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Discovering the baroque in Portugal

Museu dos Coches
Place: Museu dos Coches
Photo: José Manuel
Photo: José Manuel

Travel across Portugal from north to south, including a trip to the archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores, and discover the fascinating icons that illustrate the “Golden Age” in Portugal.

Having arrived in Portugal later than it did in the rest of Europe, baroque art was to take on a different form here, but it still continued to demonstrate great vigour and vitality. While the most eye-catching exterior features of the many monuments built in the 17th and 18th centuries were their spectacular appearance and their huge size, the interiors were surprising because of their great decorative wealth. One of their most notable characteristics is the great profusion of carved and gilded woodwork and decorative glazed tiles, but the baroque taste was equally well expressed in sculpture, painting, ceramics, gold and silverware, jewellery, furniture and textiles.

To help you in your discoveries, we suggest four tours in which you can appreciate the particular characteristics of this style in each region. In Porto and the North, set off “In Search of Treasures” and admire the grandeur of some of the region’s granite buildings with their elaborate portals and sumptuous interiors. And we’re not just talking about religious architecture, just look at some of the imposing manor houses in which the nobility used to live.

These stately homes can also be found in the Centre of Portugal, but in the tour that we recommend for you here, it’s the details that really matter. “Splendour in the Centre” will take you to some of the most important cities in the region to see fascinating works of sculpture, painting, gold and silverware, furniture and sacred art, as well as fountains, gardens or even a fortress.

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