A monastery was transformed into a neoclassical palace
A 16th-century monastery was turned into this imposing neoclassical palace in 1834, which is now Portugal's parliament.
Portugal's Parliament, inside the palace
The exterior staircase is flanked by two lions, and on the main façade are four female allegorical statues -- "Prudence," "Justice," "Strength" and "Temperance." The sculptures in the tympanum represent, among others, areas such as Industry and Trade.
The gardens behind the palace
The interior opens only during temporary exhibitions and on the last Saturday of each month, for free guided tours by appointment, which also give access to the garden.
The mansion behind the palace is the official residence of the Prime Minister of Portugal
The garden, embellished with flower beds and statues, also has Palacete de São Bento in the back, the mansion that is the Prime Minister's official residence. That building is not open to the public, but the garden opens on Sundays for free visits (accessed through Rua da Imprensa à Estrela).
A tribute to the Carnation Revolution in the gardens around the Prime Minister's mansion
Built in 1877, the mansion's first resident was dictator António de Oliveira Salazar in 1938, and the garden exhibits several pieces of art, from artists such as Leopoldo de Almeida (sculptor of the Discoveries Monument), João Cutileiro, and Vhils, who created a tribute to the Carnation Revolution of April 25th, 1974.
Public garden next to the palace
How to Get to São Bento Palace
Tram 28 stops next to the palace. It’s also about a 10-minute walk from the Rato metro station (last stop on the yellow line).
You may ride the tram and the metro (as well as the city’s buses, funiculars and trains) for free with the Lisboa Card.
Rua de São Bento, São Bento
Admission and Tickets to São Bento Palace
Admission to the temporary exhibitions is usually free. The gardens of the Prime Minister’s mansion are also free.
The garden of the Prime Minister's mansion opens on Sundays
Going up the steps across the street you reach Igreja de Jesus. The home of legendary fado singer Amália Rodrigues, which is now a museum, is down the street from the palace.
Following the tram tracks up the hill next to the palace takes you to Basílica da Estrela.