Wednesday, 11th December 2019
TRAVEL & TOURISM Article
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This Month's Magazine

A Fair to Remember

Galega International Horse Fair - By Norma Grimes

Galega International Horse Fair has become widely acclaimed as the most colourful equestrian show and fair held in Europe. It is held annually during the first week of November and it is here that many Portuguese breeders gather together to display the very finest specimens of Lusitano horses.

The very best, genuine Lusitano are shown, graded and traded and then sent all over the world.

Galega Fair was founded in the mid 18th century and it was named “Sao Martinho” until 1972. Since then, with the rise in popularity of the Lusitano, the event became officially known as the “Feira Nacional do Cavalo”. Each year Galega, otherwise known as the capital of the horse, attracts thousands of horse enthusiasts from as far afield as America. And for those who are passionate about the Lusitano horse, which includes me, the fair is equal in importance to Christmas!


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Classes include dressage to international level, show jumping, dressage to music, long distance riding, carriage driving and the all important grading of three and four year old pure bred Lusitano horses. At the end of the week is the spectacular stallion show and the not to be missed Portuguese riding outfit show, or “Concours du Costume Portugais d’Equitación”.

Displays of High School riding and bullfighting horsemanship are given by the most reputed schools of equestrian art within Portugal including the Portuguese School of Equestrian Art.” The spectacular “Equestre de Haute Ecole de Tradición Portuguese and the “Spectacle Equestre du Centre de Leziria Grande” are definitely not to be missed. Wrap up warm as the displays continue until 22hrs. and even later.
When driving to Galega from Spain, you wil pass through some incredible scenery. See the Roman ruins in Evora, the Roman Temple of Diana and the Capela de Ossos, containing the bones of 5,000 monks.

Glamorous Lisbon is within easy driving distance, making it possible to combine a city break with an equestrian treat. To complete the feast taste the famous drink “Agua-Pé” and the delicious roasted chestnuts from Galega’ Finally why not dine in one of Galega’s excellent restaurants? Or take breakfast in one of the friendly cafes which are situated around the show ground.

Galega Fair presents the most magnificent animal on earth, the horse, and is with free entrance. What more could you ask for?



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