Lisbon – Almourol – Tomar -Fátima – Lisbon (plus Óbidos)
- Almourol Castle
- Tomar Castle and Convent of Christ
- St Mary of Olivais Church
- Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary
- Óbidos Castle
This Tour is a route of Portugal’s Knights Templar Order history, also known as Order of the knights of our Lord Jesus Christ from the 12th century, who helped the first kings of Portugal in the Christian reconquest. Founded in 1118 were persecuted by the king of France and banned by the Pope Clement V.
After, the Order of Christ was founded in 1319 with the protection of King Denis I of Portugal who refused to pursue and persecute the former knights. The Order of Christ helped the king in the reconstruction of Portugal after the war and had a key role in the discoveries. They used a castle in Tomar built in 1160 and rebuilt it to be one of the most advanced military structures in the kingdom that time being their seat for nearly 700 years.
In this tour you’ll have the opportunity to see the templars path in Portugal passing by the main places of their presence and influence connecting their faith and Christianism with our sanctuary of Fátima and the medieval town of Óbidos.
- Hotel/Apartment Pick Up;
- Monuments entrance tickets are not included, so you can decide what you want to visit;
- We selected some of the sites that we consider the best to fulfill your trip expectations, the tours itinerary is flexible, you can change anything or add something you wish to visit;
- All the cars provide water for our clients;
- Tour up to 50 people;
Places to see:
Castelo de Almourol (Almourol Castle)
The Castle of Almourol location is in the Parish of Ribatejo Beach, in Santarém. The castle was raised on a granite above the sea level, on a small island in the middle course of the river Tagus. It is one of the most representative examples of the military architecture heritage of the beginnings of the kingdom of Portugal and the Templars Order, an association that reinforces the aura of mystery and romanticism.
The origin of the castle is quite old and therefore enigmatic, but in 1129 when the Portuguese troops conquered the region the castle already existed with the name Almorolan. The king D. Afonso Henriques handed him over to the knights, who were responsible to defend the Portuguese capital, Coimbra. The castle was rebuilt following the military architecture of the Tomar Castle with high walls protected with nine circular towers and a central tower with three floors.
Castelo de Tomar e Convento de Cristo (Tomar Castle and Convent of Christ)
One of the most important military buildings from the 12th century and the seat for the Knight Templars also holding the Convent of Christ listed as an World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1983.
Built to defend the borderlands with the Moors regions, Guialdim Pais, a master of the Knights Templars was the responsible of this great military architecture. The castle towers were introduced by the Templars for the first time and were considered a great innovation by having resisted heavier attacks than the traditional square towers.
Within walls you can find the Convent of Christ, a Romanesque round church also built in the 12th century decorated with Gothic and Renaissance art as well Arab architecture.
The castle history holds many mystery’s and tales like the Templars never found treasure.
Torre de Dornes (Dornes Tower)
Built in the tiny village of Dornes, in Ferreira do Zêzere, by the Knights Templars as a watchtower and defensive bastion of the region and the Tejo Valley during the Christian Reconquest. It is rare example of military architecture due to its pentagonal form.
Aqueduto dos Pegões (Pegões Aqueduct)
To provide water to the Convent of Christ this six-kilometer aqueduct began to be built in 1593 by the Italian military architect Filipe Terzio reaching a maximum height of 30 meters. It has 180 arches some of which are double-decker.
Praça da Républica (Republic Square)
Placed in front of St João Batista church the 16th century mannerist town hall has a statue of the knight templar and Tomar founder Gualdim Pais responsible to oversee the templars constructions.
Igreja de Santa Maria dos Olivais (St Mary of Olivais Church)
This 12th century church was seat and the pantheon for the Knights Templars Order grand masters where 22 grand masters were buried including Gualdim Pais the principal master of the order. His tomb dated from 1195 is still preserved inside.
Classified as national monuments since 1910 it’s an emblematic gothic architecture example in Portugal
Santuário de Fátima (Sanctuary of Fátima)
The sanctuary was built near the area of Cova da Iria where Our Lady Of Fátima appeared to the three shepherds in 1917. Its one of the most important marian sanctuarys of the world belonging to the catholic church. It was disguised with three gold roses and visited by the popes Paulo VI (1967), João Paulo II (1982, 1991 and 2000), Benedict XVI (2010) and Francisco (2017).
Basílica nossa senhora do rosário (Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary)
The building was designed by the architect Gerardus Samuel Van Krieken and continued by João Antunes and built with limestone of the area. The structure has a colonnade with 200 columns and 14 altars and 17 statues over them. It was blessed on May 13th of 1958.
Capela das aparições (Chapel of the Apparitions)
The chapel of apparitions is the principal structure of the shrine of Fátima because it was in that place that our lady talked with the shepherds. From the six apparitions, five happened in this place where in her honor the chapel was built in 1919.
Basilica da Santissima Trindade (Basilica the holy trinity)
Due to the high number of pilgrims it was necessary to build a new church. In 1997 the Greek architect Alexandro Tombazis won an international contest done by the shrine to construct the new church. In 2007 the church was dedicated by Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone then Secretary of State of the Vatican and legate of Benedict XVI. Inside the church there’s a bronze crucifix above the altar with 3 meters and the inside gold color symbolizes fidelity to god and holiness.
Castelo de Óbidos (Óbidos Castle)
This medieval castle of Roman origin was built under Arab domain and was enlarged after the Christian conquest in 1148. In the reign of King Manuel I the construction of a palace was ordered where you can see some Manueline windows influence. After being completely damaged by the 1755 earthquake was restored and nowadays it’s also a State Inn, the first in a historic building. The castle was declared one of the seven wonders of Portugal and the second most relevant monuments of the Portuguese architecture.
Igreja de Santa Maria (Saint Mary’s Church)
In the Saint Mary’s Square inside Óbidos walls you can find the church whose legend beliefs it was built during the Visigoth period. It was a mosque until King Afonso Henriques conquered it from the Moors and became Christian again. Before you enter, in the entrance, you can see an image of our lady of Assumption. Inside besides the painted wooden ceiling dated 1676 and walls covered with tiles from around 1680-90 you can see a gospel in baroque style with an image of our lady of the Rosary and one of the first works of Portuguese Renaissance art, the tomb of João de Noronha and his wife Isabel de Sousa.