Take a guided small group tour to the heritage sites of the Knights Templar in Portugal. See Almourol Castle, Convent of Christ, and more in Tomar.
• Journey through the Portugal of the Knights Templar
• Discover Almourol Castle
• Visit the Convent of Christ
• Free time in Tomar
• Lisbon hotel pick-up included
Lisbon – Almourol Castle – Constancia – Tomar – Church of Santa Maria do Olival – Convent of Christ – Lisbon
We start our journey through medieval Portugal in the Santarem District, in the central region of Portugal. Our first stop will be Almourol Castle, one of Portugal’s most iconic structures, and one of the most best examples of the military architecture of the 12th century. It evokes simultaneously the early days of the Kingdom of Portugal and the Templar Knights Order. It is said that the castle was constructed by the Romans, then refashioned by other invading peoples like the Visigoths and Moors. The caslte was conquered in 1129 and placed in the trust of Gualdim Paes, the Grand Master of the Knight Templars.
Afterwards we continue to Constancia, a charming village where famous poet Luis de Camoes once lived. We proceed next to Tomar, a land given as a fief to the Templars. Tomar was especially important in the 15th century when it was a center of overseas expansion under Henry the Navigator, the Grand Master of the Order of Christ, the organization that succeeded the Templars in Portugal. Here we will visit the Church of Santa Maria do Olival, the headquarters of the Templars, as well as a pantheon of all Grand Masters.
After lunch (own expense) and some free time to stroll around Tomar, we will proceed to S. Joao Batista Church, situated in the main square in front of the Town Hall and a statue of Gualdim Paes. You’ll also get a chance to visit the most well-preserved medieval synagogue in Portugal, built in the mid-15th century by Prince Henry The Navigator.
We finish the day at the Convent of Christ, a magnificent Templar stronghold back in the day, constructed under the orders of Gualdim Paes. The Convent of Christ is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
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