Ajuda National Palace is located in Lisbon, about a 25 minute walk north of the Jerónimos Monastery. This royal residence was the last official royal residence of the Portuguese monarchy. It was used for about 50 years until 1910 when the monarchy fell and Portugal became a republic.
Architects began designing what was to be one of the largest palaces in Europe in 1787, after the 1755 Lisbon earthquake destroyed the royal family’s main palace. However, construction of the palace was delayed in the ensuing years by economic constraints or political conflicts, including the exile of the royal family in Brazil when Napoleon invaded Portugal. As a result of the delays, the palace did not become a formal royal residence until King Luis I moved in with his wife in 1861.
The size and design of the palace underwent many changes in the 150 years since it had been originally commissioned. Today the Ajuda Palace is smaller than the palace that was originally planned. The style of the palace was also modified during that time, changing from the Baroque-Rococo style that was envisioned by the original architect, to the Neoclassical style we see today.
Two floors of the palace are open to the public, and visitors can admire the richness and beauty of the interior. It is filled with a magnificent collection of furniture, sculptures and extravagant decorative art. Highlights of the tour include the Throne Room that occupies the entire south wing, the dining room that is still used for state visits and important presidential ceremonies, the richly decorated Blue Room where the family spent time together, and Queen Maria Pia’s rooms.
For more information on Ajuda Palace, click here.
Book a private tour! You may want to consider booking a private tour with an English-speaking guide, if you want to visit Ajuda Palace as part of a day trip from Lisbon. Your personal guide can provide you with information on the city and its historic sites. For more information on our Lisbon Day Trip that includes Ajuda Palace, click here, and for information on all of our Lisbon & Lisbon Day Trip tours, click here.
Photo credit: Dguendel (CC BY-SA 4.0) / Photo of Palácio Nacional da Ajuda
For assistance with your travel plans, including hotel and private tour reservations, click here.