Viana do Castelo, a gem nestled in the northern embrace of Portugal, unfolds as one of the most captivating cities. Its profound connection to the sea echoes through the annals of Portuguese discoveries, resonating in the vast azure canvas visible from the summit of Mount Santa Luzia. Explore the secrets that lie beneath the tiled roofs, allowing the city to cast its spell, beckoning travelers to wander through time and tide.
VIANA'S ARCHITECTURAL JOURNEY
In Viana do Castelo, where time pirouettes gracefully through the ages, the architectural tale unfolds like a mesmerizing tapestry woven with threads of history. Picture the Santa Luzia Sanctuary, a medieval sentinel atop the hill, whispering secrets of centuries past as it gazes upon the ever-changing landscape.
' A street with music, manors and palaces', ©Evasões
It is challenging to resist the enchantment woven by the city of Viana do Castelo, where the clear light casts geometric shadows among majestic historical buildings. Here, the prevailing styles of Manueline, Baroque, revivalist, and Art Deco create a symphony of architectural grace. The streets and alleys of the historical center, one of the nation's most beautifully preserved, captivate our gaze—be it by the adorned facades or the precious azulejo panels, a veritable compendium of Portugal's architectural history.
And behold, the Gil Eannes Ship, an iconic vessel turned floating museum, anchors the narrative with tales of maritime prowess. It stands as a poetic reminder of Viana's deep connection to the sea, each weathered plank narrating stories of daring voyages and seafaring dreams.
Gil Eannes, ©MunicípiodeVianaCastelo
In the present, Viana do Castelo remains intimately tied to the sea. Its economy echoes in the shipyards, but primarily in sectors reliant on tourism, commerce, and services, with a distinctive nod to artisanal industries. This coastal city, nestled in the North, unfolds its allure through the harmonious blend of sea, river, and mountain, rendering it irresistibly appealing to visitors. Furthermore, it stands tall as a monumental city, with the historical center exuding a charm that transcends time.
EXPLORING FLAVOURFUL TRADITIONS
The gastronomy of the city invites a journey through flavors deeply rooted in tradition. Picture the marketplaces, bustling with stalls offering fresh seafood caught along the Atlantic coast. From the briny embrace of bacalhau (salted cod) to the comforting warmth of caldo verde (green soup), the city's culinary repertoire echoes the maritime essence.
Bola de Carne / Caldo Verde, ©24Kitchen
Wander into local eateries, where the aroma of "aranhas" (crab and shrimp croquettes) wafts through the air, tantalizing taste buds. Savor the iconic "bola de carne," a savory meat pie, and indulge in the simplicity of "pão de ló," a light sponge cake, for a sweet conclusion.
In Viana the food is a voyage through the flavors of the sea, the heartiness of the land, and the sweetness of tradition. Each dish narrates a story, connecting the present to a culinary heritage that defines the city's unique palate.
ROMARIA DA SENHORA D'AGONIA — A SYMPHONY OF CELEBRATIONS
Viana do Castelo is a picturesque city located in the northern part of Portugal, and it is known for its rich cultural heritage and traditional festivities. One of the most prominent and colorful celebrations in Viana do Castelo is the Romaria, which refers to religious festivals or pilgrimages. The city hosts several romarias throughout the year, with the most famous one being the 'Romaria da Senhora d'Agonia'.
Since 1772, the "Queen of Pilgrimages" has woven a kaleidoscopic cloak around the city during the fleeting days of August. Born from a mass honoring the patron saint of sailors, it has grown into a tourism gem, drawing visitors with its enchantment. This colossal celebration, adorned with processions, parades, and pageantry, stands as one of the nation's grandest.
In the dazzling procession, stretching over two kilometers for two effervescent hours, floats glide before the spectators. Notably, the "Galleon" stands as a faithful companion, gracing the parade for over half a century, a silent witness to the perpetuated splendor of tradition.
In the "Mordomia" parade, Viana's daughters, draped in the garb of their lands, grace the streets with the gleam of golden adornments. Did you know the colors of their attire whisper tales? Blue caresses the maidens of the sea, green embraces those in fields or mountains, while red celebrates the hues of Minho. Amidst this graceful march, the young carry flower arrangements and candles, with legend suggesting that if the flame falters, the maiden is not "fit for marriage."
A TRIBUTE OF (DE)LIGHT — INSPIRED BY VIANA
Viana Pendant Light, ©SarahNeale
In celebration of the opulence that is Viana, Luz Editions chooses to pay homage to this rich land with a distinctly Portuguese flair—a lamp infused with the authentic aroma and elegance of Viana's traditions. A very special revisiting, cloaked in a gentle finesse, adorned with sumptuous folds, beautiful curves, and vibrant hues. The quality, akin to the city itself, is nothing short of marvelous. Discover the Light that brings Viana into your home—an exquisite moment, sweet and refined, capturing the essence of this enchanting city in every delicate glow.
Viana Pendant Lights, ©SarahNeale
Ref. Viana Cool, Olhar Viana de Castelo, Portugal B'side, Turistas à Lupa, Lendas e Tradições, Vaga Mundos