Travel: Leiria

Once again, woke up late, this is becoming a pretty nasty habit since I, as a traveler, obviously want to jam-pack my days with the culture and heritage of the region. ūüė¶ Nonetheless, it was relaxing to take a leisurely day to explore a nearby town, hike up to a castle, and just breathe in the atmosphere of Portugal as I reach my final days in this nation.

We didn’t really get a good¬†head-start¬†until around 3 PM this afternoon, despite the fact that I woke up earlier than I have any other day this week (excluding the day trip to Sintra since travel time was a much larger consideration). My friend has just as much affection for sleep as I do. Zzzzzzzzz!! However, my aunt would argue the following “You are on vacation. You aren’t allowed to wear a watch, you are just supposed to relax and care about nothing.” This statute would be much easier to follow if we¬†tourists¬†did not have to conform our schedules around attraction hours.

We started off by stopping at the “Funmarcia” an interesting twist on the classic Candy Store.You select your pill¬†container¬† stock it with an assortment of candy, and are written a prescription for it!

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‘Medicines’ can range from being antidotes to lovesick woes, stimulators to improve your sense of humor, or Activators to increase your memory (all in jest of course). It was pretty comic to see all the prescription tag-lines the franchise had come up with; definitely not an innovation yet seen in the states. I almost want to open up a franchise myself! Of course, parents would hate how excited their children get over it. The company is trying to transition to include english prescriptions at this moment.

 

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All this candy provided energy for our short, but steep hike up from old Leira to the Leiria Castle. ¬†It’s location atop the mountain was strategic since it provided military support to the region.

 

 

 

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The town itself was founded by D. Afonso Henriques circa 1135. It was a prosperous economical trade center which marketws major products such as olive oil, wheat, wine and timber, as well as ore, and handicrafts. It is believed that Leiria is the first known Portuguese town to produce paper (1411).

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Despite its origins, which included both Moorish and Jewish districts in the town around the year 1211, it was ultimately chosen by Pope Paul III as headquarters for the Bishop in 1547. The city itself holds a large medley of monuments from the 16th century, the landscape served as a backdrop to a large array of convents.

View from Top

View from Top

Medieval Early Gothic

Medieval Early Gothic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The original plan was to drive to the gorgeous beach town of Nazare, but Portugal’s weather has been uncooperative as of late, and the gloomy sky ended up not boding well for us.

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