Castelo Branco





The Village

Janeiro de Cima is a parish in the county of Fundão, Castelo Branco district, located 40 km and 60 km, respectively, from these urban centres.

This village is one of 26 included in the Network of Aldeias do Xisto (schist villages), situated on the banks of the river Zêzere. It has always been marked by the proximity to the river. Its traditional architecture (which is benefiting from a successful preservation and recovery effort) allures to the city visitor, more accustomed to mass concrete constructions.

Here the houses are built with shale slabs and river pebbles from Zêzere, the final effect, beautiful, can only be fully appreciated by coming up here.

In the past, people and trade from both sides of Zêzere, joined together through a community barge that crossed the river. Whenever necessary, people shouted up "Oh Barge!" and the boatman soon would appear. You can still to this day make a ride on the barge, upriver.

But the village is not only this. There are still people and one of its oldest traditions is still present and very much alive. Here in Casa das Tecedeiras (House of the Weavers), looms still weave. You can enjoy seeing and even experience this ancient art. Articles leaving the loom can be bought, like scarves of various patterns or rugs, "borned" thread-to-thread, an ancient practice that has been lost with time.