Mertola Castle, Mertola

The Castle of Mértola is a well-preserved medieval castle located in the civil parish and municipality of Mértola, in the Portuguese district of Beja.HistoryIn 318 B.C., during the sequence of the invasion and sack of Tyre, by Alexander the Great, the Phoenicians founded the Myrtilis or New Tyre. The region became an important trading center frequented by Phoenicians and Carthaginians, thanks to the abundance of river and land routes connecting it to the southern portion of the peninsula. Before the invasion of the Iberian Peninsula, it held commercial importance among these civilizations.During the Roman epoch, the settlement was developed, becoming the centre of the mineral extract and agriculture in the Baixo Alentejo region. Mértola was encircled by a wall system that paralleled what remains today, but much grander. The Beja road crossed the walls in the north, and by 44 B.C. Julius Cesar had renamed the town Myrtilis Julia. The first historical reference to this settlement existed in the chronicles of the Swabian bishop, Idácio, who narrated an episode dating to 440 AD, and inferred the existence of this fortified site occupied by Swabians and Visigoths.It was destroyed and sacked by barbarian hordes, then Muslim Umayyad Africans, who reconstructed the centre for their own necessities, where the name Myrtilis was shortened to Martula. Ibn Qasi was governor of the Taifa of Mértola it is likely that defensive works during his rule (1144-1151) were carried out to the castle.
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Mertola Castle Reviews
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  • It is worth visiting this castle, as well as being more a piece of our history have a lovely view over the river. I strongly recommend
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  • The castle dominates the town. 2 euros to enter the tower. The tower has great views of the area. We watched a short film about the castle and it’s history. Clean with handrails for safety.  more »
  • Many of the castles in the area, it is worth entering see it, by the views from the same and what ever you can learn from history. Interesting
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Google
  • Well worth the visit. Give yourself at least 4 hours. Visit tourist office and ask for suggested walking route to see church, castle, ruins, etc.
  • This imposing castle is perched on a steep bank of the Guadiana river. The sweeping views on the river are dramatic. The town is lovely and there are many good restaurants. Migas was very reasonable and had an excellent choice of typical dishes.
  • Difficult to get to from Faro by car, but worth it. A really interesting afternoon exploring town and archeological areas.
  • Nice view but no much information about it. They could improve the site.
  • Great experience. Great view. The city is beautiful and can be overviewed from the Castello. Especially the view from the bottom of the hill to the Castello is really nice. Will entertain you for 1,5 hours. You only have to buy a ticket for the big tower/museum. I would visit it again.
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