A day in the flatlands

This tour, from Santarém leads you to discover the flatland of Ribatejo, a land of horses, bulls and "campinos", the local cowboys, main characters of the local history and cultural tradition.

The D. Luís metal bridge (1881) takes you from Santarem to the left bank of the Tagus, among vineyards, interrupted by old manors and farms, wineries and picturesque villages like Almeirim or Alpiarça. A courtiers' favourite resort, the venue for Gil Vicente's dramas and for courts meetings, birthplace for princes and also where a king died, this was once the glamourous Almeirim. Nowadays, Almeirim stands for its quality wines - Quinta da Alorna - and for its gastronomy. Continuing the journey, in Alpiarça visit the House Museum dos Patudos, the residence of José Relvas, one of the most significant figures of the First Republic. Bibliophile and scholar, a lover of history, he was as well a minister, diplomat, violinist and wine producer. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he commissioned to Architect Raul Lino this 'Portuguese' house. A land of great traditions of bullfighting, Chamusca is marked by its large bullring, neo-Moorish (1919) and by some fine examples of Art Nouveau, as the curious Agricultural Club. Do not miss the Municipal Museum, and its various nuclei. The Regional Centre of Crafts combines furniture, pottery, basketry, leather, prints, tin, paint, wrought iron works and also wines of this region. Enjoy the vastness of the flatlands from the viewpoint of Senhor do Bonfim. Cross again the Tagus by the Chamusca metal bridge (1905), to Golegã. The Parish Church has a beautiful Manueline gate, and the Municipal Museum owns a large collection of sculptures by Martins Correia. On leaving the village, and returning to Santarém by the EN 365, half concealed by the trees of the garden, the House-Museum Carlos Relvas is a unique building in the world, built from scratch as a photography studio. Continue along the picturesque road via Azinhaga (access to Paul do Boquilobo), Pombalinho, Reguengo do Alviela and Vale de Figueira.

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