Riba de Ancora or the Ancora River, the Anchor

Since the beginning of 1900 the community of Riba de Âncora in Caminha is regularly organizing Portuguese mega cozidos for a thousands of people, with the aim of raising funds for restoration works in the parish church. The collected monies are also used to recover some frescoes (XV-XVI that are fragmented by several walls of the temple.

Cozido à portuguesa is a traditional Portuguese stew. There exist numerous regional variations. The dish is considered part of the Portuguese heritage, as well as one of the national dishes of Portugal.

Preparation and ingredients: cozido à portuguesa is prepared with a multitude of vegetables (beans, potatoes, carrots, turnips, cabbages, rice), meat (chicken, pork ribs, bacon, pork ear and trotters, various parts of beef), and smoked sausages (chouriço, farinheira, morcela, and blood sausage).

In Riba de Ancora currently live some 750 inhabitants. Since 1800 the total number of people of this small village are fluctuating from 580 thru 870. Many youngsters who cannot find work in Northern Portugal leave the country to start new adventures in Canada, the US or in Switzerland. Subsequently, cafés and shops close their businesses. This famous Café Cé used to serve delicious fried chicken and other plates. Many of our guests used to have dinner and after dinner drinks in this place which is only at a 5 minutes walk from the Ancora Artist Residence.

Arte na Leira, 20a edição

Today at 18:30 hrs is the opening of the 20th edition of the exhibition Arte na Leira in Arga de Baixo, a very small community of not even 100 inhabitants, in the Serra de Arga. The exposition will end on 19 August 2018.

The highlight of this year is a ceramic board (1.8 x 2.7 m) made by the initiator and organizer of this exhibition, Mario Rocha.

The exposition showcases a variety of art works, like photography, paintings and ceramics.

Tonight there will be music, regional delicacies, many visitors and the fire works are not to be missed.

See you at Arte na Leira.








Cairns are being made and used as landmarks since ancient times. In prehistoric times they also had the meaning as monuments for the dead or to mark defense lines, to indicate areas for hunting or for ceremonial purposes.

Later on early pilgrims brought a stone from home and carried it with them on their journey to only discard of it on the Cruz de Ferro as a symbol of laying off their sins.

Nowadays everyone walking the Camino, or elsewhere, makes a pile of pebbles. Some of us even think that walking to Santiago de Compostela (or walking a part of it) is not valid without deposing of (a) pebble(s) any place, any where. There are parties criticizing this heaping up of stones saying that it is impacting the environment as sometimes the pebbles are left on plots of land or other places where they can be a nuisance to the local habitants.



One Way Ticket

“Choo, choo train chuggin’ down the track
Gotta travel on, never comin’ back
Oh, oh got a one way ticket to the blues”
Portuguese people have this special nostalgic feeling. We call it spleen, they call it saudade. The fado sings about this nostalgia. I get the feeling that Portuguese people are rather introvert, but when they sing (after a few glasses of wine) they start opening up.
But this short text is about the trains in Portugal. Unfortunately, a lot of railway stations throughout the country were closed and railway connections have been shut down. Vila Praia de Ancora has a small railway station and is directly connected with Valença (up North) and Viana do Castelo, Porto and Lisbon. The train rides along the coast. The train is reliable, cheap and comfortable.


We used to say living as a God in France. I think it is fair to say that in Portugal you can live as a God and Emperor, especially in the North of Portugal. The weather is great with a perfect balance between the sun and rainfall that guarantees beautiful nature and vegetation. The variety of food is great with nice and fresh fruits and vegetables.

But the outstanding craftmanship makes Portugal really different from the other European countries. Look at this beautiful closet which was made from old doors in the living room. Is not it simply beautiful?

Blue Mind

Did you read Wallace J. Nichols book BLUE MIND, the surprising science showing how being near, in, on, or under water can make you happier, healthier, more connected and better at what you do? Do you know that the Ancora Artist Residence is located at 5 minutes distance from both the Ocean and the Ancora and Minho rivers? It is also close to the Surftree project in Afife, where you can discover your passion or develop your talent for surfing. Embrace blue and a blue mind.