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Perched upon its vantage point at an altitude of 900 metres, 44km (27mi) north of Guarda the attractive town of Trancoso lies mostly inside a ring of 13th-century walls. Trancoso has stood sentinel over the surrounding landscape for millennia. Its strategic location has been exploited by all the different peoples who have occupied this area, the history of Trancoso mirrors that of Portugal itself. Much of the medieval town is preserved, including a labyrinth of narrow cobbled narrow lanes lined with stone houses, manicured gardens, small atmospheric squares, restored pillories and old churches. Standing aloft over the town is a castle of 10th-century origins. It was in Trancoso Dom Dinis married his 12-year-old bride, Isabel of Aragon, in 1282. He later gave her the town as a gift. A trip to Trancoso is an interesting step back to medieval times you're never going to forget.



|  Portas d'el Rei

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The existing outer walls are the realisation of extension work initiated by King Afonso III and King Dinis between 1248 and 1325 AD. Later extensions and alterations saw the introduction of stronger walls and defensive towers. There are three main entrances though the ramparts; the Portas d'el Rei, Portas do Prado and Porta do Carvalho, plus two secondary gates; Porta da Traição and Olhinho do Sol. The Portas d'El Rei and Portas do Prado gates are flanked by two mighty towers. Despite some demolition that took place in the 19th and 20th centuries most of the perimeter walls have been well preserved. In 1921 the defensive walls were classified as a National Monument.


Much of what you see at this church is a result of reconstruction work that occurred in the 18th century and is baroque in style. The original construction, however, dates from 1320 and served as the seat of the mediaeval parish. In 1621, the Governor of Arms of the province of Beira, D. Álvaro de Abranches, commissioned the construction of the tomb of Bandarra (1500-45). The church's bell tower is attached to the front right corner of the building. The church is longitudinal in shape and possesses a single nave and chancel. Within its somewhat sober interior, there is a wood-carved altarpieces and a painted vaulted ceiling. Both are well worth investigating.
39º 36' 12.6" N | 08º 25' 08.5" W


In the Praça do Municipio square in front of the town hall is a statue of Gonçalo Anes Bandarra, a famous poet, prophet, shoemaker and the Nostradamus of his time. He was born in 1500 in Trancoso. He dedicated his life to astrology and publicising messianic prophecies famous around 1531. He had an in-depth knowledge of the Old Testament scriptures, which triggered suspicion by the Portuguese Inquisition. As an adult, he lived in Lisbon at the invitation of the Lisbon new-Christian mystic and theologian community.

His prose took the form of four-line rhyming poems or "trovas" that, among other things, foretold the end and restoration of the Portuguese Kingdom. His works were banned and Bandarra was subsequently condemned to death, a sentence commuted, after a popular protest, to a punishment of walking barefoot around town carrying a giant candle until it burned to the wick. His fateful prediction came to pass in 1578 after the death of King Sebastião, leaving no heir, and Portugal lost independence to Spain.
40° 46' 39.8" N | 07° 20' 00.7" W

Estátua Sapateiro Bandarra

|  Estátua Sapateiro Bandarra


Trancoso Castle

|  Trancoso Castle

Trancoso's castle has occupied the high ground northeast of town since the 10th century and was the focus of many disputes between Christian and Muslim armies during the Reconquista, changing hands many times. In 1139 it was finally conquered by Afonso Henriques, who also repelled subsequent Muslim attacks. Surprisingly even though all the skirmishes and rebuilding of the castle since then, much of the original Arabesque features remain, predominantly in the disproportionately broad keep. The structure was expanded during the reign of Dom Dinis, adding a rectangular perimeter wall with five turrets. Within the courtyard, there's a cistern, a well and the ruins of an old 16th-century chapel. The castle was classified as a National Monument in 1921.

Monday: CLOSED,Tuesday – Friday: 10h00 - 12h30/14h00 - 17h30, Weekends: 10h00 - 12h30/14h00 - 16h30
Rua do Castelo, 6420 Trancoso, Portugal. | 40° 46' 43.6" N | 07° 20' 56.9" W
+351 271 811 147 |


During the middle ages, there existed in Trancoso a significant and thriving Jewish community who settled here after D. Pedro I granted Trancoso a Jewish quarter in 1364. In the 15th Century, there were about 700 Jews in Trancoso, which precipitated D. João II, in 1481, to grant authorisation to enlarge the synagogue. The Jewish heritage left behind in Trancoso can be found in local surnames such as Levi, Franco, Barzelai, Justo, and Barroca, and also in the houses where they dwelt. Each Jewish home has two doorways‚ a wide one for trade and a narrow door (leading to the first floor), that served as a family entrance.

The Casa do Gato Negro (in Largo Luís de Albuquerque), is the former rabbi's residence and is a prime example. Above the doorways, some have crosses hastily inscribed by the Inquisition to indicate the family's conversion to Christianity. Others retain their original Hebrew engravings.

In October 2012 the Town Council and the Ambassador of Israel, Ehud Gol, inaugurated the Jewish Culture Centre Isaac Cardoso, situated in the Jewish Quarter which incorporates the synagogue, the first of its kind in Portugal in more than 500 years. Its construction is the completed vision of Portuguese architects Gonçalo Byrne and José Laranjeira.

