Today is the International Day for Monuments and Sites, defined by UNESCO. This day is celebrated since April 1983 after the International Council for Monuments and Sites proposed it with the purpose of publicize cultural heritage, promote its protection and let on about the diversity of monuments across the world.
Portugal contributes with 15 monuments and sites for the World’s Heritage List, at this moment. In the North of Portugal you easily visit 4: Historic Centre of Guimarães, Historic Centre of Oporto, Luiz I Bridge and Monastery of Serra do Pilar, Alto Douro Wine Region and the Prehistoric Rock Art Sites in the Côa Valley and Siega Verde.
Furthermore, we highly recommend the visit to Bom Jesus Sanctuary, in Braga, whose application is now being considered.
It is a very impressive monument, that takes part of the city below and is a mandatory spot for every visitor of the largest city in Minho. This video can help you understand the monumentality of this intricate composite of buildings, art and gardens built in the XVIII century (although its history goes back to, at least, XIV centrury).
At Bom Jesus, the locals get married in the beautiful church, get fit in its 581 steps, stroll in the park, enjoy the esplanade on Sunday mornings and admire the sunset with the best view of the city.
The visitors have fun experimenting the funicular (moved solely by water), get surprised by the amazing statues, admire the magnificent church, understand the popular saying “seeing Braga from a pipe” and can+t stop taking pictures!
A lot of tourists see the resemblance with other monuments, which is natural, once Bom Jesus was used as inspiration to many other sites. For example, whoever comes from Brasil immediately remembers Bom Jesus of Matosinhos, in Congonhas (MInas Gerais).