Quintessential Portuguese

What do you think of when you think of Portugal – Cristiano Ronaldo, fado, pastel de nata, Lisbon, fresh fish, lovely people, port, madeira, piri piri, cork, stunning beaches or azulejos? The latter for me is certainly something which I now consider quintessential Portuguese. I cannot resist them even when we are on a fast train, hence these rather poor photographs of when we whizzed through Ovar.


And when we arrived in Averio I found more azulejos to appreciate. Even their dilapidated condition doesn’t put me off!


I just love this approach to covering private and public buildings with tile panels, particularly because so many reflect aspects of local life as well as Portugal’s history. It is for me quintessential Portuguese, which probably explains why so many of my posts over the past couple of years have been about azulejos. But what do you think? I would love to know what first comes to mind for you when you think of Portugal, so do leave a comment below.


But before you do I am sure there are a few of you out there who would love to know more about these azulejos! I’ve learnt that the ones in Averio are the creation of the factory Fábrica da Fonte Nova and were created around 1916. Just a year after Jorge Colaco’s incredible creation in Porto.  I’ve not yet found out anything about the ones at Ovar’s railway station, however I have discovered that Ovar has even more azulejos than Porto. One website describes it as a true open-air tile museum so somewhere clearly I need to visit!

Aveiro's original railway station

PS Don’t forget to share your quintessential Portuguese!

Author: BeckyB

It had been a good life walking, cooking, photographing, volunteering, blogging, and best of all spending time with MrB, family, & friends. Sadly it no longer is. Suddenly and unexpectedly I have become a widow.

23 thoughts

  1. When I think Portugal, it is: Beautiful nature and friendly people. Now my first two trips to Portugal this year has been cancelled due to the virus, I hope I can go in september. I miss it.

  2. Ovar isn’t on my radar. Well, it wasn’t, but apparently Andrew Petcher has beaten us to it and is off there soon. Caramba! 🙁

    1. oh no don’t tell me that i have a coop within walking distance!!!! Hopefully they are LOTS more expensive otherwise I will be rolling down there soon 😉

  3. Quick associations for me would be:
    Sandy beaches
    Cobbles and patterns
    pastel de nata
    cork trees
    large squares/placa
    Manueline architecture
    AND why don’t I live there?????

    1. Ooh I’d forgotten tbe cobbles and how on earth did I miss the manueline architecture?!!!! With you on that last point 😀

  4. We love Azulejos and living in Portugal we are treated to them all of the time on our travels, did you also know that there is an organisation that is petitioning to have them protected by law? I really hope they manage it! P.S Lovely article. 🙂

    1. No I didn’t . . oh I so hope they are protected and that money also comes to help them maintain them.
      PS and thank you so much 😀

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