Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Mosteiro de Santa Maria de Alcobaca - Alcobaca Monastery

Mosteiro de Santa Maria de Alcobaca or the Alcobaca Monastery dominates the surroundings. There is enough open space on all three sides to really appreciate the gigantic Church and monastery. The scale and form are a true architectural wonder. Cannot even imagine that this structure has been built in 1153 AD. It was founded by the first Portuguese King Afonso Henriques. 
It is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
It was the first church to be built in early Gothic style. Subsequently different styles were added to it. The church is 106 m long, 17 m wide, and internal height of 20 m. Because of these dimensions, Alcobaca Monastery is the largest Churches in Portugal, even to date.
Window detail on bell tower and the plan showing the layout of the Alcobaca church and Monstery
Main entrance to the church and main entrance to Monastery
It was the first time I had seen a real Gothic church built during that period. The size and grandeur took my breath away.
Main entrance door
Corinthian column capitals in Bell tower
Huge chimney in the kitchen
Stone table for preparation of food in the kitchen
Plumbing system in the kitchen, Inlet and outlet
Dormitory on the first floor
Fountain house and the courtyard
Courtyard with cloister around it
Dome over main chapel
Main chapel
Base of cluster columns in the Church and the central nave
Tomb of King Pedro and Inez de Castro
Chapter house and Manueline doorway to Sacristy

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