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|Time||Raid of one day|
|Degree of difficulty||High|
Although long distance the difficulty is moderate. We start in São João do Monte which is located in the extreme west of Tondela municipality in the district of Viseu, the Beira Alta region. Located in the Caramulo mountains, the seat of the parish is distant from the county seat about 30 kilometers. The parish of S. João do Monte covers an area of 4814 hectares and is comprised for twenty-one settlements; Abóbada, Almijofa, Almofala, Belazeima, Braçal, Caselho, Castêlo, Daires, Dornas, Mançores, Matadegas, Paúl, Póvoa do Soeiro, Quinta de Menderes, Ramalhal, Souto, Teixo, Valdasna, Vale do Lobo and Valeiroso.
there was also another cluster, Soutinho, but ended up abandoned due to the migration of its inhabitants. Confines the Northeast with the municipality of Oliveira de Frades, the Northeast and West with the municipality of Águeda (Aveiro district), to the south by the parish of Mosteirinho that the parishes of marriage is part of the St. John's Hill and the South West with the parish Guardão.
In 1131, D. Afonso Henriques prepare a diploma, "Totius portugalerius province princeps ", where it appears the earliest reference to Saint John Mount. In this document the monarch gives the "villa " of S. João do Monte to Garino Master and his nuns. In Caramulo, the Monastery of Santa Cruz expanded into actions and territorial areas by land ownership in Paranho and Varzielas, perhaps because included in the Master Garino will, the landlord of S. João do Monte passed to the canons regents of Santa Cruz (Coimbra).
D. Afonso Henriques granted a "Couto Letter" to the monks of Santa Cruz in July 1146, covering all properties belonging to the monastery and benefited the people. In this letter, the residents of St. John of Monte enjoyed perks such as no one would have any power over them, except in cases of murder, rape or kidnapping, and theft proved by witnesses; the disagreements between men of Santa Cruz and strangers should be tried between neighbors: exemption from the name, except in the case of placing the king; partners in Santa Cruz that plow with oxen of Monastery on the farms of the same, would not pay tax.
The pastor Martin Alves, in the inquiries of 1258, confirmed that the patronage of Santa Cruz was John Mount, and that existed in the Monastery documents that surveyors did not know, so do not pay any tax to the king.
The Bishop of Viseu, in the year 1277 it was reported that in addition to the Church of St. John of Mount be long idle time, rightfully belonged to the Cathedral. With this news a conflict arose between the Cathedral and the Monastery, which ended with the annexation of this first, by ecclesiastical document of the village and Church of St. John on the Mount. At this point, the canons developed a false "Couto Letter" of S. João do Monte and dated 1142 and presented it to the Prior D. João and the Monastery of Santa Cruz. Despite its falsity, this document is very valuable to detail that had the demarcation of Dornoch. It contained names of places in almost no different from the current, corresponding to the limits of Dornoch to the current parish of S. João do Monte and Mosteirinho.
The May 6, 1514, was granted a charter to the municipality of São João do Monte, but it had not on any quote to the titles previously received. However, it is noted that under the Lordship of Santa Cruz, the county developed with municipal organization, judiciary, property arrangements and other situations related to land owned by ecclesiastical corporations. With the extinction of the religious orders, the county emerged in 1855 becoming a district of Viseu county.
In 1997, at the suggestion of the then deputy in the Assembly of the Republic and current Mayor of Viseu, Dr. Marta Carlos, São João do Monte back to regain the title of Villa
Parish of Arca comes next.
Paranho the Arca is located at the southern end of the Oliveira de Frades municipality, constituting with Varzielas a nucleus apart, in relation to the whole territory Oliveirense.
This parish is limited to the southwest by the River Agueda, which irrigates on its right edge of many fields Paranho.
The climate is of high temperatures in the summer, the dense forest vegetation somehow eases.
The harsh winters, the people resist with traditional hood of woolen cloth, which the men themselves, especially the older ones, until recently were not ashamed to use drawn to the neck, by the same way of student case.
The soil has some fertility. Paranho fields are well known, whose wealth in corn has helped the municipal barn to kill the hunger to the people of other parishes in the difficult times of the 2nd World War.
Inside the Parish of Covelo the village, in a mountain race, is like a oasis of greenery. Equipped with a micro-climate authentic, there is created fruit, wine, green cornfields.
The well-known Carvalhedo in Gandara, near the Arca's tapir, botanical reserve with extraordinary ecological and tourist value, authentic water fountain, is a wonderful park...
...The tiny Ark, which gave name to the parish, is now almost frozen in time. It comes down thus to two or three old houses that are now as historical documents, as well as one or two new buildings next to the forest road.
According to oral tradition, here were transit station and the old steps on their way to the lands of Águeda and the Coast.
Ark may well boast of having next to you one of the ex-libris of the megalithic culture of the county and the entire mountain range of Caramulo: the so widespread tapir or dolmen's Ark. Presents comprising 3 blocks in approximately vertical position (struts) with some other broken already on which rests a large slab (or table cover) to cover the inner space. Measures of height about 4.5 meters and the table 4,20x3,20m.
Like other dolmenic buildings, must have had an access corridor and a circular mound of earth and gravel that served as protection, which gives the name of the mound or barrow.
About the tapir's Ark (National Monument by decree of 16.06.1910), says Dr. Amorim Girão:
"the intention is to the enumeration of these monuments, the main place belongs to the tapir or dolmen situated not far from the parish church of the Holy Spirit's Ark, already is because of all of them presenting externally larger, because now, the only generally known, has served to validate how many news or references has been written about the high antiquity dating back human settlements in this region...
...There have been several references to this important megalithic monument, known and designated by the Charter Corográfica Ark Stone name and qualifying a few villages, as Ark, Paranho's Ark, Covelo's Ark.
