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The Sanctuary of Fatima / The most important spiritual center for the Christian Faith / Appearance of Virgin Mary / Holy water spring / Honey tasting / liquor tasting / Monastery of Alcobaça / Portuguese most romantic love story / Portuguese Romeo and Juliet / Medieval town Obidos / medieval castle / Ginjinha liquor / Medieval Fare / International Chocolate Festival
Our tour to Fatima – Alcobaça – Obidos presents a great opportunity to visit the Sanctuary of Fatima – one of the world´s most important spiritual centres for the Christian Faith. You will learn about the three Secrets of Fatima and about the Sun Miracle occurred in 1917. Then you can taste the local honey and liquor of Fatima and visit Coin Caves. During this tour, you are also invited to visit the most romantic Monastery of Portugal, where you will find the tombs of Pedro and Ines – Portuguese Romeo and Juliet. Here you can as well bless your own love relationship. Furthermore, we will take you to visit one of the most romantic medieval walled town of Obidos, where you can explore its medieval fortress, discover local Portuguese traditions and taste typical liquor “Ginjinha”.
We invite you to start our tour to Fatima – Alcobaça – Obidos with the visit to the one of the world´s largest sanctuaries – the Sanctuary of Fatima, the site where Our Lady of Fatima appeared to three shepherd children in 1917. Since then, Fatima has become one of the most important Catholic Pilgrimage destinations and a spiritual center for the Christian Faith. More than 5 millions visitors go to Fatima each year to pay their promises, to pray or just to feel its mystical strength and energy! The largest pilgrimage occurs on the 13th May and 13th October.
The Sanctuary Square of Fatima will impress you with its astonishing dimensions. It is so big that it can receive simultaneously 300,000 visitors; and it’s twice the size of St. Peter’s Square in the Vatican.
At the Sanctuary Square you will be able to visit the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary (Our Lady of Fatima), where the bodies of shepherd children rest. It represents a gleaming Neoclassical church built on May 13, 1928, and consecrated on October 7, 1953. Its slender central spire rises 65 meters high. The church is flanked by monumental colonnades and overlooks a large open plaza, the center of which is occupied by a Monument to the Sacred Heart of Jesus (1932). The monument stands over a spring that is considered to be the instrument of many graces.
Also, you will be able to assist a mass in Chapel of Apparitions located in the heart of the Shrine. It is an open-air chapel built on the site of the appearances, where the three shepherd children reported seeing visions of the Virgin in 1917. The original chapel was built in 1919, then blown up on the night of March 6, 1922, by those who suspected the church of staging the miracles. Inside the modern chapel is a single white column over the site of a small holm oak tree over which the Virgin Mary appeared on May 13, 1917.
Furthermore, you will get impressed with the new Church of the Most Holy Trinity. Consecrated on October 12, 2007, on the occasion of the 90th anniversary of the apparitions of Fatima, this is now Portugal’s biggest church and possibly the fourth largest Catholic church in the world.
Besides visiting all these magnificent monuments, you will as well learn about the three Secrets of Fatima that Virgin revealed to the children. Furthermore, we will share with you the story of the Sun Miracle of Fatima witnessed by the crowd of more than 70.000 people in October 13, 1917.
After the Sanctuary, we will invite you to taste some local liquor and honey. Then you will be able to visit the Coin Caves of Fatima. According to the legend, one day a wealthy man with a purse full of coins was travelling through this area. When passing a daylight shaft, the deep pit of a cave entrance, he was attacked by a group of robbers who planned to loot his purse. But as the man started to defend himself a fight started, during which the man was killed and fell into the cave, but unfortunately for the robbers the purse fell too. The coins scattered down into the pit and were never recovered. The pit was hence called Coin Abyss.
Then our tour will follow to Alcobaca where you will visit the famous 12th century monastery of Alcobaça, also known as the Alcobaça Royal Abbey of Holy Mary. It is the first monument following the gothic style ever built in Portugal and is classified as World Heritage Site by the UNESCO since December 1989.
It was build as a church by the first king of Portugal, Afonso Henriques. In March 1147, facing the Moors in an important battle at Santarém, Afonso Henríques vowed that he would build a great monastery if God granted him victory. After winning the battle and becoming the first Portuguese king, Afonso kept his promise. The church later evolved into the Monastery of Alcobaça, one of the most beautiful architectural examples in Portugal.
In spite of the Monastery architectural grandeur, the romantic souls tend to consider the tombs of the Portuguese king Pedro and chambermaid Inês the highlight of the complex. In fact the love between these star-crossed lovers whom legend treats as the Romeo and Juliet of Portugal is one of the most tragic stories of the Portuguese history.
While still married to Constança Manuel, king Pedro falls in love with Inês, one of the chambermaids of his wife. After the death of Constança, Pedro goes to live with Inês and they have three children. But his father, king Afonso IV is against the romance and sentences Inês to the death by treason. When Pedro took the throne he avenge his lover’s death by killing all the implicated on Inês death and declaring her Queen of Portugal.
King Pedro ordered the construction of two magnificently decorated tombs, one for him and the other for Inês. According to his will, the tombs were to be placed in a way that the two lovers could resurrect facing each other on Judgment Day. An old tale says that the lovers who visit the tombs of Pedro and Inês and swore loyalty to this love guarantee the eternity of their love.
Finally, make your way to the medieval walled town of Óbidos protected by UNESCO as a world heritage. It is considered by many the prettiest town in Portugal and one of Europe’s most romantic medieval villages. Founded in 208 BC, Óbidos is commonly known in Portugal as the ‘wedding present town’, as it was a gift from King Dinis to Queen Isabel on their wedding day in 1282. For centuries after, the kings of Portugal followed the tradition, presenting the picturesque little town to their queens as a wedding gift.
Today its medieval structures and fortress, castle walls, narrow winding streets, colorful decorated houses, whitewashed churches, dazzling tiles and handicraft shops make this destination the highlight of the trip for many people. Follow your guide to taste the local cherry liquor “Ginjinha” served in a chocolate cup. It is the most well known and most typical appetizer from Obidos. And then enjoy free time to explore the town. Walking the ramparts, you can discover astonishing views of windmills, vineyards and surrounding farmlands.
Every July a Medieval Fair recreates the Middle Ages with medieval music, knights, witches, and theater performances. And during the International Chocolate Festival in November, Obidos becomes the world’s chocolate capital with incredible chocolate sculptures.
Enjoy our tour to Fatima – Alcobaça – Obidos – this unique spiritual and romantic adventure that will make your Lisbon stay even more fascinating and enriching!
For the private tour there is a possibility to include additional itineraries: Batalha, Tomar, Nazare, Peniche, Santaren, etc.
DURATION: approximately 9 – 10hs.