Cristo Rei – Lisbon

 

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Cristo Rei

Standing at 133 meters Cristo Rei, or Christ the King in Portuguese, is one of the iconic features and prominent landmarks of the city. It is inspired by Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro.

It was thought to have been built as a thank you to the church from keeping Portugal out of World War II, but the idea originated in 1934 after the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon visited Christ the Redeemer after being inaugurated in 1931. It took many years before construction began, and was finally inaugurated in 1959.

Getting to Cristo Rei is fairly easy from the city. Take the metro to the Cais do Sodre stop, which is the last stop on the green line, exit the building and walk towards the Rio Tajo river and enter the ferry building. Buy a round trip ferry ticket, which only costs €2.

Once you cross the river, take bus #101 which will drop you off right at the Cristo Rei monument. A round trip bus ticket also cost €2.

The Cristo Rei monument sits on top of a hill overlooking the Rio Tajo, the 25 de Abril Bridge, which is very reminiscent of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and the city of Lisbon as a whole.

There is an elevator that will take you near the top of the monument itself, and then a walk up a narrow spiral staircase the last few floors to get to the base of the Cristo Rei statue itself. The cost is €5, and will give you an even better view of the city.

For the minimal cost and effort, I do think it’s worth visiting the Cristo Rei monument just for the views of the city alone.

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