Parque Mineiro De Aljustrel

Minas de Aljustrel


Useful Information

Location: At the town Aljustrel. Signposted.
Open: Open Air Museum: no restrictions.
Museu Municipal de Arqueologia de Aljustrel: JUN to 15-SEP Tue-Fri 9:30-12:30, 16-19, Sat 10-12:30, 14-17, Sun 14-18. 16-SEP to MAY Tue-Fri 10-12, 14-18:30, Sat 10-12, 14-17. Closed on Holidays.
Central de Compressores de Algares: All year Mon-Fri 8-16.
[2020]
Fee: Open Air Museum: free.
Museu Municipal de Arqueologia de Aljustrel: Adults EUR 1, Children (0-14) free, Students EUR 0.50, Disabled EUR 0.50, Seniors (60+) free.
Groups (10+): 20% discount, reservation at least 5 daysin advance required.
[2020]
Classification: MineIron Mine pyrite
Light: n/a.
Dimension:
Guided tours:
Photography: allowed
Accessibility:
Bibliography:
Address: Museu Municipal de Arqueologia de Aljustrel, Rua de São João de Deus 19, 7600-116 Aljustrel, Tel: +351-284-600-070, Fax: +351-284-600-179. E-mail:
Central de Compressores de Algares, Bairro de Santa Bárbara, Aljustrel, Tel: +351-284-601-010.
Posto de Turismo Municipal de Aljustrel, Escola Primária da Avenida (Avenida Primary School), Avenida 1º de Maio, 7600-116 Aljustrel, Tel: +351-284-600-075. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

1952 Central de Compressores de Algares built.
1992 compressed air plant deactivated.
1999 Museu Municipal de Aljustrel opened to the public.

Description

The Parque Mineiro de Aljustrel is an open air museum in the town Aljustrel which includes the abandoned mine and various mine buildings. There are walking trails around the open cast. At the southern border are the Chapeu de Ferro, the ruin of the headframe, and the Central de Compressores de Algares, the compressed air plant. The Aljustrel mining route is 12km long trail which connects all main points of interest of Aljustrel. The area was mined by the mining company Pirites Alentejanas SA.

The Museu Municipal de Arqueologia de Aljustrel is dedicated to the history of the town, a huge portion is the mining history. There are exhibitions on the geology of the area, the mining operations, models of the machinery and more. The mining at Aljustrel has a history of 5000 years, the museum covers the development from the Paleolithic to the present. An emphasis is on the Roman mining activities. Most of the material in the museum were collected in the 1950 and 1960s during archaeological excavations. The mining related exhibition were mostly part of the old Museum of the mining company. The museum also shows a Bronze Age funeral stele, which is quite exceptional. There is only a small number of stelae known from the Middle Bronze Age, and this one is special because it shows mining related tools and weapons. It was quite a media hype, because the archaeologist who excavated it in 2013 took it home and refused to give it back. The police had to confiscate it at his home and it is shown in the museum since 2019.

The Minas de Aljustrel were using compressed air tools since 1924. At this time a first compressed air plant was erected and provided compressed air for drills and machinery. Central de Compressores de Algares was constructed in 1952 and was equipped with one compressor from the old plant and two new ones. In the 1960s another new plant was constructed, called the Moinho Plant, and this plant became a support and reserve. It was deactivated in 1992. The problem with compressed air powered tools was the loss of air because of not air-tight conduits. In the 1980 the compressed air tools were replaced by hydraulic tools.