Welcome to Vila Real De Santo António
Perched on the edge of wide Rio Guadiana, low-key Vila Real de Santo António's small pedestrian centre is architecturally impressive: it was founded after the 1755 earthquake to defend the region from neighbouring Spain, and was expanded in 1774 by the Marquês de Pombal using the same grid pattern of streets as Lisbon’s Baixa district. The town's square named in his honour – Praça Marquês de Pombal – is the lively focal point of the centre. Cobbles radiate out from a statue of King Don José I, who was on the throne at the time of Pombal's efforts.
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