Jan 2019

Cais Palafítico da Carrasqueira

port comporta

Comporta is home to a port balanced on stilts, untouched by time and suspended between sky and sea. Located in Carrasqueira on the Sado River, this small fishing port is built on a jumble of rough-and-ready landing stages made of openwork planks that rest on stilts.

A unique architecture in Europe

This outstanding example of popular architecture, the only one of its kind in Europe, was constructed during the 1950s and 1960s. The port acted as an anchorage for the fishing boats in the region, a purpose it continues to fulfil to this day.

It was fishing, especially for oysters, that led to significant growth in the Carrasqueira area. The port was created specifically so that fisherman would always have access to their boats, no matter what the tides were doing.

In fact, when the tide is low, about ten meters of mud (or sometimes as much a hundred!) separate the land from the water. Because of this, the very first fisherman hammered in stilts at the edge of the tidal wall (which protects the farmland), and put a few planks on top. The fishermen who came after them then worked together to pile up new stilts and planks. It was an evolving method of construction that gradually extended the jumble of stilts and planks by several hundreds of meters. This is how the unusual jetty came into existence, and today, it is one of the most visited places in the municipality of Alcácer.

A paradise for lovers of photography

Depending on the tides, the boats either float on the water or are sometimes buried in the mud. A large number of wooden cabins, small in size and listed as national heritage buildings, run along the jetty and enhance the beauty of the landscape.
For photography lovers, this is the perfect location.

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