Coimbra is a city where its history is like a storyteller.
Once upon a time there was Conímbriga, a prosperous Roman town, which existed thanks to the Lusitanian peace from II B.C. to the decline of IV A.D. Until one day, the Sueves plundered and almost destroyed Conímbriga and some settlers move north to create what is now known as Coimbra. Coimbra was occupied by the Moors till the VIII century, and only became fully Christian by the end of the XI century.
Portugal’s first king, Afonso Henriques, declared Coimbra the kingdom‘s capital in the following century.
From the Middle Ages to Renaissance, Coimbra became an important commercial port, with the Mondego River, and a knowledge centre, with the foundation of Portugal’s first University. The city is still, from that date, a city of students who live up its streets and typical and bohemian neighbourhoods, commonly dressed in black capes.
Coimbra has a mystic destiny called Fado, which is also the name of the students’ typical music genre; they sing about a tragic love story between the prince D. Pedro and his wife’s maid Inês de Castro.
The eternity of their love is represented in Alcobaça monastery and recently in the bridge conceived by Cecil Balmond.