Paço da Giela

Hall/Court - Middle Ages, Modern Age e Contemporary Period (35934)
Monument located in the place of Paço, in Gisela, Arcos de Valdevez, Viana do Castelo, deployed in a small elevation located in the left bank of the Rio Vez, having a privileged view over that valley. This dwelling area is composed of a medieval squared tower, with three floors and a single entrance on the second floor, facing NW and with embrasures atop the NE façade. The residential space has its foundations on medieval structures and dates back to the modern period, having several expansions during modern and contemporary times. It is a two-story building, having five windows on the upper floor, the two central framed windows, possessing columns and blind arcades and having gargoyles in between. The main door is facing SW and is flanked by 2 massive slabs, misaligned with the modern alignment of the palace and may probably be remnants of a previous entry in the old medieval wall, from which the only remaining evidence is in the NE wall of the palace, where a small defensive gap is seen on the ground level, on a 1.50m thick wall. Archaeological works carried in 2014 allowed to point a medieval date to the earliest settlement of this place, with the presence of wall vestiges and its print/negative. The tower was built close to the wall during medieval times. In the 16th century, there was a great palace renovation with the building of a palace composed of a rectangular building constructed against the tower. During late-16th century/early 17th century, two individuals were exhumed from rock dug graves, during the construction of the Santa Apolónia chapel.


Visitable monument with an exhibition area. Tickets: 0-12 years old: Free Normal ticket: 1 ¿

Visit conditions

Entrance with admission ticket


Opening hours: From Tuesday to Sunday 10.00 - 13.00 14:00 - 18:00 Summer 15th June - 15th September 9.30 - 13.00 14.00 - 19.00



    How to get there? Best practices

    Best practices

    Good practices when visiting archaeological sites

    To visit an archaeological site is to connect with our origins, to understand our path and evolution as a species integrated in the environment, and to respect and safeguard our heritage so that future generations can also visit and enjoy it.

    Walking the paths and enjoying the structures and archaeological pieces that survived over time, fosters the understanding of what is different, but also of what is common among different populations: basically, what identifies us as Homo Sapiens.

    More than just vestiges and ruins of the past, archaeological sites showcase our capacity for creative thought, adaptation, interconnection, comprehension and resilience. Without these traits we would not have been successful as cultural beings participating in an ongoing evolutionary process. These sites also allow to consider choices made in the past thus contributing for decisions in the present to be made with greater awareness and knowledge.

    Archaeological sites are unique and irreplaceable. These sites are fragile resources vulnerable to changes driven by human development. The information they keep, if destroyed, can never be recovered again.

    As such, the Directorate-General for Cultural Heritage (DGPC) invites all visitors to enjoy the beauty and authenticity of these sites, while helping to preserve them for future generations by adopting the following set of good practices:

    • Respect all signs; 
    • Do not try to access fenced areas; 
    • Do not climb, sit or walk on archaeological structures and remains; 
    • Respect areas where archaeological excavations are being carried out, not disturbing them; 
    • Do not collect materials or sediments;
    • Do not write or make graffiti on archaeological structures; 
    • Put the garbage in appropriate containers. If none exist, take the garbage with you until you find a suitable container; 
    • Leave the archaeological site as you found it; 
    • Do not drive bicycles or motor vehicles over archaeological sites; 
    • Respect and protect the plants and animals that live in the areas surrounding archaeological sites;
    • Report signs of vandalism or destruction to DGPC or Regional Directorates of Culture (DRC);
    • Share the visiting experience and the archaeological sites, as a way of raising awareness to their preservation and making them better known;
    • Do not buy archaeological materials and report to public security authorities, DGPC or DRC, if you suspect that archaeological materials may be for sale.

    Further information:

    AIA / ATTA (2013) – Guide to best practices for archaeological tourism. 

    Raposo, J. (2016) – Código de conduta para uma visita responsável a sítios arqueológicos. In Sítios arqueológicos portugueses revisitados: 500 arqueossítios ou conjuntos em condições de fruição pública responsável. Al-madan, 2ª série, p. 20 – 77. 

    DGPC contacts

    Phone: +351213614200 | Email:


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