Jewish Culture Centre Isaac Cardoso

|  Jewish Culture Centre Isaac Cardoso


Private Tour to Portugal's Shale Historic Villages with Lunch

Private Tour to Portugal's Shale Historic Villages with Lunch

The mountain province of Beira Baixa is known for its spectacular scenery, forested valley, rivers, and quaint villages. Renting a car and driving on unfamiliar mountain roads can be a daunting experience for a first-time visitor, so avoid the stress by opting for a private tour instead. Discover ancient villages you likely wouldn’t find alone, find out about the region’s history, and enjoy having a picnic-style lunch included.
• Enjoy the luxury of having a private driver for the day
• A tasty picnic lunch is included
• Incredible views of Beira Baixa mountains and villages
• Great for history and architecture fans
• See Castelo Novo Historical Site

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Full-Day Portuguese Historical Villages Tour

Full-Day Portuguese Historical Villages Tour

Steep yourself into the rich history of Aldeias on this full-day historical tour. Immerse in Northern Portugal’s storied villages with the help of a knowledgeable bi-lingual guide. Visit Celorico da Beira and Linhares da Beira, where your guide will illuminate their culture for you. Learn about Rome’s influence on the stone architecture and paved roads and also see the Castle of Linhares and the equally stunning Church of Santa Maria. This is a great opportunity for any history buff or intrepid traveller.
• A full-day historical tour of Aldeias
• Learn about the origins of Portugal
• Discover quaint stone houses and winding country roads
• Get to know the culture of this charming place
• See the Castle of Linhares and Church of Santa Maria.

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Portugal Historical Villages - Private Tour

Portugal Historical Villages - Private Tour

Take the opportunity to discover the most impressive historic villages within Portugal. Visit this treasure inside Portugal, so well preserved. Untouched natural and historical beauty that will leave you breathless. Get into contact with the local people and find out how Portuguese people really are. Enjoy this tour on luxury private transportation at your own pace.
• Choose from various Lisbon pick-up points
• Belmonte
• Sortelha

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Alojamento Local Dom Dinis (Guest House)

Alojamento Local Dom Dinis (Guest House)

The grim exterior of this guesthouse is deceiving for inside are modern comfortable rooms, all with laminate floors, fully fitted bathrooms, cable TV, soundproofing, free WiFi, heating and air conditioning. Alojamento Dom Dinis is pet friendly and there's no extra charge for bringing your four-legged friend. The breakfast is included and substantial. There's private parking available at the rear.

Avenida República 10, 6420-146 Trancoso, Portugal. | 40º 46" 48.5' N | 07º 21" 05.9' W

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Hotel Turismo De Trancoso

Hotel Turismo De Trancoso ★ ★ ★ ★

Located in a tranquil location on the island of Mouchão (Mouchão Park) in th centre of Tomar, surrounded by flowers and the romantic landscape of the Nabão river. Under the ever-present shadow of the impressive Templários Castle and the famous Convento de Cristo. The Hotel Estalagem de Santa Iria has 13 rooms and a deluxe suite. Every room has a private bathroom. They are all equipped with a satellite TV, telephone, radio and an early morning call. The hotel has a restaurant, 60 people banqueting facilities, a meeting room for 70 people and a bar with fireplace.

Rua Prof.ª Irene Avillez, 6420-227 Trancoso, Portugal. | 40º 46" 30.1' N | 07º 21" 15.1' W

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Casa do Manel (Holiday Home)

Casa do Manel (Holiday Home)

Five kilometres from the centre of Trancoso, Casa do Manel provides accommodation with a private pool and free WiFi. The holiday home is equipped with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, bed linen, towels, a flat-screen TV, a dining area, a fully equipped kitchenette, and a terrace with garden views.

Rua Principal, S/N, 6420-589 Trancoso, Portugal.
40° 46' 58.0" N | 07° 19' 04.5" W

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Restaurante O Museu

Restaurante O Museu

This quaint family run restaurant serves food which as authentically local as the building it's situated in. The food is constantly of excellent quality yet at reasonable prices. The staff are wonderfully helpful and friendly. The seating area is situated on the first floor.

Tuesday – Saturday: 12h30 - 15h00/19h30 - 22h00, Sunday: 12h30 - 15h00, Monday: CLOSED
Largo Santa Maria de Guimarães, 6420-101 Trancoso Portugal.
40º 46' 46.2" N | 07º 20' 56.5" W
+351 271 811 810

Cantinho dos Arcos

Cantinho dos Arcos

Small yet welcoming establishment that specialises in fresh local fare. Food is consistently good and excellent value for money. Typically hearty and in large portions. Make sure to leave room for their amazing desserts.

Monday: CLOSED, Tuesday – Saturday: 12h00 – 14h00/19h00 – 21h00, Sunday: 12h00 – 14h00
Largo Pelourinho 2A, Trancoso 6420-112 Portugal. | 40° 46' 42.7" N | 07° 20' 55.7" W
+351 271 828 270 |

O retiro do Castico

O retiro do Castico

A good choice to sample local cuisine with a cuban. You'll be warmly greeted and treated to a feast at honest prices.A good choice to sample local cuisine with a cuban. You'll be warmly greeted and treated to a feast at honest prices.

Daily: 10h00 - 15h00/19h00 - 02h00
Rua Sao Joao, Trancoso 6420-080 Portugal.
40° 46' 38.7" | N 07° 20' 59.1" W
+351 919 188 129

Trancoso is 211km (33.5 mi) Southeast of Francisco de Sá Carneiro Airport PORTO.


Only Just over two hours from Porto via the A1 and A25 or an hour and three quarters from Coimbra up the IP3 and A25. In both case turn off the A25 just past Calorico de Beira onto the IP2.

Latitude - 40° 46' 39.8" N Longitude - 07° 21' 00.7" W


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The nearest train station is 16km (10mi) away in Vila Franca Das Naves:
Regional train services (comboios regionais) from Lisboa Santa Apolónia:
• Beira Alta line Timetable

Trains of Portugal Website

Rede Expressos run services to Transcoso from Lisbon and Viseu. Website