South Tour - Lux on Wheels

South Tour

1st day:
Lisbon – Évora – Algarve (sleep)

2nd day:
Algarve Tour (plus Sagres) – Lisbon 

Highlights:

  • Roman Temple
  • Chapel of Bones
  • Church of Saint Francis
  • Silves Castle
  • Slave Market Museum
  • Sagres Fortress

Short Description:

In the South Tour you will descend thorough Portugal beautiful Alentejo’s landscapes until you reach Algarve famous beaches. One of the advantages of this tour is that you’ll get to know both historic and leisure side of Portugal. Heading to Évora you’ll find the UNESCO World Heritage City considered an open-air museum in 1986 where you can see medieval walls from the 14TH century at first sight. Inside you will visit iconic monuments like the Roman Temple, the Bones Chapel and Saint Francisco Church. To finish you can (and should) taste the amazing Alentejan cuisine. Following to Algarve where the leisure and the most amazing beaches are, some within the best in the world. You also can experience the vibrant Algarve night before going to sleep (in a place to be designated according your desire). The 2nd day you’ll do an Algarve Tour thorough the main beaches, sights, marinas and places, finishing by visiting Cabo de São Vicente (St. Vicent Cape) in Sagres before coming back to Lisbon.

Map:

South Tour Map

Additional Info:

  • Hotel/Apartment Pick Up
  • Monuments entrance tickets are not included, so you can decide what you want to visit.
  • We selected some of the sites that we consider the best to fulfill your trip expectations, the tours itinerary is flexible, you can change anything or add something you wish to visit.
  • All the cars provide water for our clients

Places to see:

Centro Praça Giraldo (Giraldo Square)

The historic heart of the city was dedicated to the fearless Geraldo Geraldes who conquered Évora from the Moors in 1167. In the middle of the square, which was considered Portuguese National Monument in 1910, you have a fountain in baroque style with 8 spouts symbolizing the main streets, built after the Portuguese crown took possession. Also, in the square, you can find the Santo Antão Church ordered to be constructed by King Henrique in 1557.

We advise you to take a walk along the square seeing the Portuguese pavement and to sit on an esplanade admiring the surround details in neoclassic and romantic styles.

Templo Romano (Roman Temple)

This Roman Temple from the 1st century AD was considered World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986 and is the main attraction of the city. It’s one the most well preserved Roman monuments in the Iberian Peninsula.

The monument is also known by Diana Temple due to a legend from the 17th century which assumed the construction of the temple in honor to the roman goddess, but history revealed that it was to pay tribute to Emperor Augustus, worshiped as a god.

The temple was modified in the following 2nd and 3rd centuries and partly destroyed by the Barbarians people when they invaded the city. Over the times the temple had different purposes, in the 14th century was used as a safe house and after as a slaughterhouse.

Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of Bones)

This chapel, part of the Royal Church of St. Francis was constructed by Franciscan monks in the 16th century. Because of the space occupied by 43 cemeteries around Evora, that were taking valuable land, the monks decided to relocate the bones and construct the chapel. The design was inspired on the ossuary of San Bernadino all Ossa in Milan and there’s about 5000 corpses there. At the altar in a white coffin are the bones of the three Franciscan monks who founded the church in the 13th century.

In one of the pillars you can see a poem written by Father Antonio da Ascencao who tells the purpose of the chapel: “Where are you going in such a hurry traveler? Pause… do not advance your travel; You have no greater concern Than this one: that on which you focus your sight.

Recall how many have passed from this world, Reflect on your similar end, There is good reason to reflect If only all did the same.

Ponder, you so influenced by fate, Among all the many concerns of the world, So little do you reflect on death;

If by chance you glance at this place, Stop… for the sake of your journey, The more you pause, the further on your journey you will be.”

Just in case all that death should cause you to despair, at the end of the Chapel, above the altar, you can read the Latin phrases: “I die in the light” and “The day that I die is better than the day that I was born.”

Universidade de Évora (Évora University)

Évora is also known by their education, the university of Évora is the second oldest in Portugal founded in the 16th century by the Archbishop Cardinal Infante D. Henrique future King of Portugal and Pope Paul IV.

Sé Catedral Évora (Évora Cathedral)

Being its real name, Basilica Cathedral of Our Lady of Assumption is the largest medieval cathedral in Portugal, built in granite between 1186 and 1250. The style is a mix between Romantic and Gothic.

