Arts & Entertainment

Portugal’s Prehistoric Rock Art Sites received 80,000 visitors in 2021

Lisbon, Jan 16 (EFE).- Portugal’s two Prehistoric Rock Art Sites welcomed nearly 80,000 visitors last year despite the pandemic, the managers of the site announced on Sunday.

The Upper Palaeolithic rock art, located in the northeastern Portuguese area of Coa, was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1998.

It comprises 1,300 artistic panels scattered along the banks of the Douro river, where 500 pieces contain engravings from the Paleolithic era.

The Coa Valley, “a tourist focal point”, received 79,000 visitors in 2021 despite the pandemic, Aida Carvalho, chairman of the Coa-Parque Foundation that runs the site, told Efe.

Visitors flock to the region to admire engravings of different animals like canids, deer, horses, goats and bulls that date back to 20,000 years ago.

The carvings include extinct species such as aurochs, a type of wild ox, or the woolly rhinoceros.

In a bid to attract more visitors to the site, the nearby Coa Museum will host the exhibition “Prehistoric Art: From the Rock to the Museum” between February and May, Carvalho said.

The exhibit, which belongs to Spain’s National Museum of Archeology, features 300 pieces including paintings, engravings and other art forms. EFE


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