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Belem Tower

Belem Tower

The Tower of Belém, Manueline style, was built between 1515 and 1519 and is the work of Francisco de Arruda. In 1983 it was declared Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.

The tower is located at the mouth of the Tagus and initially served to defend the city, later became a customs and lighthouse. It is located very close to the Jeronimos Monastery.

As soon as you reach the ground floor you will find 16 windows with defensive cannons and you can also visit the moats and holes where the prisoners were thrown.

The tower itself has five floors and ends on a terrace. The plants communicate only by a small spiral staircase where, on the busiest days, you will have to take turns to get on and off and it is somewhat overwhelming.

The floors are, from bottom to top: Governor's Room, Kings Room, Hearing Room, Chapel and Terrace.

The Rhinoceros Gargoyle

In the west facade of the Tower of Belém you will find a curious gargoyle of a rhinoceros. The first rhinoceros to tread on Portugal came from India in 1513.

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