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Tomar is one of Reader's Digest's most "underrated destinations" - & we agree!

Readers' Digest magazine took a look on off the beaten path destinations that commonly are not in guidebooks. and they found the wonderful Portuguese city of Tomar.

The criteria was to find under-the-radar adventures and the Templar City of Tomar is recognized as an "appealing town" that few hear about but that once served as home for the Knights Templar

Tomar_Castelo_0244

Built in the 12th century under the rule of the first Portuguese King, Afonso Henriques, the Castle and the Convent of Christ were planned to serve as the religious headquarters for the Knights Templar fighting the Moors to the south.

In a time Crusades to the Holy Land, the circular church built inside the Convent was meant to evoke Jerusalem's churches. 

With a great mystique, this structure remains today one of the most important Portuguese monuments. Among the city's heritage is also the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Conceição, from the Renaissance the Church of St John the Baptist as well as a 15th century Jewish synagogue.

An open air museum, the city is also famous for its cuisine, the queijadas (a cheesy cake) and the Tabuleiros festival. This event  only happens each 4 years in July and fills the city centre colorful parades of decorated tray-hats. 

Among the top off radar destinations in the article are also Ontario - Canada, Mt Huashan - China and Ballymote - Ireland. 

 

 

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