Coimbra’s very rich cultural heritage tells of centuries-old events... We’d like to suggest that you discover the city through another set of eyes, by taking a walk that revisits the city’s Jewish past.
Start your walk on the Rua Corpo de Deus (Corpus Christi) in the Judiaria Velha, Coimbra’s first and oldest Jewish quarter dating back to before 1139. Then, head to Rua Direita and Largo da Freiria, which make up the Judiaria Nova, the newer Jewish quarter established in the second half of the 14th century. Continue on to the Fonte Nova (New Fountain, also known as the Jewish Fountain) that was built in 1725 and can be found on Rua Olímpio Nicolau Fernandes. Don’t miss the chance to visit the University of Coimbra, permanently transferred to the city’s hands in 1537. Several Jewish professors taught there, and it is possible to consult their studies at the Biblioteca Joanina (Joanina Library), such as those by Pedro Nunes (on nautical instruments) and those by André de Avelar (mathematician and astrologer).
Take a peek at the Pátio da Inquisição (Courtyard of the Inquisition), the seat of the Court of the Inquisition after 1548. Today, the Centro de Artes Visuais (Visual Arts Centre) is located in the west wing of the building. Public burnings once took place at the monumental Praça 8 de Maio square (the former Largo de Sansão), though the Praça do Comércio (the former Praça Velha) was the site of the first public burning at the stake to take place in Coimbra.
A weekend full of history, in a city of Centro de Portugal!