Convent of the Capuchos

Sintra, Portugal

The Convent of the Frairs Minor Capuchin, popularly known as the Convent of the Capuchos, is a historical convent consisting of small quarters and public spaces located in the civil parish of São Pedro de Penaferrim.

The convent was founded in 1560, consisting of eight monks that arrived from the Convent of Arrábida. Between 1578 and 1580, the Chapel of Santo António was constructed, along with the erection of a wall around the convent, under the orders of Cardinal Henry.

In the 17th century, a painting/panel of São Pascoal Bailão, by Vicente Carducho, was completed, while in 1610 several mural paintings on the exterior of the Chapel of Senhor Morto. In 1650 a marker was erected to identify the road to the convent.

As a result of the extinction of the religious orders in Portugal, in 1834, the convent was acquired by the second Count of Penamacor, D. António de Saldanha Albuquerque e Castro Ribafria (1815-1864). It remained in the possession of this generation until 1873, when it was acquired by Sir Francis Cook, first Viscount of Monserrate.

In the first half of the 20th century, the site was acquired by the State, although little was done until the middle of that century. It was bought by the Portuguese State in 1949. The General Directorate of Buildings and National Monuments began a series of public projects to preserve the site starting in the 1950s.

The Capuchos Convent became part of the Cultural Landscape of Sintra World Heritage Site, classified by UNESCO in 1995.



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N247-3, Sintra, Portugal
See all sites in Sintra


Founded: 1560
Category: Religious sites in Portugal

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4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Heather J. (20 months ago)
I went on a foggy rainy day and the environment was magical (although a clear day would also be nice because then you could give up for the ocean view). As others have said, there is no signage saying what you're looking at. The audio guide brings the place to life and is a must. It's such a small space and already worn down, so I'm worried about the impact a lot of tourists would have. But the day I went, I was the only person. The monastery exudes tranquility - a perfect place for meditation and contemplation.
Karl Riber (21 months ago)
We initially balked at the price of 22 euros for a family with a 10 and 13 year old, given that it is a small site, but it turned out to be one of the highlights of our trip to Portugal. It's a completely unique place, unlike anywhere I have seen anywhere in the world. There are several fascinating rooms to see and the kids in particular loved exploring the complex and playing games. On an afternoon in January we had the place to ourselves, which added to the atmosphere. The entrance section was closed for repairs but this was essentially just one room and it could be seen from elsewhere anyway.
Dean Harris (21 months ago)
Fairly odd place, desperately needs to be looked after unfortunately. Worth a visit still.
Laura Smith (2 years ago)
We thought the Convent was awesome. There was hardly anyone there at the time we visited so it was lovely to wander around at our leisure and soak up the solitude.
Julie Hirtzel (2 years ago)
Wow! I loved our visit here. It was my favorite place in the Sintra area. Take the time to stop. Even though it is not one of the most advertised places. It is quiet, peaceful, beautiful, and interesting. It is fun to squeeze through the small quarters of the monks. It is quite interesting how they used cork throughout as decoration and to make it quiet. This is really a beautiful place. Five stars from me.
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