Arraiolos – the Land of Rugs, has all the charm of Alentejo and the stillness of nature in its monumental, landscape and natural heritage.

The white houses with their characteristic blue trims, which form bars defining the backdrop, are an invitation for a long visit through all of its history, intertwined with the rural landscape nuanced with a thousand colours.

To better face the future of our municipality, we need to know and understand its past and its history.

It is within a context of appreciation for the built and monumental heritage, of defence and preservation of the environment, of defence and dissemination of our handicrafts, particularly the “Arraiolos Rug”, that we promote the municipality of Arraiolos, a municipality that’s worth experiencing and, at the same time, a municipality that you’ll want to get to know.

In addition to the richness of its landscape, the municipality of Arraiolos has a vast built heritage.

From among this collection of heritage, several national monuments and other buildings stand out, namely:

  • Great Hall of the Town Hall 

The “Salão Nobre dos Paços do Concelho”, or Great Hall of the Arraiolos Town Hall received 11 paintings for decoration between 1927 and 1932, by the painter Master Simão Dordio Gomes, an illustrious painter from the town, born on 26 July 1890.

Master Simão Dordio Gomes was a student of the Lisbon School of Fine Arts and a professor at the Porto School of Fine Arts.

The distinguished painter participated in numerous national and international exhibitions.

  • Rug Monument 

The Rug Monument was inaugurated on 23 December 2001, embodying all the historical importance of the craft to which Arraiolos gave its own name.

The Monument was created by Armando Alves.

Period of Construction: 19th century

  • Stone Fountain  

Formerly called the Almocreves.

A particularly charming fountain, it is located down a steep hill, about 300 metres from the village.

Period of Construction: 19th century

  • Santana do Campo – Roman Temple 

National Monument – Important millennia-old ruins from the 2nd/3rd centuries AD

It is considered by many to be the temple of the ancient Roman settlement of “Calantica”, to which the worship of the deity “Carneus” is attributed.

Built at the same site, the Church of Santa Ana (from the 15th/16th centuries, with profound alterations made to it in the 18th century) could not hide the grandeur of the incorporated monument.

Period of Construction 1st century

  • Arraiolos Castle 

A National Monument which comprises the wall of the ancient settlement and the “Paços dos Alcaides”. Its construction began in the year 1306, following the signing of the contract between King Dinis I and the town council, mayor and judges on 26 November 1305.

Crowned at the apex by the ancient “Igreja do Salvador”, or “Church of the Saviour”, dating from the 16th century. From here, you can see the immensity and beauty of the surrounding landscape, allowing a distinct look over the historic centre of the village.

Period of Construction 14th century

  • Pillory of Arraiolos 

16th Century National Monument. A work in Manueline style, it stands on the north end of the square, next to the former Hospital do Espirito Santo, which preserves the portal of the chapel from the same century and of the same style.

Instrument of justice. A symbol of municipal jurisdiction and independence, alongside the gallows. It is located in the Praça do Município

Period of Construction 17th / 18th centuries

  • Lóios Convent / Nossa Senhora da Assunção Convent 

Founded in 1527, it stands just a few hundred metres from the village, in the green valley of Flores. The combination of various styles: Gothic elements – Renaissance Manueline and Filipino Baroque, gave it a certain originality.

A highlight inside the Church are the tile compositions of the Spanish Master Gabriel del Barco from the 18th century. Also of note is the beauty of the cloisters.

It was adapted and opened its doors as the Pousada Nossa Senhora da Assunção, or the Our Lady of the Assumption Inn, in 1996.

Initial Usage: Cultural: Convent of the Order of Saint Eligius

Current Usage: Tourist facility. Inn

Period of Construction: 16th century

  • Mala-Posta House / Captain-Major’s House 

The residence of the last Captain-Major of Arraiolos, Manuel José Mendes de Carvalho (provided by Charter of King João VI of 1802), is located on the former fairgrounds, or Rossio, today the Praça da República, next to the São Romão Chapel. The Marquis of Fronteira and of Alorna and the Duke of Terceira stayed there in 1827 and 1834 respectively, during the period of the liberal struggles.

Period of Construction: 18th century

Comments: Adapted for use as a Municipal Library

  • Church of Misericórdia of Arraiolos 

Belonging to the Brotherhood of the Santa Casa da Misericórdia of Arraiolos, established in 1524, this house of worship, exemplary of the Baroque style, was founded in the late 16th century.

Located in the historic centre of the village, it displays an interesting set of tile panels inside, lining its walls, from the 18th century.

Period of Construction: 16th century

  • Igreja Matriz 

The Church of Santa Maria (already existing in 1302), the predecessor to the current Igreja Matriz, or Mother Church, suffered very serious damage over the course of its existence, being abandoned in the middle of the 17th century.

Its complete reconstruction was conducted from the year 1747 by order of Archbishop Miguel de Távora. From the time of the Baroque-Rococo transition, dedicated to Our Lady of Martyrs, this temple, with a rectangular nave, incorporates eight side chapels.

Period of Construction: 14th century (reconstructed in the 18th century)

  • São Francisco de Arraiolos Convent 

Located on Outeiro de São Romão, which subsequently became known as Outeiro de São Francisco, this convent, belonging to the Third Order Province of Saint Francis of Penance, overlooking the village, has greatly contributed to the development of the urban fabric of Arraiolos, constituting one of the few new development axes defined in the 17th century (CARREIRA, 1995).
The founding of the convent took place in 1612, dating from that same year that the necessary licences were issued from the Duke of Bragança, Teodósio II, Lord of Arraiolos, and the Archbishop of Évora, José de Melo. The council ruling, where the authorities justify their opposition to the building of the convent on the Rossio, making the aforementioned Outeiro available, is from 3 January of the following year.

Period of Construction: 17th century

  • Igrejinha Parish Church / Church of Nossa Senhora da Consolação, or Our Lady of Consolation 

Noteworthy are the carved altars from the time of King João V, the baroque fresco paintings, which cover the coffered ceiling of the main nave and the ceiling of the “Capela das Almas”, or the Chapel of Souls (western face); dated from 1724.

Period of Construction: 16th / 17th / 18th centuries

  • São Gregório Parish Church 

The Parish Church of São Gregório was erected on the Comenda de Mendo Marques Estate. The building has architectural features from the early 1600s.

Period of Construction: 16th / 17th centuries

  • Church of Santa Clara do Sabugueiro 

The Church of Santa Clara, built in its vast yard, restored and improved, features constructive characteristics from the beginning of the 17th century. The interesting set of popular moral paintings lining its ceiling stands out.

Period of Construction: 16th / 18th centuries

  • Church of São Pedro da Gafanhoeira 

Chronology: 1534 – Visitation of Cardinal Bishop of Évora Afonso, referring to the Church of São Pedro da Gafanhoeira; circa 1585, probable foundation of the present church.

  • Igreja Matriz do Vimieiro 

The “Igreja Matriz”, or Mother Church – Dedicated to Our Lady of the Incarnation of Sobral, is a temple of accentuated regional character, which was consecrated in the year 1557.

Period of Construction: 16th century