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The prestigious North American magazine TIME released the list of the most extraordinary places in the world to visit in 2021 and Coimbra – candidate city for European Capital of Culture in 2027 – is one of the 100 places chosen by the prestigious publication. The city, known and recognized by the oldest Portuguese university, for its song – the Fado de Coimbra – unique in the world and also for the redevelopment it is carrying out on the banks of the river Mondego, is one of the two Portuguese cities that appear in this list .
Manuel Machado, president of Coimbra’s City Council, says: “The city registers and thanks this international recognition, which joins others that, in recent years, unequivocally show that Coimbra is experiencing, despite the pandemic, a moment of appreciation of its assets and its people and is recognized for that”.
And adds Manuel Machado: “We intend to continue to value Coimbra, making it, increasingly, a reference in the most diverse areas, always with our eyes set on the European Capital of Culture 2027, to which we are applying and which we have a deep expectation of come to organize, but also continuing to turn the city towards the Mondego river through an extensive requalification operation on its banks”.
For Luís de Matos, coordinator of the Working Group of Coimbra’s candidacy for European Capital of Culture, “the promotion of the cultural aspect assumes a crucial role in the life of the city and had – I have no doubts – a great influence in this election that it projects, from an incomparable form, the city of Coimbra in the international panorama”.
At this point, it should be noted that the city’s Contemporary Art Center, open to the public on July 4, 2020, which features exhibitions by artists such as Mário Cesariny, Peter Zimmermann or Helena Almeida, or the emblematic Monastery of Santa Clara-a -Velha were just some of the places highlighted in the TIME article.
Classified in 2013 as World Heritage by UNESCO, it should be remembered that Coimbra was already National Theater Capital (in 1992) and National Capital of Culture (in 2003). All those who, in 2021, follow TIME’s advice and visit Coimbra will not be indifferent to the passages of what was the first capital of Portugal, which served as the stage for the love story of Pedro and Inês and which, until 1911, held the only one university in Portugal. With culture at the center of its history and with a program that intends to continue placing the city on the media agenda, Coimbra intends to ensure a captive place in this and in the most relevant national and international rankings.