What can I say about this magnificent sanctuary other than it is a must-see although you should go with time because it takes a long time to visit. Above there is a perfect bar to have a drink (and more if you go by foot) and to enjoy the views. Don´t forget to take a walk in its surroundings.
Pópulo´s Church is in Plaza Conde de Agrolongo. It was started to built in 1562 by the order of archbishop Frei de Jesús, and which construction was paid by Carlos Amarante. The architect respected the Mannerist inside structure and Baroque of the facade, especially in the domes of the towers, but began to enter the neoclassical style. The interior impresses a lot, especially for being your walls completely covered in tiles.
The San Marcos Hospital Church was built in the 18th century. The wings were designed by José Graça Fernandes and the stone work and sculpture were made by Carlos Amarante. Free from Rococo influence, has baroque features are visible in the projection of the central body of the facade, where there is a statue of St. Mark, patron of the church. There are also classical motifs that stand on the facade. The relics of the Apostle of St. Mark's body can also be found in the Church. The facade is impressive. Inside we took a quick look but we couldn´t see it too well because there was a mass.
The Holy Cross Church was built in the first quarter of the 17th century and is in the Baroque style. In the 18th century it had to go through sanitary work, having to demolish the whole church, leaving only the facade. The church is very beautiful, especially the outside. We were impressed by the decor of the header. We must also take into account the organ of course.
The Church of San Joao de Souto is attached to the Chapel and House of Coimbra. It was built in the late 18th century. The original church was built in the 12th century. It was donated to the Archbishop of Braga Don Joao Pedro Aurives Peculiar by Gelvira Midiz and his wife in 1161. Here is where Francisco Sanches was baptized. The present church was built by Archbishop Don Gaspar de Braganza. It's a small church, but nice. When we visited we were lucky that the organist was practicing which made the visit that much more beautiful!
This house and chapel is located by the Largo São João do Souto , attached to the right side of the Igreja São João do Souto and is declared a National Monument of Portugal. It is also known as Capela de Nossa Senhora da Conceição, Capela dos Coimbras or Capela do Senhor Morto. It consists of two buildings: Next to the church of São João do Souto is the small private chapel, with a stone facade, and it is separated from the second body of the building by a small garden. The latter is a Manueline-style mansion built in the fifteenth century as the residence of ecclesiastics. The chapel is shaped like a square tower and is dedicated to Our Lady of the Conception.
The Congregados Basilica began construction in the XVI century and is the work of architect Andre Soares. The construction lasted until the 20th century. The work was finished in 1964 with the construction of the towers and the collocation of the statues of the outside, San Felipe Neri and San Martinho de Dume, work of the sculptor Manuel da Silva Nogueira. It´s a pretty church, we liked it a lot for the uniformity and for the light. The door that seperates the door from the exit with the church and calls a lot of attention.
A small chapel right next to the Church of San Marcos Hospital. More than its material or artistic value, the Chapel of San Bentinho or San Bento is characterized by the great devotion of the people. Daily devotees attend to light candles, leave alms or traditional eggs offered to the saint.
St. Paul's Church is in the plaza of the same name, near the chapel of Nossa Senhora da Torre (part of the Museo Pio XII). Built in the sixteenth century by Archbishop Frei Bartolomeu dos Martires, for the Society of Jesus as part of the Seminary of Santiago and designed by André Soares. It has a fairly smooth and sober facade with a triangular pediment in which a circular window opens and a single access door, framed by columns on the sides and a pediment at the top. The inconspicuous facade belies a surprising interior that has the city's best set of baroque art (made during the reigns of Pedro II and João V). It has a single nave, choir loft and is very spacious. The entire perimeter is lined with many gold carved altarpieces, the Mayor is byTomé de Araújo. Also noteworthy are the sculptures of the four Evangelists (by António Pinto de Araújo) and the XVIII tiles of the Mayor Altar.
