After two weeks in Aveiro, I know a little more about the place.
The high-prowed boats that carry boatloads of tourists along the canals have a very different origin. They originally carried seaweed to farmers’ fields for use as fertiliser.
The canals connect to a large lagoon. On its banks, near the town, are ponds formerly used for evaporating sea-water for salt. Now, part of the lagoon is a port and industrial area, but further south there is a quiet beach resort called Costa Nova. On one side, a large esplanade runs between a row of former fishermen’s cottages and the lagoon, where fishing boats can be seen. On the other side, beyond the sand dunes, is a beach of fine white sand.
Aveiro is perhaps most famous for its “soft eggs”, the Ovos Moles de Aveiro. These consist of a very sweet and bright yellow centre enclosed in an off-white coat. I am sure that many real eggs are used in their production. Amazingly, they are (according to Wikipedia) one of only two items of Portuguese confectionery which have IGP (protected geographical indication) status. In a country so rich in local speciality cakes and desserts, I had assumed there would be many more such!
The magnificent old ceramic factory, on a canal basin, is now the local council offices. The water, incidentally, teems with fish.
And a final word: