Aveiro, Portugal: why this is the city to live in

The Ria served as inspiration for author Saramago, who described it as a “living body that connects the land to the sea, like an enormous heart”, and charmed singer Caetano into writing “Menina da Ria”. We are talking about Aveiro, in Portugal, and in this article we will give you the reasons why you might consider moving to this city.

Known as the Portuguese Venice, Aveiro is located in the central region of Portugal, at the start of the Silver Coast. The city is capital of a district that boasts 19 municipalities, is less than an hour from Porto and even closer to Coimbra, and its residents benefit from the sort of diverse lifestyle that you can find in most of the country’s larger urban centres.

Home to an impressive collection of architectural and natural beauties, it also has plenty to offer in terms of infrastructure in health, education, safety, leisure, and jobs, all this without sacrificing the quality of life traditional to cities in the interior.

Advantages of living in Aveiro

  1. An easy city to get around in, with a rich and diverse offering

Aveiro is a flat city, devoid of hills or endless stairways, where it is easy to get around on foot or by bicycle, which makes it inviting for long walks, gatherings, and stress-free mingling. It is well worth talking a stroll in the city’s historic centre, by the canals, taking in the Art Nouveau, visiting the Fish Market, having a coffee near the 14 de Julho Square, and just feeling the beat of the heart of the city. Of course, you will want to take advantage of the proximity of the beach and enjoy a walk near the coloured houses of the Costa Nova, which is essential to better understanding the local fishing traditions and the whole of the scene which makes the city unique in the country. The Barra Beach is known for its lighthouse, one of the largest in Portugal, which marks the point where the Ria runs into the sea. If you like more savage beaches, then the Dunas de São Jacinto Nature Reserve is a good alternative.

There is plenty on offer in the realm of entertainment as well, including the famous trips in traditional moliceiro boats along the central canal. These vessels date from the time when the moliço seaweed was gathered to be treated and turned into fertilizer. With their curious and humorous illustrations, the moliceiros provide you with some of the best views of the city of Aveiro and its typical coloured houses. Continue your tour along the Aveiro walking paths which put you in direct contact with nature along an extension of almost 7.5 km, and visit the estuary, with its exuberant flora and fauna, but make sure to be there in time to enjoy the magnificent sunset.

  1. Great food

Aveiro also holds its own in terms of cuisine, beginning with the fact that it has its own salt production, and has done for a long time. Make sure to try the fresh fish and the seafood, which is second to none. The traditional egg-based ovos-moles sweets are a very famous specialty, and along with the tripas de Aveiro make for an excellent end to your daily stroll.

  1. Internationally renowned educational services

Both in terms of quantity and quality, Aveiro is one of the best cities for families interested in stability and quality of education for their children. The University of Aveiro plays a major role, having ranked among the top six in Portugal in the year of 2021/2022, according to the Center for World University Rankings, with its investment in differentiated teaching focusing on innovative areas and boasting partnerships with international universities on scientific research projects. Local schools are also high quality, and there is great offer both in terms of private and public institutions in Aveiro.

  1. Cost of living is considerably lower than in other cities

One of the advantages of living in Aveiro is, obviously, the low cost of living, when compared with cities such as Lisbon or Porto, especially in terms of services, food, and rent.

  • Great employment levels

Aveiro has an impressive development rate, especially in sectors such as shipbuilding and salt production, as well as being a reference in terms of tourism. Indeed, the tourism and services sectors are seeing periods of solid growth and present great opportunities for people looking to establish a career. The local factories present opportunities in industry and there are also options in the rail and port sectors, as well as in teaching, at the University of Aveiro.

  1. Aveiro is a safe and peaceful city

Aveiro is a very safe city, with low crime rates. Nonetheless, the presence of a large number of resident university students and tourists who are now returning to the country makes for a lively atmosphere and the type of healthy hustle and bustle that characterise a growing and developing city that still retains a good dose of calm. The growth rates presented by this central city has translated into an increased quality of life and an improvement in the business and culture sectors, leading Aveiro to entertain hopes of being granted the status of European Capital of Culture 2027.

  1. Relatively good health services

Although Aveiro may not be a national reference in terms of health services, it does have all the usual facilities for a city of its size. On the other hand, it is strategically close to Porto and Coimbra, which are fully equipped in this regard.

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