City Quarters

Castelo de São Jorge (Castle)

Photographer: Maurits van der Hoofd

Castelo de São Jorge

Lisbon is a diversified, time tunnel-like city offering a wonderful trip to the different periods of history. A small walk in the city would demonstrate that.

If you’d like to “visit” the medieval period, you shouldn’t miss:

  • São Jorge Castle, located on the highest hill of the city;
  • Alfama neighborhood, survived the earthquake of 1755, enchants its visitors with its narrow streets from the Moors period;
  • Sé de Lisboa;
  • Convent of Carmo.

Discoveries period exhibits itself in Belém by:

  • Jerónimos Monastery, built by the King D. Manuel I;
  • Tower of Belém, a military construction on the entrance of Tagus River.

These two buildings are classified as World Heritage by UNESCO.

The most important building from the beginning of the XVIII. century is the Aqueduct of Águas Livres (Free Waters). After the earthquake of 1755, on the new plan approved by Marquês de Pombal for the central zone of the city (Baixa Pombalina), the Praça do Comércio (plaza of commerce) was built on the banks of the Tagus River. Nearby, and with artistic interest, you can find the Praça dos Restauradores and the Elevator of Santa Justa, built in the end of the XIX. century by Mesnier du Ponsard, one of the students of Eiffel.

We should also refer the royal Palaces of Necessidades and of Ajuda, on the West part of the city.

In the end of the XIX. century, the urban plans extended the city beyond Baixa, which today is Avenida da Liberdade ( Avenue of Freedom). Praça Marquês de Pombal was built in 1934, on top of Avenida de Liberdade. XX. Century architecture can be seen in the Avenidas Novas (new avenues), the University of Lisbon area, the Olivais zone and the very recent Parque das Nações (Nations Park) and Alta de Lisboa, which is still in construction. The most notable buildings in terms of architecture from the end of the XX century are the Amoreiras Tower (built in 1985 by architect Tomás Taveira), the Centro Cultural de Belém (Cultural Center of Belém, built in 1991), the Estação do Oriente (Oriente train station by architect Santiago Calatrava), the Tower Vasco da Gama and the Lisbon Oceanarium (by Peter Chermayeff), all built in 1998 for the international exhibition of the same year.