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MAAT Lisbon Architecture
As one of the newest museums in Lisbon, the MAAT building stands out in its surroundings. The Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology, Museu de Arte, Arquitetura e Tecnologia in Portuguese, was built in 2016 by AL_A (Amanda Levete Architects), a London-based architecture studio.
The EDP Foundation campus includes the MAAT Museum and the repurposed power station Central Tejo. The power station was built in 1908 and is now open to the public. The plant closed in 1975 and opened as a museum in 1990. Inside, you can still see the original machinery, making it a unique construction. In both buildings, you’ll discover exhibitions and events that change regularly. The combination of the two buildings is a prominent example of 20th-century industrial architecture.
The building quickly became an icon, and you can climb the white-tiled building! From the top, you’ll enjoy a spectacular view over the river and the waterfront of Belém. You will notice that the structure also breathes art, architecture, and technology. The roof is an accessible public space, and you won’t need to pay to climb it.
MAAT Lisbon hosts ever-changing exhibitions by national and international artists and thinkers. Before visiting the MAAT, you can check online to see the current and rotating exhibits. The images in this article were taken during the Vhils – Prisma exhibition in the summer of 2022.
Fundação EDP is a non-profit social and cultural division of Energias de Portugal (EDP, formerly Electricidade de Portugal), and the institution showcases the latest exhibitions at MAAT. The three areas, discovery, critical thinking and international dialogue, are central to every presentation. The Electricity Museum in Lisbon tells you the history of Portuguese electricity and has a jaw-dropping collection of contemporary Portuguese art.
MAAT shop, café and kitchen
After seeing the museum, you can visit the lovely shop where you can buy souvenirs from current and past exhibitions. Treat yourself to a MAAT tote bag, a postcard or another nice souvenir. MAAT Café & Kitchen is open from 11.00 to 23.30 every Monday to Sunday, and it’s a great place to enjoy a snack, a glass of wine or have a fancy dinner. The riverside bar & bistro is known for fine fusion dining with a stunning view over the Tagus. It’s a mouthwatering experience, and making a reservation beforehand is recommended.
How to get to MAAT
From the city centre of Lisbon, it is very straightforward to travel to Belém. From Cais de Sodré you can take the train to Cascais, and exit in Belém. The train journey will take only 7 minutes. Buses 714, 727, 728, 729, and 751 all drive towards the museum, and it’s only a short walk from the bus stop to MAAT. If you come by tram, you can take tramline 15 towards Belém. Public transport with the Lisboa Card is included and for free. Do you come by car? There is a free public car park about 500 meters from MAAT.
Opening hours MAAT Lisbon
The opening hours to MAAT Lisbon are 10.00 to 19.00 from Wednesday to Monday. You will probably need one hour per museum to visit all exhibitions and enjoy the MAAT to the fullest. MAAT Lisbon is closed every Tuesday and on holidays such as New Year, Christmas Day and Labour Day.
Tickets for MAAT
A combination ticket to visit both MAAT and Central, the former power plant, will give you the best value. These tickets cost € 9,00, and Lisboa Card holders get a 15% discount. There are discounts for teenagers, students and seniors. Families consisting of 1 adult + 2 teenagers pay € 17,00.
Bonus tip 1: public transport is free with Lisboa Card and entrance to other sights such as the Jeronimos Monastery in Belém.
Bonus tip 2: are you in Belém on the first Sunday of the month? Entrance to the general public is free on this day!
There are tours in both Portuguese and English which last for about 40 minutes to an hour. The guided tours are suitable for all ages and cost € 7,00 per person. There are various tours to choose from, and you can book them online or at the entrance of the MAAT Museum. There are also numerous educational programmes and multidisciplinary activities for all ages.
A visit to MAAT is perfect for a rainy day. But there is much more to do in Belém and Lisbon on a wet and rainy day. Check out this comprehensive guide with activities for a rainy day in Lisbon.
Other things to do in Belém
Please don’t head back to Lisbon’s city centre yet, Belém has a lot more in store, and you can easily spend a day here! A favourite place to visit is the Jeronimos Monastery, the bakery Pasteis the Belém, Torre de Belém and the monument Padrão dos Descobrimentos. Other museums to visit are the Popular Art Museum, Museu Coleção Berardo, the National Coach Museum, and the Museu Nacional de Arqueologia.
If you still can’t get enough, Belém is THE starting point for boat tours, and it’s a magical place to set foot on a sailboat to enjoy the sunset over the river Tagus and the city of Lisbon.
Book a Boat Tour
MAAT Lisbon usually hosts contemporary exhibitions that will beat many art lovers’ hearts faster. But even if you’re not into art, it’s worth visiting the museum. Climb the rooftop for free or enjoy a beer along the river’s shores while enjoying the views. Or enjoy all the other beautiful sights you can discover in Belém.
Wow, the archictecture here is so avant garde! I especially love those stacked square structures (forgive my crude description, I’m not the best building conoisseur 😅) and it just looks so perfect set against the waters!
That is a beautiful location for an art museum in Belem! I would love to go!
Brilliant of course. Another reason to want to head back to Portugal
I’ve been to Lisbon a couple times and Belem once but I haven’t been here! I can’t wait to check it out the next time I’m there! Thanks for a great guide!
I love all the details you provided to ensure you have a great time visiting this beautiful museum. The photos are gorgeous too! Thanks for sharing 🙂
First of all the pictures in this article is reason enough for me to make a visit to the MAAT. I have seen the MAAT building from the river, while on a boat tour, and always felt it will be a wonderful experience to be there. Well, I will keep it for the next time.