Convent Enclosure. Mata dos Sete Montes
The hilltop site of Sete Montes, where, in 1160, the Knights Templar founded Tomar Castle as their military stronghold, was transformed into the retreat of the Knights of the Order of Christ in the 16th century.
Later, João III reformed the Order of Christ, making it a congregation of monks living in clausura. In order to house the new brotherhood, João commissioned the construction of a grandiose monastery set against the west flank of the Templar castle. As is mandatory for monastic life, the whole urban part was surrounded by a demarcated expanse of land, symbolising the land that man should inhabit and transform with his labour.
Thus the Sete Montes enclosure was added to the Renaissance convent. It is an example par excellence of the union of an historic landscape and a unique monumental complex to create an outstanding cultural environment that must be experienced and protected, as it is of immense value in terms of the cultural, historical and environmental heritage of Portugal.