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Belém sightseeing Tips (10)

Centro Cultural de Belém

This Cultural center is used for a museum of design and also for temporary exhibitions and musical performances. its site right next to St Jeromes Monastery along the river by the Belem tower. The ultra modern architecture of the building stand out against the historical architecture around it.

Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
Apr 27, 2016

Windmills? Yap!

Very few people know, but Lisbon (near Belém) has some windmills you can visit!

It's called "Santana Windmills", and they’re found in a neighborhood park in the Ajuda district above Belém.

The entrance is through Rua Tristão Vaz and you can enter until 6PM in winter and 8PM in spring and summer.

Karlithus's Profile Photo
Sep 02, 2013

Mosteiro dos Jeronimos

If you make it to Belem make sure you pay a visit to the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos. This stunning monastery is an example of Manueline style. Work commenced in 1502 but was not completed until towards the end of the 16th-century.

The building is decorated with a large number of ornaments and it if you stand a look around you will see more and more designs...from bunches of grapes to sea shells.

The highlight of the visit for me was the church, which is quite magnificent inside - fabulous patterned columns and a dignified air made it particularly special to me.

It is free to visit the church, and on Sundays it is also free to visit the monastery.

Located on Praca do Imperio
Catch no. 15 tram from Praca de Figueira or Praca do Comercio

sue_stone's Profile Photo
Apr 04, 2011

Museu do Design

Located in Belem (6km west of Rossio) is the excellent Design Museum. You will find it as part of the architecturally interesting Centro Cultural de Belem complex.

Opened in 1999, the museum has a fabulous collection of 20th-century design - plenty of quirky furniture and stylish vases and various other items.

There are some one-off designs along with some mass-produced items such as the stylish Eames lounge. Some of the crazier things we saw included a chair made from bubble wrap!

You can also check out some modern art exhibitions while you are there.

To get to Belem, you can catch the number 15 tram from Praca de Figueira or Praca do Comercio, or the train from Cais do Sodre. Buses will also get you there. We opted for the tram.

Centro Cultural de Belem, Praca do Imperio

sue_stone's Profile Photo
Apr 04, 2011
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A day in Belém

The suburb of Belém merits at least a day of your time in Lisbon. A popular destination for visitors and locals as well, it is home to a number of museums and at least three iconic sights: the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos, the Belém Tower and the Monument to the Discoveries. The first two in particular are wonders of Manueline architecture and not to be missed. You need to allow several hours to properly see the monastery alone, so if your time in Belém is limited make these your first priority.

With a little more time you can take the lift to the top of the Monument to the Discoveries for a panoramic view, and if you can afford a whole day you should also consider taking in one of Belém’s many museums. These include a highly-regarded Coach Museum, the Museu Nacional de Arte Popular (showcasing folk art from the various regions of the country), a Cultural and a Design Museum, as well as two museums within the monastery itself, the National Archaeological Museum and the Maritime Museum.

There are attractive gardens in front of the monastery, the Praça do Império, with a large fountain and column commemorating Alfonso Alberquerque, while just a little off the beaten path a pleasant stroll can be had in the tropical gardens, also known as the Jardim do Ultramar.

There are plenty of places to refuel too, most notably the historic Casa Pastéis de Belém where the traditional Pastéis de Belém are still baked to their original recipe. Only here can they be given this name – elsewhere you will see them as Pastéis de Nata.

My separate page describes the sights of Belém in rather more detail.

Directions Take the train from Cais do Sodre or tram 15 from the Praça da Figueira Square or Praça do Comércio

toonsarah's Profile Photo
Jun 23, 2009

Trip to Belem

Belem is a popular daytrip destination from Lisbon, as it is located only about 6 km west of Lisbon's city centre. It was an independent city until 1885, but nowadays belongs to Lisbon.

Many Portuguese explorers set sail for their discovery trips from here (e.g. Vasco da Gama for India). As Belem wasn't that much affected during the 1755 earthquake, it has some interesting historic sights from the 16th century.

Among them are the famous Torre de Belem (Tower of Belem) and the Mosteiro de Jeronimus (Jeronimos Monastery).

Another well known sight is the Padrao dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries). The 52 m tall monument was built in 1960 and commemorates the 600th anniversary of the death of Henry the navigator.

Belem can be reached with tram #15 from either "Praca da Figueira" or "Praca do Comercio".

HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
Mar 22, 2009


Belém is linked to Portugal’s Golden Age of Discoveries as the site where the famous navigators set sail to discover the world. Today it is a spacious green suburb with many gardens, parks and monuments that are well worth a visit. Amongst Belém’s attractions are the Jerónimos Monastery, the Monument to the Discoveries, the Torre de Belém and the Belém Cultural Centre .

quartinb's Profile Photo
Oct 22, 2006

Museu da marinha

This aint a very know place to go but i think that it is a nice historical museum.
Its from Marines responsability.
Its interesting because u can see the history of Portugal and its old (and modern) ways of exploracion of the world.

Museu de Marinha
Praça do Império
1400-206 Lisboa

RedMoon's Profile Photo
Oct 21, 2006
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"Keeweechic's Lisbon"
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"My home town"
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"Lisbon, Portugal"
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"Ahh, LISBON....Esta tao bonita como sempre."
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The pretty district of Belem spreads west along the River Tagus, around 6km from the centre of Lisbon. It is a quiet place that is home to several historic monuments and some great museums. Perhaps more importantly, it is home to one of the oldest cafes in Lisbon, serving up a mean custard tart!

To get to Belem, you can catch the number 15 tram from Praca de Figueira or Praca do Comercio; or the number 14 bus from Praca de Figueira. There is also a train from Cais do Sodre to Belem (Oeiras).

Belem is home to the Torre de Belem, which is one of its most photographed monuments. Built in 1515 to defend the river mouth, the tower sits just offshore and is an intriguing mixture of a few architectural styles. Unfortunately we did not get to visit it as when we were in Belem it was pouring with rain.

Also of interest is the Padrao dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries ). This huge limestone monument stands by the river, paying homage to the Age of the Discoveries. Due to the rain, we only got the chance to view this impressive monument from a distance, as you can see from the photo.

Other must see attractions are the fabulous Mosteiro dos Jeronimos and the if you are into it, the Design Museum or the Maritime Museum. There are also some really pretty gardens.

Catch no. 15 tram from Praca de Figueira or Praca do Comercio

sue_stone's Profile Photo
Jan 26, 2006

A Break in Historic Tour

Need a break in Belém?

Ok. East, and behind the Presidential Palace, the Tropical Garden (Jardim Tropical) is a pleasant place to rest and… to breath.

solopes's Profile Photo
May 20, 2016

Things To Do in Lisbon

Things to do

Castelo de São Jorge

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Igreja de São Vicente de Fora

The monastery Sao Vicente da Fora is one of the most important religious buildings in Lisbon. In 1147 after conquering the city of Lisbon from the Moors, Alfonso Henriques ordered the construction of...
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Feira da Ladra - Thieves Market

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Casa do Alentejo

Right on the busiest, most touristic street in downtown Lisbon called Ruas Portas de San Antao, just above Rossio square, the same street lined by restaurants with those big fish tanks and glass...
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Teatro Nacional D. Maria II

Built in 1846 upon the ruins of a former palace used by Inquisition, the national theatre D. Maria II suffered a strong fire in 1964 saving only the walls. Being the most emblematic building in...
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Sé de Lisboa Cathedral - Igreja de Santa Maria Maior

The cathedral of Lisbon, the Se, is one of the oldest building of the city. Originally it has been built in 1150 century after the city had been reconquered by the Moors during the second crusade....
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Getting to Lisbon


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