Fátima, Portugal

Our Lady of Fátima Basilica

Coat of arms
Fátima is located in Portugal
Location within Portugal
Coordinates: 39°38′N 08°40′W / 39.633°N 8.667°W / 39.633; -8.667
Country Portugal
District Santarém
Municipality Ourém
Parishes 1
 – Total 71.29 km2 (27.5 sq mi)
Population (2011)
 – Total 11,538
 – Density 144/km2 (373/sq mi)
Time zone GMT (UTC0)

Fátima (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈfatimɐ] ( listen)) is a city in Portugal famous for the religious visions that took place there in 1917. The town itself has a population of 7,756[1] and is located in the municipality of Ourém, in the Centro Region and sub region of Médio Tejo. It is in the district of Santarém and is included in the urban agglomeration of Leiria, in central Portugal, 187 km (116 mi) south of Porto and 123 km (76 mi) north of Lisbon.



The name of the town (formerly a small village) comes from the Arabic name Fatima (Fāṭimah, Arabic: فاطمة ).

Marian apparitions

Fátima is famous for the shrine called the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, built to commemorate the events of 1917 when three peasant children allegedly saw the "Virgin of the Rosary", Our Lady of Fátima. When the children asked for her name, she said "I am The Lady of The Rosary". The children experienced the reported Marian apparitions in a pasture called the Cova da Iria


The economy of the town relies on religious tourism. Fátima now attracts hosts of believers from far and wide, particularly on the pilgrimage days, and the shrine has been developed on a correspondingly large scale. The town has a considerable number of shops and stalls selling all kinds of religious articles, and the streets of the town have plenty of hotels, hostels and restaurants.

Religious events

The Marian shrine in Fátima attracts a large number of Catholics, and every year pilgrims fill the country road that leads to the shrine with crowds that approach one million on May 13 and October 13, the significant dates of Fátima apparitions.[2]

On the far side of the esplanade rises the gigantic basilica, in neo-classical style, with a central tower 65 metres (213 ft) high, the construction of which was begun on 13 May 1928. It is flanked by colonnades linking it with the extensive conventual and hospital buildings. In the basilica are the tombs of the three seers, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, who died in 1919 and 1920 respectively in the Spanish flu pandemic, and were beatified in 2000, and Lúcia dos Santos who died in 2005. The Igreja da Santíssima Trindade, one of the largest churches in the world, was built on the other side of the esplanade during the 2000s.

International relations

Twin towns - Sister cities

Fátima is twinned with:[3]


Fátima's major sports club is the Centro Desportivo de Fátima, currently in Portuguese football's second tier, the Liga Vitalis.


See also


  1. ^ UMA POPULAÇÃO QUE SE URBANIZA, Uma avaliação recente - Cidades, 2004[dead link] Nuno Pires Soares, Instituto Geográfico Português (Geographic Institute of Portugal)
  2. ^ Trudy Ring, 1996, International Dictionary of Historic Places, ISBN 9781884964022 page 245
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Association of Towns awarded The Europe Prize". www.czestochowa.um.gov.pl. http://www.czestochowa.um.gov.pl/europeprize/altotting.htm. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 

External links

Coordinates: 39°38′N 08°40′W / 39.633°N 8.667°W / 39.633; -8.667

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