Convent of Cardaes

In the heart of Bairro Alto and just a few steps from the viewpoint of Sao Pedro de Alcântara you can find the Convent of Cardaes, one of the jewels of the city of Lisbon.

Is it Monday and everything is closed in Lisbon? It’s raining and you want to occupy your time without getting wet? Is the heat hard to bear and don’t want to spend the day at the hotel? In any of these cases, don’t think twice because the convent of Cardaes is waiting for you.

Convent of Cardaes
Convent of Cardaes – outside view

The building was built in the 17th century outside the medieval walls of Lisbon by donation from the founder, D. Luísa de Távora, who lived in the convent until her death and is buried there. The ensemble survived the 1755 earthquake with little damage, only the ceiling of the Church collapsed.

The Church contains magnificent Dutch and Portuguese tiles, with scenes from the life of Mary. The set at the Convent of Cardaes contains more than 100 of the most important paintings in the history of Portuguese art.

In its origins, the Convent housed 21 nuns from the Order of Discalced Carmelites. Currently, the Convent is home to Dominican nuns who are responsible for caring for around 35 women with profound disabilities and who have found their haven in Cardaes. Revenue from ticket sales and donations help maintain this work of great merit.

Convent Church – Dutch tiles and gilded carving

Contrary to other Convents and Monasteries in Lisbon, which lost their original contents in the earthquake, the Napoleonic invasions and the civil war, the Convent of Cardaes shows a history of resilience as it reached the 21st century with its contents, furniture and decoration intact, as they were experienced by the nuns who ended up there after the foundation of the convent. Even the floors and ceilings are original (except for the Church’s ceiling), naturally subject to maintenance imposed by the passing of the years.

Today, the Convento dos Cardaes is at the same time a unique tourist attraction, an active religious institution and a work of solidarity. These 3 worlds co-exist without the privacy of religious women and the people they care for being violated.

So you know, do you have an early afternoon to occupy? Pass by Cardaes, visit an artistic, historical and cultural complex in Lisbon and help put a smile on the face of those who need it most.

days of operation: every day of the week except Tuesdays

opening hours: 1:30pm-4:30pm

guided tours: in Portuguese, French and English

telephone: (+351) 213427525

address: Rua do Século, 123 (Bairro Alto)


Better than just a visit to the Convent of Cardaes, only a visit to the Convent, completed by a heritage drawing class, led by the hands of Marta Ubach.

telephone: (+351) 915586231


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