Machado de Castro National Museum, Coimbra

Machado de Castro National Museum, Coimbra (must see)

When Coimbra was Aeminium it was a city of the Roman empire. Like other cities, it had a forum. The Aeminium forum was supported by a cryptoporticus, a semi-underground gallery with vaulted ceilings and arches to support above ground structures. Most of Aeminium is gone, replaced by Coimbra. The forum and the cryptoporticus remain.

Supported by the cryptoporticus, the forum, in turn, supports the Bishop's Palace. The Bishop's palace dates from the middle ages. Today it is the home of the Machado de Castro National Museum. Joaquim Machado de Castro (1731-1822) was one of Portugal's greatest sculptors. He presided over his own school and he was Master to many artists.

The museum opened in 1913. The majority of the museum's permanent collection consists of items of a religious nature from areas surrounding Coimbra.

The museum has the most extensive collection of sculptures among Portuguese museums. The exhibits of paintings, ceramics, precious metals and textiles are especially fine.

The museum occupies three floors above the old forum. It has a pleasant cafe with a terrace for outdoor seating. The terrace overlooks terrific views of the city. The time spent in the museum is never enough.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Coimbra. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Machado de Castro National Museum on Map

Sight Name: Machado de Castro National Museum
Sight Location: Coimbra, Portugal (See walking tours in Coimbra)
Sight Type: Museum/Gallery
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Coimbra, Portugal

Create Your Own Walk in Coimbra

Create Your Own Walk in Coimbra

Creating your own self-guided walk in Coimbra is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Historic Buildings Walking Tour

Historic Buildings Walking Tour

Amid the array of historic buildings narrating the cultural and architectural heritage of Coimbra, Portugal, there are both secular structures and great churches, dating back centuries. Apart from their historical value, these buildings exemplify the resplendent European architecture of the past, featuring Baroque, Renaissance, Rococo, and other styles. Some of them are richly decorated on the...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles
Coimbra Introduction Walking Tour

Coimbra Introduction Walking Tour

The ancient Roman city of Aeminium, by the Mondego River, eventually became the city of Coimbra. The modern Machado de Castro National Museum rests on the remains of a medieval bishop's palace. The palace was supported by an old cryptoporticus and Roman forum. The forum was the seed of the political and religious center of a city always reborn.

For more than 100 years Aeminium was held by...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.2 Km or 1.4 Miles