Located, since its inception, on the banks of the Tagus in a former armoury of the Royal Palace of Belém, this is one of the oldest museums in the city. It was inaugurated in 1905 by Queen Amélie of Orléans, wife of King Charles I, who wanted a place to keep the horse-drawn carriages and coaches of the Portuguese royal family. The building is a treasure trove, with gorgeous paintings and azulejos on the walls, and an exquisite indoor arena where horses were trained, and equestrian shows were held. Picture yourself driving one of these magnificent vehicles (coaches, sedans, cars, trucks, litters, sedan chairs), dating from the 17th century until the advent of the automobile. In May 2015, part of the museum was relocated 250 metres away and housed in an ultramodern building designed by Pritzker Prize-winning Brazilian architect Paulo Mendes da Rocha. Make sure you get time to visit at least one of the sites: be it the old or the new, each is beautiful in its own, wonderful way.
Museu Nacional dos Coches (Belém)
Avenida da Índia 136
+351 21 073 2319
Praça Afonso de Albuquerque
+351 21 361 0850