Sé Nova


The landmark 'new' cathedral, started by the Jesuits in 1598 and completed a century later, dominates the square of the same name high in the old town. Its two-tier white facade gives onto a cavernous interior adorned with gilt side panels and an ornate baroque altarpiece. It also features a gallery of reliquaries featuring bones and worse from minor saints and bishops, including St Francis Xavier and St Luke (so it's claimed!). Climb to the platform for uplifting city views.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Coimbra attractions

1. Museu Nacional de Machado de Castro

0.05 MILES

This great museum is a highlight of central Portugal. Housed in a 12th-century bishop's palace, it stands over the city's ancient Roman forum, remains of…

2. Museu da Ciência

0.06 MILES

Coimbra's science museum is wonderful, with everything from kid-friendly interactive machines to early scientific instruments, fossils and skeletons. The…

3. Porta Férrea

0.14 MILES

The university's main entrance is the Iron Gate, a 17th-century confection designed by architect António Tavares in 1634 on the orders of Rector D Álvaro…

4. Paço das Escolas

0.14 MILES

Housed in a former royal palace, this is the historic heart of the university, where traditional academic ceremonies are still held. The main ceremonial…

5. Sé Velha

0.15 MILES

Coimbra's 12th-century cathedral is one of Portugal's finest examples of Romanesque architecture. The main portal and facade are particularly striking,…

6. Torre da Universidade

0.16 MILES

Another of the university's signature landmarks, this 18th-century tower – and its clock and bells – regulates academic life. Built between 1728 and 1733,…

7. Universidade de Coimbra

0.17 MILES

Coimbra's Unesco-listed university, one of the world's oldest, was originally founded in Lisbon in 1290. It was subsequently relocated several times…

8. Capela de São Miguel

0.18 MILES

Part of the main university complex, this ornate 16th-century chapel has a brightly painted ceiling, lavish tilework, Manueline features and a gilded 18th…