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Mértola is a municipality in southeastern Portuguese Alentejo near the Spanish border. In 2011, the population was 7,274, in an area of approximately 1292.87km2: it is the sixth-largest municipality in Portugal. Meanwile, it is the second-lowest population centre by density with approximately 5.62 persons/1km2 (second to the adjacent Alcoutim).The seat of the municipality is the town of Mértola, which has around 2800 inhabitants (2011), located on a hill over the Guadiana River. Its strategic location made it an important fluvial commercial port in Classical Antiquity, through the period of Umayyad conquest of Hispania: Mértola's main church (the Church of Nossa Senhora da Anunciação) was the only medieval mosque to have survived the period in Portugal.HistoryDuring Classical Antiquity, Mértola was inhabited by Phoenicians, Carthaginians and finally the Romans, who called it Myrtilis Iulia. The strategic location of Mértola, on a hill by the northernmost navigable part of the Guadiana river, was crucial in its early development. Agricultural products grown in the villae nearby and valuable minerals (silver, gold and tin) obtained from the lower Alentejo region were sent from the fluvial port of Mértola via the Guadiana to Southern Hispania and the Mediterranean. Between 1st and 2nd century, Myrtilis, was part of the larger Pacensis region (under the capital Beja/Pax Julia), acquired a great importance, as a dynamic commercial centre, permitting it to mint its own coin.. The town was raised to the status of a Municipium in times of Emperor Augustus and was connected to important Roman cities (Beja, Évora) through a road system. Mertola is in Beja District. Our Portugal online road trip planner allows you to schedule your trip to Mertola, learn about its attractions, and find out about where else to go during your holiday.
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Top tours near Mertola
Horse Riding in Comporta BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $233
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50 days in Portugal BY A USER FROM CANADA April, popular sights PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 25 days in Mertola BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL November, popular sights PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 15 days in Portugal BY A USER FROM BELGIUM October, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Mertola BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL September, popular sights PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 15 days in Alentejo BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 6 days in Alentejo BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL July, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium