In the middle of the 16th century the Portuguese King D. João III has given his cousin, the Archduke Maximilian of Austria, a rather unusual wedding gift: an Asian elephant.
This brilliant novel, written by Portuguese Nobel-prize winner José Saramago, tells the story of the epic journey of the elephant called Solomon that had to cross Europe because of royal extravagances and absurd strategies. A powerful insight on the human condition through the witty words of the outstanding writer José Saramago.
Beautifully nested on the slope of Gardunha Mountain, the Historical Village Castelo Novo is a truly inspiring place full of enchantment. Walk along its welcoming streets, go all the way up to the castle and marvel at a dazzling natural landscape! Casa da Lagariça is a beautiful cosy shop located in the amazing Historical Village Castelo Novo that has created a one of a kind toy: Petrus! This is a handmade toy named after the first Governor of the Historical Village Castelo Novo, Petrus Guterri.
The journey of Solomon continues to the magnificent Historical Village Belmonte. Placed on a breathtaking natural setting, Belmonte was the birthplace of Brazil’s discoverer, Pedro Álvares Cabral. On your visit to Belmonte you must visit the Jewish Museum of Belmonte, a very interesting museum depicting the Jewish legacy, as well as Belmonte Interpretation Centre, an interactive museum, shedding a whole new light on the theme of Portugue Discoveries.
The journey of Salomon stops at the enchanting Historical Village Sortelha, enjoying a breathtaking location at the top of a rocky outcrop. This Historical Village has a charming Medieval flair with is beautiful granite houses. A magical place at the heart of a timeless landscape!
The journey of Solomon heads to the enchanting village of Cidadelhe in the council of Guarda. On his travel book dedicated to Portugal, “Viagem a Portugal”, Saramago describes Cidadelhe as “the heel of the world”. In Cidadelhe the author has found a superb gastronomy, a welcoming people and the exquisite canopy dating back to the 18th century and carefully preserved by the community.
Castelo Rodrigo is one of the unique Historical Villages of Portugal. Overlooking the Ribacôa plateau, Castelo Rodrigo will seduce you with its delightful details: picturesque narrow streets, beautiful cosy houses with colourful flower pots hanging on the windows and a welcoming smiling people. Stop by Páteo do Castelo, owned by the French André who fell in love with this place, and taste his delicious teas and unrivalled almond tart!