Exploring northern Portugal: Pontes de Lima
This is the continuation day of our sightseeing around the northern part of Portugal. We started our day in Vieira do Minho, where we were staying in a Tourism Rural Property. From there we drove to Valença do Minho and Tui.
From Tui we drove south to the beautiful town of Pontes de Lima.
Pontes de Lima is known as the oldest Portuguese town. The Roman troops were marching through Portugal and when they reached the River Lima they refused to cross. The area was so pretty that they decided this river had to be the legendary River Lethe, famous for wiping out the memories of anyone who crossed it.
The only way the captain found to persuade the soldiers that they wouldn’t forget everything and everyone they know was to cross the river and call each of them by name. That’s the reason for wooden models of Roman soldiers along the riverside.
Once across, the Romans built a bridge which was the only safe place to cross the Lima River during many centuries. The bridge was part of the Roman road, was rebuilt in the 14th century and it’s the major attraction of the town.
Pontes de Lima is also known as one of the most floral towns in Portugal. When we were there, in late May, there were flowers everywhere! The gardens were very well kept, attracted many birds, tourists and locals. A great place to spend the day!
Statues / sculptures
Wow! How many statues! I confess I had never seen a town with so many statues! Lots of them and they are really, really beautiful!
The traditional and beautiful Portuguese tiles (called “azulejos”) are present in many constructions and they are of extreme good taste and extremely beautiful. We spent a lot of time walking along the old town admiring the facades.
Pontes de Lima, as other Portuguese towns, has plenty of restaurants and little shops selling marvelous Portuguese sweeties. I am confident you will have a great time there!