What is peculiar about the town of Monsanto, Portugal?
Monsanto is a village in Portugal of about 823 residents. The most peculiar thing about the town of Monsanto is that the homes are created in and around large granite boulders! These rocks weigh over 200 tons!
It's not just about building a home near a boulder or beside it. Villagers have even burrowed through the boulders to make their home inside them. The residents of this town have adapted to their environment. These gigantic boulders are used as walls, floors, and for some villagers these boulders work as roofs.
As you can imagine the landscape is very uneven. Moreover it is located on a cliff 2400 feet above sea level so the entire village has a picturesque view. The residents have maintained the integrity of mediaeval times because the preferred mode of transport is the donkey. The village has not changed in over 100 years. Over the years, Monsanto played a very important part in defending Portugal against invading armies.
Some say this town is a living museum. The streets a very narrow and are very haphazard and the village has no precise layout. Near the top of the hill, you will find the walls of a medieval castle. Just below the castle are the ruins of St. Michael’s Chapel which is surrounded by curious stone coffins.
You can reach Monsanto by bus and take advantage of unique restaurants and craft stores. The villagers are friendly and welcoming. You can tour around on foot or hire a horse. Your visit will be one you remember fondly.