Castelo de Silves is one of the most notable works of military architecture that the Arabs left among us, with more than a thousand years of existence.
This fortification is located at the highest point on the hill on which the city rests. It forms an irregular polygon, surrounded by a strong rammed earth wall, covered in red sandstone – the sandstone of Silves, and occupies a total area of about 12,000 m2. Deeply devastated by countless earthquakes, it is the object of restoration works in the 40s of the 20th century, assuming its current design through the intervention promoted within the scope of the Development Plans.
Still outside, next to the main entrance you can find a bronze sculpture representative of King D. Sancho I, monarch who in 1189 conquered the city of Silves for the first time with the aid of the Cruzados.
Access to this alcove is through a double door with atrium, flanked by two of the eleven towers that connect a 388-meter-long round path, making this formation an important defensive system. In the northern area of the wall, we find a secondary access, designated as Porta da Traição, a small porthole that allowed to open the wall, with discretion and autonomy of the alcove in relation to the Medina.
Inside the castle there are several elements worth noting, of which the Aljibe stands out – a large rectangular cistern that supplied a significant part of the city with water. 20m long and 16m wide, its roof is seven meters above and is closed by four cannon vaults, placed side by side to facilitate the aeration of water, supported by six central columns and another six sweetened to the walls.