TOMAR is a charming, small town on the banks of the Rio Nabão – close enough to Lisbon for a day-trip, handsome enough and certainly interesting enough to warrant an overnight stay. Its old quarter is typically attractive, laid out as a grid of cobbled streets centred on a fine square, and there are riverside strolls to enjoy and green woods for picnicking. But standing sentry over town, high on the hill above, is the real reason for a visit – the mighty Convento do Cristo, founded (along with the town) in 1160 as the headquarters of the Order of the Knights Templar, scourge of the Moors and defenders of the faith. Castle and town both survived Moorish siege and attack in 1190, after which Tomar prospered in line with the gradual establishment of Portugal as a regional and, later, imperial force.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Portugal features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

That ever-growing travel wish list might be putting some pressure on your pocket – but there are plenty of destinations where you'll get more bang for your b…

11 Oct 2017 • Emma Gibbs camera_alt Gallery
Where to eat in Lisbon: an area-by-area guide

Where to eat in Lisbon: an area-by-area guide

Lisbon has rightly garnered a reputation as being one of Europe’s hippest cities – but Portuguese cuisine remains somewhat unknown. Rest assured, though, Li…

24 Aug 2017 • Matthew Hancock insert_drive_file Article
The 10 best beaches in Portugal

The 10 best beaches in Portugal

For many travellers, Portugal is synonymous with images of golden sun-baked beaches. And with a generous 1700 kilometres of coastline, there’s enough sand for…

28 Jul 2017 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Weekly newsletter

Sign up now for travel inspiration, discounts and competitions

Sign up now and get 20% off any ebook