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Clérigos Tower

Clérigos church tower was the tallest structure in Portugal when completed in 1763 (the national record is now Lisbon’s Vasco da Gama Tower), and as the main feature of the city’s skyline, ships used it as a guide when coming into Cais da Ribeira.

It’s a remarkable baroque landmark designed by the Italian architect Nasoni, who also designed the adjoining church. It has become a popular tourist attraction for the aerial view of the city from the top (76 meters up — after a steep flight of 240 steps). Inside the church, the highlight is a polychromatic Baroque-Rococo marble retable.

Opposite the tower is Cordoaria Gardens and an imposing Neoclassical and Pombaline building that is the city’s former prison. The ground floor houses a photography museum with both permanent and temporary exhibitions. The collection includes the works of a Scotsman named Frederick William Flower who spent much of his life in Porto in the 19th century, and who photos (many of them of Oporto) are Portugal’s oldest.

From here it is possible to the monumental Santo Antonio Hospital, classified as a national monument for being a remarkable example of 18th century Neoclassical architecture.

How to Visit

Location: Rua de São Filipe de Nery
Getting there: Walk from Avenida dos Aliados