Cristo Rei (Christ the King) is a Catholic monument and shrine located in the city of Almada, across the River Tejo, overlooking the Portuguese capital.
Inspired by Rio de Janeiro’s famous Christ the Redeemer statue, the 110m-high Cristo Rei was erected in 1959.
The views from the statue are stunning, with Lisbon spreading before you. In good weather conditions, you can see as far as the Pena Palace in Sintra, some 20km away.
Visiting the statue should be a relatively simple process, yet it’s not very easy to know exactly how to get there. To reach Cristo Rei across from Lisbon by public transport, you have 2 options:
Ferry + Bus (Recommended)
Go to Cais do Sodré Ferry Terminal and take the 10-minute ferry ride to Cacilhas in Almada (if in doubt, ask staff to make sure you enter the right waiting area, the one to Cacilhas). Use your Viva Viagem card both on the metro, bus or tram to get to Cais do Sodré, and on the ferry across the river. Ferries, operated by Transtejo, run every 10 to 20 minutes during the day.
On arrival to Cacilhas, take bus #101. The stop is out of the terminal to the left. The bus runs every half an hour or so. The white Viva Viagem card in not valid on buses in Almada operated by TST, in which case you should buy a return ticket on board. On the other hand, if you have a green Viva Viagem card with “zapping” credit, you may use it to pay as you go. Get off when the bus reaches its final stop (the route is only three stops), and the statue will be less than 200 metres away.
Bus + Walk
Using your Viva Viagem card, take bus #753 operated by Carris from Marquês de Pombal direction Centro Sul. The bus runs every 15 to 30 minutes. It crosses the 25 April Bridge between Lisbon and Almada, so you can enjoy the views.
The journey takes 10 to 15 minutes. Get off at the last stop, Portagem, which means Toll, as this is where you pay to enter Lisbon by car. Then, use the overpass to get to the other side of the road, walk along the street till you find a café, turn left and go straight up the hill till you reach the statue. The walk takes about 15 minutes.
Taxi / Tour
A taxi will take you to the statue of Christ for about €15-20 one way. The waiting time is not included, so it will be more expensive.
There are guided tours that include a visit to the statue of Christ, some even take you to cross the 25 April Bridge over the River Tejo on a tuk tuk.
Best time to visit
As with most tourist attractions, it’s best to go early during peak season (July-August), even though queues usually move fast. The best time to visit Cristo Rei depends on what you’re priorities are.
- Morning: best for avoiding the crowds and the heat of the day.
- Afternoon: best for photographing, but it can get very hot during summer.
Things to know
- Cristo Rei is open daily. Opening times: 9.30am–6pm (21 Sep to 30 Jun), 9.30am–6.45pm (1-14 Jul and 1-20 Sep), 9.30am–7.30pm (15 Jul to 31 Aug). On 25 December opens at 2.30pm; on 1 January opens at 10am.
- Views are stunning even from the terrace at the base (and they are free). To go to the top, you have to pay €5 to take a lift (cash only).
- The lift takes you about three quarters of the way up, and it is a very confined space. Then, there is a very narrow staircase of about 60 steps leading up to the viewing platform.
- There’s a little chapel and a gift shop next to where the lift drops you.
- At the base of the statue, there is also a café. Toilets are located next to it, not inside the monument.
- There’s a free car park.
- There are two recommended seafood restaurants near the Cacilhas ferry terminal to the right: Farol and Ponto Final.