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Travel Guide to Arcos de Valdevez

General Information About Arcos de Valdevez


Arcos de Valdevez is a municipality located in the district of Viana do Castelo with about 22000 inhabitants (2011). It has an area of 450 km² and has 36 parishes, mostly rural.

The municipality is bordered by Monção to the north, Melgaço to the northeast, Spain to the east, Ponte da Barca to the south, Ponte de Lima to the west and southwest and Paredes de Coura to the west.


Arcos de Valdevez is a very rich territory in terms of fauna and flora. With a territory formed mainly by mountains and valleys and the presence of a river, the river Vez, which rises and flows into the county, this municipality is marked by its natural landscape. Part of the municipality is in Peneda-Gerês National Park, considered World Biosphere Reserve by UNECO, a protected area with a great diversity of ecosystems.

There are also many natural sites of great beauty, such as the river beaches, the hiking trail of Vez - which stands out the Sistelo walkways - and many other sites.


As for the gastronomy of the region, it is worth mentioning the meat cachena (a species of bovine only existing in the PNPG, small due to the wild conditions of the life in mountain) with rice bean “terrestre”. There are still other dishes to highlight such as “cabrito”, “cozido”, “rojões”, “pica no chão” and cod to the farmer.

In the sweets, the “rebuçado dos Arcos” and the “charutos dos Arcos” stand out.


The main festivities of the municipality of Arcos de Valdevez are:

Festivities of the Municipality - beginning of August; Festivity of Nossa Senhora da Lapa where its intended to show and to live the tradition and culture of Arcos de Valdevez, through gastronomy, “rusgas”, popular music, religious traditions, among other activities; Here we can highlight the ethnographic procession, the songs to the challenge and the river parade with floats.

Nossa Senhora do Castelo - 40 days after Easter; This religious festivity starts with the descent of Nª Sra from her usual place - the castle - to the village of Arcos de Valdevez, where she will stay in the two main churches of the village for a few days. In these days it is possible to participate in some religious events in honour of Mrs. do Castelo. Finally, she returns to the castle hill on a pilgrimage marked by the flower carpets in the streets of the village.

São João - June 23 and 24; Festival of the Popular Saints in the Valeta neighbourhood; Party marked by popular marches and popular music.

S. Bento de Ermelo - July 11; Pilgrimage in honour of the patron saint of the county; It is a tradition for pilgrims to arrive at the "sanctuary before sunrise and inside the church to bless wearing the hat of the image of St. Benedict "(wikipedia).

Senhora das Boas Novas – March; pilgrimage in the parish of Oliveira.

Transport in Arcos de Valdevez

About Local transports


  • Viana do Castelo: A27 and IC28 (approx. 46km)
  • Braga: N101 (approx. 43km) or A3 and IC28 (approx. 57km)
  • Porto Airport (Maia): A3 (approx. 98km) or A28, A27 and IC28 (approx. 108 km)
  • Porto: A3 and IC28 (approx. 102 km)
  • Vigo: AP-9, A3 and IC28 (approx. 88km)
  • Lisboa: A1, A3 and IC 28 (approx. 400km)

Public Transport

  • Expresses from Lisboa/Porto (RENEX)
Tel.: 707 22 33 44 (Information)  
  • Buses Braga (Salvador)
Tel.: 258 521 504, Email:,  
  • Buses/Expresses Viana do Castelo
(Barquense – Express) Tel.: 258 454 303 E-mail:  
  • (AV CURA – Express and bus)
Tel. (+351) 258 806 830 E-mail:


  • Address: Avenida Drº António Caldas
  • 4970-592 Arcos de Valdevez
  • Tel.: 258 510 090
  • Portal:


  • Health Center of Arcos de Valdevez
  • Address: Rua Eng.º Adelino Amaro da Costa 4974-458
  • Tel.: 258 520 140
  • Fax: 258 520 146

 Emergency number


Arcos de Valdevez Culture and History


This region is marked by a very early human occupation due to its natural characteristics - the existence of a river and its tributaries, as well as of mountain and plain areas. This occupation left marks in the territory with the several archaeological vestiges that today we can visit.

Over the centuries its location is not forgotten, making this territory a strategic place of military and social organization. The castle of Santa Cruz, along with the medieval bridge of the river Vez, were extremely important elements in the establishment of population in this territory. Thus, by mid-1250 a dynamic and sustainable urban pole was already forming. The continuous growth and importance of Arcos de Valdevez leads D. Manuel I to give a charter to the village in 1515.

The municipality boundaries, as they are drawn today, were defined with the liberal reform of


Arcos de Valdevez has a vast cultural heritage. The various chapels, churches and monasteries (such as the Mother Church, Holy Spirit Church, Monastery of Ermelo ...) and the Paço de Giela stand out in the built heritage. At the archaeological level there are several mamoas and tapirs throughout the territory. Also the “brandas” are part of the culture of this region, being a type of settlement very specific of the localities of mountain.

What to visit

The village of Arcos de Valdevez is marked by the existence of several churches with different characteristics. These are:


Mother Church

Built at the behest of Dom Pedro II, on the foundations of a pre-existing building, at the end of the eighteenth century. It is characterized by a very rich interior.

Espírito Santo Church

It is due to the Brotherhood of the Holy Spirit the construction of this church in the middle of the XVII century, having been the exterior refurbished already in the XIX century. The interior stands out for the examples of carving and painting.


Church of Misericordia

Construction promoted by the Brotherhood of Misericórdia, it is totally rebuilt in 1710. The Church is decorated in the Baroque style, presenting, however, some neoclassical elements. Frontal to the church there is a cruise of the XVIII century.

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Casa da Caroline

Casa da Caroline Freixo de Espada a Cinta Portugal

0 reviews

Caroline House has a personalized decoration, but trying to maintain originality and local tradition. It is a Douro typical house. The Caroline House has a small green space, ideal for barbecues and outdoor meals.

avg/night65.00€ SELECT
Eido do Carvalhoso

Eido do Carvalhoso Arcos de Valdevaz Portugal

0 reviews

Eido do Carvalhoso is a country house, located 12 km from Ponte do Lima, Portugal's oldest village, 12 km from Arcos de Valdevez. Eido do Carvalhoso consists of 3 suites, one of the suites has a private room where you can put 2 extra beds. All property located on the ground floor.

avg/night50.00€ SELECT
Hotel Alendouro

Hotel Alendouro
Macedo de Cavaleiros Portugal

0 reviews

Situated in the center of Macedo de Cavaleiros and about 15 minutes from the Albufeira do Azibo, Hotel Alendouro combines Transmontana art of well-receive with the modernity and comfort that your stay deserves.

avg/night55.00€ SELECT
Quinta da Pedreira

Quinta da Pedreira Viana do Castelo Portugal

0 reviews

Quinta da Pedreira is a centuries-old house, with the region´s own architecture, surrounded by gardens, with indoor swimming pool. Quinta da Pedreira is located next to the town of Viana do Castelo, Portugal’s Green Coast, Minho, about 15 minutes’ walk from the historic center

avg/night250.00€ SELECT
Ribeira Collection Hotel

Ribeira Collection Hotel
Arcos de Valdevaz Portugal

0 reviews

The Ribeira Collection Hotel is located on the left bank of the Rio Vez, in the heart of the historical area of the village of Arcos de Valdevez. The Ribeira Collection Hotel offers 33 rooms and 4 suites with environments that honor the history of the mythical Hotel Ribeira and the village of Arcos de Valdevez .

avg/night90.00€ SELECT