The renovated Varanda dos Carqueijais Viewpoint is a mandatory stop for anyone on their way to Serra da Estrela. Don’t miss it.
O Balcony of Carqueijais Viewpoint it seems to float over the valley like a cloud. The new structure created to revitalize the area, but also to mark the 150 years of Covilhã as a city, allows you to see the flat surface of Cova da Beira and, at the bottom of the slope, the city of Covilhã that extends to the beginning of the elevation of the Serra da Estrela.
The views from the site were already incredible, but a stone wall limited the site. This suspended pedestrian structure is even more beautiful and extraordinary, as it seems to enter the landscape, providing a feeling of contact with nature, almost as if we have always belonged to it.
Visiting the place is, therefore, a true escape from problems, routine, everything that is not good for us, to recover energies in this close contact with the valley and the mountains.
Find out more about the suspended viewpoint
The Varanda dos Carqueijais Viewpoint transformed “an emblematic place that did not leave anyone indifferent” and which was already an obligatory stop for those who went up to the Serra da Estrelain a unique point of interest, “with a happy architecture that enters the valley”, says Vítor Pereira, mayor of Covilhã.
The suspended structure is installed on a plot of about 800 square meters with high security conditions, not least because the place is an obligatory stop for many visitors. With this innovative alteration, the affluence is expected to be even more intense.
This natural balcony allows you to enjoy the space and the surrounding landscape in a safe way. Especially because, in addition to the new suspended viewpoint, with a glass floor for a greater range of observation, an amphitheater was also created that follows the natural morphology of the terrain, as well as a level platform where you can remain and absorb everything that the eyes can see. testify.
Associated with this space there is also a route of 7 walking routeswhich cover a total of about 100 km, perfect for challenging the most adventurous spirits and who can’t do without a walk in the open air.
The viewpoint, and the routes, represent an investment of 270,000 euros and it is just the first of a set of four viewpoints that the City Council of Covilhã planned to build. The others, in Altos dos Livros, Covão and Nave de Santo António, already have an open tender to start construction.
Points of interest in Covilhã
When visiting the Varanda dos Carqueijais Viewpoint, take the opportunity to get to know the city that houses it. Covilhã, located in the heart of Serra da Estrela, is the perfect example of a mountain town, a rare setting in Portuguese urban planning, which makes it a very special destination.
It is true that the mountain is thus the main attribute of the city, since it is located in the heart of the city. Serra da Estrela between the Carpinteira and Goldra rivers – historically so important for the wool industry, which still marks the region today, albeit in a less imposing way.
The university, restructured in the contemporary era, is also another important hub for boosting the local economy, culture and life.
Ribeira da Carpinteira
As for the more cultural points, then, without a doubt, the bridge over the Ribeira da Carpinteira is a place to be known. It’s one of the biggest pedestrian bridges in Portugal, 52 meters high – the equivalent of a 17-storey building, 220 meters long and 4.40 meters wide. The bridge is used for walking and cycling and is located over the Carpinteira valley and the granite hills of the river flow, where it is still possible to observe the empty factory facades and the granite walls of the wool drying structures.
With the aim of facilitating pedestrian access to the old town, the Santo André funicular was built, whose visit saves you from climbing 162 steps and offers you another perspective on the breathtaking landscape that Covilhã has to offer. to offer.
Jewry and spas
Naturally, a visit to this city cannot do without the old Jewish Quarter, with its narrow streets and Manueline windows, the Chapel of São Martinho, the Chapel of Santa Cruz and the Wool Museum.
And even to relax there you will find an excellent option: the Unhais da Serra Spaintegrated into a hotel unit, are considered the first mountain spa in Portugal.
And with so much touring, of course hunger starts to tighten. Therefore, know that cheesesham and corn bread are frequent at the table, accompanied by good wines from the region.