In 1753, at the request of the Brotherhood of Clerics occupying the church, Nicolau Nasoni presented plans for the bell tower. Upon approval, the construction started a year later. The work ended in July 1763. When completed an iron cross was installed on the pinnacle. An effigy of St. Paul is placed within a niche above the entrance. Built from granite and in a distinct Baroque style, the Torre dos Clérigos remains the tallest campanile in Portugal, standing a whopping 76 metres (249 ft) and remains a dominant feature of Porto's skyline.
In 1917 an astonishing publicity stunt was staged when a group of Spanish acrobats, known as the Puertullanos, climbed the outside of the tower in front of the amassing crowd below. From the top, they pretended to drink tea before throwing fliers which blew across Porto advertising a brand of biscuits. Today, however, visitors wishing to climb the tower take a far easier route to the top via the inner staircase compiled of 225 steps. Along the way, you'll encounter a large carillon comprised of 49 bells which might make you startled if they start playing as you pass. Your knees are finally relieved as you reach the spherical clock enclosure and viewing platform at the top. Your efforts will be rewarded by the incredible 360º birds-eye perspective over Porto and the river Douro beyond. For keen photographers, the Torre dos Clérigos is a must-do experience, and if you make it in time for sunset, be prepared to be overwhelmed by the richness of colour.
Daily: 09h00 - 19h00
Tower & Clérigos Museum, Adult: €3.00, Child under 10 yrs: FREE, Porto Card: - 50%
With this entrance ticket you can gain entry to the Spiritus light show: Igreja da Clérgio at your leisure. Buy online before you arrive to avoid queues and have the convenience of the e-ticket on your phone. Children under four get in for free. Book with confidence with FREE CANCELLATION.
The Spiritus light show is a very impressive multimedia show that exceeds the confines of the emblematic Igreja dos Clérigos. A totally immersive experience, designed by the creative studio OCUBO, uses to full effect the architecture of the church and takes viewers on a spirtual journey.
Inspired by the poem “After all, the best way to travel is to feel”, by Álvaro de Campos. With an abstract and fluid look, and an intense sound, the architecture of Igreja dos Clérigos is filled with visual poetry, synchrony and lightness.
Feel the beauty of life in Porto and reflect on our role in this world with Spiritus, an audiovisual experience that combines light, music and architecture at the heart of the city. Choose a time-slot when you book online.
The Church of Clérigos is another of Nicolau Nasoni's Baroque masterpieces dating from the mid-18th century. The church was commissioned by the Brotherhood of Clerics following a donation of land. Construction started in 1732, and after it was completed seventeen years later, it was Portugal's first elliptical-shaped church. Entrance into the church is obtained by climbing the double bolster stairway at the front of the church.
The interior is embellished with a marble altar and a rococo-inspired altarpiece, designed by Manuel dos Santos Porto, in which a throne crowned by the image of the Patroness, Our Lady of the Assumption, stands out. On the flanks of the altarpiece are two painted wooden sculptures representing the co-patron saints of the Brotherhood of the Clerics; St. Peter ad Vincula and St. Philip Neri. There's a gallery that runs along the perimeter of the naive, allowing you a great view of the oval dome above and the interior as a whole. The church is well-illuminated thanks to its well-positioned windows bringing the gold gilding and pink marble to life. Nasoni must have been proud of his achievement because at his request he's buried here. Entrance is free and it's well worth having a peep inside if you're passing.
The infirmary of the Brotherhood of the Clerics, which once served as a refuge for sick and impoverished clerics, is now home to a museum. The exhibits are an insight into the life of the brotherhood and contain collections dating as far back as the 13th Century; such as sculpture, painting, furniture and gold-smithery.
Rua de São Filipe Nery, Porto 4050-546, Portugal. | 41° 08' 44.4" N | 08° 36' 52.5" W
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