Archive for June, 2011

Arriving at the gate of the Castle of Tomar in Portugal

You may have noticed that in this topic, I am trying to publish photos that follow our walk (my family and I) from Calçada de São Tiago in the town, to the Castle of Tomar. This collection of photos (Please click HERE) begins at São Tiago Roadway, which then connects to the road that leads to the hill where the Castle was built more than 800 hundred years ago (1160) by Gualdim Pais, the Grand Master of the Order of Knights Templar. As you can see, this is the stage where we are arriving at the gate of the Castle of Tomar.

Gate of the Castle of the knights Templar in Tomar, Portugal

In the distance I can now see the the gate of the Castle of the Knights Templar in Tomar. My wife is already there waiting for me and my son is already inside.

 

Main entrance to the Castle of the Knights Templar in Tomar, Portugal

Another photo of the gate of the Castle of Tomar in Portugal

 

Gate to the Castle of the knights Templar and the Vonvent of Christ in Tomar

Almost there. My wife is waiting for me at the gate of the Castle of Tomar

Castle of Tomar from Mouchão Park and Nabão River

As previously mentioned the Castle of the Knights Templar in Tomar and the Convent of Christ, are a constant feature from almost anywhere in my home town. I shot these three pictures from Mouchão Park (Parque do Mouchão) and in one of them you can also see Nabão River (Rio Nabão). The first photo shows one of the entrances to the island park as well as the wooden water wheel underneath the willow trees which are present all over Nabão River. In the second photo, that white building is the central post office in Tomar and in the third photo you can see the river, a weir, Vieira Guimarães building and the start of the street known as Corredoura (Rua Serpa Pinto).

The Castle of the Knights Templar from Mouchão Park in Tomar

The Castle of the Knights Templar in the distance seen from the island of Mouchão Park in the City of Tomar. You can also see a traditional wooden water wheel near the entrance to the park

 

Castle of Tomar in the distance from Mouchão Park

Another view of the Castle of Tomar from Mouchão Park. The white building is the main Post Office in the City of Tomar in Portugal

 

The Castle of Tomar from Mouchão Park and Nabão River

When I shot this photo of the Castle of Tomar in the distance, I was near Bela Vista and Nabão restaurants but still at Mouchão Park.

More about Carril Dam in Tomar, Portugal

As I mentioned previously, in 2010 I visited Carril dam near Tomar with my family. When I left Portugal in 1989 this dam hadn’t been built yet and since the last time I had visited Portugal was in 1998, I hadn’t seen this body of water confined by a dam. Apparently and despite its objective which was to irrigate farmers’ lands living in the areas of Junceira, Santa Maria dos Olivais e São Pedro, very few are using it for that purpose because they have refused to pay duties which they say are too expensive. So this dam is now more like a recreational area where you can swim, fish and paddle a canoe or boat.

Body of Water at Carril Dam in the City of Tomar in Portugal

Beautiful view of the body of water at Carril Dam in the City of Tomar. You can spend a day here swimming, fishing, canoeing and boating

 

Fence around Carril Dam in the City of Tomar in Portugal

Another perspective of Carril Dam in the city of Tomar. This was my first visit to this area of Tomar as the dam was built in 2002 and the last time I had visited Portugal was in 1998

 

Areas around Carril Weir in the City of Tomar in Portugal

The areas around Carril Dam in Tomar are also fantastic for social walking, pic-nics and enjoy a day devoted to an outdoor gathering with your family and friends

Building of Fernanda Galo Laboratories in Tomar, Portugal

I have no connection whatsoever with these Fernanda Galo laboratories in Tomar, Portugal, but in my visit to my home town in 2010, one morning I went to the shopping centre where Modelo Supermarket is located (Supermercado Modelo) at the street Rua Coronel Garcês Teixeira, when I saw this modern building. As I was carrying my camera and shooting photos of the City of Tomar, was one of my goals while in Portugal, I took a few pictures of this edifice in the suburbs of Tomar. I later investigated a little bit about Fernanda Galo Laboratórios and learned that it was founded in 1958 by Dr. Fernanda Galo who from the beginning decided to use the most advanced technologies and scientific knowledge of the time and nowadays follows the exact same policy.

