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Castelo de Bragança

Castelo de Bragança
Place: Bragança
Photo: João Paulo
Castelo de Bragança


Bragança Castle, one of the most characteristic examples of medieval architecture, was built in 1409 on the orders of king João I on foundations dating back to the times of the first king of Portugal, Afonso Henriques.

Formed by an imposing keep and a double wall, it has stood up well to the tests of time. The central parade ground, known as the citadel or old town and where the church of Santa Maria and the Domus Municipalis are to be found, retain its medieval lines with narrow streets and small whitewashed houses.

Inside the 17-metre wide and 33-metre tall Keep, there are some notable gothic features including the battlements, the railed windows and the stone carved arms of the Casa Real de Avis (Royal House of Avis), founded by king João I.

Also inside, there is the Military Museum. Heading up to the top floor is well worth it if only for the wonderful views out over the city and surrounding countryside.

Fifteen towers and three gateways complete the walls. The Torre da Princesa (Tower of the Princess), a former belonging of the Casa dos Alcaides stores the legend of a princess taken prisoner. There is also the Porta da Vila (Town Gateway) that welcomes in visitors to the castle.


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