Castro Verde - Messejana
Turismo do Alentejo, ERT
Caminhos de Santiago do Alentejo e Ribatejo - Caminho Central - Etapa 4Photo: Upstream, Turismo do Alentejo, ERT
We leave Castro Verde for another extensive stage, along 29 km, until Messejana. Initially, we cross the Campo Branco (White Field) through successive estates dedicated to cattle raising. At this time, or even earlier, it is advisable to call the only existing accommodation unit in Messejana, or the Parish Council, to ensure an overnight stay, which is always difficult to obtain due to the high demand of Aljustrel mine workers. We pass the village of Almeirim and travel about 1 km by road before turning to a dirt track on the left, where the sign indicates the Herdade de S. Miguel. Before that, we also pass a green gate that gives access to the path leading to Fonte dos Milagres, whose waters, for public use, are credited with exceptional benefits. We surround the estate, passing by a rural dam and enter Casével, passing the roundabout that bears an original metallic sculpture in honor of Cante Alentejano, and turning right onto Rua de Castro Verde. We can't miss the opportunity to visit the main church, built on another older temple. Here, a strange silver relic was found, representing a head of human scale, but carrying inside, glued to the interior of the silver, an authentic human skull. At the time, the local people remembered the ancestral memories and had no doubt that it was the holy head of São Fabião (St Fabian), the Pope martyred in the 3rd century by the Empire of Rome, which for centuries remained in the church of Casével and was venerated for the powers attributed to it in protecting the cattle. After lunch, we continue our journey towards the old Casével railway station, on a practically deserted rural road. From now on we have 10 km of rural roads until Messejana, almost always between property fences, without any relevant stories. At some point we'll find the national road 263 but, immediately, we make the shift to the left in the direction of Monte das Muralhas, passing all the gates interposed to us. Finally, we cross a viaduct over the motorway and see the village of Messejana.
We arrive at the central square and are welcomed by the church of Misericórdia, one of 11 churches that the village used to have. The Praça de Touros (bullring) is on the right, behind the houses. The bullfighting was already traditional in 1573, when D. Sebastião was here, three bullfights being held in four days. On the top, the main church and the ruins of the castle, built in 1288, persist, but now only with vestiges of a tower wall. It's time to go to the Junta de Freguesia (Parish Council), also in the central square, to find out what Messejana reserves for us.
In the Alentejo you really have to try the typical delicacies. The Alentejo bread, the olive oil, the wines. The starters with olives, a cheese board and delicious smoked ham. The Alentejo soup (there are several). Savour the açordas and the migas, the lamb and pork. Why not a sericaia, which is a conventual sweet for dessert, for example? But the menu is diverse. See where you can taste the Alentejo gastronomy. And because when travelling in Alentejo, restful nights are a must. Here you will find many options where you can rest and relax.
Track typesShow elevation profile
Safety informationFor information regarding conduct, recommendations and self-safety, please refer to this page.
Tips and hints
- Messejana Parish Council: +351 284 655 148
- Aljustrel City Council: +351 284 600 070
- Aljustrel Fire Department: +351 284 600 130
- GNR − Aljustrel Territorial Station: +351 284 600 010
EquipmentAlways carry water, supplies, sunscreen, a hat, waterproof, comfortable shoes, and a map.
- 4 Waypoints
- 4 Waypoints
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