Coimbra Travel Guide

  • view from the bridge
    view from the bridge
    by Rita.E
  • Fonte dos amores - Love fountain
    Fonte dos amores - Love fountain
    by Rita.E
  • Banco de Portugal (Coimbra, Portugal)
    Banco de Portugal (Coimbra, Portugal)
    by Redang

Coimbra Highlights

  • Pro
    rp6686 profile photo

    rp6686 says…

     Very informal city. Lot's of young people, parties and beer. 

  • Con
    Henrik_rrb profile photo

    Henrik_rrb says…

     The non-existing empty parking-places 

  • In a nutshell
    SonOfLusus profile photo

    SonOfLusus says…

     A proud atmospheric old city rich in history and traditions. 

Coimbra Things to Do

  • Palace of Justice

    Located in Sofia street, the most traditional street of low Coimbra, this is one of the classical buildings that give character and personality to that street.Originally a school, in the 16th century, it became later a Noble's residence, until its final adaptation, 70 years ago, to the actual use.

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  • Visit the tomb of Alfonso Henriques.

    Portugals first king Alfonso Henriques is buried inside the Santa Cruz church in Coimbra.He lived in the 12th century and moved the capital of Portugal to Coimbra and was therefor buried there.Soon the capital was moved to Lisbon so you do not have lot's of royals buried there, but you have Alfonso Henriques there and he is probaply the most...

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  • Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. The Cloisters...

    The monastery was founded in 1131 under the patronage of Dom Afonso Henriques the first King of Portugal and actual Father of nation. He granted that monastery to the order of Augustinian Canons. Among famous scholars of the monastery school was Saint Anthony of Lisbon better known to public as Saint Antonio of Padua, who joined the Grey Friars...

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Coimbra Hotels

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Coimbra Restaurants

  • Brasilian cuisine in tasteful...

    It is Brazilian cuisine in a nicely renovated building with some art-deco accents. We ate one of the menu's, for two persons, with three. It starters was thin meat with smokes salmon. Then we got pineapple rice with shrimps boiled (?) in a pine apple cut open. Next we had different dishes with different types of meat, almost as much as you could...

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  • Nice cafe in a historical setting.

    Cafe Santa Cruz isset in a former church and is one of the nicest cafes in Coimbra.It´s quite a large cafe that serves both coffee and cakes aswell as food.The place also have fado music from time to time and when they do then it is usually free, so pop by to see if there is fado on when you are in Coimbra.The place also has free wifi so you can...

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  • Excellent place for lunch

    Facing the steps to the old Cathedral, so very well placed for lunch when the Cathedral’s closed - I think 1.30-2.30. And extremely good food, I thought. The menu gives you a short list of the what the chef suggests for the day (when I went there were only two things on it) and you choose, or you do as I did and cock an eyebrow at the waiter and he...

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Coimbra Nightlife

  • Emocionante

    Estar tão perto dos artistas, num ambiente aconchegante, ouvindo canções tão lindas, fui muito emocionante. O espetáculo e os artistas de qualidade e, para fechar, um brinde com um bom vinho do porto. Recomendo esta oportunidade de conhecer um pouco da cultura deste país.

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  • Coimbra Fado

    Located in a transformed XIV century chapel, the bar "A Capella" features live music, being the most regular place to listen to Coimbra Fado. Sometimes other things happen there. Be prepared for a young and lively place, and if you're lucky enough to get some fado, try to understand what makes it so different from Lisbon's fado.

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  • Teatro Académico de Gil Vicente

    Teatro Académico Gil Vicente (TAGV) - Academic TheatreE-mail: tagvart@ci.uc.ptReception========Phone number: +351 239 855 630Monday to Saturday09h00m-12h30m and 14h00m-24h00mBox-Office========Phone number: +351 239 855 636Monday to Saturday17h00m-22h00m780 places Casual.

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Coimbra Transportation

  • Elevator

    Coimbra is a very steep city, and visiting the old quarter is hard. You may use the elevator that stands right behind the market to go up, and make your visit from top to base. It's cheap and comfortable.

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  • Bus from Coimbra to Batalha

    Express bus from Coimbra to Batalha is expensive, about €13.0 (one way). If you travel to Leira by express bus it costs €9.0. From there to Batalha, you can go by a local bus for €2.05.

