It is only fair that on the twelfth anniversary of its Lines of Torres Vedras Interpretation Centre, an occasion as venerable as it is resonant, the municipality of Sobral de Monte Agraço should present the CILT – and you – with a gift: not a gift of material opulence, mind you, but a gift woven in the universal language of music, celebrating the union of various cultures, from Brazil to Macau, from the USA to Portugal, while also paying tribute to some of the greatest poets of the Portuguese language.
The concert by the Fontenelle Trio, formed by Felipe Fontenelle, João Pedro Santos and Ciro Lee, takes place on 2 December at 9.30pm at the Sobral de Monte Agraço Municipal Auditorium. You have until 30 November to register, free of charge, by emailing email@example.com. Enrolment is, of course, subject to capacity.
Go there, enjoy yourself and don't forget to say happy birthday to the Sobral de Monte Agraço CILT. And the next day, because the younger ones are also entitled to a present, take them to the CILT, right in the town centre, so they can try on the barretine of a Peninsular War soldier and see the objects he carried in his rucksack. Registration, which is free but compulsory, should be sent by 1 December to the e-mail address above.
Every year, around this time, we collect the fallen leaves of Autumn to compose the Winter edition of Invade magazine. With issue 9, a conversation with Peninsular War scholar Mark S. Thompson about his book 'Wellington and the Lines of Torres Vedras' is on the way. We'll talk, of course, about the launch of InvadeMAG.. We'll have powerful spotlights aimed at the New Invasions Festival and the National Day of the Lines of Torres Vedras, which will equally shine on the inebriating rooms of the Wine and Vineyards Museum - Bucelas. We'll also tell you about how beautiful the 1st Marchinha dos Fortes was, learn how to appreciate nectars and make good friends at the cosy Adega Cooperativa da Lourinhã, introduce you to the exquisite simplicity of the Minimal House Bombarral accommodation and offer you the usual suggestions on where to enjoy the local cuisine, where to rest your head and body and, in short, how to fully enjoy a visit to the Lines of Torres Vedras.
When the magazine is ready, we'll sound the trumpets. Until then, visit us here and keep up to date with the best of what's happening in our region.
If you're an illustrator over the age of 18, or a future great artist who is currently attending secondary school in the municipalities of the Historic Route of the Lines of Torres Vedras (Torres Vedras, Bombarral, Lourinhã, Sobral de Monte Agraço, Arruda dos Vinhos, Mafra, Loures and Vila Franca de Xira), take note: Fábrica das Histórias - Casa Jaime Umbelino is holding the 2nd edition of its biennial illustration competition, under the motto "Resistance".
The aims are noble: to exalt illustration as an art, to bring illustrators and apprentices closer to Torres Vedras' cultural heritage and to stimulate the generation of new artistic creations.
There will be cash prizes and an exhibition with the illustrations that have most delighted the jury's senses, respecting the criteria of relation to the theme, quality of execution and originality.
Access all the information here. (choose 'Selecionar idioma' for an automatic translation).
The nectar of the gods and a symbol of celebration in ancient times, wine embodies a rich tapestry of history, culture, and conviviality. In the Lines of Torres Vedras region, we know that the cultivation of vineyards and the ritualistic aspects of wine consumption have evolved into a global phenomenon, stimulating a refined wine culture that is as diverse as the nuances of our societies.
Vila Franca de Xira Town Hall is offering three days of dedication to this enduring companion and civilising element. As a celebration of wine, the initiative doesn't stop at nectars: because the relationship between wine and gastronomy is a timeless romance, it counts on the participation of the municipality's restaurants to organise showcookings (live cooking) and tastings of regional products.
The Xira Wine Fest takes place from 17 to 19 November. See the programme here (choose 'Selecionar idioma' for an automatic translation).
"Napoleon was able," writes biographer Adam Zamoyski, ‘to sit through a comedy (,,,) and remain impassive while the whole house laughed, and then laugh raucously at odd moments.’ Don't we all know someone like that? And if, as Zamoyski also assures us, Napoleon ‘despised comedy’, it was perhaps because he knew its subversive potential: as an informed and well-read man, he must have come across Aristophanes in some library.
This is to tell you that on the evening of 17 November, if you have a reasonable understanding of the language, you'll have the opportunity to exercise your laughter at the Cine-Teatro de Sobral de Monte Agraço, with a new generation of comedians committed to reach the level of Molière's Tartuffe - the only comedy that, it is said, even the Emperor of the French was able to appreciate. Laugh and the whole world will laugh with you – except, perhaps, Napoleon.
