Side Trips from Évora

A trip through the countryside surrounding Évora will take you to some of the earliest-inhabited sites in Portugal, the country’s carpet- and tapestry-making center, and to a stunning medieval castle in the lively town of Montemor-o-Novo. The area is also considered the capital of Iberian megaliths, with pastoral fields dotted with dolmens and menhirs (huge carved stones usually marking ancient graves or religious sites). While impressive, the megaliths are difficult to spot by car or to navigate by foot, and are better viewed as part of an organized tour. By foot or bicycle, it's rewarding to follow the path of Évora’s ancient aqueduct, which crosses the city’s medieval walls and juts out across rolling wheat fields and cork groves. A new system of trails along disused railways and ancient public footpaths delivers vast views of the countryside.

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