Évora

Visiting Évora is like entering the time machine and finding the whole history of Portugal in little alleys and fabulous monuments.

Here time has another dimension, you can hear the steps on the sidewalks, our voice echoes in some squares. In about three hours, we can visit the most imposing part of the historic center.

The golden age in Évora was the 16th century, when this was the second city in the kingdom, and the royal family and the courts of its various members often lived here for long periods. From this Renaissance period we have several palaces. I particularly like one, the Palácio dos Condes de Basto, open only by appointment and for very small groups. A jewel of the Renaissance. Churches have always been spaces, where art, in various forms and purposes, was displayed showing the importance of its sponsors. In Évora there is a lot of diversity in this subjet, from the Cathedral to the famous church of S. Francisco with its Chapel of Bones, the most visited monument in the city. Everything here is loaded with details and filled with history and legends.

We can say that we have a Roman Évora, with its Roman Temple (wrongly attributed to Diana), the thermal baths, the walls and the entire structure of the most central part of the city. We also have an Évora with islamic influence: if we pay atention we will discover this influence so strong and present in streets, portals, windows, cisterns and in architecture in general. Also in what concerns food.

Évora
Roman Temple, Évora

At the main square, Giraldo, you find all sorts of shops, handicrafts, clothes and shoes. This is the heart of Évora. From here you go to the market, to the old Jewish neighborhood, you can follow the arches of the aqueduct on the way to the old moorish area. At Giraldo square  have a seat  on one of the many terraces, enjoy a queijada (traditional  goat cheese tart of Évora),  admire the crowned fountain and these 16th century arcades, full of life.

If you feel like  cooking and eating, you can keep talking in the kitchen in my backyard, the old kitchen of the preparations, just outside the walls, 10 minutes walking from Praça do Giraldo. My suggestion is a hands on cooking class where we cook and eat, and drink. This area is known for its food and wine. In each recipe we can keep learning about our culture, and enjoying its flavors. This is a totally informal experience in my own place. Authentic and tasty!

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