Click here for the details (in Portuguese).
While it's not difficult to pinpoint the end of the Napoleonic political adventure, its beginning can be condensed into two days - the 18th and 19th - of the month of Brumaire in the year VIII on the French republican calendar (the 9th and 10th of November 1799) when, amid fears of a Jacobin resurgence and a restoration of the monarchical regime, the two assemblies - the Council of Elders and the Council of 500 - met in the former royal palace of Saint-Cloud, away from the centre of a Paris in turmoil.
After a series of more or less rocky episodes, inflammatory speeches and demonstrations of martial force, the government of the Directory fell; and Bonaparte, whose popularity was well anchored in successful military campaigns in Italy and Egypt, became First Consul. The revolution, it is often said, ended right there.
It would be more than a decade before Masséna - and, to some extent, Napoleon's star - stood in front of the Lines of Torres Vedras, gazing at a precarious fort on a hilltop.
The patent for the accordion, or its immediate precursor, the handäoline, was registered in Berlin when the Constitution of 1822 was being approved in Portugal. Since then, from the Argentinian tango to the dances of the North Caucasus - not forgetting the cafés and cabarets of Paris - the instrument has appeared in musical contexts as varied as pop, jazz and classical music, having earned a place of honour in what we now call "world music".
As part of the Torres Vedras Festivities, the 20th edition of the Acordeões do Mundo festival runs until the 10th. See the programme here (in Portuguese).
If you're like us, who can't put down a good book until we've finished reading it, you know that (almost) as good as reading is talking and hearing about Literature.
The only good reason to miss the Mafra Literary Festival, 'an event that aims to celebrate Literature in all its forms, with particular emphasis on Portuguese-speaking authors', would be if you couldn't put down the book you're reading. If that's the case, do as we do: put it under your arm and take it with you.
The Mafra Literary Festival is curated by José Fanha and will rock the town until 5 November, 'involving different entities (schools, storytellers, writers, illustrators, among others).' The programme is 'aimed at all ages, with a Book Fair, meetings with authors and storytelling sessions.'
Go on - put down that book for a moment and check out the programme here (click on 'selecionar idioma' for an automatic translation of the page).
On the National Day of the Lines of Torres Vedras we presented – as has been the case since 2021 – the Wellington Honour awards, in recognition of people, entities and institutions that play an important role in the human, economic and cultural development of our region, as well as in the dissemination and promotion of the material and immaterial heritage of the Lines of Torres Vedras.
This year, AIDGLOBAL – Ação e Integração para o Desenvolvimento Global was honoured with the Environment and Sustainability award. In the Culture and Creativity category, the award went to the Grupo de Danças Históricas da Batalha do Vimeiro. The Associação VOA – Inclusão para a Deficiência received the Accessibility and Inclusion award. In the Sports and Movement category, the award went to the Clube Desportivo, Recreativo e Cultural da Calhandriz. Last but not least, Clive Gilbert received the Promotion and Dissemination award.
The Wellington Honour awards are more than a well-deserved recognition for individuals or organisations. By highlighting local players in the wider context of the region and the country, they highlight also the virtues of treading a common path, of which the Lines of Torres Vedras are, at one time, anchor of identity and idea of development.
Congratulations to the winners!
See the photo gallery here.
To those vilafranquenses who may have been alarmed last Friday by the presence of a gallant troop, armed with sabres, pistols and rifles, in front of the Museum of Neo-Realism, we can assure you: the guard was one of honour and their intentions were kind. Nor did the peasants who occupied part of the pavement pose any danger to public order, despite the sticks and pitchforks from which, for historical reasons, they are never separated.
They were there, along with many other friends of the Lines of Torres Vedras, to take part in the celebration of their National Day. The house was packed, as it is every year, and even Junot - who we didn't want to throw out with arms and baggage - was invited to read us the Testament he never wrote. Speeches were made, the Wellington Honour prizes were awarded, and conversation was caught up with a good wine from the region.
Above all - and this is what remains every year, more and more - the past was honoured, and the future of our region was celebrated.
See the photo gallery here.
We commemorate to honour the memory of a past event and the people who lived through it. We celebrate to share that memory with others and turn it into a positive feeling for the community. Today, 20 October, we want to commemorate the Lines of Torres Vedras and celebrate our National Day with you.
