We had intended to stay in Lagos, a beach town on the southern coast of Portugal, for 2 days, just enough time to take in the small walled city and walk along the cliffs to hidden beaches. Neither of use are really beach people, unless it’s really hot and the water is warm, and when it comes to Europe we are more interested in antiquities than sunbathing – have you seen my glow-in-the-dark skin – so two days was going to be the perfect amount of time.
But then the perfect storm hit. It turns out that this time of year the direct bus to Evora runs only on Sunday. The man at the train station didn’t know how to get to Evora by train and, after looking at the time tables, said it would take 8 hours and 4 transfers (which was very, very wrong). Then Scoutt got sick and I wasn’t about to put him on a bus or a train. Then, we met a man who had come from Evora and he informed us that it was only a 4 hour train ride with two easy transfers. But, when Scoutt finally started feeling better, the Portuguese train workers went on strike.
Defeated, we tried to rent a car. Two rent-a-car agencies, and three internet cafes later we determined that $200 (more than 2 day’s budget) was not a reasonable amount to spend on a car for three days.
With our head hanging, we walked to the bus station just hoping to get a bus to Lisbon. This time, a much more helpful ticket agent explained that if we took the 4 hour bus to Lisbon, then waited 30 min at the bus station we could take a 1 hour and 45 min bus to Evora.
“Sold! Take me to Evora!”
We hoped it was worth it. We hoped we would arrive and be blown away by the beauty of the city and the preservation of the antiquities. We were not disappointed.
5 reasons Evora was worth all the trouble of getting here:
Beautiful and strangely alien surrounded by a gothic cathedral, a museum, and modern construction.
2) Capela dos Ossos
Captivating the morbid curiosity of all the tourists and unique because it was until recently a place for monks to mediate on the morality of man. The words over the door read “Nos ossos que aqui estamos pelos vossos esperamos” (We , the bones that are here, await yours).
3) Megalithic Stone Monuments