Marvao is a Portuguese village in the District of Portalegre, Alentejo region and intermunicipal community of Alto Alentejo, Marvao owes its name to Ibn Marwan al-Yil’liqui “El Gallego” (died about 889), leader of a Sufist movement of Al-Andalus, which took up arms against the emirs of Cordoba and created the kingdom of Badajoz until the establishment of the Caliphate of Cordoba in 931. Ibn Marwan had refuge in the current Castle of Marvao.
Located on a plateau of 800-860 meters, on the heights of the national park Serra de S. Mamede, the city offers a beautiful view over the surrounding Serra de Sao Mamede. Thanks to its strategic location on the border with Spain, the city can look back on an eventful history. In the context of constant threats and conquests over the centuries, the extensive fortifications of the city have emerged. A vila and the rugged mountains that are located are listed in a list of candidates for World Patrimony of UNESCO since 2000.
The village was included in the #1 New York Times bestselling book, ‘1000 Places to see Before you Die’. The Nobel prize-winning author Jose Saramago,wrote of the village ‘‘From Marvao one can see the entire land…
In the 50s, The author Huldine V. Beamish wrote of Marvao ‘There is an atmosphere about the district (of Marvao) that is very ancient..
Access : Coordinates: 39.394167, -7.376667 / By bus :The company Rede Expressos makes a daily direct connection between Lisbon and Marvao with several stops, including Portalegre and Castelo de Vide. The bus departs from Lisbon at 07h30, arriving in Marvao at 11h50. On the return trip, the bus departs from Marvao at 15:50, arriving in Lisbon at 8:15 p.m.
There are also local buses between Marvao and Portalegre among other villages / towns, but they are infrequent./ By car : Marvao is located on the national road N246, which meets 50 km northwest on the A23 motorway (here also European route 802), after she has passed about 26 km at Alpalhao in the IP2.
– Castillo de Marvao : The castle is part of the Serra de Sao Mamede Natural Park, on the northern side of the mountain, dominating the village and controlling, in the past, the passage of the river Sever, a tributary of the river Tagus.
– In the village of Marvao itself are numerous colorful little houses, from the 13th century is the church of Santa Maria where the Municipal Museum is located, with sections on archeology, epigraphy, ethnography, armory and sacred art.
– The town hall, a watchtower and the pillory are from the 16th century.
– Just outside the village the Church of Santiago, the Renaissance Chapel of the Holy Spirit and the Convent of Our Lady of Estrela, outside the walls.
– the beautiful view over the region One is one of the main reasons to visit the town.
Activities : Guided Tours / sightseeing / photo opportunities / strolling at the old town / hiking From the village there is an interesting 7.5-kilometer hiking route that leads to Portagem, passing through Abegoa and Fonte Souto, following a medieval cobblestone route./
Events : The Fiesta del Castanheiro, which takes place in November, is an excellent opportunity to visit and learn about local people and customs./ annual international classical music festival,was launched in Marvao in July 2014/
‘Al-Mossassa’- a celebration of the town’s Moorish past annual festival /
Eat : Drink : Accommodation :
Go next : Nature Park of the Southwest Alentejo / Evora / Castelo de Vide / Santiago do Cacem / Terena / Zambujeira do Mar /