CASTELO DE SAO JORGE.......... When you climb the winding streets of Alfama and reach the top of the highest of the seven hills upon which Lisbon was built, you reach the Castelo de Sao Jorge. This fortress was built by the Moors, who wanted to maintain their hold in Portugal. However, as a part of the Second Crusade, they were ousted from the castle and Lisbon in 1147.

Before 1371, the castle was simply called Lisbon Castle. But, when King John I married an English princess, the most important castle in Portugal got a new name. Since Saint George was so important to the English, and the Portuguese liked the idea of a dragon slayer, it's not hard to figure out why the name was changed. That same earthquake damaged the castle in 1755. It remained in ruins until the early 1900's. But today, you can walk along the walls and ramparts to view the bustling city below and the Tagus River just beyond.


Copyright 2009 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.