Visit the Sé de Lisboa Cathedral and its cloister

The Lisbon Cathedral, or Sé Cathedral, is one of the must-see monuments along with the Castle of São Jorge if you go to the Alfama neighborhood of Lisbon.

Originally, the cathedral was known as the Church of Santa María la Mayor and it was not a cathedral until the end of the 14th century.

We find the oldest cathedral in the city, with a Romanesque style, simple and polished (with a little Gothic touch). We can go visit it and access it every day of the year.

History of the Sé Cathedral

Lisbon - CathedralThe Cathedral of Sé stands out from other buildings as one of the few monuments that survived the earthquakes and fires that have been happening in the city since the most ancient times.

However, it is true that the facade has been restored from the earthquakes of 1344 and 1755 and the exterior part in a deep restoration that dates back to the 20th century, but the building presents its oldest essence.

Its foundation was when Alfonso Enríquez, the first king of Portugal, together with the first bishop of Lisbon, Gilbert de Hastings, decided to build the cathedral on an old mosque after conquering and expelling the Arabs who ruled in the capital.

What to see in the Sé Cathedral

Lisbon - Cathedral - InteriorInside we will witness a faithful representation of the Romanesque style, that is to say, a dark interior, but thanks to the stained glass windows and the luminaires we will see how the beauty of simplicity stands out, the bare walls, the polychrome carvings and the columns adorned with flowers.

Undoubtedly, entering and contemplating the Cathedral of Sé is to witness a time when the austere predominated before the most gothic.

Lisbon - Se Cathedral - InteriorEntering the Lisbon Cathedral is to observe almost ten centuries of history in just a moment. Ten centuries that weigh on the walls of the simple cathedral.

In the upper part of the cathedral, which we can access if we pay the small sum of two and a half euros, we can visit the treasure: four rooms with costumes, relics and jewels dating from different periods and famous people.

And not only that: it houses a truly precious treasure: the remains of Saint Vincent, patron saint of the city who, according to legend, tradition and myths; two ravens accompanied the transfer he made to the city. Hence, the Lisbon shield itself has two ravens.

The cloister of the Lisbon Cathedral

Lisbon - Cathedral - CloisterWe can also enter the cloister, however, being able to access it will cost us a small sum of money (two and a half euros), but it is especially interesting, since several archaeological excavations have certified that its remotest past, before construction of the cathedral, is Roman and, evidently, Arab.

The cloister itself represents in its architecture a Gothic style.

In short, being able to observe a monument of great historical value, with simple and easy access, is a must-see.

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