The Castelo de Almourol, in Vila Nova da Barquinha, reopened earlier this month after the completion of the monument transformation. The requalification work, finished in late 2015, focused on several areas of the castle walls and towers.
With a renewed castle coming to life, the new “battle” for the region is to increase the 70 thousand visitors in 2015 to 100 thousand in 2016. To fight for this goal it was created, per example, conditions to accommodate cultural shows and another type of events.
About Castelo de Almourol
Almourol floats on a tiny island in the river Tejo, rising like a dream over the calm waters. It was never attacked and today is one of the purest castles to be found in terms of retaining its original design. Even before the arrival of the Romans, a fort was there and the Moors held the islet briefly. In 1171 Gualdim Pais and his fellow Templars were given the task to build a new castle to solidify the lines of the Tejo that they were defending. The result was an imposing castle that looked like a stone ship. It rises 18 meters high, and is 310 meters long and 75 meters wide.
With the total defeat of the Moors in 1249, Almourol lost its military importance and was left to its river and the wind. Soon, legends and ghost stories were told about the place. But, sitting on an islet, vandals, stone thieves, and invading armies all left the castle alone, and it has survived intact to the present time. The castle’s plan is simple: one high keep is flanked by a wall on either side and one wall in the middle. A series of small round towers defend the walls, and a double castellated wall juts out like a prow to the east. A small boat carries the visitors to the island for a pittance. Eerie and silent, the enchanted isle remains a place of legends.
Embrace more stories and histories of Portugal’s 12th Century Frontier - The Lines of the Tejo River in this article.
Visiting Castelo de Almourol
The castle is open every day, from May 1st to September 30th - closing on Mondays between October 1st and April 30th. To ensure the monument sustainability conditions, access to the main tower is controlled and reserved for groups up to 15 people a time.
For more information:
Posto de Turismo
Centro Cultural de Vila Nova da Barquinha
Largo 1º de Dezembro
2260-403 Vila Nova da Barquinha
Tel: 00351 249 711 550 | 00351 915 081 737 |