Building of Fernanda Galo Laboratories in the City of Tomar, Portugal

The facade of the building where Fernanda Galo Laboratories is located at the street Rua Manuel Matos in the City of Tomar in Portugal

 

Fernanda Galo Laboratórios, Tomar, Portugal

Modern building of Fernanda Galo Laboratories in the city of Tomar in Portugal near the street Rua Coronel Garcês Teixeira and not far from Modelo Supermarket

 

Fernanda Galo Laboratories located in Tomar, Portugal

Fernanda Galo Laboratórios is said to use technologies and scientific knowledge at the cutting edge of clinic diagnostics, quality control of the environment and food safety

Small bridge crossing to the Island of Mouchão in Tomar

The small Island of Mouchão (Ilha do Mouchão) is a beautiful place to visit and enjoy in my home town Tomar, and there are three ways to go there, one of them through this bridge that crosses the street Rua Marquês de Tomar to the island park. Of course the island is surrounded by Nabão River as it passes through Tomar. In one of these photos you can also see a partial view of the water wheel of Mouchão Park (Roda do Mouchão) which has been there for ages. There were probably water wheels like this in Tomar in the 19th century or even before.

Mouchão bridge in the City of Tomar in Portugal

This small bridge which crosses Nabão River in the City of Tomar, connects the street Rua Marquês de Tomar to the Island of Mouchão

 

Mouchão bridge and the street Rua Marquês de Tomar

Another view from this bridge, this time shot from Mouchão Park. The other side is Rua Marquês de Tomar and the building of the main Post Office

 

Mouchão bridge and the water wheel in the City of Tomar in Portugal

I have crossed this bridge many times, even when I was a kid and used to go swimming at the pool Vasco Jacob on the other side Mouchão Island. In fact I had to cross two bridges, this one and another one made of wood.

Travessa do Arco in Tomar near an old palace

These windows are at Travessa do Arco in the City of Tomar and based on some research I believe they belong to what used to be to an old palace, which in Portuguese was called Palácio dos Velhos de Macedo. The window shown in the first photo is at the corner of Avenida Cândido Madureira and Travessa do Arco, and the other two photos show the same window at Tv. do Arco. Now here is the curious part of these photos. It was here at Travessa dos Arcos that my mother used to live in her late teenage years, and my father (Fernando de Jesus Fidalgo) spent a great deal of time looking up to one of these windows courting and talking to my mother (Maria de Lurdes Simões Fidalgo). That of course ended up in marriage and as result my brother and I were born.

Windows at the corner of Travessa do Arco and Rua Cândido Madureira, Tomar

This photo is from windows in the corner of the streets Rua Cândido Madureira and Travessa do Arco in Tomar.

 

Window at Travessa do Arco in the City of Tomar in Portugal

Another window from the same house in Tomar, which in the past used to be a small palace called Palácio dos Velhos de Macedo

 

A window at Tv. do Arco in the City of Tomar in Portugal

My mother used to live in this house in Tomar and this was the window my father courted her when she was in her late teens. Now she is 87 years old (2011)

Raining in the city and the waterfalls of Nabão River in Tomar

As you can see, this was a rainy day in the City of Tomar in Portugal. It was October 2010 and depending on your perspective this was either bad or good weather. I quite enjoy rainy days and this was a good opportunity to once again put my camera into action. As everybody knows, when it rains the result is that the volume of water in the river increases and the small waterfalls of Nabão River (Rio Nabão) may follow. These shots were taken when I was crossing the old bridge of Tomar to the other side of the town, coming from the street Rua Marquês de Pombal.

