Guimaraes Castle

Guimaraes Castle is located at Rua Conde Don Henrique in Monte Largo, the highest point in the town. Countess Mumadona Dias ordered it built around 968 because there were constant attacks on the Christian monastery by the Moors, Normans, and Vikings. In the 12th century, Count Henrique Guimaraes (the son of Alfonso VI of Leon) had a more solid castle built there and had the old castle expanded, adding two entrances. The son of Count Henrique was Afonso Henriques, the first King of Portugal, and he was born in the castle. It was at the castle that Afonso Henriques had a fight with his cousin Alfonso VII, the King of Leon. When artillery guns were invented, the Castle of Guimaraes lost its strategic importance and started to deteriorate. In 1910, the castle was declared a National Monument. Restoration started in 1937 and this was finished in 1940.