A short visit to Portuguese museums


photo by Trishhhh/flickr

Before telling yourself that going to a museum is probably a boring activity let me give you some good reasons that might change your mind. First of all a visit to a museum is a good way of learning, learning about a people’s culture, about the most representative personalities and pieces of art but it can also be very entertaining, especially for the kids. In Portugal, the value of museums is appreciated not only at a local level but also worldwide as many of the exhibits are representative for the entire European history.

So, stay with me as we will pay a short visit to Portuguese museums.

Museu de Marinha (Maritime museum)

With such imposing figures like Vasco da Gama, Bartolomeo Diaz or Magellan, it is no wonder that Portugal owns one of the most important maritime museums in the world. The museum is actually a tribute to the glorious Age of Exploration, a period of great pride to the Portuguese people but also with important discoveries for the entire world. The visitors will be surprised by a variety of ships dating from the 15th century to the 19th century, maps from the 16th century and also a complete set of Portuguese navy uniform. The museum, host to 17000 items is located in the Jeronimos Monastery. The oldest object is a wooden statue that represents Archangel Michael that was on Vasco da Gama’s ship on his journey to India.

Calouste Gulbenkian Museum

If you appreciate fine arts and unique objects, then Calouste Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon must not be missed as it displays a large variety of unique Asian, European, Greek, Egyptian and Roman items. The museum was named after Calouste Gulbenkian, an oil magnate that decided to donate his magnificent collection to the country where he spent his last years. Among the exquisite objects that can be admired are gold Egyptian masks, Hellenic coins, pieces by Rembrandt, Rubens, Monet paintings, Chinese porcelain, Lalique jewelry, Persian tapestries. So,Calouste Gulbenkian Museum should be a must on your visiting list.

Bread museum

The only museum of this kind in the Iberian Peninsula and one of the few on the continent, the bread museum enchants all your senses. From the smell of the fresh bread that welcomes you the moment you enter the museum to the traditional objects used for making bread and decorating the oldest bakery, this magical place is a joy for every visitor. Located close to Seia city, 350 km from Lisbon, the bread museum in Portugal presents the history of one of the most essential product for people. Built on three floors and spread over 3500 square meters, the museum displays the history and production of bread in most of Portuguese regions, each with its own particularity and tradition. I am sure you will not leave the museum without buying something for home or at least tasting a bit of the Portuguese delicacies.

I hope that this short visit to the Portuguese museums stirred your curiosity and determined you to visit them as the surprise will be, without any doubt, a pleasant one.

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