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Arouca is a town and a municipality in the Metropolitan Area of Porto, Norte Region, Portugal. The population in 2011 was 22,359, in an area of 329.11km2. It had 20,383 electors in 2006. The population has grown from 7072 inhabitants in 1801.The entire territory of Arouca is "Arouca Geopark" which is a member of the European Geoparks Network and Global Geoparks Network on account of its outstanding geological heritage, educational programs and projects, and promotion of geotourism.HistoryThe territory that became Arouca was settled by vestiges of pre-historic tribes, but it was in the Roman occupation that the first artifacts associated with settlement first appeared. From archaeological excavations, it is known that the area was settled late in the Roman conquest of the Iberian Peninsula (due to its distance from coastal and North-South accesses). From local toponomy, the permanence of Germanic tribes is evident; names such as Sá, Saril, Alvarenga, Burgo, Escariz, Friães and Melareses, are examples of this influence.Following Moorish invasion more information began to be recorded in this region. Christian settlements that existed within the area were abandoned during this time, and moved to other northern access points. These settlements later returned following the Reconquista, when instability in the region disappeared. The history of Arouca, therefore, only became available with the founding and growth of the Monastery of Arouca, culminating in the religious life of D. Mafalda, daughter of the second King, D. Sancho I. It was this monastery, which for many centuries, that the populous of the region depended. The monastery was erected in the 10th century, in the invocation of Saint Peter, by two noblemen: Loderigo and Vandilo, from Moldes. The primitive building was nothing more than a simple dwelling, supporting a complement of monks and nuns.Arouca is in Aveiro District. Make your own Arouca vacation itinerary, with a little help from those that know the place like the back of their hands, by using our Portugal itinerary planner.
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Top Arouca tours
Douro Valley Historical Tour with Lunch, Winery Visit with Tastings and Panoramic Cruise BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $96
Duration: 9 hours
Authentic Douro Wine Tour Including Lunch and Optional River Cruise BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $84
Duration: 9 hours
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9 days in Portugal BY A USER FROM ISRAEL July, culture, outdoors, romantic, historic sites, popular sights PREFERENCES: July, culture, outdoors, romantic, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 8 days in Arouca BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, popular sights PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 8 days in Arouca BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, popular sights PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 3 days in Arouca & Viseu District BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 1 day in Arouca BY A USER FROM LATVIA September, popular sights PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 6 days in Arouca BY A USER FROM SPAIN August, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium