Extremadura Balcony, Windmills and Flowery Villages: Montejunto Mountain and Obidos
Come with us on this visit where you will travel through planted fields and verdant slopes. Let yourself be carried away on this journey through fields, mountains, villages, vineyards, whitewashed houses, flowered streets, windmills, churches and typical Portuguese tiles.
The purpose of this visit is to make you feel the soul of the Extremadura region through its rural landscapes. Be surprised by the vineyard and agricultural landscape among the white limestone massifs with Mediterranean vegetation, villages and towns of whitewashed houses with flowered streets, windmills and white stone churches lined inside with tiles that tell us stories. All this just 1 hour away from Lisbon.
Start the day by visiting the amazing Church of Santo Quintino! One of the most beautiful and extraordinary (isolated) Gothic-Manueline church in Portugal. With its interior walls entirely decorated with tile panels from the 17th and 18th centuries, the Church of Santo Quintino dazzles any architecture and art lover, being therefore a place that deserves a careful visit. You will understand why this church is referred to as a "Tile Museum". Classified as a National Monument since 1910, it was built by King Dom Manuel I in 1520.
Built of white stone in Gothic-Manueline style, its interior walls are entirely covered with tiles of different styles that help to tell the history of the tile making.
Vila Galega da Merceana. Visit a small and friendly medieval village with a pillory and a church with a Manueline style portal and a baroque interior and several flowery streets. Around the village there is a beautiful landscape with several wineries.
Continue the journey going up the Montejunto Mountain to visit the Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Snows. Montejunto is considered to be the balcony of the Extremadura province.
At the top of the mountain, marvel at verdant slopes, observe wild orchids, windmills and the view of the Portuguese coast from Sintra to Nazaré. Classified as a Protected Landscape in 1999, the Montejunto Mountain is one of the last refuges for many species of animals and plants. A bird sanctuary, about 75 species nest here, some of which are considered to be at risk of extinction.
Don't be surprised if, on the way up the mountain, you come across shepherds and their flocks of goats in their daily chores of traditional wisdom.
Royal Ice Factory Interpretation Centre. Being a landmark of industrial archeology, it is the only one of its kind in Portugal and Europe, being a symbol of medieval technology.
Internationally considered unique, thanks to the originality of its structures and good preservation conditions, the complex of the ‘Real Fábrica do Gelo’ (Royal Ice Factory) was built around 1741 in the Montejunto hills.
“It is said that when the month of September came, shallow tanks were filled with water and during the night it was expected that the cold would freeze it. When the ice formed, the factory guard went on horseback to the village of Pragança and, with a bugle, woke the workers. Before sunrise, with arduous and hard work, the ice sheets were broken, the fragments piled up and then carried to the storage silos, where the ice was conserved until the arrival of summer. “ (Text taken from the Natural.PT website)
If you were curious then know that we have more interesting stories to tell! Learn more by taking a guided tour of the Real Ice Factory.
Did you know that…
• Due to its climatic characteristics (at least 6ºC less than in Lisbon), the Serra de Montejunto was chosen as the location for an ice factory (Real Fábrica do Gelo) in the 18th century?
At the top of Montejunto Mountain, you will visit the Santuário de Nossa Senhora das Neves (Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows) - 13th century. Next to the chapel are the ruins of the first Dominican monastery established in Portugal. A place of pilgrimages since medieval times until nowadays (annually in August), it is known that the construction of the chapel predates that of the Dominican convent, built on top of the mountain in the 13th century. The chapel is clearly related to the convent as it is attached to it, on the side of the building there is a tile panel alluding to the history of the Dominican Order. Currently, the chapel excels in simplicity, highlighting the image of Our Lady of the Snows from the 16th century.
You will complete the tour in the flowery village of Obidos. This fortified village is one of the ex-libris of Portuguese heritage and will be a surprise to you, since it is a medieval village surrounded by the walls of its castle, serving as a living, inhabited testimony that has remained almost unchanged since the end of the XVII century. Walking through the streets of Óbidos is to make an appointment with the past, through its sidewalks and Gothic houses from the 16th and 17th centuries.
Departure at 9:00 at hotel/accommodation in Lisbon
Visit the Santo Quintino Church
Visit the Merceana Galician Village
Visit the Montejunto Mountain
Visit the Santuário de Nossa Senhora das Neves (Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows)
Visit the medieval village of Óbidos
Return to Lisbon. You can choose a different drop-off location from the pick-up location, as long as it is in Lisbon
Our tours are designed especially for the traveler who wants to get away from the traditional tours and wants to experience new realities, original and unique experiences on every journey. Our Tours provide the traveler a visit made with time to enjoy the attractions in a quiet way.
About your PICK UP and DROP OFF Time
As a rule, the start and end of the service are from 8h30 am to 5 pm. However, it is not a strict schedule and can be flexible depending on your needs.
About your PICK UP and DROP OFF Local
We can pick you up and drop you off at your Hotel, Apartment, Cruise Terminal, Airport, or at a location of your choice. Contact us!
WiFi on board
Personal Accident Insurance
What's not included
Entrance tickets to the Castle and Convent of Christ
Any additional expenses not covered and agreed in advance
Estrela d'Alva Tours is not responsible for excess or oversized baggage, because of a lack of notice, if it can not be transported in the reserved vehicle
If it proves impossible in providing one or more services for reasons that are strange to Estrela d'Alva Tours, they will be replaced by equivalent services
Estrela d’Alva Tours operates a non-smoking policy in its transportation services.