Despite the small size of Portugal, the country has a great variety of architectural styles, which reflects in its monuments, two more grandiose than more modest. There is, for example, an exclusively Portuguese style, or Manuelino, present in some of the two most symbolic national monuments.
Some of our two monuments stand out for their antiquity, others for their history, and others for being the maximum exponent of a certain architectural style, but all of them are equally beautiful and relevant.
Despite this, when we think of national monuments, there are some that stand out and are better known than the rest. Let’s leave here some two most impressive monuments of Portugal.
1. Mosteiro da Batalha
This is an uncontroversial masterpiece of national and European architecture, born from a promise made by D. João I as gratitude for his victory in the battle of Aljubarrota, which ended by securing the throne and national independence from the Spanish.
The works will last 150 years, and for this reason the ensemble will have Gothic, Manueline and Renaissance elements. EITHER Mosteiro da Batalha It is one of the two most notable Portuguese monuments and is part of a route in the center of Portugal that also includes the Mosteiro de Alcobaça, the Convent of Christ and the Palace of Mafra.
2. Convent of Christ
EITHER Convent of Christ It belongs to the Order of the Knights Templar and was founded by grão-mestre Gualdim Pais, having been the headquarters of this order in our country (and later from his herdeira, to the Order of Christ).
It was the Infante D. Henrique, who was master of the Order of Christ since 1418, who ordered the construction of the cloisters between Charola and the Templar Fortress.
3. Alcobaça Monastery
This monastery is UNESCO World Heritage and is considered one of the most important Cistercian abbeys in Europe. It was donated by D. Afonso Henriques to Bernardo do Claraval, and his works began in 1178. Therefore, the place was the first work truly in the Gothic style to be built in our country.
4. Mosteiro dos Jerónimos
This work expresses the perfection of Manueline architecture, having been commissioned by D. Manuel I himself after the return of Vasco da Gama from his first trip to India.
The monastery ended up being handed over to the Order of São Jerónimo, who settled there in 1834. The place survived the earthquake of 1755, but was damaged by Napoleon’s troops I don’t know. XIX.
5. Sameiro Sanctuary
It is the second most visited Marian sanctuary in Portugal, attracting thousands of visitors every year. In addition to its religious side, you will also be able to observe an incredible panoramic view over Braga, as well as walk through its gardens or discover the highest part of the place, which is more than 600 meters above sea level.
6. Paço Ducal de Vila Viçosa
These are two of the most emblematic buildings of Alentejo, I have a very rich history. They were two favorite locals of the Portuguese royal family, for centuries, something very evident in their wealth.
Its iconic façade is 110 meters long, entirely covered in regional marble. Hoje, o palácio é um museu, que tem no su aquivo movable antigo da família royal Portuguesa.
7. Amoreira Aqueduto
This construction arose, in ancient times, due to the scarcity of water caused by the increase in the population of Elvas. The aqueduct began to be built in 1530, but it took more than a century to be finished.
The monument has 843 arches and has some underground galleries, being considered one of the most intriguing works of Alentejo.
8. Sanctuary of Santa Luzia
This great monument of romantic architecture is located on the top of a hill, from where you can have an incredible and privileged view of Viana do Castelo and its surroundings, as well as the sea.
This ex-libris of the region attracts more and more visitors every year, who seek not only the views, but also get to know this imposing construction firsthand.
9. Paço dos Duques de Bragança
This building, inspired by the French stately residences, was the place of habitation of the Casa de Bragança, before it took its final residence in Alentejo, a height in which this country began to define.
Later, it returned to a military barracks and, currently, it is a museum of contemporary art, a mandatory stop for those who visit Guimarães.
10. Forte da Graça
Elvas has a history strongly marked by war and, therefore, it is not surprising that there are various forts in it. But we cannot fail to highlight Forte da Graça, for the dominant position it occupies, as well as for its peculiar architecture. However, do not stop visiting the similar constructions during your visit to the city.
11. Pena Palace
It is located about 4.5 km from the historic center of Sintra and is one of the two greatest representatives of Portuguese and Romantic architecture. It began to be built in 1839, from the ruins of an old monastery, by order of D. Fernando II, or consort of D. Maria II. It was at this height that the spectacular Parque da Pena was also planted by the roots.
12. Mafra National Palace
It is said that it was built following a promise of D. João V, which he ordered to be fulfilled after the birth of Infanta D. Maria Bárbara. The works began in 1717, with the initial idea of the convent housing 109 Franciscan brothers.
The arrival of ouro from Brazil to the real chests led to a considerable increase of the project, not being populated or sovereign to despesas.