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Portugal - Fatima - route on the pavement for pilgrims to approach the chapel on their knees. - Krista photo

Portugal - Fatima - pilgrims - Krista photo

Portugal - Fatima - pilgrims - Krista photo

Fatima - center - Krista photo

Fatima - Francisco, the sheperd boy - Krista photo

It’s an interesting fact that the whole city of Fátima was built on the site of an apparition in a sheep pasture not far from a small village called Cova da Iria. There are no historic monuments, because virtually the entire town was constructed after the 1930s. Significant construction work is still going on around the outskirts of the town, so Fátima is still growing. It will come as no surprise that the miracle has been exploited commercially from the beginning, and this tendency is only increasing. A vast array of gift shops sell merchandise related to the miracle, ranging from quite kitsch to off-the-scale kitsch. Most of it is made-in-China plastic tat. Unbelievably, we even found a football jersey, which can be linked to the miracle of Fátima only by the most creative imagination.

Practicals

Transport

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Shopping

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Portugal - Fatima -those three sheperd children for sale - Krista photo

Health

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Fatima - clean public toilets - Krista photo

Others

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Portugal - Fatima - kneeler lane - Krista photo

Fatima - prayer candles burn in the metal fire pit at the shrine - Krista photo

Background

Portugal - Fatima - This main square of the sanctuary is larger than that of St. Peter's in the Vatican - Krista photo

Destination in brief

Fatima is a city in the Central region of Portugal. 

Fatima is one of the most important Catholic pilgrimage sites in the world dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Fatima's fame is based on a legend (reality for some):  in 1917 Our Lady of the Rosary appeared to three shepherd children; Lucia dos Santos and her two younger cousins, Francisco and Jacinta.

History

Leaving the question of the miracle’s authenticity untouched, some historians stress that after the fall of the left-wing government in 1926, both the fascist dictator Salazar and the Catholic church which energetically supported him became very interested in embracing the story of the miracle. Both the military government and the church needed a symbol through which they could win the support of the people, who had long sympathized with the so-called ‘atheist’ left-wing parties. It is no coincidence that in 1930, 13 years after the event itself, the church began promoting the miracle of Fátima. In 1936 Our Lady of Fátima became the patron saint of Portugal.

Tourist etiquette

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Fatima - Warning sign - Don't talk loud - Please, don't make group photos - Krista photo

Fatima - prayers in casual clothes - Krista photo

Attractions

Krista photo

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