Another way to celebrate is by learning. And what better way to learn than by listening to those who have something relevant to say? In the first episode of InvadeCAST, the InvadeMAG podcast that debuts today, Ana Raquel Machado conspires with Raul Almeida, the new head of Tourism for the Centre of Portugal, for a tourist invasion of the Lines of Torres Vedras region.
In a fortnight's time, a very small tree - perhaps a stone pine or a cork oak - will want to know who planted it on a steep hill in the Serra do Socorro. Perhaps an old copper eagle or a royal buzzard will remember seeing, from the heights where the eagles fly, some very lively and colourful children populating the hill with shoots as tall as they are; while groups of hikers, these much larger and with a very determined air, marched to the top of the mountain.
Then the old birds will open their memory chests and show the photos from our gallery to the stone pines, the cork oaks and even a strawberry tree that has infiltrated the hosts.
You've only just got back from the March of the Forts and you're already up for another one? Since we can't sit still either, we've prepared a hike for you, 'Discovering the Lines of Torres Vedras', on the section of the Great Route between Loures and Mafra.
Be at the Cabeço de Montachique Municipal Park, in Loures, by 9am on Saturday, 21st October (we know that you're very good at being guided by the position of the sun and stars, but here are the GPS coordinates in case the weather turns cloudy: 38°54'03.5"N 9°10'53.7"W). The hike will pass the fortifications of Achada, Coutada, Carrascal, Capitão, and Presinheira, in the municipality of Mafra, before returning to the starting point. The level of difficulty is, of course, high and the 16 kilometre route, entirely in rural surroundings, takes approximately 5 hours, not counting the nap.
Register until 18 October with the Divisão de Desporto da Câmara Municipal de Loures, using this online form, this email address or, if you're a more classically inclined person, by calling 211 151 157. The number of registrations is limited. Insurance is included, but don't forget to bring water, suitable footwear and a bite for the road. Happy hiking!
Among the many brave participants of the Marcha dos Fortes who yesterday, under a heavy sky, were making their way to the top of the Serra do Socorro for a refreshing break, a small group stood out: the bravest of the brave - the little participants of the 1st Marchinha - had the pride of a mission accomplished in their eyes. They don't count kilometres by the dozen, as older hikers do. But the many trees that, with the help of their parents and many equally generous friends, they left planted on a hill in the mountains are an excellent omen for our common future.
And while the participants in the Marcha dos Fortes set off on the second part of their epic journey, those in the Marchinha stayed right there, at the top of the mountain, learning how to operate a balloon telegraph from the Peninsular War era, with a contagious joy and a commitment that would have come in very handy two hundred years ago.
Stay tuned to InvadeBLOG, because very soon we'll have a photo gallery to share.
For those who aren't in the habit of paying attention to classical music in Portugal, the name Darcos is familiar. For those who are paying attention, it's intimate. This is because, since its first concerts in the country - more than two decades ago -, the Darcos Ensemble has been agitating and transforming the Portuguese music scene.
Under the direction of Nuno Côrte-Real and composed of international musicians such as Filipe Quaresma, Paula Carneiro, Reyes Gallardo, Gaël Rassaert, Pedro Wallenstein, and Helder Marques, the Ensemble has shown, in its formative years, remarkable diversification and artistic flexibility. Diversification and flexibility that made the creation of a complementary musical programme, also founded by Côrte-Real, almost inevitable in 2008. Known as Temporada Darcos, it rapidly established itself as one of the most prestigious music programme agents in Portugal.
Temporada Darcos is supported by the Torres Vedras City Council, the Lisbon City Council, DGArtes and various other public and private partners, including RTP - Antena 2, which regularly records and broadcasts some of the Ensemble's and Temporada Darcos' concerts live.
Check out the programme in PDF format (in Portuguese). And if the name Darcos was only familiar to you, take the first step towards making it intimate.
More information here.
Just as there is a before and an after the French Invasions of Portugal, there is a before and an after the National Day of the Lines of Torres Vedras, which since 2019 has been celebrated on 20 October, the day it was elevated to National Monument.
The before started yesterday - on the 11th. The after runs until the 29th. In these almost three weeks of activities, we will remember the capacity for resistance and the will to independence of an entire people. Before and after are not rhetorical figures: if it's memory that feeds us, it's in the future that we have our eyes on.
This is a tribute from the community to its greatest. Come and celebrate them with us!
See the programme (in Portuguese).
‘Leonardo da Vinci saw trees, towns, battles and a lot of other things in the stains he found on old walls. Shakespeare saw whales and camels in the clouds. Simple Simon looks at the clouds and just sees clouds. The stains on old walls simply look like stains to him. On old walls.’
