Tag Archives: fortress
We only rarely focus our attention on the many Algarve historic sites that can be seen and visited in this region, usually we talk more about beaches and festivals, but today we’ll change that with a quick look at some of the historic sites that you can find while on your Algarve trip.
Today we’ll take a bit of time to talk about the main Sagres tourist attractions, this not so very well-known of Algarve towns has some interesting places to visit that you may not be aware of, because it isn’t well known on the tourist guides.
The town is located at just five kilometers from Cabo de Sao Vicente and is has the distinction of being the country’s most southwesterly point, and implicitly Europe’s as well. This is and has been a place of particular meaning for both the Portuguese as well as others. It is said that this is where Henry the Navigator founded his school of seamanship during the 15th century which assembled Portugal’s major geographers, cartographers and astronomers to put their heads together. However there aren’t very many signs left that would suggest this was anything physical or stable, more likely this was a place where the various experts would meet on various occasions, without a proper purpose.
The Algarve is many things to many people, and while many people may be aware of the region thanks to its great weather and wonderful beaches, there are quite a few Algarve visitors out there who come to the region to visit one or more of the plethora of religious destinations and sacred sites, and we’ll talk a bit about some of them.
Silves, Portugal sits on the banks of the Arade River, a town littered with lemon and orange trees, Silves is a place full of history and wherever you’ll look, you’ll find some small or large thing that adds to this place’s enchanting atmosphere.
The settlement that is today known as Silves, has always been an important one in the region because thanks to its positioning, it lay at the entrance to the inland areas of the Algarve. Going there now, you can’t really see it, because the river is now too silted up to allow large vessels to travel it, but in centuries past, that was not an issue.
Any Silves guide is pretty much obliged to mention the most prominent monument in the city, namely the Castelo de Silves. This is now the best preserved castle in the region and it towers above the town alongside the nearby Cathedral. Being a fortress it was built on an overlooking hill, obviously so the views from the battlements are quite spectacular. The castle features eleven towers, two of them being barbicans, and its thick walls still enclose an area of about twelve hundred thousand square meters. Four of the towers were rebuilt during the 14th and 15 centuries and as such feature Gothic doorways.
What started as a quiet and very elegant resort back in the 1930s only started to develop at a major rate once cheaper flights started to be offered in the 1970s, which in turn spurred on a boom in apartments being built, and steadily and surely Praia da Rocha became the region’s second-largest resort town.
There are basically two types of travelers in the world: those who haven’t been to the Algarve yet, and those who return there year after year, but what exactly makes the latter do this?