Author: Julie Thompson | Last Updated: 19 Oct 2019
Belem tower (Torre de Belém) stands tall in the district of the same name. What was once a defensive structure, the tower was converted into a functioning lighthouse over the years. First built in the 16th century, the striking tower adopted the Manueline style, a Portuguese gothic architecture style which was often full of naval imagery. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the tower is at the top of many a traveller’s list of things to see in Lisbon, and rightly so. The outstanding features of the tower are its brilliant white finish which glows in the Portuguese sun, the distinct art style in which it is modeled, and the breathtaking views of the vast Atlantic Ocean. An interesting fact about the tower is the role it played in Portugal’s illustrious Golden Age. The tower served as a striking symbol of the power of the Portuguese nation during the 15th and 16th centuries, when exploration of the sea was high on their priorities.
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