Welcome to Coimbra, the charming city that offers a perfect blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re a history buff, an art enthusiast, or simply looking for a relaxing getaway, Coimbra has something for everyone. In this blog post, we’ve curated a list of the 30 best things to do in Coimbra, so you can make the most of your visit to this enchanting Portuguese city.
- Best Things to Do in Coimbra (Portugal)
- 1. Visit the University of Coimbra:
- 2. Explore the Coimbra Old Cathedral:
- 3. Wander through the Streets of Baixa:
- 4. Discover the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha:
- 5. Admire the View from the Santa Clara Bridge:
- 6. Visit the Machado de Castro National Museum:
- 7. Take a Boat Trip on the Mondego River:
- 8. Explore the Botanical Garden of the University of Coimbra:
- 9. Visit the New Cathedral of Coimbra:
- 10. Discover the Quinta das Lágrimas:
- 11. Enjoy a Fado Performance:
- 12. Visit the Portugal dos Pequenitos:
- 13. Explore the Jardim da Sereia:
- 14. Discover the Roman Ruins of Conímbriga:
- 15. Visit the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Nova:
- 16. Explore the National Forest of Choupal:
- 17. Indulge in Coimbra’s Gastronomy:
- 18. Attend a Cultural Event:
- 19. Explore the Coimbra City Walls:
- 20. Visit the Church of São Tiago:
- 21. Enjoy a Sunset at the Parque Verde do Mondego:
- 22. Explore the Coimbra Municipal Market:
- 23. Visit the Church of Santa Cruz:
- 24. Take a Day Trip to Aveiro:
- 25. Explore the Coimbra Municipal Museum:
- 26. Relax at the Praia Fluvial de Palheiros e Zorro:
- 27. Visit the Church of Santiago:
- 28. Explore the Coimbra Botanical Garden:
- 29. Visit the National Museum Machado de Castro:
- 30. Enjoy a Traditional Coimbra Fado Show:
Best Things to Do in Coimbra (Portugal)
1. Visit the University of Coimbra:
No visit to Coimbra is complete without exploring the University of Coimbra, one of the oldest universities in the world. Marvel at the stunning architecture of the Joanina Library, wander through the beautiful Botanical Garden, and soak in the rich history of this prestigious institution.
2. Explore the Coimbra Old Cathedral:
Take a step back in time as you visit the Coimbra Old Cathedral. Admire the intricate details of the Romanesque architecture and climb to the top of the tower for panoramic views of the city.
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3. Wander through the Streets of Baixa:
Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of Baixa, the historic downtown area of Coimbra. Stroll through the narrow streets, browse through local shops, and indulge in traditional Portuguese cuisine at one of the charming restaurants.
4. Discover the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha:
Step into the ruins of the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha and uncover its fascinating history. Explore the underground galleries and learn about the life of the nuns who once inhabited this serene place.
5. Admire the View from the Santa Clara Bridge:
Head to the Santa Clara Bridge and enjoy breathtaking views of the Mondego River and the city skyline. This is the perfect spot to capture stunning photographs and take in the beauty of Coimbra.
6. Visit the Machado de Castro National Museum:
Art enthusiasts will appreciate a visit to the Machado de Castro National Museum. Explore the impressive collection of sculptures, paintings, and archaeological artifacts that showcase the rich cultural heritage of Coimbra.
7. Take a Boat Trip on the Mondego River:
Embark on a relaxing boat trip along the Mondego River and admire the picturesque landscapes that surround Coimbra. Sit back, relax, and let the gentle breeze guide you through the city’s natural wonders.
8. Explore the Botanical Garden of the University of Coimbra:
Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and find tranquility in the Botanical Garden of the University of Coimbra. With its diverse collection of plants and serene atmosphere, it’s the perfect place to unwind and connect with nature.
9. Visit the New Cathedral of Coimbra:
Marvel at the grandeur of the New Cathedral of Coimbra, also known as the Sé Nova. Admire the intricate architecture and explore the beautiful interior of this iconic religious landmark.
10. Discover the Quinta das Lágrimas:
Step into a world of romance and history at the Quinta das Lágrimas. Explore the lush gardens, visit the Fountain of Tears, and learn about the tragic love story of Pedro and Inês.
11. Enjoy a Fado Performance:
Immerse yourself in the soulful melodies of Fado, Portugal’s traditional music genre. Coimbra is known for its Fado performances, so make sure to catch a live show and experience the heartfelt emotions that this music evokes.
