Vila Real is located about 60 kilometers east of Porto. There are no direct trains linking Porto to Vila Real, but bus or car trips can easily be made, since the two cities are directly connected by the so-called Auto-Estrada Porto-Amarante and its extension, Estrada IP4.

The most celebrated tourist sight in Vila Real refers to the splendid Mateus Palace. Built in 1745, the palace is considered one of the finest expressions of the Baroque style in Europe. Its backdrop consists of an elegant garden, and the inside of the edifice matches its outer splendor, being replete with furnishings which call forth the taste for beauty and grandness of the old aristocracy. One of the architects who worked at designing the palace was Nicolau Nasoni, the Italian architect which influenced most the architectural landscape of Porto itself, designing structures like the famed Clerigos Tower.

Thus, the Mateus Palace might overshadow the rest of the attractions, but one can not simply miss out the plethora of further sights, such as the Archaeology and Numismatic Museum, the Vila Velha Museum, the Ethnographic Museum, as well as sights like the Diogo Cao House, the Carvalho Araujo House and the Brocas House. Also of note are the Chapel of Sao Bras and the Chapel of the Holy Spirit, the church of Sao Pedro and the Church of Sao Domingos, Capela Nova and the Necropolis of Sao Mihuel da Pena. The Serra de Alvao Nature Park, widely known as an excellent paragliding site, further enhances the list of attractions.

Vila Real
Vila Real, Portugal
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