Day 17 – Day off in Covilhã

Starting Point: Covilhã
Ending Point: Covilhã
Today’s Distance: 0 km
Total Distance: 1,126 km

After a long cycle the day before, and a big day looming ahead, I slept in and relaxed to start my day off in Covilhã. Still wanting to be a good visitor, I finally made my way out of my room and went out to see the Museu de Lanifícios / Museum of Woolworks. What had previously been a huge factory for the processing and production of wool products was now renovated and dedicated to the University of Beira Interior. The university has since added a museum to show the history and methods of wool production, a historically important industry in the region. Covilhã was considered the wool producing capital of Portugal, similar to Manchester at the time. While production has slowed from the historical levels, it is still an important industry, both economically and culturally. I was most amazed by the vats large enough to fit multiple people used for dyeing the wool products in bulk.

Most of the rest of my day (not spent napping) was used for planning the rest of my journey. Tomorrow I would be attempting to cycle up to the highest point in mainland Portugal and I wanted to make sure I was ready.

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