Rabelo Boats Miniatures

Rabelo Boats Miniatures
4150- PORTO
County :Porto
Parish:Foz do Douro

The Rabelo Boat is one of the most typical Portuguese vessels. With a flat bottom and a length between 19 and 23 meters, it was used for over 700 years to transport barrels of Port wine up the river Douro to the cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia. Some of these boats could carry about 100 barrels. Its origins are very old, and they are mentioned in documents from the time of formation of the nationality. The boats were built by the sailors themselves on the banks of the Douro, which called them names that reflect the people's religiosity and the prayer for heavenly protection: names such as "God bless me" or "Our Lady of the Good Journey". The last trip made by a rabelo boat, carrying pipes of wine until Gaia, occurred in 1956. However, we can still find these boats moored on the banks of the Douro and every year on the Day of Saint John, takes place the famous rabelo boat race from Foz to Ribeira. There are many artisans who manufacture miniatures of these boats as souvenirs for tourists.


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