The most important religious building in Porto, the cathedral was built on the highest point of the city in the Morro da Sé district. As one of Porto’s oldest districts, many say this area is the most genuine part of the city which is reflected in the kind nature of the residents.
Overlooking the Rio Douro with stunning views over the city, the square that the cathedral stands on has a history going back to medieval times. All the major commerce and trades of the city took place on the ground where the cathedral now stands.
The construction of the cathedral began during the 12th century and, throughout the centuries, the building was rebuilt and renovated which explains why the cathedral is a beautiful mix of architectural styles.
On the outside, the cathedral looks a little like a fortress – it’s facade and nave are romanesque, the temple is baroque in style, and its cloisters and one of the chapels have a distinctive gothic flair.
Just inside the cathedral is the entrance to the cloister through a door to the right of the temple. Dating back to the 14th century, the cloister is decorated with Azulejos, Portuguese hand-painted tiles with scenes from the Bible. The Casa do Cabildo which features the cathedral treasure, a collection of precious possessions is open to visitors.
For Camino pilgrims, the cathedral is a major starting point of the Portuguese Camino de Santiago. A pilgrim can visit the cathedral to purchase a pilgrim credential and receive their first Camino stamp.
If you plan to walk the Camino de Santiago, check out my book, A Wild Woman’s Guide To The Camino de Santiago. I share everything you need to know before you begin your Camino. Read at A Wild Woman’s Guide To The Camino De Santiago or click the link below.
(c) Samantha Wilson 2019. All Rights Reserved.