It’s hard to believe that the Terras d’Ossa organisation is only two years old when it has accomplished so much in such a short space of time!
Before taking this cyanotype workshop with Terras d’ossa we had no idea what it was – just that it was an old way to print photos that was used before the invention of the camera. So we were intrigued…and signed up.
One of the reasons we came to visit Portugal in the first place was to check out its numerous castles, so you can imagine our excitement when we found out that the nearby town of Elvas was holding a re-enactment of the attack on the town’s Forte da Graça by French troops.
As we are still only just discovering the Alto Alentejo region of Portugal, for us camping is all about experiencing new places that are not necessarily long road trips away. So in late April we drove to Vimieiro, a village that is only 30 minutes from Estremoz in the district of Arraiolos.
The art of producing the unique socks that come from the tiny Serra d’Ossa village of Aldeia de Serra sadly has almost died out with only a handful of women still making them today.
I was really looking forward to seeing these ‘prehistoric’ cave paintings – as I had never seen any before – until a friend pointed out that they are actually around 5,000 years old, so not really pre-historic. More like Bronze Age rock art created by hunters and gatherers.
In early April we were fortunate, as members of the Terras D’Ossa Association, to be invited to take part in a guided tour of Vila Viçosa. The theme of the walk was the use of marble in religious buildings in the town—churches, convents and other religious monuments. You may think this sounds like it could make for a boring morning, but far from it!
Having been living full-time in Estremoz, Portugal, now for a year and four months, all of that time under the cloud of Covid, we were beginning to feel a little restricted. So we decided to look around for a suitable van for nights away, or to ‘pernoitar’ as the Portuguese say, and a chance to get out and explore the country.
This week, a friend suggested we go to see the winner of Portugal’s Tree of the Year, as it is just down the road from Estremoz in Vale do Pereira, near Arraiolos.
In collaboration with the children’s cancer charity Acreditar, local non-profit organisation, Terras d’Ossa, is set to host the 1st Solidarity Walk in the nearby Serra d’Ossa—and everyone is invited to take part!