A Journey Through Portugal’s Templar Legacy: Almourol Castle, Tomar, and the Convent of Christ
Embark on an extraordinary medieval expedition through the heart of Portugal, where history comes alive amidst ancient stone walls and grandeur. This Templar Knights Tour takes you on a voyage to some of the most significant sites that shaped the destiny of this country. From the iconic Almourol Castle to the revered town of Tomar, steeped in Templar history, and finally, the awe-inspiring Convent of Christ, a UNESCO World Heritage Site – this journey promises a day of captivating exploration.
Almourol Castle: A Granite Fortress on the Tagus River
Our adventure commences at the remarkable Almourol Castle, a beacon of Portugal’s history and an emblematic structure perched 18 meters above sea level on a small granite island. This picturesque stronghold, measuring 310 meters in length and 75 meters in width, stands proudly in the midst of the Tagus River waterway. A testament to the military architecture of the 12th century, it stands as an incredible sight that transports visitors back in time.
The history of the Castle of Almourol is intertwined with the Knights Templar. They played a significant part in fortifying and maintaining the castle during their presence in the region. The castle’s strategic importance extended beyond its military function, as it also served as a symbol of Templar influence in Portugal.
Today, the Castle of Almourol stands as a prominent historical site, drawing visitors from around the world to witness its architectural splendor and immerse themselves in the rich history of the Knights Templar. It is a testament to the enduring legacy of this enigmatic order in Portuguese history.
Tomar: Templar Heartland and Hub of Exploration
Next, we journey to Tomar, a land bestowed upon the Templars. This town held pivotal significance in the 15th century, serving as a central point for Portugal’s ventures beyond its shores, thanks to Henry the Navigator, the Grand Master of the Order of Christ. This order succeeded the Templars in Portugal and played a crucial role in the Age of Discovery. Here, we explore the Church of Santa Maria do Olival, which once served as the headquarters of the Knights Templar and now stands as a revered mausoleum for all Grand Masters.
Tomar is situated along the banks of the Nabão River, which adds to the city’s picturesque setting. The river and its surrounding landscapes offer opportunities for leisurely walks and scenic views. The city hosts various cultural events and festivals throughout the year, celebrating its history and heritage. These events often include reenactments, processions, and exhibitions.
The Convent of Christ: A Templar Legacy and UNESCO Treasure
Our day culminates in grandeur at the Convent of Christ, a monumental site that was once a stronghold of the Templars. Constructed under the visionary guidance of Gualdim Paes, this awe-inspiring complex now holds the distinguished title of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. As you walk through its hallowed halls and intricate chambers, you’ll be immersed in the profound history and architectural splendor that echoes through the ages. The convent is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, known for its intricate Manueline architecture, impressive cloisters, and the stunning Charola (Rotunda), which is a unique round church.
The Templar Knights Tour offers an unforgettable odyssey through Portugal’s medieval legacy. From the commanding Almourol Castle to the historic town of Tomar and the illustrious Convent of Christ, each site bears witness to the indelible mark left by the Knights Templar. Join us on this immersive journey and let the echoes of history guide you through the hallowed halls of Portugal’s past.
What’s included on the tour:
- Meeting Point – 08:00 Praça da Figueira (in front of the statue) in Lisbon
- Drop-off at 2 centrally located points: Restauradores / Marquês de Pombal
- Small-group tour (8 people max.)
- Professional local guide
- Transport by air-conditioned minivan
- Live commentary on board
- Boat ride to Almourol Castle (susceptible to weather conditions)
- Entrance fee to Convent of Christ in Tomar
- Local pastry
What’s not included on the tour price:
- Pick-up at your hotel (service available for an additional fee of 15€/person)
- Drop-off at your hotel
- Meals or services not specified
- Tips / gratuities
Have any questions about this or any other of our tours?
Hit us up at [email protected] or via WhatsApp, at +351 910124199!