Palace of Mafra

Palace is baroque heart of Mafra

In Mafra you can visit the Palacio Nacional de Mafra, a beatiful palace and monastry. João V demanded the construction in the 18th century, the profits of gold- and diamond mines in Brazil financed the construction.

This vast complex is among the most sumptuous Baroque buildings in Portugal.

The palace is open to the public, although only by guided tours. The tour through the palace takes about one hour, and gives you a good impression of the palace, convent and basilica.

The highlight of the tour is the very impressive Rococo library: 88 m long, over 35,000 leather-bound volumes. Besides natural techniques of conservation for the books, such as the lack of space between the wall and the book (so it doesn't create humidity), there are also a few bats that inhabit this library eating any insect that could destroy this invaluable treasure!

Portuguese writer José Saramago wrote a novel about the construction of the monastry: Memorial do Convento (Memorial of a Convent).

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Outside you can walk around the Tapada Nacional de Mafra, the king’s former wildlife and game reserve. It is a unique nature reserve, over 800 hectares in size, completely enclosed by a wall.
The variety in flora and fauna is impressive.

www.tapadademafra.pt

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