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  • Train from Coimbra to Figueira da Foz

    The best comfortable way to travel from Coimbra to Figueira da Foz is by train. The trip takes about 1hThe ticket costs €2.6.Regional and Interregional Services Coimbra - Figueira da Foz - Coimbra

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Coimbra Shopping

  • A bigger mall

    Located in he left side of the river, facing the city, this new mall is, as expected, bigger than its predecessors. What may we expect inside? The usual - same stuff, same shops, same brands, confirming that commerce is nowadays a sort of card game - they just shuffle and deal the same cards all around the world.Ah!The building is attractive. As...

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  • Chinatown

    Chinese are taking care of commerce in Portugal. One after the other, local shops are closing, replaced by a bank, a pizzeria or... a Chinese store.They are discreet, not yet assumed as local community, but very soon we will have also in Portugal our several Chinatowns. In Coimbra, the streets around the Palace of Justice are already... Chinaland.

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  • A Great Mall

    Right beside the new football stadium, this is one of the three big malls in Coimbra, and Fernanda's first choice. Well, it has a nice decoration and the same shops as all the other malls, selling the same stuff, with the same brands, the same fast-food and fast-buy, fast-live... Damn globalization!I heard that a bigger one was opened west of the...

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Coimbra Local Customs

  • Imperial memories

    People strongly condemn the objectives behind the building of a theme park named "Portugal dos Pequeninos" - propaganda to the nationalist regime of Salazar.Several decades later the park remains, its political purposes are gone (most young people don't even understand how it worked) but the park keeps being attractive to children, and a nice...

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  • Long term lodging

    "Republicas" is the name given in Coimbra for collective lodging managed by the students.You have the contacts of all the known republicas in: http://www.regiaocentro.net/lugares/coimbra/universidade/republicas/index.htmlMany students do also rent a room, alone or with some friends. It's common to have advertising in the universities in...

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  • "Bazofias"

    People in Coimbra treat the river with love, even forgiving its occasional excesses. That's why the river is locally called "O bazófias", which means the brag. As a matter of fact flooding is not serious in Coimbra, but the same may not be said about the planes from the city to Figueira da Foz. A small weir is closed almost all year, giving the...

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Coimbra Warnings and Dangers

  • Non existing parking-places

    I have really no idea why, but it seems like all people in Coimbra ows at least 5 cars each. And they love to park them everythere...So make sure you have plenty of time when visiting the city, because you'll need about an hour to find a place to put your car...After driving around for about half an hour, getting more and more lost for each minute...

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  • egg-boats

    Now I don't think we're going to drift very far in our egg-boat. Portugal dos Pequenitos is full of these strange spray painted egg halves that are yellow inside. They sit on top of buildings and structures. Now what kind of bird layed these monstrous eggs?I would not recommend jumping into an egg. They are flimsy, and the water we are in is gated...

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  • big boys

    watch out for these big boys, i've taken a fond liking to them. I tried to climb up into his arms and take a nap, but the security guard made me get down.the statues at Portugal dos Pequenitos are very fun to take photos with.

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Coimbra Tourist Traps

  • Santa Justa

    This dirty facade and the need to "climb" to reach it, repels the visitors from this temple recently abandoned by the capuchin monkeys. Don't be fooled by the general look. Inside you will have a nice baroque gilded altar from the 18Th century and many other rich religious pieces

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  • Monastery of Saint Claire The Old

    If you are visiting Coimbra then I advise you to pay a visit to this wonderful and historic monastery which you will find situated on the left bank of the River Mondego. Built in the late 13th Century this historical monastery was under constant attack of regular flooding from the River Mondego and in the 17th century had to be abandoned. And only...

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  • Turismo

    This is a shot of the first tourist information office we tried to visit when we first arrived in Coimbra. Since it wasn't open, we headed up to the one near the university. The one pictured here is right next to the Santa Clara Bridge on Largo de Portagem. The one by the university is at Largo Dom Dinis and is open from 9 am to 6 pm weekdays and 9...

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Coimbra What to Pack

  • Bring plenty of film

    This was my first trip with my new digital camera. I was resistant to the idea of purchasing a digital (I guess I'm a bit of a purist), but after using it on this trip, I'm a convert! I have a Nikon Coolpix 2500, which is just a basic 2 megapixel camera that is all I need for web page building. It's also small enough to put in my pocket which...

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  • Packing List

    Camping If you go to Óbidos in summer, don't foget your swimming suit and enjoy the Foz do Arelho beach or the Óbidos Lagoon.