(Bruno Munari, ‘Design as Art,’ 1966)
You know those days when, feeling a debilitating rumbling in your stomach, you say to yourself:
'Now I could do with some matured ruddy and some Ovos Rotos General Carrera'.
'What would really whet my appetite would be some Mussels Wellington'.
Or even, in a more military tone:
I'm ready for a Cockerel Napoleon Bonaparte.
We know what that's like. And because we're also not capable of going too long without a bite to eat, from the 13th to the 22nd of October we're cooking the Eating with the Generals initiative, with ingredients, sorry, participating restaurants throughout the Lines of Torres Vedras region.
Don't fight those battles on an empty stomach: download the programme in PDF (in Portuguese, to give you the chance to exercise those fancy AI translators) and set off to discover our epoch menus. Eat the food of the generals - without being court-marshalled for it.
Time can be defined negatively, as in "what we don't have". Or in more empathetic terms: "what we share".
Because we can't be without celebrating something, we have a very short film to share with you, today that InvadeMAG is one month old. We promise not to waste your time.
If you didn't go today to the Interpretation Centre at the S. Vicente Fort, in Torres Vedras, ‘ficou a ver navios’ – you're missing out... but there's no reason to be discouraged: there will be many more Saturday mornings to play, learn and get to know some of the most unusual episodes of the French Invasions, as well as the origin of some of the expressions, so common today, that enriched the Portuguese language during that period. Now, ‘não saia à francesa’ – don't sneak off – take the kids with you.
From the Royal Family's ‘Ala, que se faz tarde’ – ‘Make way, it’s getting late’ – to musical and yoga activities for the family, there's a bit of everything going on at the S. Vicente fort until 1 June next year.
Check out the programme here and pick a day, or - why not? - pick them all and do it ‘à grande e à francesa’ – the French way. Don't let this opportunity ‘ir para o Maneta’ – be wasted –, the little ones will thank you for it.
More than two hundred years after Beethoven erased Bonaparte's name from the dedication page of his 3rd symphony, the Eroica (watch our short documentary if you want to know why), the municipality of Bombarral – which we proudly call ‘one of us’ – is holding its Classical Music Festival.
The festival will debut - very appropriately - on 1 October, World Music Day, with Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition performed by a brass quintet, and will end on a high note (pun intended) on the 29th of the same month, with Mário Laginha and the Banda de Música do CCMB. And if you think that's already great, look what's coming up in the middle: Ana Cosme, with the Trio de Canto, Violoncelo e Órgão; Vivaldi's obligatory Four Seasons, especially dedicated to families; and the CCMB Adult Choir's 40th Anniversary Concert.
The concerts are also an opportunity to get to know some of the town's landmarks: the Eduardo Brazão Theatre, the Church of the Most Holy Saviour of the World, Quinta do Sanguinhal and the Fernão do Pó School Auditorium.
Admission is free to all concerts, subject only to available capacity. We’re sure Beethoven would have applauded.
* the Benfica - FC Porto football match.
We know the feeling: you don't know what to do with the old sabre left over from the Peninsular War campaigns. With the faithful tent that sheltered you on those rainy nights in the Alqueidão fort. With the enamelled basin in which you cooled your face covered in dirt and gunpowder. With the old iron pot in which you cooked the maintenance soup. With the resplendent epaulettes that adorned your garish uniform, before wear and moths did to it what the enemy troops could not.
We have good news!
The municipality of Sobral de Monte Agraço has opened registration for the long-awaited Old and Second Hand Market, to be held on the first Saturday of every month. You have until 1 October to reserve your place at the first edition, which will take place on 7 October, at the Sobral de Monte Agraço Central Bus Station.
For registrations and more information, contact the municipality by the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org, by telephone on 261 942 296, or pay a visit to the Tourist Office at Praça Dr Eugénio Dias no. 12.
1. the act or effect of marching.
1. the act or effect of marching less whilst having a lot of fun along the way.
The March of the Forts crosses the territory of the Lines of Torres Vedras over a distance of 44 kilometres, being this year already in its 17th edition (take note: it's on 14 October!). Its little sister, the Little March of the Forts, is designed for families and animates its 4 kilometres of length with lots of activities, including, imagine, learning how to operate a balloon telegraph.
And since mountain walkers and hikers of all ages leave nothing but footprints and take nothing but photographs - they're Friends of the Environment - they'll make the area richer by planting some trees.
