Visit Portugal - Cerdeira

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4 years ago

There were times when the road that led to Cerdeira, besides being steep, was on dirt. Today it is tarred and has open rails for deer to pass. The village, in the middle of the green, is a treat for the eyes, with its homogeneously restored schist houses and narrow, sloping streets. Until you get to the heart, you pass a convivial house, a chapel, a stream and a tank where you will soon feel like diving.

Everything is organized and clean, trying not to misrepresent the soul of the site, which seems to incorporate the pieces of art that appear here and there.

Its mission is summarized in a plaque: "Bringing to life a secular village and surrounding cultural landscape as a place of learning, intersection and creative inspiration between people of various cultures and backgrounds".

Throughout the year there are artistic residencies, workshops and courses. You can learn how to make chanfana, one of the typical dishes of Lousã, as creative travel writing. All this without distractions, because there is only internet in the common space that is Café da Videira. Purposely, of course. The lodges don't even have a television to stimulate conversation.

It is hard to believe that the Cerdeira has been in ruins, so carefully has it been rebuilt since, almost 30 years ago, Kerstin Thomas, her husband and a friendly couple began repossessing homes. More interesting, she thought, would be to continually create something that generated value. And that is what has been done.

In addition to being "a creative inspiration center for even non-professional artists," Cerdeira has a gallery that sells everything from ceramics and notebooks to "Explore the Center of Portugal" scripts, with Cerdeira Village stamp, and even a small library.

Other points of interest are the communal baking oven and the smoke-free ceramic oven, built under the direction of the Japanese master potter Masakazu Kusakabe. Without forgetting the Schist Plant, a brand dedicated to aromatic and spicy plants. The Cerdeira may be a promise of tranquility, but spice is not lacking.

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4 years ago