Cape Santo Andre, Leixoes, Portugal | CruiseBe
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Cape Santo André

Póvoa de Varzim, Portugal
Natural sights
cape, nature, sightseeing

Cape Santo André (Portuguese for Saint Andrew) is a cape located in the Northern coast of continental Portugal, in Santo André, municipality of Póvoa de Varzim. It is the tip of Póvoa de Varzim's cuspate foreland.

It is probably the old Roman Avarius, Auarius Promontorium or Auaron Promontorium (In Ancient Greek, Αὔαρον ἄκρον) referred by Ptolemy, geographer of Ancient Greece, in the territory of the Callaici Bracares, between the river Avus (Ave River) and river Nebis (Neiva River).


The cape has a small sheltered beach between its boulders known as Dois Cabos Beach, literally two headlands beach.

It is the westernmost point in Póvoa de Varzim and the center of Póvoa de Varzim triangular shaped territory that enters into the sea and is surrounded by the Atlantic by the north and south.

The cape has iconic views over coastal northern Portugal. The northern coves of Póvoa de Varzim and the city are visible to the South and the sand dunes of Coastal Northern Portugal Parkland in Esposende and the Minho river rocky cliffs can be seen to the North.


The cape has a native dune flora, including Honckenya peploides, Otanthus maritimus, Eryngium maritimum, Ammophila arenaria, Juncus acutus, Silene littorea, and several other species, although most of the cape is dominated by the invasive species Carpobrotus edulis.


Near the cape, there's the 16th century Saint Andrew chapel and Rock, to whom Povoan fishermen dedicate a night pilgrimage throw the beach in the last day of November.

According to local legends, Saint Andrew is the boatman of souls, and fishes cadavers from shipwrecks. Several victims were found near the cape and buried below the chapel. The people also believed the chapel's saint helped in fisheries and provided marriages. It is of ancient cult in Póvoa de Varzim, there are hints of Stone Age paintings and Roman activity in the site.


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