For those who think that, because it's smaller than the March, the Little March will be less challenging, we'll talk after the climb up the Serra do Socorro...
The 1st Little March of the Forts will take place on 14 October. Request information and register for free via this e-mail address. You'll receive detailed information and the GPS coordinates of the meeting point in the reply.
Everyone knows that Arruda dos Vinhos is a wine-growing region of excellence, not least because of the fame engraved on the many medals that adorn the labels of the region's producers. And yet, if the Enchanted Valley makes no secret of the excellence of its vineyards, the wines themselves hold many mysteries that are up to you to discover.
Since we at InvadeMAG can't keep a secret, here goes: the municipality of Arruda dos Vinhos, in partnership with local producers, has created the Na Rota do Vinho programme, with guided tours and (surprise!) wine tastings, so that you can investigate first-hand the centuries-old mysteries that Arruda's nectars are made of. See all the details, including how to sign up, here (in Portuguese).
Because a good wine calls for a good glass, and so that you don't think that Arruda only has excellent wines, take the opportunity to get to know the municipality's civil, historical, artistic, military and intangible heritage by signing up for the cycle of guided and audio-guided tours Journeys through Arruda's Heritage, here (in Portuguese).
Who's a friend?
As usual, and because the New Invasions Festival is already a classic, Invade magazine will publish an article about the 2023 edition, which took place from 31 August to 2 September. Because we don't know how to wait, we're bringing you the photos we took of three days of culture, entertainment and amazement in Torres Vedras.
See the gallery here.
Until December, we invite the general public (including, as usual, families with children) to take part in more than 40 initiatives - from music to theatre, sports, equestrian rides, reading activities, health and well-being, citizenship and nature, historical re-enactments and official commemorations, guided tours, games, children's workshops and gastronomy. Have fun while exploring the history and culture of national territories whose identity was marked by the passage of Napoleonic armies during the French Invasions of Portugal.
Download the PDF version of the Agenda, find an initiative near you and join us!
'The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.'
(L.P. Hartley, "The Go-Between")
We spend our time counting time itself, watching it flow like sand through our fingers. And if something remains in our memories - like grains of sand that stick to the skin -, most of it will be lost if we don't care to keep it. No longer in formaldehyde, as in the past (they did things differently there), but in the living, dynamic media that the technological revolution has put at our disposal.
Instead of competing with each other, INVADE magazine and the InvadeMAG portal complement each other: because it is not subject to the constraints of paper editions, the latter makes it possible to make available not only content that is not printed due to space limits, but also that which is natural to the new technologies, reaching more distant places and more varied age groups, always in favour of the Lines of Torres Vedras region and the promotion of its tourism and unique historic heritage, adding value to a title of which we are so proud.
And then, if we didn't mark the beginning of things, how would we celebrate their anniversaries? Our lives are a series of countdowns and at the Historic Route we already have many beginnings to celebrate, but that doesn't take away from our commitment when it comes to marking another one: Day Zero of InvadeMAG is today, and it is with renewed ambition that we share it with you.
For ten days and nine nights, from 8 to 17 September, Sobral de Monte Agraço doesn't sleep: anyone who has been to the town's festivities in the past will tell you that while it doesn't sleep, it eats and drinks, dances, cultivates, and, above all, has a lot of fun. We know what we're talking about.
The Sobral Festivities feature a multitude of initiatives and activities aimed at a wide variety of audiences. Check out the Sobral festivities facebook page and you'll see that we're not exaggerating.
As they say in Sobral, "The best festival happens here!"
"The New Invasions festival is both a point of creative confrontation and an affirmation of a European vision based on diversity. These "New Invasions" differ greatly from the original "invasions" that serve as their backdrop.
The Festival is aimed at the general public, especially families looking for entertainment, leisure and knowledge, valuing initiatives that cross popular culture with contemporary artistic and creative expression practices, in an informal and interpersonal context."
The 5th edition takes place from 31 August to 2 September (programme and more information on the official website). Until then, you can see images from previous editions right here on InvadeMAG.
During the Napoleonic Wars, life was tough for horses and riders. Today, of course, an equestrian experience no longer entails tensions greater than the nervousness of those who try to get on the back of a horse for the first time. There is no shortage of horses and riders in the Oeste region, nor of places where both can enjoy nature and develop the physical and psychological well-being inherent in an activity like this.
'Cavalos da Vinha' provides the places, the horses and the experience. The visitor takes away well-being, a few extra years of life and a few stories to tell. Find out more on their website.