Seis Coisas

Online resources to further your Portugese reading

Our latest Brazilian Portugese class meets for the first time this Monday, so to limber ourselves up for it we’re taking a look at six online resources you could peruse to develop your Portugese comprehension and boost your vocabulary.

1. Dicionário electrónico

Portugal’s largest publisher, Porto Editora, has the site to go to for your Portuguese dictionary. You need to register for its infopédia site in order to access the dicionário bilingue content but it is worth it because you gain access to all of its dictionary and encyclopaedia services. The Língua Portuguesa com Acordo Ortográfico is Gratuito.

2. Port

It’s obvious, I know. And I do feel uneasy about the general British characterisation of Portugal as a land famous for this fortified wine, the Algarve, golf, that Euro 2004 quarter final, Luís Figo and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Indeed, the names borne by many of the main port producers will testify to the British obsession with the drink. However, it has to make our list because, aside from the merits of the tipple itself, the Douro Valley (where it is produced) is simply beautiful.

The official Douro Valley site not only gives a full guide to the various quintas, enotecas, adegas and caves de vinho to visit, but also a great deal of information about the region’s other attractions – whether natureza, património, or espaços culturais. It even provides a wide selection of themed rutas to inspire you.

The only thing missing really is the list of local pousadas, which will have you booking that flight like ontem.

3. 2014

If you’re already studying Portugese with us, you will know that we offer both Portugese and Brazilian Portugese. So, no wonder that we turn to Brazil for our next coisa. And there just happens to be something big happening there soon…

4. José Maria de Eça de Queiroz

He is recognised as one of Portugal’s greatest writers; certainly its greatest writer in the realist style.

It always makes me a little sad about how closed the British publishing market seems to be to translations and how little British schools teach of international literature. If you are looking to advance your reading in Portugese, then this is one author to consider. And this is a great site to find out more about the man.

5. Madeira

What is it with these fortified wines? We’ll all be complaining of gout before you know it! But seriously, Portugese is also spoken in the Atlantic archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores.

This beautiful isle has a website to make you start booking flights again! The next festa to take place will be the festa do vinho Madeira (oh! the gout!) in the capital Funchal de 1 a 8 de setembro. But the time to be there is new year when the town goes all out for the harbourside firework spectacular. And we’re definitely not misusing the word spectacular. Cruise ships blockade the harbour to get a glimpse as the action kicks off in town.

6. Vasco de Gama

Actually, this isn’t a link to a site about the famous explorer, but a (really rather interesting) article about the diaries of the man’s voyages. Sadly, for such a world-changing and fascinating life, there are very little online resources about this explorer to explore. I can’t help feeling he deserves a mention on this list, hence the title of this link to one of Portugal’s foremost jornal do dia.

You can subscribe to Publico online – and get Smartphone, tablet (Android or iPad) or Kindle editions. There is plenty of great content to root through and amuse yourself with, including one of the best articles commemorating the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream’ speech I’ve come across. Ok, so you’re not going to pick up a lot of Portugese listening to the clips, but great tunes…

What are your favourites? What have we missed off this list? Share your thoughts!

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