The Belém Tower is about 500 years old. From this spot, 5 centuries ago, Lisbon was a departure port for adventurers facing the unknown. New Worlds discoveries made possible to build great monuments and Portugal was rich and prosperous.
The Tower was complete, with the unique architectural form it has presently. With Islamic oriental influences and decorative elements, with segmented cupolas covering the towers, one of the most particular architectural examples of the time.
As a symbol of the King´s prestige, the sculptures highlighted the Manueline symbology, adding elegant knots, military spheres, crosses and naturalistic elements.
Clear proof of Portugal’s pioneering attitude toward other lands, special standouts include the image of a rhinoceros, the first in stone in all of Europe, supporting the base of the guard tower facing west.
Served as a prison in 1580 and it has been use to defend the area. Today the impressive Tower is a mark of the Portuguese adventures. Recognized by UNESCO, in 1983, as Cultural Patrimony for All Humanity. Nowadays it is packed with tourists from early morning until the end of the day.
To get there, tram 15 or bus 727, 28, 729, 714 or 751. Like the Jerónimos Monastery.
During your visit to the area, do not forget the famous pie, Pastel de Nata at the Pasteis de Belém pastry shop.