Medieval town of Obidos Medieval town of Obidos

Medieval town of Obidos

The unique medieval walled town of Obidos also known as the Town of Queens because of a tradition in which kings used to offer the place to their wives is Portugal's most romantic medieval village. Perched on a hill rising out of an agricultural plain, Obidos has been declared a national monument.
It is also known as the Wedding Present Town because in 1282, the romantically inclined husband King Dinis gave it as a gift to Queen Isabel on their wedding day, but not this thing makes it such an extraordinarily romantic place - its incredibly picturesque cobblestone streets lined with colorful houses filled with geraniums and bougainvillea, Gothic doorways and windows, whitewashed churches, flowerpots and dazzling tiles make it one of Europe's most romantic medieval villages. All of these things are encircled by the walls of a 12th century castle. Scaling its 13 meters high medieval walls is the best way to admire this picture postcard-perfect place.
The Manueline castle which in past times was a formidable medieval fortification, crowns the town and now houses guests in its luxurious rooms. In 1148 it was won back from the Moors and restored after extensive damage of earthquake from 1755.
Rua Direita is the main street and leads from the town gate to the main square - Praça de Santa Maria. There is the renaissance Santa Maria Church, a 15th century pillory, a beautiful fountain and the Town Museum where can be found archeological finds (paintings and sculptures) from 15-17th centuries. Santa Maria church is very old, its walls which house a handsome example of renaissance tombs and paintings by the artist Josefa d’Obidos have been adorned with 17th century tiles. where 10-year-old King Afonso married his 8-year-old cousin Isabel in 1444. Its interior, entirely faced with tiles contains the tomb of João de Noronha, the castle governor who died in 1575. Closeby is Misericordia Church with its fine Baroque doorway, while outside the walls is the Amoreira Aqueduct, built at the behest of Catherine of Austria in 1575.
The best way to spend your time to Obidos is to stay overnight when most visitors are gone. Try booking the castle hotel to find yourself filled with medieval romance when you step outside and find the walls floodlit and the narrow alleys brightened by the moonlight. Also you can swim, sunbathe or even hire windsurfing equipment in the nearby is the large lagoon - Obidos Lagoon. However, the beaches around Peniche famous for their various surfing waves are not far away.
Don’t miss to savour the local cuisine, with dishes like caldeirada, made with fish from Obidos lagoon, accompanied by special regional wines. Within the walls, numerous bars, cafes, restaurants and tavernes offer you a taste of ginjinha - a traditional liqueur.
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