Unfairly passed over due to her location in a dry dock at Cacilhas on the southern bank of the Tagus River from central Lisbon, the Dom Fernando II e Glória is one of the most complete and best examples of wooden-hulled frigate in the world. At 280 ft (87 m) in length, the immaculately restored warship had 50 cannons and was launched by the Portuguese Navy in 1843.
This elegant three-masted frigate was built in Goa, southern India, and her maiden voyage was to Lisbon; she served across Africa and Asia until 1878, wracking up 100,000 nautical miles before becoming a permanent fixture in dock in Lisbon as the Naval Artillery School. A fire destroyed much of her hull in 1963 and the ship then lay abandoned in the Tagus until 1993, when she was fully refurbished to splendid working condition, awarded an International Maritime Heritage Award and opened as a museum; she was eventually moved to Cacilhas in 2007.
Today Dom Fernando II e Glória has four decks to explore, offering an intimate glimpse into life aboard a 19th-century warship, from the cooking stations to primitive hammocks for the sailors, the swanky officers’ mess to the sick bay and rows of cannons poised to fire.
Admission for the Dom Fernando II e Glória for adults is €5; seniors & children aged 4–12 are €2.50; family €13. Admission is free on the first Sunday of every month. The ship is open Tue–Sun 10am–6pm. To access, take the ferry from Lisbon’s Cais do Sodre terminal to Cacilhas (€1.25) and it is a 175-yard (150-m) walk to the warship.