Area Guide

Shopping & food

Restaurants and Coffee shops:        As everywhere in Portugal, in the village of Branca has no lack of coffee shops and restaurants. About 200 meters from the Quinta da Luz Outeiro (left hand side from outside of the front door) there is located a bar called COLINAS (1), that is open in the evenings and on weekends. On Thursdays there is karaoke, they also offer billiards. Opposite the church there is the Café Sandrita. (2) Several restaurants are located on the National Road (IC-2). Here you can enjoy fine Portuguese cuisine. We recommend the restaurant “Piraquara” (3) (closed on Saturdays) where you can get delicious meat or fish dishes at a good price. The Piraquara restaurant outwardly does not appear very appealing, but the basement is quite cozy. Down there it is usually quieter. It’s really cheap if two people eat the same dish. Then order “uma dose”, which is a double portion and is enough for two people. Including drink and coffee 2 persons can eat for a total of about 15 €.  Even closer (also reachable by foot in 10 minutes), there is the restaurant “Krokant”. (4)

It is not quite as simple as “Piraquara”, but a little more expensive. Walk or drive before the church, turn to the right, and if you have arrived at the National Road IC-2, turn left. After a few meters you will see the restaurant on the left with a large window. In many of these restaurants there is the opportunity to take with home hot dishes for lunch and dinner.  


      You will find the bakery “S. Vicente” (5) if you follow the street at the church down until the national road. On the other side of the street there is this bakery. There is also a very good bakery called “Villa” (6) in front of “Piraquara” (opposite side of the road). 

Post Office: (7)

      Go before the church until the National Road from Branca. The post is located opposite to the petrol station. The post office is open from 9 – open 18.00 clock – 12.30 clock and 14 of 30. 

Shops:  Everything you need for daily living is to be found on the National Road: shops (8),  banks (6,9), pharmacies(9), etc. LIDL there in Oliveira de Azemeis and in São João da Madeira (north). A nice shopping center (“Oitava Avenida”), there is at the entrance of São João da Madeira, 15 km away in the Avenida Dr. Renato Araújo 1625, 3700-346 S. João da Madeira. 


From Chaque, Branca you can explore the wholenorthern Portugal in single day trips. The place is located 50 km from Porto (1) and 67 km from Coimbra (2), both of which are big cities of great beauty and historical significance. We can also recommend a visit to the city of Aveiro (3) (25 km, and in the west of Aveiro there is Costa Nova with a lake and ocean beach.  Other interesting exursions could be Curia, Luso and Buçaco be (approx. 40 km), Santa Maria da Feira, with its famous medieval fair in July or August, Arouca, Espinho (4) with a beautiful beach and very long beach promenade) and the casino. Espinho has a very nice pedestrian zone. On Mondays there is a big market in Espinho.       As there are new highways, also day trips into the wider environment are possible: in the south the environment of Coimbra, Fatima, Batalha, Nazare, Alcobaça. To the north and northeast passing over Porto: Guimarães (5) (European Capital of Culture in 2012, highly recommended), Braga (6)Viana do Castelo (7), the Douro River till Lamego. Boat trips on the River Douro from Porto to Régua are very beautiful. Nature-loving people can visit Serra da Freita (8) (30 km) and enjoy the beautiful stone scenery,  clear, clean stream and the waterfall Mijarela on the mountain. On the way to the Serra da Freita, you can enjoy a stunning panoramic view over wooded mountain ranges.  The possibilities to interesting sightseeings in Porto and Coimbra are immense. An evening stroll in Porto, for example, along the river – in the Foz district – is highly recommended. Nearby there is “Sea Life”, an deep sea aquarium which is worth seeing. Some of our guests have not shied away to make a day trip to Lisbon (280 km). Since Portugal is a small country with a great history, you will find historical sights closely packed.


The beaches of northern Portugal – Silver Coast – include: Espinho, Esmoriz, Costa Nova, Torreira, São Jacinto. Although Torreira is the nearest beach (about 30 km), you can reach even faster – in about a half an hour by car, largely on the highway – the beaches of Espinho and Esmoriz. The special attraction of Torreira as well as Costa Nova is the location between the ocean on one side and the lake Ria. In the summer, the beaches or even are heavily visited. People who prefer to have more calmness, should avoid such trips on weekends.

Tennis and Golf:

You have the opportunity to play golf in Páramos, in the south of Espinho. In Espinho and in Albergaria-a-Velha, there are also tennis courts.

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