Climbing up through the trees in the São Mamede mountains, the huge walls of Marvão Castle come into view.
Before reaching the castle you’ll see the small Gothic convent of Nossa Senhora da Estrela and a marble pillory. Continuing to climb, more of this historic town can be seen: its small, winding streets, houses with Gothic style windows and elegant wrought iron verandas. You’ll see Renaissance doorways, such as those on the Church of the Holy Spirit, and Gothic style doorways built in granite, such as those of the Church of Santiago. The Town Hall is decorated with the shields and armillary spheres of King Manuel I.
In town, the Church of Santa Maria has been converted into a museum.
Here you’ll see a variety of archaeological finds, all of which help us understand the history of the region, its natural wealth and people.
Finally, when reaching the castle, you’re rewarded with a spectacular view.
This splendid location has another significance in the history of Portugal. The almost inaccessible rocks made this fortress “the most invincible in the entire Kingdom.” Since the time of its conquest in 1116 by King Afonso II up to the Wars of Independence between Spain and Portugal in the 17th Century, this castle was continually adapted to new techniques of war. Today it is a place of peace and beauty.