The best independent guide to Lisbon
The best independent guide to Lisbon
The Miradouro da Senhora do Monte is one of the best viewpoints of central Lisbon. It lies at the highest point of the Graça neighbourhood, and from this wonderful vantage point you can see across the entire Baixa district and out to the Tejo Estuary.
At any time of the day, the Miradouro da Senhora do Monte has a vibrant atmosphere, with musicians and pop-up bars serving the constant stream of tourists ferried in by tuk-tuks. The shaded garden and seating also make it a popular location to rest during a day of sightseeing or hang out at sunset.
The viewpoint faces westwards, making it a wonderful location to visit at sunset when you can watch the lights of the city switch on. During the summer, the actual sunset is obscured by the hills of the Bairro Alto district, but in winter the sun can be seen setting behind the Tejo Estuary, offering a magical view.
Historically, the Miradouro da Senhora do Monte was associated with young lovers, drawn by its romantic setting and the relative seclusion on top of the hill. Today, the viewpoint is often crowded, especially at sunset, but it still manages to retain its magical and romantic atmosphere.
Note: The exact location of the Senhora do Monte viewpoint is GPS: 38.7191, -9.1330 (link to Google Maps). Details on how to get there are provided later in this article.
Related articles: The Graça neighbourhood
The viewpoint may get busy, but it always has an amazing atmosphere
The Miradouro da Senhora do Monte and hill, as seen from Bairro Alto
The Miradouro da Senhora do Monte offers a 210-degree view of southern, western and northern Lisbon. The most impressive view is to the south-west, where on a fine day you can see all the way to the Cristo Rei statue, 5.6km away.
Sights looking south: 1) Castelo de São Jorge 2) Praça do Comércio 3) Cristo Rei statue 4) Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge 5) Martim Moniz 6) Igreja do Carmo 7) Mouraria neighbourhood.
Looking north-west provides views over the Avenida Almirante Reis (which follows the green metro line) and the Pena neighbourhood. However, from this elevated viewpoint, you primarily see the tops of hotels, offices and residential buildings.
Sights looking north: 1) Pena neighbourhood 2) Avenida Almirante Reis 3) Campo dos Mártires da Pátria park 4) Palácio da Bemposta
Below is an interactive image of the viewpoint:
The Nossa Senhora do Monte in the evening as the lights of the city come on
The viewpoint lies in the churchyard of the Capela de Nossa Senhora do Monte, and there has been a chapel and hermitage on the site since 1147. The present baroque chapel dates from 1796, having been rebuilt after the 1755 earthquake when the original hermitage collapsed. A statue of the Nossa Senhora do Monte stands in front of the chapel and looks out over Lisbon.
The Capela de Nossa Senhora do Monte
The statue of Nossa Senhora do Monte, which gives its name to the viewpoint
Being located in a churchyard - and until recently being a lesser-known attraction - there are no cafes or bars at the site. Often there are two pop-up stalls here that sell inflated-priced drinks aimed at tourists. If you wish to enjoy the sunset, we suggest bringing drinks (and snacks) from the Pingo Doce supermarket in Graça, just 300 metres away.
Musicians often play at the site, and it’s a really pleasant and romantic setting where you can sit, relax and simply hang out. It becomes even better once the tuk-tuk tours leave.
The Miradouro da Senhora do Monte is always a popular destination with the tuk-tuk tours
A tile painting detailing the sights of central Lisbon
The Miradouro da Senhora do Monte lies at the highest point of the Graça neighbourhood and is tucked behind residential areas. This is why 90 per cent of visitors here arrive by tuk-tuk or as part of an organised tour, as reaching the location requires a demanding uphill walk and it can be difficult to find without a map.
Additionally, most tourists walking from Alfama stop at the Miradouro da Graça and do not realise there is a much better viewpoint only a 10-minute walk away.
The best way to reach the Miradouro da Senhora do Monte is to catch the E28 tram to the main street of Graça, the Rua da Graça, then walk up the Rua da Senhora do Monte. It is just 400m from the tram stop, however the Rua da Senhora do Monte is a steep hill road.
If you are at the Miradouro da Graça, walk around the Igreja Paroquial da Graça. This route leads to the Largo da Graça and the Rua da Graça.
The Capela de Nossa Senhora do Monte is dedicated to Saint Gens. Legend has it that he was martyred on this site in 284. Saint Gens was an early bishop of Lisbon and is locally revered as the patron saint of childbirth, because his mother died during his birth.
A strange tradition arose during the medieval period, where pregnant women would sit in a stone chair, reputedly used by Saint Gens. By sitting in the chair, the pregnant woman believed it would lessen the pain and complications of birth.
This superstition became so strong that even Queen Done Maria Ana (married to King João V) sat in the chair in 1711 while pregnant. The little stone chair still sits in the chapel today, and pregnant women can still sit in it.
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