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  • Packing List

    Hiking If you are visiting Coimbra in May you may need to bring a new liver or an economy size box of paracetemol...The reason being that May is party time for the students of Coimbra, rather bizzarely for us it is just before exam time but basically the penultimate students organise huge parties. There is a procession into town and all the...

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Coimbra Off The Beaten Path

  • Sa da Bandeira avenue

    This avenue connecting the commercial "baixa" with the academic "alta" has no significant detail (well... Avenue Cinema is a classical...), but, maybe because of its importance in moving around, has been embellished with some modern tiles. Nice, but... pastiche. Don't read anymore, please, but I can't resist to tell a true story lived in Avenida...

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  • City Hall

    Left of Santa Cruz church, City Hall has a very controversial history. Formerly installed in a part of Santa Cruz convent, it was not functional, and suffered several transformations, always discussed until the recent version, dating from the 19th century, with a few changes.

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  • Conimbriga

    Ten kilometers south of Coimbra, the best roman ruins in Portugal deserve your visit. The city seems to exist from the 9th century BC, with the Romans arriving 800 years later. Only less than one third of the area has been already excavated, but some buildings show good mosaics.

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Coimbra Sports & Outdoors

  • Rowing is big in Coimbra.

    Being a traditional university town, Coimbra of course has a very active rowing club and you can see the rowers practise most of the day down in the river.I personally think this is a sight in itself as it really gives the town this good old fasioned university feel.

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  • Nice stadium

    The football-stadium in Coimbra, quite close to the University, was really nice! We watched the Euro2004-game between France and Switzerland there, and as all the stadiums we visited during the tournament it was amazing!From outside it doesn't look so fantastic, but then inside it was a great arena. Only bad thing was the atletic tracks, which...

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  • AAC - Associação Académica de Coimbra

    Associação Académica de Coimbra (Academic Association of Coimbra), the Coimbra University Student's Union, the oldest university in Portugal.There is a football club with the same name, that started being a section of the student's association, but later became an autonomous entity. This club has also a long tradition in portuguese football.

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Coimbra Favorites

  • "Quebra-costas"

    The funniest thing about this steep and narrow coblestone street is its name - backbones bracker. It's easy to understand why. Hidden below heavy construction, it has a long history, serving as the main passage from the high to the low city, in the students' acess to the university.

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  • Pedro and Inês love story

    the love story of D. Pedro and Dª Inês is the most romantic episode of the portuguese history and some of it took place in Coimbra. I'll try to resume it:Prince Pedro of Portugal was about to marry Princess Constanza of Spain.When Constanza arrived in Portugal, Inês de Castro, the daughter of a Castilian landed aristocrat accompanied her as her...

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  • General Info

    Tourism OfficeLargo da Portagem- Tel.: (+351) 239 48 81 20- Fax: (+351) 239 48 81 39- Internet:www.turismo-centro.ptwww.turismodecoimbra.ptwww.cm-coimbra.ptwww.visitportugal.com/NR/exeres/9CDE9524-8392-4ACA-89CF-CF904B8FE297,frameless.htmwww.planetware.com/portugal/coimbra-p-coim-coim.htm- E mail: info@turismodecoimbra.ptThere is another at the...

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Explore Deeper into Coimbra
Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. The Cloisters.
Things to Do
Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. Sacristy
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. The Pulpit.
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. Chapels.
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. National Pantheon.
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. Interiors.
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. Sacristy III.
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz. Sacristy II.
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Mosteiro de Santa Cruz
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Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra, Nothern Nave
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra, Perspectives.
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra,Baptismal font
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra, Tombs.
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra, Chapel of HS.
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra, High Altar.
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra, Interior.
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The University of Coimbra. The Yard.
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Old Cathedral (Sé Velha) of Coimbra
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The University of Coimbra.
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The University of Coimbra II.
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Machado de Castro National Museum.
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St Cruz Church
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St Bartolomeu
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Almedina Arch
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St Tiago
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Portagem
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Praça do Comercio
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Sofia
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Medieval House
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Jardim da Manga
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GOwalks - walking in the city with students
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Portugal dos Pequeninos
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Santa Clara
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Botanic garden
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Fado ao centro
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Fado ao Centro
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Manga Garden
Off The Beaten Path
Portugal dos Pequeninos
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The Old Cathedral (Sé Velha)
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Map of Coimbra

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