Discover Marvao- Part II

After a stop at the town museum, we can continue to discover Marvao by talking a walk in this empty countryside, still centrally located, so easily accessible from the coast, either from Lisbon or from Madrid. Counting only 150 residents, this amazing and intimate place is home of a united community with only 20 local children in the mix. Here everybody knows everybody and the feeling you get once you meet them is that they all are a big and happy family, helping each other and doing everything to live a peaceful life in this fairytale landscape.

by flickr.com

Marvao Castle

Marvao Castle was built by King Dinis, in 1299 as a measure of protection for the village. Even nowadays its position on the hill gives the impression of a protective force looking over the city. Once you get up there you will have a spectacular and great view south and west towards the Serra de Sao Mamemde and eastward towards the Spanish border. The castle contains a huge water cistern and amazing bartizans that come out of the cliffs like perfect, angular wings.

Just walking

by viewphotos.org

Marvao’s greatest landmark is undoubtedly the unspoiled medieval atmosphere that you can only feel when taking a walk in this breathtaking village. Just image strolling on the cobblestone streets and hearing only the beat of your heart, while you explore every alley and corner of this fairytale land. If you rise your glance up you will see the steep and narrow lanes with immaculately whitewashed houses, positioned as if all leading to Marvao Castle, rising from the rock. If you look for something s little more adventurous, then the most rewarding walk is climbing onto the walls, battlements and towers for an impressive view and waiting there for the sunset on a balmy afternoon.

What many of you might not know is that Marvao applied to be recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Site, but it failed a round of evaluation, because two officials decided to withdraw the candidature rather than facing the risk of a final rejection. And if you think about it, maybe it is for the better, as the high number of visitors would have only ruined this charming solitude that makes this village so unique.

In order to truly discover Marvao, your visit should not stop here. Nearby you can admire the mountains of Sao Mamede, a natural park with ancient Roman traces and Europe’s largest colony of bats.

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