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Alcobaça, Batalha and Fátima

Alcobaça was emancipated as city in 1995, but its history is far older than that. It is known that its first inhabitants date back to the Roman times however it was the Arabs who named it taking into consideration that it is located in a valley between the Alcoa and Baça rivers. Some time ago time it had access to the sea which allowed its development and the exportation of delicious fruits produced by the Cistercian monks. In 1153 Afonso Henriques gave lands in Alcobaça to these Monks and their duty was to clear and cultivate the land. The Cistercian monks became masters of 14 villages, 4 of them with
access to the sea. Alcobaça was also affected by the Tsunami of 1755 and Sebastião José de Carvalho e
Melo, known as the Marquis of Pombal, was once again the driving force of its recovery.

The village of Batalha is best known for its superb monastery, Convent of Santa Maria da Vitória, built by King D. João I in memory of the victory achieved over the Castilians in the battle of Aljubarrota. The monastery, which took over two century to be built, was built, features various constructions styles, the latter being an unfinished work. This is one of our most beautiful monasteries, one of the seven wonders of Portugal, a place not to be missed for its beauty and historical content.

The village of Fátima is one of the most visited places in Portugal and certainly one of the best known in the world with about 6 million visits per year. The “Apparitions of Our Lady” in Fatima is a religious phenomenon dated back in 1917 witnessed by three children, Lúcia dos Santos (10 years), Francisco Marto (9 years) and Jacinta Marto (7 years), who claimed to have seen a shinning lady on top of an oak tree. Ten years later the Bishop of Leiria celebrates the first Mass in Cova da Iria and the following year the construction of the great basilica begins. Some of the most famous places of interest in Fátima are are In Fatima are the Wax Museum and the House of the Shepherds in Aljustrel which is about 2km away from Fatima.

Thank you for traveling with us.
Arado Azul team

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