Évora. A World Heritage Centre

(…) ‘none of our cities, apart from Évora, was able to say to me, with purity and beauty, "I am Latin”, " I am Arab”, "I am Christian”, "I am Iberian”, "I am Portuguese” (…)’ – Miguel Torga, 1942, Diary II.

Évora is the inevitable reference point for anyone coming to the Alentejo inspired by the theme of Heritage. Classified by UNESCO as A World Heritage Site, Évora justly occupies an important place in any Cultural Tourism itinerary.

Its architectural and artistic heritage is so omnipresent and impressive that this alone guides the steps of anyone who loves strolling around with no fixed direction: from the Roman to the Neoclassical, by way of the Gothic and various expressions of the Manueline, the Renaissance and the Baroque, all the epochs of history are documented with works that fully satisfy the eye and the soul. Referring only to what is essential, you need several hours to visit the Roman Temple, the Cathedral of Santa Maria, the Igreja (church) de São Francisco and the Chapel of Bones, the Palace of King D. Manuel, the Ermida (chapel) de São Brás (St Blaize), the Mirador-Terrace of the Casa (house) Cordovil, the Manueline Window of the Casa de Garcia da Resende, the Colégio do Espírito Santo, now part of Évora University, the Igreja da Misericórdia, Praça do Giraldo (the main square) and the Teatro Garcia de Resende.

In the Tourist Office, you will find tourist information relevant to your visit as well as equipment for audio tours. If you opt for a guided visit, always advisable for a first experience of the city, ask for the contact details of local professionals.

After you have finished this initial reconnoitre of the Historical Centre, venture further afield. As you will quickly understand, Évora is not a museum of disconnected pieces. What is unique about it is that it is an exceptional collection of streets and buildings with a thousand and one details to discover, it is inhabited, it has a living present, where you can feel the pulse of a contemporary city that is culturally active and that naturally integrates and reflects a heritage it has known how to preserve. Stay a few more days, live all of this and, when your intuition tells you it is time to leave, begin the adventure of discovering the many delights that are beyond its walls and contribute so much to making sense of it: other cities, towns and villages, so many other places of distinction.


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