When we arrived in Lisbon, the first monument we visited was Jeronimos Monastery located in Belem. Jeronimos Monastery is the most stunning masterpiece of Portuguese architecture from the 16th century. Belem is an important neighborhood of Lisbon and full of attractions such as museum and parks. You can spend half or one day at Belem. The most famous Portuguese tart pastries shop called “Pastéis de Belém” is also located here.
Unesco World Heritage Site
Well, you won’t be surprised if it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it is also one of the most visited sites in Lisbon together with Tower of Belem which is located right opposite.
Housing tomb for Poet Luis Camoes & Explorer Vasco da Gama
Jeronimos Monastery is housing tombs of some of the famous Portuguese, one of them is poet Luiz Camoes who has similar fame as Shakespeare in England. I came across one of Luis Camoes’s poem in Cabo da Roca, the westernmost of Europe. The famous quote inscribed – “Where the land ends and the sea begins”. Another occasion, I spotted his statue at Macau China at Leal Senator Building. Within a year time, I came across this greatest poet several times, both in Europe and Asia.
The other famous Portuguese was Vasco da Gama, his tomb was placed here too. This guy is a famous explorer who was the first from the European country to reach India by sea.
- An individual ticket will cost you €10 and combination tickets start from €12. These combination tickets include entrance to other sites, such as Torre Belem.
- Children below 12 are free.
- Closed on Mondays.
Manueline Architecture Style
The Manueline refer to Portuguese late Gothic style of architecture which consists of many elements from the maritime. You will notice many of the ornaments are representations of the discoveries brought from the voyages by Portuguese famous explorer Vasco da Gama. The ornaments are anchors, elements from the seashells, pearls, and string of seaweed. This tells us the power and knowledge of the Portuguese sailors and the Portuguese empire during that period.
A Century to complete
The construction took about a century to complete. The King at that time, King Manuel asked several talented architects to build this masterpiece. When King Manuel died, he also has a place here. His tomb was placed inside too.
It seems Lisbon has plenty of tuk-tuks which can be associated with Thailand. Many of tuk-tuk can be seen line-up near Jeronimos Monastery. Tuk-tuks are not cheap at all in Lisbon, it cost about 70 Euros for 90 mins with fun and knowledgeable driver-guide, with 5-6 seats. However, I do think it is easier to speed through the narrow lanes of Lisbon city.
How to get Jeronimos Monastery?
City bus lines: 727, 28, 729, 714 and 751.
Suburban train: Belem station
Jeronimos Monastery has a beautiful facade which has unique Manueline Architecture Style, spend some time to look at the little ornaments and try spotting the features from the sea.