Good Practice Database - Country - PT - Ecomuseu do Barroso
Good Practice Database

Ecomuseu do Barroso

Practical details:
NUTS 2: PT11 Norte
Start date: 01.07.2009
Type of initiative:  private
Description of the practice:

This good practice demonstrates that old traditions can be kept alive throughout Ecomuseums and showed to tourist as cultural heritage. It is also a way to involve the young and old generations and make them work together in order to attracted more tourists to a rural and mountain area, which also suffers with depopulation and lack of job opportunities.

The Ecomuseum is directly connected to the National Park Peneda-Gêres and some of the Ecomuseum’s  delegations are even located in villages that are already inside the Park.

The constitution of the Ecomuseum was a great achievement for the Barroso sub-region and population. The revitalization of old traditions involving not only the aged population but also the young people became so important that the Ecomuseum is now a reference to the population of Barroso. The activities promoted are so diversified and interesting that even small children find the Ecomuseum a place to enjoy, the outdoor activities call people all over the north region of Portugal and Spain. The headquarters and the poles have high quality equipment. Their main objectives are: valorise and publicize the heritage and natural resources of the region; innovate and involve the population on the activities; train and cooperate with other organizations; Represent the identity of the region. Originally it was an initiative of the Municipality of Montalegre, supported by the public funds from the government. Along the years, it had the financial support of different programmes and initiatives: ON and ON2 (national programmes), LEADER II, LEADER+ and INTERREG SUDOE. Besides the principal building, placed on the historical centre of Montalegre, it also invested in 3 other small villages (2 in the National Park of Peneda-Gerês), recovering ancient traditional buildings, installing there the poles. The pole of Pitões das Júnias is an Interpretative Centre focused on local communitarian traditions, on the ethnographic heritage, on the Cister Monastery and on the National Park. The pole of Tourém, 30 km far from the Ecomuseu headquarter, is related with the ancient smuggling activities, the farming labors and handcraft. This village is close to the border with Spain and is also included on the National Park of Peneda-Gerês territory. The pole of Salto is hosted on the Casa do Capitão (Captain’s House), an ancient house of an important family some centuries ago. The house was reconstructed to host the pole, having also a library and a small auditorium for public events.

Evidence of success
Biological/biodiversity values:

Natural oaklands, riparian forests and mountain pastures; Birds Directive species (iberian wolf, roe deer, otter, golden eagle, etc.);  Habitats Directive species (heathlands); Iberian endemisms (e.g. Chioglossa lusitanica and Iris boissieri); natural forests and habitats; natural regeneration of abandoned farmlands.

Visual impact and recreational value:

Oaklands, mountain pastures; Cultural landscapes associated with traditional cattle breeding; natural and semi-natural landscapes, suitable for nature sports (trekking, mountain bike, birdwatching, canyoning).

Cultural heritage:

Communitarian pastoralism and traditions; agricultural landscape, involvement of local inhabitants in some activities (pedestrian tours, cultural events, etc.).

Environmental impact:


Economic viability:

The Ecomuseum has stimulated the local economy by promoting the local products and handcraft. The Ecomuseum has a shop with local products, produced locally, that is quite successful.

The Ecomuseum can be transferred into another reality, country or region, even if it is completely different from the Ecomuseu of Barroso.

Contact details:
Name: David Teixeira
Organisation: Ecomuseu do Barroso
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Completed on: 25.07.2011
Date added: 12.9.2011  Hits: 255
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