Santo Tirso Tourist Attractions
The little town of Santo Tirso (altitude: 75m/245ft), situated in pleasant wooded country on the left bank of the Rio Ave about 25km/15.5mi northeast of Oporto, attracts many visitors who come to explore the surrounding area. The town's main source of income is the textile industry, supplemented by various handicrafts, including pottery.
Convento de Sao Bento
Santo Tirso's most important building is the Convent of Sao Bento, now containing an agricultural college. The Benedictines founded a convent here in the 10th century. The present building, with its impressive Baroque facade, dates from the 14th to 18th centuries. The church is richly decorated with talha dourada and sculpture. There is also a beautiful two story cloister (14th-17th centuries), with fine capitals. The adjoining little Abade Pedrosa museum has prehistoric and medieval archeological displays. A reddish granite calvary stands in front of the church.
In Roriz, about 10km/6mi east of the little town of Santo Tirso, is the interesting 12th C. Romanesque church of the former Benedictine convent, its main portal embellished by an early Gothic rose window.
Pacos de Ferreira
The village of Paços de Ferreira lies 14km/9mi east of Santo Tirso. It has an unusual Romanesque church with a separate tower.
Vila Nova de Famalicao
About 10km/6mi north of Santo Tirso, Vila Nova de Famalicao is a center for Portuguese watchmaking. The place is dominated by the former convent church of Sao Tiago de Antas (13th C.). The choir was decorated with azulejos in the 17th C.