Historical Religious Buildings (Self Guided), Funchal

Madeira’s capital boasts a large number of churches that truly represent the historical and architectural value of this 500 year old city. The Sé Cathedral is just one of the spiritual places in Funchal, among its numerous religious treasures. This walking tour will take you to the most important religious sites in Funchal.
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Historical Religious Buildings Map

Guide Name: Historical Religious Buildings
Guide Location: Portugal » Funchal (See other walking tours in Funchal)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 10
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 Km or 2.1 Miles
Author: john
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Convento de Santa Clara
  • Igreja de São Pedro
  • Igreja Inglesa
  • Capela de Santa Catarina
  • Sé Catedral do Funchal
  • Igreja do Colégio
  • Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Carmo
  • Capela da Boa Viage
  • Capela do Corpo Santo
  • Igreja de São Tiago
Convento de Santa Clara

1) Convento de Santa Clara (must see)

Convento de Santa Clara was founded some five hundred years ago as a convent for Franciscan nuns. The architectural elements of the church have changed over the centuries but some of them remain, such as the Gothic marble doorway, the walls covered with glazed tiles and the Gothic tomb situated at the entrance.
Igreja de São Pedro

2) Igreja de São Pedro (must see)

Igreia de São Pedro plays an important role in the spiritual life of Funchal. The church features three lateral chapels and two collateral altars. Its amazing interior contains richly decorated walls with glazed tiles, antique murals and furniture. It’s a beautiful place that welcomes every visitor and where everyone can enjoy the blessing of the local priest.
Igreja Inglesa

3) Igreja Inglesa

Igreja Inglesa (The Anglican Church) has been open since 1822. This holy building serves the English-speaking community of Funchal and its visitors. Its main characteristics are the neo-classical design, the four large columns and an elegantly painted dome. In the church’s garden is the bust of Filipa de Lencastre, the wife of the King of Portugal, John the First.
Capela de Santa Catarina

4) Capela de Santa Catarina

Capela de Santa Catarina is small chapel located in downtown Funchal, in Santa Catarina Park. It is thought that the chapel was initially made of wood in 1425 and then rebuilt in the late 17th century, by the order of Constança Rodrigues, the wife of Joao Gonçalves Zarco.
Sé Catedral do Funchal

5) Sé Catedral do Funchal (must see)

Sé Catedral do Funchal is among the top tourist attractions in Funchal. The cathedral was built in 1514 and is an architectural masterpiece that combines Arab-Hispanic and Gothic-Roman styles. The exterior is marked by a contrast of basalt with the whitewashed walls and a Gothic style main door. The interior has more of a Flemish influence, with the characteristic choir stalls and bishop's chairs.
Igreja do Colégio

6) Igreja do Colégio (must see)

Igreja do Colégio is a Jesuit church established to spread the word of Christ in the late 17th century. This temple features the typical Jesuit architecture of the time, namely in the ample and high nave. The church has collections of carved golden altarpieces, and the Eleven Thousand Virgins altar is considered to be the most beautiful of all.
Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Carmo

7) Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Carmo

Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Carmo is one of the Neo-Baroque architectural treasures of Funchal. Its history dates back to the 17th century and has been the subject of some modifications over the centuries, but not major ones. Try to visit on a Sunday to listen to some beautiful choir music and admire the walls decorated with ancient ceramic tiles.
Capela da Boa Viage

8) Capela da Boa Viage

Capela da Boa Viage was considered the center of pilgrimage in the 17th century, and was used later on as a chapel by the local bishops of Funchal. It is also famous for being the home of the Portuguese writer António Feliciano de Castilho, who lived here from 1840 to 1847.
Capela do Corpo Santo

9) Capela do Corpo Santo

Capela do Corpo Santo was originally a fishermen praying chapel from the 15th century. This Gothic style spiritual building was also where the oldest religious fraternity on Madeira Island offered support to families that had lost their men at sea. The interior is covered in murals depicting the most important steps and miracles of the fishermen’s saint.
Igreja de São Tiago

10) Igreja de São Tiago

Igreja de São Tiago is another example of Barque style architecture from San Jose. More surprisingly is that this church is also known as Igreja do Socorro or Igreja de Santa Maria Maior. The explanation is that over the centuries it has been reconstructed and each time given a new name. The present name was given to glorify Funchal’s city protector, São Tiago.

Walking Tours in Funchal, Portugal

Create Your Own Walk in Funchal

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Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles