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Sao Bartolomeu de Messines

Sao Bartolomeu de Messines sits in the central Algarve under the district of Silves. Steeped in history and offers much to explore. Yet hard to come across in most tourist guides, offering 2 free museums it lends itself to having so much. Due to the fact the town sits in a basin and retains what other towns lost in the earthquake of 1755.

Situated just off the EN: 124 towards Silves. with views of the whole town from the road. It beckons you to wander down, and explore what it has to offer.

The first building you will see sits in the town centre, is the church, not just another one of the Algarve’s old churches. This is a Marvel (Igreja Matriz), originating from 16th century, with a style somewhere between Manueline and Renaissance. To which a baroque facade added during the 18th century.

 The elaborate front stone doorway with the date 1716 carved into it. The front of the church is rather impressive with the contrast of white walls and red sandstone that is unique to the Silves area.

Even if religion is of no interest to you, the inside is well worth a visit. They have put wooden ramps for wheelchair access; if any difficulty the police station is just 2 doors away and a helping hand will always be on offer.

Opposite the church is a museum the birthplace of the 19th century poet, Joćo de Deus. Whose book “Cartilha Maternal" widely used to teach reading and writing during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This museum is of interest to all ages open to the Public with free entry. In 2 parts showing the original house as it was when Joao de Deus lived there.


Messines sits in a basin

1716 carved stone doorway

Museum next to church

Many narrow cobbled streets

Room setting in the museum

To read more about Sao BrŖ de Messines and 54 other Cities/Towns/villages you can now purchase the Travel guide book, packed with useful information

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