Marinha Grande: Travel and tourism

São Pedro de Moel
São Pedro de Moel
Vast areas of pine forest cover the coastal plain and surround the town of Marinha Grande, widely known for its glass industries, a traditional activity in which generations have worked since the 18th century.

The former Stephens Brothers Glass Factory is one of the sites bearing witness to the ancient industry, having been founded in 1769 by William Stephens with the support of the Portuguese prime-minister, the Marquis of Pombal. It now lodges the interesting Glass Museum.

However, between the town of Marinha Grande and the sea, it is the «green and whispering cathedral», as the local poet Afonso Lopes Vieira described the pinewoods planted by King Dinis in the 13th century, that dominates the landscape.

The forest extends northwards to frame several beaches and delicate stretches of sand, namely at the small resort of São Pedro de Muel, with its rugged coastline and wonderful beach, and continues until Praia da Vieira, with an impressive lighthouse facing the ocean.

Regional food offers excellent fresh fish and seafood on the coastal areas, namely specialities such as caldeirada (a rich stew of several kinds of fish) and shellfish rice.

Local handicrafts naturally include diversified glass objects, ranging from common utensils to more artistic creations.
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Hotel Mar & Sol Hotel Mar & Sol
São Pedro de Moel, Marinha Grande
$$$ (50 to 100 euros)

Two steps from the beach, this beautifully refurbished hotel is the ideal retreat for those in search of a peaceful retreat near Fátima.

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