Portugal // The Minho //

Citânia de Briteiros

Ancient Portuguese archeological sites don’t come more mysterious or dramatic than the Citânia de Briteiros, an Iron Age hilltown that lies roughly halfway between Guimarães and Braga. It’s one of dozens in the Minho region, large and small, most dating back to around 500 BC, although some are considerably older still. Home to a people known as the “Bracari”, the extensive site at Briteiros, straddling a boulder-strewn hill, probably made a last-ditch stand against the invading Romans and was eventually abandoned by around 100 AD. Its significance is enormous – the hillside ruins may appear obscure today, but Briteiros is one of the earliest sites on the Iberian peninsula that could reasonably be described as an urban settlement.

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