Cantanhede, Portugal

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Flag of Cantanhede
Coat of arms of Cantanhede
Coat of arms
Coordinates: 40°21′N 8°35′W / 40.350°N 8.583°W / 40.350; -8.583Coordinates: 40°21′N 8°35′W / 40.350°N 8.583°W / 40.350; -8.583
Country Portugal
Intermunic. comm.Região de Coimbra
 • PresidentJoão Moura (PSD)
 • Total390.88 km2 (150.92 sq mi)
 • Total36,595
 • Density94/km2 (240/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC±00:00 (WET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+01:00 (WEST)

Cantanhede (Portuguese pronunciation: [kɐ̃tɐˈɲeð(ɨ)] (About this soundlisten)) is a city and municipality in the Coimbra District, in the Centro Region, Portugal. The population in 2011 was 36,595,[1] in an area of 390.88 km².[2]


Cantanhede is located in the Coimbra District, in the Baixo Mondego subregion of the Centro Region, halfway between the cities of Coimbra and Aveiro, in Portugal. This small town is located just 25 km from the very popular beaches of Mira and Tocha on the Atlantic coast.


The name "Cantanhede" comes from the Celtic cant, which means "great stone", and refers to the quarries in the region. It was the original Cantonieti, mentioned in the documentation of the centuries 11th, 12th and 13th also with the spellings Cantoniedi, Cantonidi and Cantonetu. Its first historical references dating back to 1087, date on which Sisnando Davides, governor of Coimbra, provided the village with fortification and promoted its repopulation. With a well-preserved urban area elevated to city (cidade) status by the Lei n.º 69/91, de 16 de Agosto in August 1991, and being home to a number of large and elegant houses, dating back to the 19th century, Cantanhede was granted foral in 1514 by the king Manuel I of Portugal.[3]


Traditionally a major agriculture center, Cantanhede is at the heart of the Bairrada DOC which produces famed wines. The town is home to Biocant Park,[4] a biotechnology park. This park is attracting biosciences companies to Cantanhede, and has the scientific background of the University of Coimbra and Aveiro University, both associated entities of the project. Cantanhede was growing fast, and the inauguration of the C.C. Rossio (local shopping center) helped to boost the area's economy. EXPOFACIC - Feira Agrícola, Comercial e Industrial de Cantanhede, a trade fair, agricultural show and festival, is a major event in the region and is organized every year in July, attracting thousands of visitors to Cantanhede.


The municipality is subdivided into the following parishes:[5]

Famous people[edit]

  • Pedro Teixeira (born in Cantanhede, unknown date, died 1640), a Portuguese explorer commissioned by the Portuguese governor of Maranhão, in current-day Brazil, to explore the Amazon in 1637.
  • António Luís de Meneses, first Marquis of Marialva and third Count of Cantanhede (born 13 December 1596 - died in Cantanhede, 16 August 1675) was a notable Portuguese general.
  • João Crisóstomo de Amorim Pessoa (14 October 1810 in Cantanhede - 22 December 1888) a Portuguese bishop, he was Bishop of Santiago de Cabo Verde and archbishops of Goa and Braga
  • António Fragoso (born June 17, 1897 in Cantanhede, died October 13, 1918 in Cantanhede), Portuguese composer and pianist.
  • Luís Filipe (born 14 June 1979 in Cantanhede), a Portuguese footballer.
  • José de Carvalho Rodrigues Pereira (born on January 20, 1929 in Cantanhede - died in Lisbon, 28 November 1984) was an eminent Portuguese lawyer for Petrogal.
  • Dina Matos, former first lady of the American state of New Jersey.


  1. ^ Instituto Nacional de Estatística
  2. ^ Eurostat Archived October 7, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ (in Portuguese) O concelho de Cantanhede Archived September 20, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, Freguesia de Covões
  4. ^ Biocant Park,
  5. ^ Diário da República. "Law nr. 11-A/2013, page 552 32" (pdf) (in Portuguese). Retrieved 10 July 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External links[edit]

Typical meal in Cantanhede featuring cheese, enchidos and local sparkling wine.