Coja (5 km)
This traditional Portuguese village is the ideal gateway to continue exploring the environments. It is lovely to spend time under the plane trees on the main square. There are terraces, shops, restaurants… In summer, there is a fair amount of tourists because of the camping site near the river, but there is certainly no mass tourism.
Benfeita is a beautiful village on the way to Fraga da Pena, with a lovely river beach in the middle.
Fraga da Pena (7 km)
These are waterfalls in a nature park and at the same time the start of a beautiful outlined route through the nature park of Mata Da Margaraça.
Arganil (13 km)
Arganil is certainly worth visiting on Thursdays, for its weekly markets.
A village that is fully built of schist on the side of a mountain in Serra do Açor.
Oliveira do Hospital (24 km)
This is a nice, quiet and calm town at the foot of Serra Da Estrella. Don’t forget to visit the best Italian restaurant in the area L’Artista, where you can eat delicious pizza.
Penacova (38 km)
Penacova is a beautiful, touristic town on a great location near the river Mondego. There is a dam and you can also visit a couple of old mills while there.
Seia (43 km)
This town is considered the gateway to the mountains of Serra De Estrella. You can visit several museums here, such as a toy museum, an electricity museum, and a bread museum.
Termas de Luso (58 km)
This spa was built in 1852 and some buildings still originate from that time. Today, all facilities of a modern spa are present. This spa is surrounded by the lush vegetation of the mountains of Serra do Buçaco (see further on). It is a classic health resort with a spa (where health-giving water is used for aesthetic treatments as well as for drinking) and a medical centre for motoric and heart revalidation.
Next to the baths, there is a big, ancient forest, which is lovely to walk through. You can try and find Fonte Frio or the natural waterfalls that you can see on different locations in the forest.
Parque National do Buçaco (61 km)
This national forest of Buçaco holds a lot of hiking routes, hermit’s caves and the hunting lodge (these days the Buçaco Palace Hotel.
Mealhade (68 km)
Mealhade is situated halfway in between Aveiro and Coimbra and is certainly worth a visit. The village itself doesn’t seem very much and with only a few houses along the side of the road, it doesn’t take long to pass through. The wine, the homemade bread, the roasted pork and the water of the thermal baths however, are real touristic attractions. You can go lunch in the restaurant called ‘O tipico da Barraida’. This restaurant serves fresh roasted pork to the local people. When arriving on time, you can walk to the back of the restaurant and see how the little pigs are prepared in big ovens. It is a good thing you don’t see the whole pig on your plate, you only get a piece of the pork meat covered in a delicious crispy layer. Together with some homemade potato crisps and a salad, this is a real delicacy.
Serra Da Estrela and the Torre (65 km)
Serra da Estrela is the highest mountain ridge in Portugal, with beautiful nature and astonishing views. It has been a nature park since 1976. It expands over more than 100 thousand hectares making it the biggest nature park in Portugal. At its highest point (the Torre at 1993 m) you find a modest ski area in Winter. The mountain range is also known for its beautiful, long-haired shepherd dogs, the de ‘Cão da Serra da Estrela’. On the way from Seia to the Torre, you pass several little and big shops where you can buy local products such as liquor, cheese or honey. This region is also known for its way of processing leather. In Serra Da Estrela, you can make a good bargain when searching for a new leather jacket or purse.
Coimbra (65 km)
Coimbra is especially known for the Fado music and its ancient university together with the beautiful library within. The old town centre with the medieval alleys, nice buildings and shops is definitely worth visiting as well.
Viseu (67 km)
This old town with houses made of grey stone and with a lot of green, is a cosy and alive town. Viseu was named the town with the greatest quality of life of all Portugal. There are a lot of enjoyable cafes and delicious restaurants.
Linhares da Beira (75 km)
Linhares da Beira is one of the most beautiful little villages in Serra da Estrela with a beautiful castle.
Conimbriga (80 km)
This is an old Roman city that holds the biggest Roman heritage of Portugal.
Covilha (84 km)
If you have some time left visiting Serra da Estrela and the Torre, you can descend down to Covilhã and visit the Museu dos Lanifícios (museum of wool). This museum is dedicated to one of the most important economic activities in this region, where you find big flocks of sheep everywhere. The loyal sheepdogs that herd these flocks, are Serra da Estrela (dog breed). Your children will be delighted seeing their young puppies.
Figueira da Foz (104 km)
Figueira da Foz is a vibrant place with a vast wide beach and a marina.
Aveiro (117 km)
This is a beautiful coastal town with remarkable canals and an estuary of a river. It is especially known for its delicious fish restaurants.
Porto (170 km)
Just barely doable on a day trip, is the historic city of Porto, situated at the estuary of the Douro. The old centre Ribeira is listed on the World Heritage List. You should also go and taste a port in one of the many wine cellars along the river.
Lisbon (270 km)
Lisbon is a bit far for a day trip, although you could consider staying the night and make it a two day excursion. The region of Lisbon has anything a tourist could want: Monasteries, castles, museums, restaurants, bars and nice beaches. The Naval history is present everywhere.