Suggestions in this region 7 Regions CENTRO SERRA DA ESTRELA BELMONTE
Castelo de Belmonte
Castelo de Belmonte
Igreja de Santiago
Arco Gótico na Igreja de Santiago
Torre junto ao Castelo
Largo do Pelourinho e biblioteca
Antiga Capela
Fachada da Igreja Matriz
Casa Típica


Jewish secrets in the cradle of Brazil’s discoveror

Belmonte is a town full of history and tradition, situated in Monte da Esperança, in a valley known as Cova da Beira, on the left margin of Zêzere river. The Romans were here, leaving traces over the council. It was an important military stronghold until D. Denis reign, for the borderline with Leon kingdom was located in the surroundings. After the fights against Castile, D. João I takes hold of the town and appoints Luís Álvares Cabral as castle’s alcalde. This title was inherited by the family’s firstborn child. One of those children, Pedro Álvares cabral, who discovered Brazil, is said to have been born in this magnificent fortress. However, Belmonte village is internationally known for being the centre of an important Jewish community, identified in the 20th century. Ancient Jewish customs passed from generation to generation by oral tradition (namely by women), since Inquisition times. Completely isolated from any other Hebrew group until 1974, Belmonte Jewish community is said to be the only Crypto-Jewish community in whole Europe. This cultural heritage can be discovered in the town’s Jewish Museum, the first one in Portugal. Included in the Historical Villages’ programme, Belmonte is an interesting tourism landmark, not only because of its privileged location near Estrela mountain, but also of its history and monumentality. Worth mentioning are the following highlights: Santiago Church, Cabrais Pantheon and Centum Celas Tower. Handicraft, fairs, beautiful landscapes and a diversified gastronomy count as other attractions of this town.


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