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Belmonte

Belmonte

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Located on the laps of the amazing Estrela Mountain, and crowned by the granite mass of the ancient Castle, Belmonte was the hometown of Pedro Álvares Cabral navigator that in 1500 discovered Brazil.

One of the main highlights in Belmonte is the Castle, a National Monument, formed by the Donjon, vestiges of the ancient Cabrais Palace and a modern open air amphitheatre, surrounded by majestic walls. Visit the Manueline window, a remarkable granite work of art where one can observe the majestic Estrela Mountain in all its extension.

Next to the Castle is located a small Romanesque-Gothic church dedicated to S. Tiago, which has in its interior a granite sculpted Pieta. Annexed to the Church is the Cabral family pantheon, even though the Pedro Álvares de Cabral ashes are located in the Graça Church, in Santarém.

Belmonte presents other highlights such as the Pillory, the medieval symbol of municipal power, the Gothic Nossa Senhora da Piedade Chapel and also the synagogue, a Jew symbol that shows off the importance of the Jew community, specially in the 15th century when here several Jews found refuge from the Castile persecutions. Even nowadays, in the Bairro de Marrocos, the quarter where the Jews lived, the symbols of each profession can be seen by the doors.

Visit the Mother Church, a recent building that houses the 15th century image of Our Lady of Hope that, according to the tradition, is the Saint that Pedro Álvares Cabral took in his Brazil Discovery trip.
In the Tulha, a wonderful 18th century granite building from the Cabral family, nowadays is housed the Zêzere river eco-museum, with a perspective of the natural and cultural heritage of this region.
Also quite interesting is the Jewish Museum and the Olive oil Museum.

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