Postcards from Guimarães, Portugal

In the hills above Guimarães there’s a hidden garden.

Pousada Mosteiro de GuimarãesFlicking through old holiday photos, the mossy greenness of the grounds of the Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães in northern Portugal is the perfect antithesis to the unrelenting greyness of January.

Today the former monastery is a hotel, but wannabe Indiana Joneses can pretend they’ve discovered a forgotten civilisation in its grounds.

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

In early autumn, the stone steps leading to the algae-filled pond are covered in crunchy leaves and acorns cover the benches.

Roses are still in bloom in the manicured gardens closer to the hotel, where statues look on.

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

The monastery is full of staircases leading to all sorts of interesting places, from the grand dining room to the bedrooms in the former monks’ cells with views over the valley.

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães

And if you eventually tire of all that, the UNESCO world heritage site of Guimarães is a short walk away, with its castle and palace (you can buy a combined ticket at the palace).

Palace of the Dukes of Braganza

Guimarães castle

We stopped off on our roadtrip through Northern Portugal, but Guimarães is an easy day trip from Porto by train.

Is anyone else scrolling back through holiday snaps from the last 5 years while the wait for January to finally finish?

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Ramble away...

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