Located about half an hour from Lisbon on Setúbal Península between the Sado River and the Atlantic Ocean, Serra da Arrábida is part of the Arrábida Natural Park, one of the most important nature reserves in the country, covering a surface of approximately 17,000 ha.
In the surrounding landscape of Arrábida it is difficult to determine the dividing line between human intervention and the work of the divine nature. This area, made by nature on a day of particular perfection, is inhabited since there is memory.
The earliest evidence of Man’s presence in this region dates back to the Lower Paleolithic that occupied some of the numerous caves that exist mainly in the mountains. It is known that in a cave located in Arrábida was found vestiges of the life of the last men of Neandertal, already near the time of the last glaciation.
The great civilizations of the Mediterranean have passed by here, the Atlantic ones too, and this mixture, contact and opposition, builds the history of this place. The beaches of rare beauty and the bay of the city, considered one of the most beautiful in the world, figure in the Club of the Most Beautiful Bays of the World.
In the face of the surroundings, it is worth noting a gastronomy that essentially focuses on fish and seafood specialties, but also a very rich traditional sweets, which include queijadas, pies and “those of Azeitão”, the “shells” of orange of Setúbal, without forgetting the famous honey of the Serra and the production of cheese as one of the significant artisan and economic activities of this region of the Costa Azul.
The wine production in the region of Setúbal gave rise to internationally recognized products, with a variety of quality red and white wines, obtained from mature grapes on the Serra slopes. Among these products, we should highlight the Moscatel de Setúbal, a renowned liqueur wine of demarcated origin centered in Azeitão and the Arrabidine liqueur produced by the friars who inhabit the Convent of Our Lady of Arrábida.
One of the beaches of Serra da Arrábida and the Natural Park of Arrábida were chosen by the British newspaper “The Mirror” two of the “best beaches in Portugal”, a selection that includes ten beaches from the Algarve to Lisbon.
Arrábida is a territory of knowledge, heritage, stories to tell and retreat of hermits that followed the Way of Grace, with lives devoted to Mary.