In 1251 some religious from Mount Carmel, with the help of the Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, founded a convent in the city of Moura. In 1397 Blessed Nuño Alves Pereira, the Sargent of Artillery, gave the Carmelites, whom he got to know and admire during his campaigns, a magnificent convent and church which he had built in Lisbon in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He asked to be received as a lay brother in that same convent. In 1493 the Province of Lusitania (Portugal) was established. In the XVI century the Province was radically reorganised by the Provincial, Fr. Baltasar Limpo, who founded some convents, among them the College in Coimbra (1536), and left a deep spiritual impression on the Province. The first Carmelite friars who founded the Brazilian Carmel left Portugal in 1580. The Province developed materially and spiritually in the XVII-XVIII centuries, until the time of the earthquake of 1755 which caused great damage. The Province was suppressed in 1834, when all the religious Orders in Portugal disappeared.
The work of restoring Carmel in Portugal in 1930 was undertaken with the help of the Province of Betica, which found a convent in Lisbon (S. Quiteria). In 1949 the Province of Rio de Janeiro also collaborated in this restoration, and in 1954 took over from the Province of Betica, and, a little later, created the Commissariat of Portugal. In 1949 the house in Miranda del Duero was founded (closed in 1951 because the seminary was transferred to Sameiro). Other foundations were Falperra (1954, closed twenty years later), Fatima (1957), Felgueiras (1959), Moura (1963, closed in 1978), Beja (1968), Loures and Lisbon (1982). The Commissariat has also a residence in Ervidel.
On 8 December 1992, the Provincial Commissariat of Portugal became a General Commissariat by decree of the General Council of the Order. At present it has about 30 religious working in Portugal.