12. Visit the Portugal dos Pequenitos:
Take a trip down memory lane at the Portugal dos Pequenitos, a miniature park that showcases the iconic landmarks of Portugal. This is a great place to visit with kids and learn about the country’s history in a fun and interactive way.
13. Explore the Jardim da Sereia:
Escape to the enchanting Jardim da Sereia and surround yourself with the beauty of nature. Admire the stunning sculptures, relax by the lake, and enjoy a peaceful moment away from the city’s hustle and bustle.
14. Discover the Roman Ruins of Conímbriga:
Take a short trip outside of Coimbra and explore the impressive Roman ruins of Conímbriga. Wander through the ancient streets, marvel at the well-preserved mosaics, and imagine what life was like during the Roman era.
15. Visit the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Nova:
Continue your journey through Coimbra’s religious history with a visit to the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Nova. Admire the beautiful tiles that decorate the walls and learn about the life of the Poor Clares nuns.
16. Explore the National Forest of Choupal:
Nature lovers will appreciate a visit to the National Forest of Choupal. Take a leisurely walk, have a picnic by the river, and enjoy the tranquility of this peaceful oasis.
17. Indulge in Coimbra’s Gastronomy:
No visit to Coimbra is complete without trying the local gastronomy. Sample traditional dishes such as leitão (suckling pig), chanfana (goat stew), and pastéis de Tentúgal (delicious pastries) at one of the city’s many authentic restaurants.
18. Attend a Cultural Event:
Coimbra is a city that celebrates its cultural heritage through various events and festivals. Check out the local calendar and attend a concert, theater performance, or art exhibition during your visit.
19. Explore the Coimbra City Walls:
Take a walk along the Coimbra City Walls and enjoy panoramic views of the city. This is a great way to get a different perspective and appreciate the beauty of Coimbra from above.
20. Visit the Church of São Tiago:
Discover the Church of São Tiago, a hidden gem tucked away in the heart of Coimbra. Admire the intricate details of the Baroque architecture and step inside to witness the beauty of the interior.
21. Enjoy a Sunset at the Parque Verde do Mondego:
Head to the Parque Verde do Mondego and witness a breathtaking sunset over the river. Take a leisurely stroll, rent a bike, or have a picnic in this beautiful park.
22. Explore the Coimbra Municipal Market:
Experience the vibrant atmosphere of the Coimbra Municipal Market. Browse through stalls selling fresh produce, local delicacies, and unique handicrafts, and immerse yourself in the local culture.
23. Visit the Church of Santa Cruz:
Pay a visit to the Church of Santa Cruz, the final resting place of the first two kings of Portugal. Admire the stunning architecture and explore the beautiful cloisters that surround the church.
24. Take a Day Trip to Aveiro:
If you have some extra time, consider taking a day trip to Aveiro, also known as the “Venice of Portugal.” Explore the charming canals, taste the famous ovos moles (sweet egg pastries), and soak in the picturesque scenery.
25. Explore the Coimbra Municipal Museum:
Learn about the history and culture of Coimbra at the Coimbra Municipal Museum. Explore the diverse collection of artifacts and exhibits that showcase the city’s rich heritage.
26. Relax at the Praia Fluvial de Palheiros e Zorro:
Escape the summer heat and relax at the Praia Fluvial de Palheiros e Zorro, a river beach located just outside of Coimbra. Enjoy a refreshing swim, soak up the sun, or have a picnic by the water.
27. Visit the Church of Santiago:
Discover the Church of Santiago, a hidden gem that is often overlooked by tourists. Admire the beautiful azulejos (painted tiles) that decorate the church and take a moment to appreciate its peaceful atmosphere.
28. Explore the Coimbra Botanical Garden:
Discover the Coimbra Botanical Garden, a haven of tranquility in the heart of the city. Take a leisurely walk through the lush greenery, admire the diverse collection of plants, and enjoy the serenity of this peaceful oasis.
29. Visit the National Museum Machado de Castro:
Step into the National Museum Machado de Castro and immerse yourself in the rich history of Coimbra. Explore the impressive collection of art and artifacts that span different periods, from Roman times to the present day.
30. Enjoy a Traditional Coimbra Fado Show:
End your visit to Coimbra with a traditional Coimbra Fado show. Experience the unique style of Fado that is sung exclusively by men and let the melancholic melodies touch your soul.
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Coimbra is a city that captivates visitors with its rich history, vibrant culture, and breathtaking landscapes. From exploring historic landmarks to indulging in delicious gastronomy, there are endless possibilities for adventure and relaxation in this enchanting Portuguese city. So pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready to embark on an unforgettable journey through the 30 best things to do in Coimbra.