What to do in Fatima – One of the world’s most important Catholic shrines

Situated north of Lisbon, Fatima is one of the world’s most respected religious centres. People come to Fatima to ask for miracles and thank for thanks reached. Demonstrations of faith are what no shortage.

Its fame is the apparition of our Lady of the Rosary, which appeared to the three little shepherds: Lucia dos Santos and her two younger cousins, Francisco and Jacinta. Between May and October of 1917, three children witnessed several guest appearances. The title of our Lady of the Rosary is also used in reference to the same appearance.

Fatima is also considered one of the world’s most important Catholic shrines hosting millions of pilgrims and tourists.

Basilica of our Lady of Fatima

In front of the Basilica of our Lady of Fatima, the chapel of the apparitions and the monument of the sacred heart of Jesus

It is possible to know the main points of Fatima with only 1 day. We did a back out of Lisbon also Battle, Nazareth and Óbidos.

The main points are all close to the square of the sanctuary by simply walking from one side of the other.

What to do in Fatima? -Script for a 1 day turnaround

The sanctuary of Fátima

The visit to the shrine of Fatima begins with large terrace. She is able to receive thousands of people. The days 12 and 13 of may are those who receive more pilgrims on the celebration of the date of the first apparition of our Lady. In other months, all day 13 the city also gets a lot of people. As there are no special date we saw only a few people, many of them knelt down towards the chapel of the apparitions.

Basilica of our Lady of Fatima

Basilica of our Lady of Fatima

The church started to be built in 1928 being consecrated in 1953. The tower with the Bell has 65 meters high and is topped by a bronze Crown of 7,000 pounds.


Visit the interior of the Basilica and saw the tombs of the three Shepherd children, facing the altar towards the right is the tomb of Francisco Marto and the left are the graves of Jacinta Marto and Lucia dos Santos.

Basilica-of-Ntra-Mrs-de-Fatima-4 Basilica-of-Ntra-Mrs-de-Fatima-5The day May 13, 1958, opened a large statue of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, sculpted by Fr. Thomas McGlynn, under indication of sister Lucy, and placed in the niche of the façade of the Basilica in June 13, 1959. The statue has 4.73 meters and weighs 14 tons.

Immaculate Heart of MaryThe sacred heart of Jesus monument is of bronze, author unknown, is erected in the Centre of the Prayer, in front of the chapel of the apparitions. This image is reminiscent of the Fatima message involved in the love of God around the world, we must understand and reflect on the love of God has for each one, for humanity through prayer to our Lady taught the three seers in July 1917 appearance.

Church of the Holy Trinity

Basilica of Holy-TrinityThe first basilica built fit at most 3.5 thousand people and that it was necessary to the construction of a new Basilica to celebrate for larger groups. Opened in 2007, is situated in the grounds of the shrine of Fatima, at the opposite end to the Basilica in Fátima. The Basilica of the Holy Trinity has the ability to receive up to 9 thousand people.

Church of the Holy Trinity

Church of the Holy Trinity

The chapel of the apparitions

Fatima, Portugal

Sacred Heart of Jesus monument in front of the chapel of the apparitions

At the request of our Lady was built a modest chapel on the exact spot of the apparitions. The chapel of the apparitions is located in the Cova da Iria in Fátima sanctuary.

The chapel of the apparitions-Interior

The chapel of the apparitions-Interior

The Chapel is considered the heart of the sanctuary. The pedestal where the statue of our Lady of Fatima, marks the spot where the little Holm oak (tree), on which our lady appeared. The holm oak disappeared by reason of some people withdraw part of it and take it home, stating that a piece of the branch would be the representation of our Lady, but, behind the chapel there is a replica of the holm oak.

The candlelight room

Room-candlesThe candlelight room is next to the chapel of the apparitions, there are candles of various sizes and you can buy them, light them and put them on the torch of the sanctuary. Some pilgrims offer related articles with a problem that affect them, so they put other pieces in wax, then, being imitations of organs of the human body, like breasts, hearts, heads, legs, feet and hands.

The candles of various sizes and shapes

The candles of various sizes and shapes

Berlin wall

With the input source of the Sanctuary, is a large block of the Berlin wall, transformed into a monument. The monument of the Berlin wall, a symbol of the reunification of Germany, was inaugurated in Fatima in August 13, 1994.

Berlin wall

Berlin wall

In headstone along, were entered the words spoken by John Paul II in May of 1991: “thank you, celeste Shepherd for having guided with caring people to freedom!”

A little more of Fatima

These were the main points that you can do in a few hours and can take advantage of the remainder of the day to get to know other cities of Portugal. If you have more time you can meet also the wax museum Mudeu Christ and the shepherds ‘ House. We weren’t in any of the three sites but in a next opportunity we will certainly meet. Here is a little about each one:

Wax Museum

The wax museum of Fátima becomes more and more a point of reference in the pilgrimage to Fatima. The Museum presents the true story of Fatima from the Annunciation of the Angel to the shepherds and three until the advent of Pope John Paul II. More information click here.

Museum of Christ

The Museum is the only one in the world that represents through wax figures to life of Christ. It is moments such as the Annunciation of the Angel to Mary, birth, the flight into Egypt, baptism, the last supper, way to Calvary and other scenes. More information click here.

Shepherds ‘ houses

The homes where the children Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco are approximately 3 Km from Fátima sanctuary, located on the street of the Shepherds, in Aljustrel Village. More information click here.