Day Trip: Évora

Evora, Portugal

Known as Portugal’s “Museum City,” Évora is an hour-and-a-half drive from Lisbon but feels like stepping back in time. The UNESCO World Heritage Site was once the Portuguese royal capital, and it is considered the best example of a city from the country’s “golden age” since much of Lisbon during that period was destroyed by an earthquake and fire. But Évora’s history dates back to the Romans, and an impressive Roman temple commands a prominent place in town. In addition to wandering the charming streets of white-washed houses, there are Baroque and Neoclassical treasures to explore, such as the Church of St. Francis, which contains a chapel built from skulls and bones by the Franciscan order and Évora’s cathedral, which is the largest in Portugal. Don't miss the chapel of the Cadaval Palace, which has exquisite blue-and-white tile interiors. The adjacent Cadaval Palace is not only a royal residence but also contains the family’s collection of art from the 18th century as well as contemporary African art. In the summer, it hosts a wonderful world music festival.

Written by Melissa Biggs Bradley

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