Herdade do Esporão
Since it was founded in 1267, the boundaries of Herdade do Esporão have remained virtually unchanged, despite being the stage of bloody battles and heroic deeds over almost nine centuries. Soeiro Rodrigues, judge of the city of Évora, was the first of many owners, who included the Master of Santiago Rodrigues de Vasconcelos, Morgado D. Álvaro Mendes de Vasconcelos who built the Esporão Tower and the Counts of Alcáçovas, who kept the estate in the family until 1973, the year it was sold to José Roquette and Joaquim Bandeira.
In the centre of Herdade do Esporão, three historic monuments were constructed: the Esporão Tower, the Esporão Arch and the Nossa Senhora dos Remédios Chapel, the latter related to intense and devout popular worship in the region that involves local people to form processions when the rains are late. The Esporão Tower, an assertive symbol in society and a demonstration of military strength, is one of the most important towers in the region, illustrating the transition for the medieval to the modern age in Portugal.
If a journey back in time in Herdade do Esporão leads to the Middle Ages, then the same thing in Herdade dos Perdigões, just five kilometres away, takes us back to Neolithic and Calcolithic times, between 4,500 and 2,000 years before Christ, when the region housed a residential and cerimonial complex covering 16 hectares. The quality of the finds and research has transformed the archaeological complex into a key site for recent European pre-history.
The Historical Centre
The Tower of Esporão is one of the most important towers built during the transition from the Middle Ages to the modern era. It is thought to have been built by Morgado Álvaro Mendes de Vasconcelos between 1457, the date he inherited the property, and 1490, the year he died. This is the conclusion of the historian José Pires Gonçalves, based on the architectural style and the location of the Tower.
Today, the Esporão Tower it is the symbol of Herdade do Esporão wines, having regained its former grandeur and importance. It is the most important and representative building of all those on Herdade do Esporão. On the ground floor of the Tower, you can visit the Archaeological Museum and see an exhibition of items found on the estate and at the Perdigões Settlement.
• Visits and Tastings
• Techincal Tastings
• Visit to Herdade do Esporão’s Historical Heritage
• Bike rides and picnic