The Sanctuary of Fátima is a symbol of the Virgin Mary and one of the world's most important religious sites. A major tourist attraction for centuries, pilgrims from all over the world flock here every year, especially between May and October.
It was between May and October 1917, when three shepherd children, Jacinta, Francisco and Lúcia - witnessed apparitions of Our lady of the Rosary, (the Virgin Mary), at the site of the sanctuary.
Initially regarded with suspicion by the Church, but greatly cherished by the people, the phenomenon was only officially recognised in 1930 by the Bishop of Leiria.
On the 13th May 2000 the Vatican beatified Jacinta and Francisco, because it is said they could miraculously cure illness after their visions.
The fame of the Sanctuary of Fátima has spread throughout the world, especially during the papacy of John Paul II, who was a devout worshipper of Our Lady of Fátima.
As well as the famous Sanctuary, you can also visit Fátima Parish Church, the small Chapel of the Holy Way and the Calvary. At Loca do Anjo in Valinhos, you can visit the shepherd children’s houses and their local water well. Trips to the Museum of Sacred Art and Ethnology, the Wax Museum, and the Casa-Museu de Aljustrel, as well as the Museu Fátima 1917 Aparições, and the Animated Crib and Village of Bethlehem - will all shed light on the history of Fátima too, and leave a lasting impression of this mystical place.