An octagonal, baroque parish church in the southwest area of the city, on the hill known as "Alto da Cividade", where most of the remains/ruins of the Roman period of Bracara Augusta are. It's one of the oldest churches of Braga and was built by Pedro de Graça (Benedictine Monastery of Santa Maria do Carvoeiro) on an earlier Romanesque church, it has a foot tower. In the late eighteenth century all images were transferred to the Capela de São Sebastião das Carvalheiras. The most notable features inside are the tiles narrating scenes from the life and martyrdom of San Sebastian, the Chapel of the Wounds of Christ, a rich altar on which there 's a Crucifix and a chest containing the remains of its founder. It can be visited during services (Monday-Saturday at 7:15 pm). At the end of the street is the Torre do Postigo.
This convent is in Central Av, in front of the Totus Tuus Monument, although it originated in the seventeenth century, the current building dates from the XIX century. The Penha Convent was founded by a couple of devotees, Pedro Aguiar and his wife Maria Vieira, as a gathering place for women, virgins and widows, who lived under the rule of San Francisco. Then it was converted into the Convent of the Order of the Immaculate Conception, and later into a Capuchin Convent. Outwardly it may go unnoticed, since the only highlight is the stone roof that stands on a bland white wall that forms the façade. It has a heraldic shield and is topped by a triangular pediment that has a niche with the image of the Virgin. However, that say that inside has the most beautiful pulpit in Portugal, I could not visit it.
This small church is in Largo da Senhora-A-Branca, next to the Palace of the same name, in the parish of São Vítor, it has a single nave with 2 side chapels, a tower at the foot and its main facade is covered with tiles. It was built in 1775 and formerly known as Igreja de Nossa Senhora das Neves because the image of the Virgin wearing white is in a niche over the main entrance, framed by twisted columns. It was a shame not to see the inside as they say it has a gorgeous eighteenth century tube organ.
This church is on the outskirts of the historical district, in the parish of São Vicente, almost next to the Municipal Market. It was part of a former Carmelite convent founded in 1635, but with the extinction of the religious order it was used as a military hospital, then a school, only the church was kept. Its facade is the work of Moura Coutinho, completed in 1911, that has a peculiar pyramidal structure with a central bell tower that rises above the roof, topped by a dome with lantern on with a sculpture of Virgen del Carmen. The church has a Latin cross plan, nave, choir loft (2 organs) and 2 side chapels. It belongs to the parish of S. João do Souto.
This church is in Largo São Francisco (in the parish of S. João de Souto), on the corner of Rua dos Capelistas, and is on track to be declared a Property of Public Interest (IPP). It belongs to the Third Order of St. Francis and was built with donations from the faithful. Its Baroque façade was designed by Manuel Fernandes da Silva in the early seventeenth and conducted by Manuel Nogueira, where tiles and granite are combined. The roof is topped by a triangular pediment with 3 windows (the middle one is round), and the last body has a niche with the image of Our Lady and the emblem of the Franciscan order. The tower is at the foot of the temple. The spacious interior has a vaulted stone ceiling and walls covered with tiles depicting scenes of life in San Francisco, Santa Rosa and Santa Margaria (by Nicolau de Freitas), as well as several gold carved altarpieces. You can visit during services and masses are Monday-Friday: 8.30 and 18.00, Saturday: 18.30 and Sunday: 8:30, 11 and 18:30.
Another of the many churches in Braga, in the historical center, on the back of the Cathedral, that's been declared Property of Public Interest (IPP). Built in 1562 but completely renovated in the eighteenth century with Baroque additions and the main facade is Florentine Renaissance style. Opposite the main entrance is a stairway flanked by Ionic columns with a shield, though this entrance is usually closed - the entrance is on the side facade. The interior is quite ornate, contains numerous Baroque gilded carvings and the highlight is the main altar, by Marcelino de Araújo. It also has an important roof that's composed of more than 35 panels of polychrome and gilded wood. Mass is daily at 9.30am. The church is run by the House of Mercy, which is based at the Hospital de San Marcos. Almost opposite the entrance is Largo do Paço, with the Palace of the Republic Bracarense.