Last month me and my boyfriend went to Lanhoso Castle to celebrate our anniversary. It’s located in Póvoa de Lanhoso, in the North of Portugal. Nowadays it’s a small portion of the original castle. It’s situated in the biggest outcropping granitic in Portugal, which just for this fact makes the visit worth it. The view from up there is amazing!
We wanted to have an experience that would be new to both of us. Even though I went often to Póvoa de Lanhoso, I had never stopped to visit the castle, neither Nuno had. The visit to the castle can be quick or longer, depending on your will. We ended up spending there a couple hours!
The castle offers a short documentary about the castle, information about the outcropping ganitic, the sanctuary of Our Lady of of the Pillar, also on top of the outcropping granitic and that you can see in the pictures, Nowadays the sanctuary covers the castle but not its splendor. The castle is famous for having D. Teresa while in prison because she was against D. Afonso Henriques, her son and the first king of Portugal. The castle is even older than Portugal. Older than the castle, however, is the settlement you can find near, it’s Pre-Roman. The castle also has assets from this settlement.
You can go to the top of the tower and explore the landscape, with the sanctuary close to you and Póvoa de Lanhoso at your feet. You can even see Gerês. In the day I took the pictures, there were some people training climbing near the castle. This area is part of Póvoa de Lanhoso’s heritage and that0s why there are also cultural activities here throughout the year.
The experience in the castle was better than expected and that was thanks to José, the guide that’s in the castle available to help you have a perfect experience. He spoke with us about the story of the castle, legends, the settlement’s assets, about Póvoa de Lanhoso. I even found that both José and I studied in the Master of Heritage and Cultural Tourism, in different years. It’s a small world! José had the idea of placing a map on a wall where people place a pushpin in the place they come from. It’s a good idea, both for aestetic and statistic purposes. It had already a good amount of foreigners and people from the centre of Portugal.
My advice is to visit the castle wether you like History, nature, landscapes. And I advise you to speak with José to know more about the castle and the settlement. Be eager to listen and you’ll love it. Find more info and its cultural agenda here.