Evora

We left Lisbon around midday and it felt odd to be moving again after more than two weeks in one place. We knew we wanted to cross one of Lisbon’s amazing bridges on the trip east.  The choices are the Ponte Vasco De Gama bridge (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vasco_da_Gama_Bridge) or the Ponte 25 de Abril bridge (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/25_de_Abril_Bridge).  Both are great bridges.  While 25 Abril is in the middle of town and it’s a high bridge it’s only 2km long.  The Vasco da Gama bridge is at the east of the town but is a whopping 12km long. As we had visited the top of the Ponte 25 de Abril during our stay we went for the Vasco de Gama.  Both bridges have a toll, but as it’s only charged Northbound, it didn’t interfere with our ‘no tolls’ policy! The bridge was great but it was really windy and made us glad that we didn’t cross the much higher bridge in town.

About 80 km later and we are at Evora (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%89vora), a walled city with a few notable landmarks and the capital of the region.  The city walls are almost intact and there is an aqueduct and citadel on the outskirts.  But the reason this got onto our map is the somewhat macabre Capela dos Ossos (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capela_dos_Ossos).  Maybe you can guess, but this is a small chapel covered in human bones. Built in the 16th century by a Franciscan monk,  there are estimated to be the skulls and bones of around 5000 people embedded in the walls – collected form the local cemeteries.  The sign at the entrance reads “We bones that here are, for yours await”.  Obviously it reminds us of the catacombs in Paris.

We took a day out do do about three weeks washing and watch the last GP of the season, and get rained on.

On the 26th, a final lap of the town in the morning including the cemetery on the outskirts of town. One thing we notice again having spotted this in Lisbon is that many of the crypts have glass doors and we find it unusual to see the coffins sitting neatly on shelves in the crypts. At least the crypts here are all well looked after – in Lisbon, many of the older crypts have broken glass or rusted doors and you can imagine the sights within.

Bread and cheese for lunch an an early afternoon start and continuing the journey East.

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