Theme Week Alentejo – Mértola

Wednesday, 22 February 2023 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
Reading Time:  4 minutes

© Vitor Oliveira/cc-by-2.5

© Vitor Oliveira/cc-by-2.5

Mértola is a municipality in southeastern Portuguese Alentejo near the Spanish border. In 2011, the population was 7,274, in an area of approximately 1,292.87 square kilometres (499.18 sq mi): it is the sixth-largest municipality in Portugal. Meanwhile, it is the second-lowest population centre by density with approximately 5.62 persons/1 square kilometre (0.39 sq mi) (second to the adjacent Alcoutim).

The seat of the municipality is the town of Mértola, which has around 2800 inhabitants (2011), located on a hill over the Guadiana River. Its strategic location made it an important fluvial commercial port in Classical Antiquity, through the period of Umayyad conquest of Hispania: Mértola’s main church (the Church of Nossa Senhora da Anunciação) was the only medieval mosque to have survived the period in Portugal. In 2017 Mértola started the process to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

© Alexey Komarov/cc-by-sa-4.0 © flickr.com - Hugo Cadavez/cc-by-2.0 © flickr.com - Miguel Vieira/cc-by-2.0 © flickr.com - zone41/cc-by-sa-2.0 © Vitor Oliveira/cc-by-2.5 Mértola Castle © Reino Baptista/cc-by-sa-4.0
<
>
Mértola Castle © Reino Baptista/cc-by-sa-4.0
In 1238, in the context of the Reconquista, the town was conquered by Portuguese King Sancho II, putting an end on several centuries of Islamic rule in the Mértola region. The town was donated to the Knights of the Order of St. James, a Military Order that played a vital role in the Christian conquest of Southern Portugal. The seat of the Order was established in Mértola until 1316. From the Reconquista time date most of the castle, including its mighty keep, and a letter of feudal rights (foral), granted in 1254.The economic importance of Mértola and the Guadiana faded after that period. In the 15th-16th centuries, when the Portuguese conquered several cities in the Maghreb, Mértola experienced a brief revival in its economic relevance, supplying Portuguese troops in Northern Africa with cereals. King Manuel I granted a new foral to the town in 1512.

After a long period of economic stagnation, the discovery of copper in the S. Domingos mines led to a new wave of development that would end abruptly in 1965, when the mine was exhausted. In the next decades, the municipality lost much of its population, who emigrated to richer parts of Portugal and other European countries. Starting in the 1980s, a series of archaeological surveys brought to light various remnants of past periods of Mértola, and the town became an important cultural touristic site.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

Read more on Wikipedia Mértola. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




Recommended posts:

Share this post: (Please note data protection regulations before using buttons)

The European Union: Institutions

The European Union: Institutions

[responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Politics of the European Union are different from other organisations and states due to the unique nature of the European Union (EU). The EU is similar to a confederation, where many policy areas are federalised into common institutions capable of making law; however the EU does not, unlike most states, control foreign policy, defence policy or the majority of direct taxation policies (the EU does limit the level of variation allowed for VAT). These areas are primarily under the control of the EU's member st...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Beirut - The Central District

Theme Week Beirut - The Central District

[caption id="attachment_152039" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Rue Maarad © flickr.com - Ismail Küpeli/cc-by-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Beirut Central District (BCD) or Centre Ville is the name given to Beirut’s historical and geographical core, the "vibrant financial, commercial, and administrative hub of the country." At the heart of Lebanon’s capital, Beirut Central District (BCD) is an area thousands of years old, traditionally a focus of business, finance, culture and leisure. Its reconstruction constitutes o...

[ read more ]

Madeira, the Portuguese island in the Atlantic Ocean

Madeira, the Portuguese island in the Atlantic Ocean

[caption id="attachment_152973" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Market in Funchal © Hannes Grobe[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Madeira is a Portuguese archipelago that lies just under 400 km north of Tenerife, Canary Islands, in the north Atlantic Ocean and an outermost region of the European Union. The archipelago comprises one of the two Autonomous regions of Portugal (the other being the Azores located to the northwest), that includes the islands of Madeira, Porto Santo, the Desertas and the Savage Islands. Madeira was re-disco...

