Mosteiro de Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz was the home of the first mediaeval college in Portugal, which was designed to strengthen the newly-emerging royal power through its educational vitality. It was within the walls of this monastery that one of the most universal figures of western culture in the 12th and 13th centuries, St. Anthony, a Doctor of the Church, continued his theological studies and deepened his vast knowledge of the Holy Scriptures, a feature which is so clearly visible in his sermons.
The church, cloister and chapels were rebuilt in the 16th century, in keeping with the plan devised by Diogo de Boitaca (Boytac), making this one of the most beautiful works in the history of Portuguese Renaissance art.
Despite the ravages of time upon the fragile Ançã stone with which the church was built, it still preserves some magnificent details: the façade, pulpit and tombs of the kings, the Cloisters of Silence and the paintings in the sacristy.