Convento Beneditino de Ganfei

Religious Heritage

The Convento Benedito de Ganfei is a must-see in the heritage route of Valença, and you should take your time to visit it in detail. Once you arrive to its yard, you’ll feel overwhelmed by its majesty and sumptuousness. Its origin probably dates back to the 7th century and, after being destroyed by the Al-Andalus governor Almançor in 997, it was rebuilt in 1018 by order of Dom Ganfrido, who died as a saint. It was deeply refurbished in the 17th and 18th centuries, but this doesn't mean you won't be able to see some of its Romanesque elements. The proper convent’s building – with the church aside – is in a fairly degraded state. However, visit the much better preserved church and behold Dom Ganfrido relics exhibited in the main chapel. Long time ago, these relics would attract many Portuguese and Spanish devotees who sought the relics power to heal children diseases. Outside the church, walk along the two cloister's floors and enjoy the silence and quietness of the place. Don’t go away without scrutinizing the surroundings… You’ll find other interesting constructions such as the threshing floor with raccards, the hedgerow and the ancient mill. A little further, at the center of the parish of Ganfei, the Largo de São Teotónio is also a must-see. That’s where the Capela de São Teotónio is located, at the exact birthplace of this first Portuguese saint and a statue of himself.

Valença (Viana do Castelo)

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