Belém Tower Lisbon

Inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the Tower of Belém (or Tower of St. Vincent) is an icon of Portugal’s cultural heritage spread across the world. It is one of the architectural elements punctuating the cityscape of Lisbon’s monumental riverside area of Ajuda-Belém. Built to perpetuate the memory of Lisbon’s Patron Saint, St. Vincent, the Tower was part of a tripartite defence system as it stood between the bulwark of Cascais and the fortress of S. Sebastião da Caparica on the opposite bank of the river.

The Tower boasts a typical Manueline decoration with twisted ropes encircling the building and ending in elegant knots, armillary spheres, crosses of the Order of Christ and naturalistic elements.

Strategically built on the North bank of the Tagus River to the plan of Francisco de Arruda between 1514 and 1519, the Tower of Belém is one of the jewels of architecture from the reign of King D. Manuel. It combines a traditional mediaeval keep with a more recent bulwark housing a casemate to store the first devices designed to resist artillery fire.

The Tower gradually lost its role as a defence system at the mouth of the Tagus River and after the Spanish occupation, its former ammunition depots were converted into dungeons.

Noteworthy in the Tower’s four stories are the Governor’s Room, Kings’ Room, Audience Room and, finally, the Chapel with its typical 16th-century vaults.

For lovers of architecture and travelers wishing to immerse themselves in the history of Lisbon, Belém Tower is a site to not be missed.

Read what others share about their experience

  • Ganesh Kumar
    3 weeks ago
    Really enjoyed the Belem Tower. For 4 Euro, we had a great experience there. From the outside, it...
  • Marion NYC
    a month ago
    Get ready to wait in the sun! The line can be long! Amazing architecture for sure! The experience...
  • Saidur Rahman Babu
    2 months ago
    Many stores around the area where you can buy all kinds of souvenirs. You can you buy some foods...
  • The Belem Tower is fascinating, with its beautiful exterior complemented by the sea and waves in the...
  • Amy “Lou” Lakey
    a month ago
    The tower and surroundings are stunning! If you like architecture or taking photos I would highly...

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We recommend to stay in one of our historic accommodation, each one with its own “Story to share”.

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