Marvão is a great place to buy quality local crafts and local delicacies. Look out for the O Poial da Artesã craft shop, it's a treasure trove of local ceramics, wickerwork and local curiosities. The weather-beaten pillory (Pelourinho) standing on a four-stepped pedestal is a remnant from the past where Regal justice was once metred out.
The 15th-century church of Santa Maria has been home to Marvão's municipal museum since November 1987, following a period of refurbishment. The exhibit inside is an interesting collection of artefacts from different periods of Marvão's existence, including a range of Roman artefacts. Outside are well-manicured gardens that are an ideal spot to admire the panoramic views.
Tuesday - Sunday: 09h00 – 12h30/14h00 - 17h30, Monday: CLOSED
Adult: €1.30, Child & Concessionary: €0.75
Igreja de Santa Maria, Largo de Santa Maria, 7330-101 Marvão, Portalegre, Portugal.
39° 23' 40.4" N | 07° 22' 40.6" W
+351 245 909 132 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Marvão's impregnable terrain and commanding location over its surroundings make it a natural choice for building a castle, a fact taken advantage of for thousands of years. The formidable fortifications you can see now date back mostly to the 15th and 17th centuries. The Castle is built on top of a 13th-century original, which in places, was built into the living rock. The views from this vantage point are breathtaking, even more so from the top of the castle keep, the Torre de Menagem. Just inside the entrance is a huge vaulted cistern, designed to withhold a siege lasting six months and today is still full of water.
The castle has played a fundamental role in many military conflicts during its lifetime, including the war between king D. Dinis and his brother D. Afonso in 1299 AD, the Dynastic Crisis of 1383-85, the Restoration Wars 1640-68, the War of Spanish Succession 1704-12 and the Peninsular Wars 1807-11. However, the castle was captured only once, in 1833, when the attackers entered through a secret gate. The castle's military history is explained in greater detail in the Núcleo Museológico Militar museum found within the walls.
10h00 - 13h00/13h30 - 17h00 Tuesday - Sunday, Monday: CLOSED
Castle: FREE | Museum: Adult: €1.00, Child: €0.80
Rua do Castelo 7330, Marvão, Portugal. | 39° 23' 45.2" N | 07° 22' 44.5" W
Following the Punic wars in the second century, BC Rome acquired lands in Iberia which belonged to the defeated Carthaginians. Capitalising on this gain the Romans slowly expanded their lands northwards into the Lusitanian territory. Romans who settled at Marvão knew the town as Herminio Minor in honour of its strategic position. The largest Roman settlement in the area was established at the present-day parish of São Salvador da Aramenha, known as Ammaia, around three miles south of Marvão on the Portalegre road. It was founded in the first century AD, most likely under the reign of Claudius. Archaeological evidence suggests the town was intensively settled around the reign of Augustus, with possibly up to 6000 inhabitants.
Today sheep graze across the ruins which include parts of the south gate, a bath complex, forum and temple. A small museum occupies the kitchen and basement of an old Roman villa. The museum is jam-packed full of finds from the site.
09h00 – 12h30, 14h00 – 17h30 | Adult: €3.00, Concessionary: €1.50
4 Estr. da Calçadinha, São Salvador da Aramenha, Portugal. | 39° 22' 09.6" N | 07° 23' 11.1" W
+351 245 919 089 | Website
In the valley below Marvão where the river Sever flows you will find the village of Portagem, which means "Toll". Here there is a defensive tower and Roman bridge, in times passed travellers were charged to cross. The name of the Roman Bridge is misleading, although it utilises some of the original Roman stone blocks it was rebuilt and widened in the 16th century. The best way to reach the village and bridge from Marvão walking eight kilometres along a footpath, which itself is ancient and contains medieval cobbles in places.
Next to the Roman bridge is a natural swimming pool which brings great relief on the hottest days of summer. Here the Rio Sever is tamed for safe family bathing. The river beach forms part of a network of municipal pools complete with amenities.
3 Rua da Ponte Romana, Portagem, Portugal. | 39° 22' 58.3" N | 07° 22' 47.7" W
Tucked away within the hodgepodge of Marvão's winding, cobbled streets this Pousada has been converted from two medieval buildings, parts of which date back to the 13th century. The Pousada has retained much of it's original medieval character whilst being fully equipped with modern facilities. The hotel has 31 rooms, including seven superior rooms and three suites, all with en-suite bathrooms, heating/air conditioning, minibar, hairdryer, telephone, cable TV and internet access.
Rua 24 de Janeiro 7, 7330-122, Marvão, Portugal.
39º 23" 35.0' N | 07º 22" 35.0' W
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Located within the walls of the Marvão Castle, at the top of the high village of Marvão, Dom Dinis Marvão features a rooftop terrace with a Jacuzzi® and panoramic views of the countryside below. It offers air-conditioned guestrooms.
The traditional rooms have terracotta floors and are decorated in natural tones. All rooms come equipped with a TV and a private bathroom with a hairdryer. Dom Dinis Marvão features medieval-inspired décor and also has a communal living room with a fireplace..
Largo de Santa Maria, 7330-121 Marvão, Portugal.
39º 23" 39.2' N | 07º 22" 39.1' W
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Located close to the main gate this old house has been tastefully restored and converted into a hotel with full facilities. Good friendly service and homely. Amazing views from the rooms which face away from town.
Largo de Olivença, 7330-104, Marvão, Portugal.
39º 23" 38.4' N | 07º 22" 34.4' W
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A popular eatery serving great Alentejan cuisine at reasonable prices. The atmosphere is relaxed, unpretentious and homely. Vegetarian options are also on the menu.
Daily: 12h00 - 15h00/19h00 - 22h00
Restaurante e Turismo Rural, Praça do Pelourinho 1-A, 7330–108, Marvão, Portugal.
39º 23" 38.5' N | 07º 22" 34.4' W | +351 245 909 002 / 245 993 272
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The location is fantastic with views overlooking the surrounding region making a table on the terrace or up stairs by a window the perfect place for a drink, lunch or dinner. Serving a range of dishes from simple light eats to main meals of Portuguese cuisine.
Daily: 09h00 - 22h00
Travessa do Chabouco 2, Marvão, Portugal.
39º 23" 40.8' N | 07º 22" 35.0' W | +351 245 99 316
Located in the village of Portagem eight kilometers downhill of from Marvão and close to the famous "Roman" bridge over the river Sever. This family restaurant and hotel has won many contests for the quality of it's food and interpretation of Alentajan cuisine.
Monday - Sunday: 11h00 - 02h00
Estrada Rio Sever Portagem, 7330-347, São Salvador de Aramenha, Marvão, Portugal.
39º 22" 54.3' N | 07º 23" 00.3' W | +351245 993 192
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GET A GREAT DEAL ON FLIGHTS:
From the south the E802 will bring you from Évora and Beja. From Portalegre take the N359 northbound and from Lisbon via the A1, A23 and the E802 eastbound.
GET A GREAT DEAL ON CAR HIRE:
The closest train station is at Évora, from here it's possible to take buses to Marvão via Portalegre however buses are unfrequent. Intercity train (comboios Intercidades) services Évora's train station from Lisbon and Beja.
Rodoviária do Alentejo run coach services all over the Alentejo and beyond, linking the region to major cities within Central and Southern Portugal, including coaches to Évora and Estremoz: Website