Your Hotel in Coimbra downtown

Historical Uptown

Varanda Coimbra HotelThe ancient “Alta de Coimbra” district is just a few minutes away from Hotel Oslo. After seeing one of the most representative images of the city from your room window, you should still see it, again before leaving for discovery, from our bar or from the hotel roof-top. Guests will definitely want to see this part of the city more closely. It is nowadays the university area, inside the old walled area of the city, which became the home of kings and governments for centuries and still maintains its rich and detailed architecture, topped by the old Royal Palace, which has been the centerpiece of the University and its “Paço das Escolas” for centuries now. Alta is, of course, part of the UNESCO World Heritage area of Coimbra.

In addition to the monumental image of “Alta de Coimbra”, this is an area with its own culture and which has been enriched over centuries. It became a residence for governments (including Roman remains), the nobility and the clergy, for long it has welcomed the students of the University of Coimbra, becoming part of the life of many personalities of culture, art and knowledge. This is the natural habitat of Fado de Coimbra.

The “Arco da Almedina”, one of the main medieval doors of the city wall, just 5 minutes from the hotel, remain the main entrance to this area of Coimbra and its name recalls the Arab contribution to its history. From here, you will have to climb, but it will be worth it.

Crossing the Arco da Almedina you can take the opportunity to go up to the “Torre de Almedina” tower. Built in the XI century, it had the function of watching and defending the main access door to the interior of the wall. On the top floor of the Tower, be dazzled by the labyrinthic view over the city, which allows you to have a better sense of the city’s urban development.

The famous “Quebra Costas” stairs connect the “Arco de Almedina” to “Largo da Sé Velha”. In fact, they are much more than a long stairs. The stairs are part of the old medieval castle and wall of Coimbra and, today, they welcome students and their black capes that pass through there daily.

When you reach the top of the “Quebra Costas “ stairs, you’ll arrive at the “Sé Velha de Coimbra“, the Old Cathedral square. A small village within the city where generations mingled: the elders and the young students, who they rent their homes to. During the day, the serenity of the Sé Velha area contrasts with the bohemian atmosphere that is lived at night and that is typical of a city of students.
And it is precisely in Largo da Sé Velha that, at 00:00 on Thursday of the week of Queima das Fitas festival, you can watch the beautiful “Serenata de Coimbra” and enjoy the “Fado” of Coimbra.

In the “Alta de Coimbra”, in addition to the University and many of its faculties, we also highlight the presence of several Student Republics, mythical spaces of Coimbrã student life, “Casa da Escrita” (House of writing), Museum of Science and the most prestigious Museum in the City of Coimbra: “Museu Nacional Machado de Castro”.

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Hotel Oslo - Coimbra
Av. Fernão de Magalhães, 25
3000-175 Coimbra, Portugal
Tel. +351 239 829 071
Fax. +351 239 820 614
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