The Chapel of Apparitions in Fátima is a must-visit day trip from Lisbon. Experience the sacredness of the place where the Virgin Mary appeared in 1917, immerse yourself in prayer, and witness the profound devotion of pilgrims from around the world.The Chapel of Apparitions in Fátima is a must-visit day trip from Lisbon. Experience the sacredness of the place where the Virgin Mary appeared in 1917, immerse yourself in prayer, and witness the profound devotion of pilgrims from around the world.
The construction of the Capelinha was prompted by the request of Our Lady of the Rosary, who expressed her desire for a chapel to be built in her honor at the site. The chapel, slightly larger than a niche, was built in 1919 through the determination of Maria dos Santos Carreira, a devout woman who had been visiting the Cova da Iria since June 13, 1917. Before the construction of the chapel, a wooden arch was erected around the apparition site. Maria dos Santos Carreira initially cleared the area around the holm oak tree, adorning it with flowers and devotional ribbons. With the help of her husband, she built a wall around the tree and constructed a wooden arch.

By 1919, the offerings collected by Maria dos Santos Carreira amounted to 357,000 réis and forty liters of olive oil. The chapel was built on the exact site of the apparitions that took place in Fatima in 1917. The construction was carried out by the stonemason Joaquim Barbeiro from Santa Catarina da Serra, between April 28 and June 15, 1919. On October 13, 1921, the celebration of the Holy Mass was officially permitted for the first time near the Capelinha. Maria dos Santos Carreira became popularly known as Maria da Capelinha, and the Cova da Iria gained a temple whose smallness was inversely proportional to its importance for pilgrims.

On March 6, 1922, the chapel was dynamited by unknown individuals but was reconstructed in the same year. In 1982, a large canopy designed by architect José Carlos Loureiro was built and inaugurated during Pope John Paul II's visit on May 12 of that year.

In 1988, during the Marian Year, the canopy of the chapel was covered with pine wood from Russia, specifically from the northern part of Siberia. This particular wood was chosen for its durability and lightweight properties. Throughout the years, the original Capelinha, although subject to minor repairs, has retained the characteristics of a popular hermitage. Recommends

The original image of Our Lady, located on a pedestal marking the exact spot of her apparition to the shepherds, was offered by Gilberto Fernandes dos Santos in 1920 and commissioned from the Casa Fânzeres in Braga, based on the instructions of Sister Lucia. The sculpture, made by José Ferreira Thedim using Brazilian cedar wood, measures 1.37 meters in height and weighs 19 kilograms. Professor Xavier Coutinho recounts that it was inspired by an existing image of Our Lady of Lapa from Casa Estrela, "with minor modifications." Thedim made some additional changes to the image in the 1950s.

On May 13, 1920, the statue of Our Lady of Fatima was blessed in the Parish Church of Fatima by Reverend António de Oliveira Reis, the archpriest of Torres Novas. The statue was then enthroned in the Capelinha on June 13 of the same year. It was solemnly crowned on May 13, 1946, by the papal legate Cardinal Bento Aloisi Masella.

The golden crown was offered by a group of Portuguese women on October 13, 1942, as an act of thanksgiving for Portugal not entering World War II. It was crafted free of charge by 12 artisans from Leitão & Irmão in Lisbon over a three-month period. The crown weighs 1200 grams and is adorned with 313 pearls and 2679 gemstones. It also contains the bullet from the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II in Rome on May 13, 1981, as a sign of gratitude to the Virgin Mary for saving his life.

Over the years, 12 "pilgrim" replicas of the image were created to meet the numerous requests for its presence in various locations in Portugal and abroad. In June 2013, the original statue left the Capelinha for the first time to undergo examinations of its state of preservation. The tests were conducted at the Polytechnic Institute of Tomar and revealed that the statue was in good condition considering its almost centenary age. Special security measures, including guards and insurance agents, were put in place for the statue's departure from Fátima.

The Chapel of Apparitions in The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Fátima, with its humble appearance and powerful spiritual significance, continues to draw countless pilgrims from around the world who seek solace, faith, and a connection to the miraculous events that unfolded in Fatima in 1917. It stands as a testament to the enduring faith and devotion of those who believe in the messages and miracles associated with Our Lady of Fatima.

Map View