Porto de Mos Castle, a sui generis monument
Porto de Mos Castle is a amazing Portuguese monument that distinguishes itself from all the rest by its great tall, green and sharp towers. It’s truly unique!
The tall, green and sharp towers of the Porto de Mos Castle stand out from a distance, anticipating the originality of its architecture. King Afonso Henriques conquered it to the Moors in 1148 and handed it over to Don Fuas Roupinho, who shortly after was forced by the infidels to abandoned it. However, the retreat of Roupinho was only a strategic move to reorganize his troops in order to conquer the castle once and for all.
The geographic position of the castle on top of a hill dominating and protecting the neighborhood valleys granted it a military importance recognized not only by the Portuguese but also by the Visigoths and Muslims who preceded them. The two visible Latin inscriptions proof the presence of the Romans in the area.
The development of Porto de Mos castle
In order to overcome the Moorish threat that still persisted, king Sancho I implemented a policy of colonization of the conquered lands. Therefore, he ordered some improvements to the castle, hopping to increase population in the area. King Dinis granted Porto de Mos a charter and the castle suffered the first changes aiming to turn it into more a manor house than a military building.
Porto de Mos and its castle were back in the limelight during the 1383-1385 crisis when sided with the Grand Master of the Order of Aviz. In fact the Portuguese troops camped here on their way to confront the Spanish army in the Aljubarrota battle. As a repayment for his services during the war against Spain, Don Nuno Alvares Pereira was granted with lands and the Porto de Mos castle. Alvares Pereira left this legacy to his daughter and his son-in-law, the first Dukes of Braganza. Their son, Don Afonso, Count of Ourém, was responsible for turning the medieval castle into a unique Renaissance manor, distinguished by its original towers.
Unfortunately, the 1755 Earthquake damaged severely Porto de Mos castle, especially the north elevation. For many time the building was abandoned even though it has been classified as National Monument in 1910. Luckily in 1960’s the castle was renovated. Yet, it was only after the profound restoration started in 2001that Porto de Mos regained that entire splendor immortalized by the poetry of Luis de Camões.
From April to October: 10:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 18:00
From November to March: 10:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 17:00