Óbidos is a charming little town in the west of Portugal with narrow streets, colourful houses and perfectly preserved town walls. For centuries, it has provided a retreat for Portuguese monarchy. The majestic Castelo de Óbidos looming over town looks intimidating from afar, but in fact, it houses one of the best accommodations in the area.
It was bought by a luxury hotel chain Pousadas de Portugal specializing in historical hotels. Unlike some other castles-turned-hotels, this one doesn’t forcefully try to reconstruct the antique interiors. The rooms are furnished in a modern fashion with just slight hints at the building’s regal past: a fragment of exposed stone wall here, a chandelier or a four-post bed there. The common areas have a stronger castle theme with suits of armour and tapestries decorating the walls, but still tastefully blended with contemporary furniture.
The hillside location affords sweeping views of Óbidos and lush green countryside that can be enjoyed from the outdoor terraces and the restaurant. The combination of regional dishes and fantastic Portuguese wines served here is the cherry on top.
If you’re travelling by car, there are many great daytrips to be made from the hotel. Peniche, a fishing town known for its beautiful sand beaches and dramatic cliffside, is just 25km away. Two UNESCO Sites, Monastery of Alcobaça and Monastery of Batalha, are 40km and 70km away, respectively. They can both be visited in one trip making for a great architecture-filled day.