Capela das Almas#8 in Best Things To Do in Porto
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- 0.0Food Scene
While the Igreja do Carmo features imagery made from blue- and white-painted tiles on one side, the Capela das Almas (also known as the Chapel of Souls or St. Catherine Chapel), has such tiles on a side wall as well as its front facade – 16,000 tiles in all. Like Igreja do Carmo, Capela das Almas dates back to the 18th century, though the colorful tilework was added in the early 20th century. The azulejo, as the tiles are known, here depict episodes from the lives of the saints, including the martyrdom of its dedicatee, St. Catherine. The stained-glass windows date back to the 19th century.
As with the other similarly decorated church, the Capela das Almas earns enthusiastic praise for its attention-grabbing external tiles. Even so, it's worth peeking inside too.
Entrance to the chapel is free. It opens daily at 7:30 a.m. but hours differ on various days. On Mondays, Tuesdays and Saturdays, it closes at 1 p.m. and then reopens from 3:30 to 7 p.m. On Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, it forgoes the midday closure. On Sundays, after the 1 p.m. closure, it only opens its doors for another hour, from 6 to 7 p.m. The chapel can be reached by metro, the nearest stop is the Bolhão station.
More Best Things To Do in Porto
#1 Dom Luís I Bridge
This iconic arching iron bridge straddles the Douro River, connecting Porto to Vila Nova de Gaia. Though Porto is known for having quite a few bridges, the Dom Luís I Bridge is especially renowned because it was designed by a student of Gustave Eiffel, the mastermind behind the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Plus, at the time of its completion in 1886, this bridge was the longest iron arch in the world. The bridge accommodates cars on its lower level and Porto's metro on its upper level; pedestrians can walk along the bridge on both levels. Stroll along the upper deck of the bridge and you'll be rewarded with spectacular views of the edifices built into the hillside cliffs that line the river.
Admiring the bridge's composition and the views it offers is something all visitors to Porto must do, according to recent travelers. "This bridge has got to be one of the most amazing pieces of architecture," swooned one TripAdvisor user. "Be sure to walk both top and bottom levels if you can, views are excellent!" A visit here would pair well with a stop at some of Porto's nearby wineries across the bridge in Vila Nova de Gaia. Another option would be to hop on a Douro River cruise or boat tour, which would allow you to see all six bridges in one go.
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