doçaria. Numerous stalls display and sell bread and sweets that the Alentejo region is known for, including sweet liquor, candied fruits, jams and jellies, and the famous plums from Elvas. Bakeries and pastry shops from Montemor-o-Nov and the neighboring towns are represented here, as well as individuals whose baking skills are topnotch.
Alentejo is well-known for very good cakes and confectionnery, many of them old recipes dating back to the medieval age and from the convents. These pastries are very rich, and use plenty of egg yolks (still a throwback to the convents' practice, where the eggwhites are used to make the wafers for mass). Most of them have honey, almonds, or gila (a type of squash, which is very very good as filling for pastries).
The fair also highlights other activities -- with plenty of singing, drink to go around, a concert, and other activities such as the usual contest for best pastry, and related workshops (in 2010, for construction of solar ovens, and slow food), and exhibitions. Entrance is free.
Montemor-o-Novo is halfway between Lisbon and Evora, and certainly worth visiting on the way to its more famous neighboring town.
Written May 9, 2010
The old train line running between Montemor-o-Novo and Torre da Gadanha which began in 1909 was inactived in 1988, and has been turned into a hiking trail in 2009. This route, which goes for 13 km, is now called Ecopista do Montado, a very easy walk, which is one advantage of being an old rail line -- it's flat and continuously straight! It's great for hiking, cycling, a little birdwatching, and just enjoying the very nice views along this route. A remarkable part of the route is an area which had the oldest and biggest cork oak trees I've ever seen - impressive! As one goes along, there is constant reminder that this used to be a rail line -- there are still the old stations, the railroad signs, among others.
This is a very good way to see the countryside of Alentejo at its best.
Equipment: Good walking shoes, drinking water
Updated May 25, 2010