Top Historic Sights in Ponte de Lima, Portugal

Explore the historic highlights of Ponte de Lima

Ponte de Lima Roman Bridge

One of the oldest towns in Portugal (founded in 1125), Ponte de Lima was historically significant as a Roman settlement on the road from Braga to Santiago de Compostela and Lugo, and the first place in Portugal getting a municipal charter. The main symbol of Ponte de Lima, that together with the river names the town, is its bridge. In reality, it’s a composite formed by two bridges: a medieval part, which is bigger, st ...
Founded: 1st century AD | Location: Ponte de Lima, Portugal

Refoios Monatery

The building of Refoios’ Monastery, founded on the 12th century by Afonso Ansemondes, is presently home to Ponte de Lima’s agricultural college, having next to it the imposing Parish Church. The cloister, with its central fountain dated and autographed by José Lopes, is Renaissance style, as well as some portals of the ancient monastic rooms. The parts painted with scrollwork and windings in some of the corridors ar ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Ponte de Lima, Portugal

Church of Senhor do Socorro

The Church of Senhor do Socorro  is an 18th-century Baroque sanctuary situated in the civil parish of Labruja, municipality of Ponte de Lima. The church is the centre of pilgrimages and festivals in honour of the Lord of Help/Distress, particularly on the first Saturday and Sunday of July, attracting many people from the Portuguese diaspora. The construction of the church began in 1773. A votive offering was already oc ...
Founded: 1773 | Location: Ponte de Lima, Portugal

 Curutelo Castle

The Curutelo Castle is a well-preserved medieval castle located in the civil parish of Ardegão, in the municipality of Ponte de Lima.  There are many interpretations as to the construction of the palace of Curutelo. Félix Machado, in his notes on the nobility of the Count of São Pedro, stated that the structure existed during the time of Ferdinand I of León who conquered Coimbra from the Moors, and gave it to Nuno N ...
Founded: 16th century | Location: Ponte de Lima, Portugal

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Varberg Fortress

Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.

King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.

The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.

It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.