Cod is almost a way of life in Portugal, and if ever there’s a place to go to understand this affection, Ílhavo is the right place to start.
Fundamentally linked to the Ria de Aveiro lagoon that surrounds it and inevitably facing the sea by glorious Atlantic beaches – Barra and Costa Nova - with bubbling surf, Ílhavo has in this connection its main characteristic, apart from having one of the tallest lighthouses in Europe
With about nine and a half centuries of history, the Ílhavo population is considered to be descendants of legendary navigators. But what defines Ílhavo and its people is cod fishing.
History tells us that most of the cod fishing vessels officers, as well the majority of Portuguese cod fishermen were Ílhavo born and bred, and went on epic voyages to the North-Atlantic seas.
The modern maritime museum will give you all the background, as well as a 1948 trawler turned museum moored for you to visit.