Although the dimensions are not much higher than those of many other neighbors, the fact to have been destroyed mound, which was undoubtedly, which faces the cap or hat a height of 4.5 meters above the ground, allowing horseback riding underneath and preventing up to it without the aid of a ladder, gives it the first place among the megaliths in the region..."
One of the legends created around this tapir:
The tapir's Ark was built by a Moorish and the slab that is horizontally on top of that are the pillars erected there by that Moorish, bringing it to the head, spinning on a spinning wheel and a son in her arms. Said Moorish appears every year on the morning of St. John the spinning one mowing on the tapir and surrounded by gold objects; ro the mortal that passes there first is asked of which prefer: if the eyes of the Moorish or the golden objects that there has. As all have said that like most of the gold objects, they have always turned to ashes because of the magical powers of Moorish.
They can only get the gold objects when they are more pleased by the Moorish eyes than the gold.
NOTE: Text from Monografia de Oliveira de Frades - Edição da Câmara Municipal – 1991
Then enter the parish of Macieira de Alcôba.
Since Urgueira we climb to Mount Junqueiro where we can visit the Community oven Urgueira and its Geocaching in http://coord.info/GC1G9NN, and know its fantastic history of Urgueira and its rituals already occupies a unique and important place in the history of Portuguese folklore, being exemplary in the way traditional culture serves the current community. It seems that the ancestors left a cultural heritage to serve economic and social solution to come. The Serranos Associação Etnográfica channeled this heritage, but the whole community Urgueira and Maceira Alcoba is together this design. When Manuel Cego from Urgueira, around 1880, built a very strange and unusual oven on the hill Junqueiro, apid the promise to the divinity which should help to survive a terrible sea storm and at the same time assured reputation of Urgueira, his native village, beyond the following centuries. A generation later, the son of Manuel Cego, Manuel Duarte dos Reis of his grace, completed the work, sending build at its own expense and with due connivance of his wife Maria Trindade, a chapel at the top opposite the deck oven that extends in that hill of Junqueiro. Here, extends a generous and gentle plane, under the cool shade of native oaks, as if the wild nature of the mountain offered a blanket spread to the knapsack and the rest while admiring the wide landscape and distant. THE OVEN MIRACLE In the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century, the miracle of Urgueira attracted pilgrims by the thousands in the third or fourth Sunday in August. The news was spreading beyond the rocky places Caramulo, leading the fantastic case the man who came into the furnace, fully function and hot three days of fire access, baking a huge cake 100 kg of flour. Even the bread loaf had mystery, for they never caught mold and the protection of thunderstorms was guaranteed to its owner. The intense pilgrimage to Urgueira filled the paths of the hills and gave the pilgrims the importance of having seen and witnessed this miraculous feat and possession of a codeine not caught mold and granted other favors. The memory of older shows that, when the experiment was attempted by others, than the mysterious man who came from the sides of Coimbra or Tomar and "going in the oven with a carnation in his mouth, swept the oven helped her put bread "according to the report of Adolfo Portela, tragedy struck the scorched ears, tucked in cold water mine, who gave pneumonia and death punished.
Finally we arrive to Macieira de Alcoba through PR4,
Coordinates: 40° 37.278 N 8° 16.527 W
Among the schist and granite, in the Serra do Caramulo, is the parish of Macieira de Alcôba, Águeda municipality, originally called Montedalcobar.
This is a region marked by the history, customs and traditions. Among them, the former girls' woolen hood or burel dark or black, the skirt and the slipper, not forgetting the bread distribution in granite table after the funeral.
Occupying a preliminary before câmbrio shale contact area with granite, the town traditionally used these rocks as materials for their constructions. Herself Parish Church is a reconstruction essentially granite, region material. Inside, one can find several pieces with origins in earlier centuries, as the Calvary with Christ and St. John in limestone plate, sculpture of the Virgin with the boy also in limestone and granite pulpit.
difficult to access in not too distant times, Apple Tree of Alcoba also has, in the community, their ancient traditions, the linguistic aspects and the ethnographic peculiarities that distinguish these mountain village in the region in which it operates.
Alongside the characteristics of society and the communal way of life itself that characterized this village is part of an environment of natural beauty and breathtaking scenery with its natural springs and small Corgas that attract visitors to this lovely place.
This is a multi-cache which seeks to guide those who seek a small tour of the village paths. Upon reaching the entrance to the village, we suggest that you park your car near the church, so you can cover the tracks of the multi-cache walk.
Each point of the cache is learned about the three main characteristics of the communal way of life:. Water, the sun and the bread
1 point cache is a small card (credit card size) with the following coordinates. The 2nd place will take you to the place where the sun reigns, and the 3rd point (and last) implies a stop to visit the natural pool of Apple, a place of rare beauty, before you reach the treasure.
this cache is still part of a "Route of the Mills " in Agueda, which means that while individual and own geographical coordinates unrelated to others, this cache is related to the mills, having a similar environmental context.
The water mill is characteristic of Aveiro municipality, including the mountainous areas of the region. It is a distinctive landmark in the countryside, showing both the wisdom and popular technique in the use of endogenous potential of their surroundings
Points of interest:.
Still enjoy your passage through the village of Macieira de Alcoba to taste the local cuisine on site restaurant located in the old primary school. There's another cache (GC1G2K9), at the top of the village, Chapel of the board of Macieira, from where you can admire the magnificent view.
You may even know the neighboring village of Carvalho(where there is another cache) as well as the mountainous area that extends beyond the borders of Agueda and that will take you to the nearby county (Viseu) and the Serra do Caramulo.
in the end returns to Fonte Frade through municipal road connecting the Matadegas and Belazeima.