[ read more ]

Brownsville in New York City

Brownsville in New York City

[caption id="attachment_220178" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Zion Triangle Park © Jim.henderson[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Brownsville is a residential neighborhood located in eastern Brooklyn in New York City. The neighborhood is generally bordered by Crown Heights to the northwest; Bedford–Stuyvesant and Cypress Hills to the north; East New York to the east; Canarsie to the south; and East Flatbush to the west. The 1.163-square-mile (3.01 km²) area that comprises Brownsville has 58,300 residents as of the 2010 United St...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Potsdam - Cecilienhof Palace

Theme Week Potsdam - Cecilienhof Palace

[caption id="attachment_169074" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Gryffindor[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Cecilienhof Palace is a palace in Potsdam, Brandenburg built from 1914 to 1917 in the layout of an English Tudor manor house. Cecilienhof was the last palace built by the House of Hohenzollern that ruled the Kingdom of Prussia and the German Empire until the end of World War I. Cecilienhof has been part of the Palaces and Parks of Potsdam and Berlin UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990. Cecilienhof is located in the northern...

[ read more ]

Barcelona Royal Shipyard

Barcelona Royal Shipyard

[caption id="attachment_234404" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Lluis Ferrer[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Barcelona Royal Shipyard (Catalan: Drassanes Reials de Barcelona, Spanish: Atarazanas Reales de Barcelona) is a shipyard and former military building of Gothic architecture placed at the Port Vell area of the Port of Barcelona. Nowadays it houses the Barcelona Maritime Museum. Construction started during the 13th century under the rule of Peter III of Aragon. During excavations in 2012 it was discovered that in the late...

[ read more ]

Loch Torridon in Scotland

Loch Torridon in Scotland

[caption id="attachment_209248" align="aligncenter" width="590"] House on the Loch © flickr.com - Chris Combe/cc-by-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Loch Torridon is a sea loch on the west coast of Scotland in the Northwest Highlands. The loch was created by glacial processes and is in total around 15 miles (25 km) long. It has two sections: Upper Loch Torridon to landward, east of Rubha na h-Airde Ghlaise, at which point it joins Loch Sheildaig; and the main western section of Loch Torridon proper. Loch a' Chracaich and Loch Bea...

[ read more ]

Jumeirah in Dubai

Jumeirah in Dubai

[caption id="attachment_238466" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Jumeirah Archaeological Site © Sahil.latheef/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Jumeirah is a coastal residential area of Dubai, United Arab Emirates mainly comprising low rise private dwellings and hotel developments. It has both expensive and large detached properties as well as more modest town houses built in a variety of architectural styles. The area is popular with expatriates working in the emirate and is familiar to many tourists visiting Dubai. ...

[ read more ]

Charleston in South Carolina

Charleston in South Carolina

[caption id="attachment_26578" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Old Slave Mart Museum © Benjamin Dahlhoff/cc-by-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Charleston is the oldest and second-largest city in the State of South Carolina, the county seat of Charleston County, and the principal city in the Charleston–North Charleston–Summerville Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city lies just south of the geographical midpoint of South Carolina's coastline and is located on Charleston Harbor, an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean formed by the c...

[ read more ]

Ostend in West Flanders

Ostend in West Flanders

[caption id="attachment_234680" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © panoramio.com - bogdan1971/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Ostend (Dutch: Oostende, French: Ostende, German: Ostende, West Flemish: Ostende) is a coastal city and municipality, located in the province of West Flanders in the Flemish Region of Belgium. It comprises the boroughs of Mariakerke, Raversijde, Stene and Zandvoorde, and the city of Ostend proper – the largest on the Belgian coast. In the Early Middle Ages, Ostend was a small village bui...

[ read more ]

Return to TopReturn to Top
Master James statue at Beaumaris Castle © AJ Marshall/cc-by-sa-4.0
Portrait: James of Saint George, master of works and architect

Master James of Saint George (French: Maître Jacques de Saint-Georges) was a master of works/architect from Savoy, described by historian...

Palácio dos Condes de Avillez © F nando/cc-by-sa-3.0
Theme Week Alentejo – Portalegre

Portalegre is a municipality in Portugal. The population as of 2011 was 22,368, in an area of 447.14 square kilometres...

© Matthias Zepper/cc-by-sa-3.0
Royal Palace of Brussels

The Royal Palace of Brussels is the official palace of the King and Queen of the Belgians in the centre...

Close