This monument has many details, from the sides of the portal you can see sculptures of the Apostles from the 14th century, the dome and the lantern-tower from King Dinis. The chapel included a religious art museum with a wide collection of ecclesiastic garments, painting, sculpture and jewelry.

Igreja de São Francisco (Church of Saint Francis)

Considered World Heritage Site by UNESCO is an amazing example of Gothic architecture with a Baroque inner decoration. Inside appears to be covered in gold due the number of gilt-edged woodcarvings. Was built in the 14th century during the reign of King D. Fernando and is one of the most beautiful churches in Portugal.

Castelo de Silves (Silves Castle)

This red brick castle from the 7th century was part of numerous battles between Christians and Moors. Between the 8th and 13th centuries the castle was occupied by the moors who leaved one of the most notable military structure among us. Next to the main entrance you will find a bronze sculpture representative of King Sancho I, the monarch who conquered the city of Silves from the Arabs for the first time, in 1189, with the help of the Crusaders. Later in the 18th century, when the earthquake of 1755 happened, the structure was severely damaged. In the 1930s and 1940s consolidation and restoration interventions were promoted and today this castle constitutes one of the largest and best-preserved monuments in the country.

Praia da Falésia (Falésia Beach)

This blue flag beach has one of the best landscapes in the Algarve with ochre cliffs and green pines splattered in white. It was considered the 12th best beach in the world and the second in Portugal by tripadvisor travelers. The beach has a very diversified offer of aquatic activities (rental of awnings, seagulls, gondolas, ski shark, buoys and kayak).

Praia da Rocha Portimão (Rock Beach Portimão)

One of the most famous beaches in Algarve common selected to publicity and photographs boosted with a great nightlife and a casino. Stroll on the wide wooden walkways that run along the beach, along with numerous bars and restaurants, including a sports area. The beach has two panoramic viewpoints that will enhance the natural landscape surrounding Praia da Rocha. Besides the themed bars and the marina complex’s restaurants you can perform different aquatic activities such as dolphin watch trips and boat tours along the seacoast. 

Castelo Paderne (Paderne Castle)

It’s one of the castles represented in the Portuguese flag.  Built by the Arabs in the 12th century it’s a good example of Muslim military architecture. The earliest reference to the castle dates back to 1189, when it was conquered in a fierce night-time assault by D. Sancho I forces (1185-1211), with the help of of English crusaders. However, in 1191, it was recovered by the Almohad forces under the command of the caliph Iacube Almançor. This defensive infrastructure was endowed with a tower Albarrã that allowed the defenders to attack the opposition behind their backs. After the Christian conquest of the Algarve a new population was installed in the castle altering the interior and the domestic life inside of it.

Museu do Mercado de Escravos (Slave Market Museum) (Lagos)

This historic building located in Infante D.Henrique square, Lagos, was built in 1444 and was Europe’s first slave market. The museum shows the history of slavery since the arrival of the first slaves to Portugal, in the 15th century, from Africa. Used in heavy labor and domestic tasks, African slaves were part of the Portuguese human landscape for centuries, until the abolition of slavery occurred in the 19th century. The Museum’s Nucleus of the Slaves Market offers visitors a perspective on this regrettable chapter of Portuguese history. For many years, the first floor of this infrastructure was used as House of Wisdom and Customs, House of Guard and as a Military Prison. The ground floor is currently occupied by an Art gallery.

Fortaleza de Sagres (Sagres Fortress)

Built in the 15th century to defend the village of Sagres from pirate harassments this fortress was the principal point of coastal defense for several centuries. This is also considered a devotion place because of his key role in the discoveries, where important navigators departed from there. Inside you can also find the 16th century Igreja Nossa Senhora da Graça (Our lady of Graça Church) with a baroque carving of São Vicente and the Museum of Portuguese Discoveries.

Cabo de São Vicente (St. Vicent Cape)

For many years it was believed that this place was the end of the world, called Promontorium Sacrum (Holy Promontory) by the Romans. The legend says that the name of the cape is linked to the martyred 4th century Iberian deacon St. Vicent, whose body was ashore there, and a shrine was built over his grave. Later the King D. Afonso Henriques brought it to Lisbon with the ravens that was believed to guard the body. Also played an important part during the discoveries and several naval battles were fought in the edge of the cape.

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