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Welcome Reception

The welcome reception will take place in Guimarães, at Museu Alberto Sampaio, on the 19th of September, at 19h30.

The Alberto Sampaio Museum is located in the heart of the historic centre, in the place where Countess Mumadona ordered a monastery to be built in the 10th century. Although it was initially a double monastery, at the beginning of the 12th century it became a Colegiate, having undergone some rebuilding by this time.

However, it was in the reign of D. João I that major enlargement and improvement of the buildings of the Collegiate Church began. The construction of a new church dedicated to St. Mary of Guimarães was started and finished during the reign of this king.

In the 16th century, the church, cloisters and House of the Priorate underwent significant renovation works and during the following centuries the Church was under constant alteration with some additions being made. At the end of the 18th century the Chapter House underwent major reconstruction, this being the building that today serves as the main entrance to the Museum.

When the buildings belonging to the Colegiada de Nossa Senhora da Oliveira passed into the hands of the State, an important programme of works was undertaken adapting the building to the needs of a museum. Work began on the cloister and the 1st floor of the House of the Priorate on 14 May 1928. Alfredo Guimarães was officially nominated as the Museum’s Director on 19 October 1932. In 1935, works for converting the building finished, the Museum having at its disposition the Cloister and five more rooms as exhibition space for its collections. Besides these, there were three rooms in which the library, administrative services and storage area of the Museum functioned. 

In the 1960’s the Direcção Geral dos Edifícios e Monumentos Nacionais do Norte embarked on conservation work and the recuperation of all the House of the Priorate building and Chapter House. The spaces thereby remodelled were inaugurated in 1967, the Museum now being able to count with modern services, a conferences room and its own spaces for temporary exhibitions. 

Between 1999 and 2004, the Museum underwent further restoration and remodelling works gaining a new look: the reception area and the museum storage and exhibition spaces are rejuvenated. 

Soon, the museum will have a new building in Praça de Santiago, offered by the Municipality of Guimarães, which will have the following areas: Administrative Services, Reserves, Conferences Room and rooms for temporary exhibitions. The project of architecture was created by Architect Filipe Vilas Boas, from the Town Hall of Guimarães. 

The building will be ready at the end of 2011, right on time for European Capital of Culture, in Guimarães, in 2012.

The Gala Dinner

The gala dinner will take place in Guimarães, at the Pousada de Santa Marinha, on the 21th of September, at 20h00.

Near the historical centre of Guimarães, set on a hill overlooking the city, we find the majestic Pousada de Guimarães, Santa Marinha, a former XII Century Augustin Monastery, which after being rebuilt and restored, received the National Architectural Prize in 1985.

This historic luxury hotel has unique charming points, like the superb gardens, considered to be among the best Portuguese’s gardens, a magnificent stone staircase and an artificial lake can be found among the trees. The rich Portuguese glazed tiles, the cloisters, the terraces over the city will, together with the magnificent cuisine and wines, make you wish to stay for a very long time.

Guimarães Tour - 19th September 2012

Half Day Visit - 24,50 € per person, valid for a minimum of 20 participants per Bus
(including visit to the Ducal Palace)

Meet with the guide at the Congress Venue. Half day tour to the World Heritage city of Guimarães, visiting the Ducal Palace (built in the 15th century, by the Duque D. Afonso, son of the King João I, in the French manor house style with several cylindrical chimneys) and the S. Miguel chapel where it is said that the Portuguese first king was baptised. Time for a walk from the Ducal Palace to the centre, passing by the old quarters in Santa Maria Street. Arrival in the centre of the city, in Santiago square where one can find the former city hall (built in the 14th century), the Srª da Oliveira church (built in the 14th century, by the King João I) and the Salado monument (built in gothic style by the King Afonso IV to commemorate Salado battle in 1340). Time to see the tower that commemorates the birth of Portugal, the former city tower walls, as Guimarães was the first country's capital and the new centre.

Braga - Barcelos Tour - 20th September 2012

Full Day Visit - 77,50 € per person, valid for a minimum of 20 participants per Bus
(including visits and lunch)

Meet with the guide at the Congress Venue. Departure to Braga - known for its baroque churches, magnificent 18th century houses and elaborate gardens and squares. This visit will provide the general idea of the most important religious and architectural monuments, such as the Sé, the most impressive church which has several styles, from Roman to Baroque. Panoramic visit passing through the City Hall, the Palace of “Raio”, the Convent of “Populo”, and visit to “Bom Jesus” do Monte (by funicular). Free time at Bom Jesus do Monte and Lunch on a Restaurant with a panoramic view over Braga. After lunch the Tour proceeds to Barcelos - one of the most emblematic cities of popular Minho art. On your stroll around Barcelos visit to the Ceramics Museum. On the Handicraft Centre, you can get a good general view of Minho arts and crafts. The brightly-coloured Barcelos Cock is the most representative of all the pieces produced here. Return to Guimaraes around 17h00.

Ponte de Lima - Viana de Castelo Tour - 21st September 2012

Full Day Visit - 71,50 € per person, valid for a minimum of 20 participants per Bus
(including visits and lunch)

Meet with the guide at the Congress Venue and departure to the town of Ponte de Lima: place full of history, of art and natural beauty, rustic and with a path historical-cultural since the castral period and famous for its Manors. Walking visit to the Historical Centre of the town and free time to stroll around. We continue by bus passing Valença do Minho, Caminha, Vila Praia de Âncora and Viana do Castelo. Lunch in a typical Restaurant.. On the afternoon visit to Viana do Castelo, charmingly situated at the mouth of the Rio Lima below Monte de Santa Luzia, is an important harbour in the Costa Verde. Its attractive townscape and good beaches also make it popular with tourists. Surrounded by verdant hills is probably best appreciated from atop the Monte de Santa Luzia. Just outside of the town, the aforementioned Santa Luzia mount boasts not only an excellent miradouro, a viewpoint with some of the best panoramic views in Portugal, but also a fairly modern basilica (the Santuario de Santa Luzia) and the remains of a Celto-Iberian settlement. Return to Guimaraes around 17h00. 

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