Rain in the City of Tomar in Portugal and waterfalls

Rainy day in the City of Tomar in Portugal. This is a view of Nabão River, the dam and waterfalls resulting from an increase of rain. The Chapel of Senhora da Conceição can be seen on top of the hill

 

Wet day at Nabão River and Mouchão Park in the City of Tomar

Close up of the waterfalls at Nabão River in Tomar. Nearby are those yellow tourist boats and on the other side, is the small island of Mouchão Park

 

Crossing the old bridge in a rainy day in the City of Tomar in Portugal

Wet day in Tomar when I was crossing the old bridge to the other side of the town. Small waterfalls at Nabão River, the old town ahead and the Castle of the Knights Templar in the distance

The beautiful garden of Varzea Pequena in Tomar

Varzea Pequena is a beautiful green space in Tomar, which as you may know, is a small historical city located in the centre of Portugal, not far away from the cities of Santarém and Leiria. This specific spot in the town, according to my 87 year old mother (2011), used to be the place where couples in love or singles looking for a companion used to spend Sunday afternoons, in those good old days of the beginning and middle of the 20th century. There was no TV in those times and radio broadcasts were rare, so the entertainment used to be philharmonic bands playing on the Varzea Pequena bandstand built in 1897.

Garden of Varzea Pequena in the City of Tomar in Portugal

Beautiful garden of Varzea Pequena in Tomar, Portugal, near Hotel dos Templários. This garden is very old but this specific spot seems to have been added later

 

Pathway at the garden of Varzea Pequena in the City of Tomar in Portugal

Another area of the garden of Varzea Pequena in Tomar. This pathway heads to the Chapel of São Gregório and the staircase of the Chapel of Senhora da Piedade

 

Varzea Pequena around Nabão River in the City of Tomar, Portugal

In the early days and middle of the 20th century people used to spend their sunday afternoons walking around the garden of Varzea Pequena and listening to philharmonic bands

Varzea Grande and the Judicial Tribunal of Tomar in Portugal

The Square or Plaza of Varzea Grande (Big Plaza) in the City of Tomar, looks more or less the same of when I was a kid and attended a primary school in the area. The only difference is that in the 60’s there were no cars parked there and now it is often covered with automobiles. Nowadays is more of Parking lot than a square, but I still enjoyed the moment and shot a few photos, especially from the Judicial Tribunal of Tomar (Tomar Courthouse) which I sometimes used to visit to get formal documents. I also got married there.

Parked cars at Varzea Grande and the Tribunal of Tomar

Varzea Grande is located in an area of Tomar near the Railway and Bus Stations. The street in this photo is called Avenida Combatentes da Grande Guerra. In the the distance is the Judicial Tribunal of Tomar

 

Varzea Grande and the Courthouse of the City of Tomar

Another view of the Tribunal of Tomar in Portugal. On very busy days the area in front of the courthouse is full of cars parking there

 

Varzea Grande and the Tribunal of the City of Tomar, Portugal

A close up view of the main entrance of the Judicial Tribunal of Tomar in Portugal. This building isn't just for court cases but you can also get official documents

Rua Marquês de Pombal in Tomar is my favourite street

One day in 1954 I was born in a house at Rua Marquês de Pombal and that naturally makes this street, my favourite one. Also, my grand parents Manuel Fidalgo and Lucília Fidalgo, used to live across the house I was born and when they died my parents lived there too. I got married and since the house was big enough and divided into two areas, I also lived at this street. When I was a kid, came from Angola in Africa and lived in Tomar for a couple of years, and during that time I remember the grocery shop that my grand parents owned at this same street. Furthermore I also saw my wife for the first time at Rua Marquês de Pombal, more exactly at Santa Iria Coffee Shop (Café Santa Iria). So I have good memories of this street and I am forever connected to it.

Rua Marquês de Pombal near Santa iria Coffee Shop in tomar

This the street Rua Marquês de Pombal in Tomar, Portugal. On the right is Café Santa Iria, a coffee shop which opened in the mid 70's

 

Rua Marquês de Pombal around Tomar old bridge

Another perspective of Rua Marquês de Pombal. At some distance is the old bridge of Tomar, which crosses Nabão River to the other side of the town

 

Rua Marquês de Pombal in Tomar, around Alameda Primeiro de Março

This photo of Rua Marquês de Pombal, shows the transition from the old City of Tomar to the new one, represented by Alameda Primeiro de Março and those relatively new buildings