The Puppet Museum is the only and only museum of its kind in Portugal. It is located in a magnificent building, the former Bernardas monastery. The museum’s collection includes about four thousand pieces from more than 30 countries around the world.
The museum’s exhibition is entirely devoted to the history of puppets and puppet theatres. Some puppets in the form of knights, princesses, buffoons and even devils date from the 17th and 18th centuries.
In addition to the traditional Portuguese puppets, the museum presents the famous collection of African and Asian puppets and masks by collector Francisco Capello. Visitors to the museum can also see oriental masks and puppets from exotic places such as the islands of Java and Bali, Thailand, India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Japan and China.
There are also traditional Russian dolls and Sicilian puppets among the exhibits. The Lisbon Puppet Museum in Portugal also exhibits an exceptional collection of European and Portuguese dolls from famous families.
The museum often organizes puppet shows and classes for those interested in the process and technology of puppet making. There are video recordings of shows, rituals, celebrations and shows to which the puppet contributes.
The museum has a special room for children, where they can play with dolls.