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Tuesday, 6 December 2011


The Wedding Present Town; Portugal's most romantic medieval village
All of Obidos has been declared a national monument.
It is known as the "Wedding Present Town" because it was a gift King Dinis gave to Queen Isabel on their wedding day in 1282, but that alone is not what makes it such an extraordinarily romantic place -- what make it one of Europe's most romantic medieval villages are its incredibly picturesque cobblestone streets lined with colourful houses filled with geraniums and bougainvillea, Gothic doorways and windows, whitewashed churches, flowerpots and dazzling tiles -- all encircled by the walls of a 12th century castle. Scaling its 13m (45ft)-high medieval walls is the best way to admire this picture postcard-perfect place.
The main street ("Rua Direita") leads from the town gate (decorated with 18th century tile panels) to the main square (Praça de Santa Maria). It has a beautiful fountain, a 15th century pillory, the Town Museum (with exhibits ranging from archaeological finds to 15-17th centuries sculpture and paintings), and Santa Maria Church. That's where 10-year-old King Afonso V married his 8-year-old cousin Isabel in 1444, with an interior entirely faced with tiles and containing the tomb of João de Noronha, the castle governor who died in 1575. Close by is Misericordia Church (with a fine Baroque doorway), while outside the walls is the Amoreira Aqueduct, built at the behest of Catherine of Austria in 1575

Colour is the name of the game in this little gem of a town

Bright colours and a pride in their town made Obidos a very special place to visit

The local tipple

Óbidos remains a well-preserved example of medieval architecture; its streets, squares, walls and its castle are a popular tourist destination.

It is possible to walk around the whole perimiter of the town via the original walls, not a lot of regard to health & safety with some mighty unprotected drops of 10 meters or more to the roads below--great stuff

Bags of places

Beautifuly maintained cobbled streets

An old bicycle used as a clothes display in a local shop

An old bicycle used as a clothes display in a local shop

The castle and walls of Obidos

The streets of Obidos were a warren of suprises and colours

1 comment:

  1. A brilliant set of photos Ken - impressive when they're all set out together like this. The write-up is really interesting. Tourist Board quality! Some great stuff mate.