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Top Rated Attractions in Lisbon

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Rua Augusta Arch

Rua Augusta Arch is one of the most highly regarded landmarks in the city of Lisbon. Seen by some as Portugal's Arc de Triomphe, it was constructed in 1873 and designed by the notable French sculptor, Antoine Calmels. The structure is crowned by nine elegant allegorical statues signifying Portugal's social and political history. Included are Vasco da Gama, who discovered the maritime route to India in 1498; Nuno Álvares Pereira, who helped the Portuguese gain independence from Spain; and the politician Marquês de Pombal, who contributed to the reconstruction of Lisbon after its devastating earthquake in 1755.

Jerónimos Monastery

The Mosteiro dos Jéronimos is an homage to the Manueline or the Portuguese Late Gothic style of architecture, built entirely in limestone. The monastery was commissioned by Manuel I to commemorate Vasco da Gama's successful voyage to India. The walls are covered with an assortment of intricate carvings including tropical plants and wild animals inspired by voyages to Africa and the Far East. Inside, there are three tombs: the tomb of Vasco da Gama, the great Portuguese explorer who discovered the maritime route to India, the tomb of Dom Manuel, the king who was in power at the time of da Gama's journeys, and finally the tomb of Luis de Camoes, the poet who accompanied da Gama on his many travels. The monastery was home to the Order of St. Jerome who dedicated their service to sailors embarking on long voyages and was a symbol of Portugal's maritime legacy.

National Museum of the Azulejo

Situated in the Convento Madre de Deus, the National Azulejo Museum, which is also referred to as the Tile National Museum, has an original Azulejos collection of the 15th Century. Established in 1965, the museum is renowned for housing one of the world's largest collections of ceramics. Some of the museum's popular tiled exhibitions include a 17th-century panel, Nossa Senhora da Vida retabule, Great View of Lisbon, The Hunting Room and many more.

Sanctuary of Christ the King

The Sanctuary of Christ the King or Santuario Nacional de Cristo Rei towers at an impressive 110 meters and was inspired by Rio de Janeiro's famous Christ the Redeemer statue. The pedestal is 82 meters high and the statue another 28 meters, and an elevator takes visitors to the top, where there is a mesmerizing view over Lisbon, Almada and the Tagus River. The statute, considered a symbol of the city, was completed in 1959 and believed to have been constructed to give thanks that Portugal was spared the devastating effects that plagued much of Europe post World War II.

Praça do Comércio

On the cusp of the Tagus, the grand Praca do Comercio was once a busy landing port for arriving vessels and was for many visitors the very first glimpse of Lisbon. The square is surrounded by elegant arcades built in the 1700s, painted in a distinctive shade of yellow while in the center, the statue of of Dom José I astride a charger, commands attention. It's the majestic and ornate Arco da Rua Augusta with its six-columned gateway topped by beautiful sculptures by Célestin Anatole Calmels representing 'glory', built to commemorate the city's survival of the earthquake in 1755, that draws the eye. At sunset, the square's mosaicked floors and historic buildings awash in a blaze of fading sunlight are one of the city's most picturesque sights.

Museu Calouste Gulbenkian

The Museu Calouste Gulbenkian (Calouste Gulbenkian Museum) houses a beautiful collection of objects, which at one time belonged to the private collection of the businessman, Calouste Gulbenkian. Inaugurated 14 years after his death, this museum includes some rare works from a variety of periods. Pieces of Egyptian, Greek, Roman and Islamic-Oriental art are all showcased here. The museum is complemented by a vast collection of European paintings from the Middle Ages to the beginning of the last century as well. Works from the likes of Lochner, Renoir, Monet, Manet, Rembrandt, Van Dyck, and Rodin are on display here.

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