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Cultures, Museums and Heritage - Historic Buildings

The community and buildings of the University of Porto contribute to its history every single day. Discover U.Porto's heritage.

Can the history of an institution be kept inside a building? At U.Porto, our legacy is preserved in modern buildings harmoniously integrated into the urban landscape and a set of buildings that have witnessed almost 250 of great history.

One of these special buildings is the Historic Building of the University, located in the Gomes Teixeira Square (or Lion's Square).

U.Porto's "mother-house" was built on the foundations of the Boarding School for Orphan Boys and the Church of Nossa Senhora da Graça (17th century). The Royal Marine and Commerce Academy was also housed here, and later the Polytechnic Academy of Porto, both predecessors of the University of Porto.

After the University's establishment in 1911, the building started to host the Rectory, the Faculty of Sciences (1911-2006), the Technical Faculty (1915-1937), the first Faculty of Arts and Humanities (1919) and the Faculty of Economics (1953-1974).

After a fire that destroyed part of the building in 1974, the Rectory services were transferred to the former CICAP facilities in Rua D. Manuel II. They would return in 2007 after moving from the Faculty of Sciences to the Campo Alegre campus.

In addition to the Rectory services, the same building hosts the Main campus of the Natural History and Science Museum of the University of Porto (MHNC-UP), the Casa Comum, the University of Porto Shop and the historic Old Collection Library.

Other historic buildings

Other historic buildings

The former building of the Medical-Surgical School of Porto is also part of U.Porto's historic buildings. It housed the Faculty of Medicine until it was transferred to the São João Hospital in 1960 and the Abel Salazar Institute of Biomedical Sciences between 1975 and 2012.

The Palacete Braguinha (the main facilities of the Faculty of Fine Arts) deserves a visit, as well as the Rua dos Bragas building (the former facilities of the Faculty of Engineering and currently the Faculty of Law), which was inaugurated in 1937 on the Hundredth Anniversary of the Polytechnic Academy.

Aside from the lecture spaces, a journey through U.Porto's history includes mandatory visits to the impressive Meteorological Observatory of Serra do Pilar (the main building of the Geophysical Institute of the University of Porto), the Marine Zoology Station (the first aquarium in Porto, established in 1914 in Foz do Douro) or the pioneering Professor Manuel de Barros Astronomical Observatory in Vila Nova de Gaia.

Our museum, cultural and scientific research spaces also form a fundamental part of the University.

At the end of the day, we suggest relaxing in one of U.Porto's green spaces. Some of them are also historic!

Discover our historic buildings!

Discover the U.Porto's Historical buildings!

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