How do I get from the airport to my hotel?

Evora is home to an airport which welcomes private aircraft only. You will be entering Portugal via air at Lisbon`s Humberto Delgado Airport (called Portela Airport by locals, IATA code LIS). Lisbon`s airport is a little more than 80 miles west of Evora.

From Lisbon Airport (LIS): Follow the signs in the airport for the Lisbon Metro. Once you have arrived at Aeroporto station on the airport grounds, you will take the Red Line (`Linha Vermelha`) to Oriente station, approximately ten minutes away. The fare costs less than €2. From Oriente station, you will purchase a ticket to Evora train station on Comboios de Portugal`s `Intercidades` train. One-way tickets cost between €15 and €20 (an hour and 40 minutes). If purchased online and in advance, special Internet-only fares discount the ticket even more. For more information, visit venda.cp.pt (website in both Portuguese and English). There will be taxis queuing outside the station waiting to take you to your hotel.

How do I get from the train station to my hotel?

Evora train station is less than half a mile outside the historic center in the neighborhood of Horta das Figueiras. Taxis can be found outside the train station during normal business hours. The taxi fare will cost you less than €10 from Evora station to nearly anywhere you want to go in the Evora city limits. Allot approximately €12 for a fare from Evora station to Cartuxa.

How do I get around using public transportation?

The bus system in Evora is operated by Transportes Rodoviarios de Evora (TREVO). TREVO operates ten lines that serve Evora and its suburbs, and two special blue lines (so noted by signs for linha azul) which loop the southern and northern portions of the historic district, respectively. The blue lines run from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. The other ten bus lines are all in operation by 7 a.m., running until 8 p.m. on weekdays and 6 p.m. on Saturdays. Only a handful of lines are in operation on Sundays and during holidays, and the schedules are much tighter.

The blue lines run four buses per hour, while the other lines run at least four buses during rush hours and fewer during the afternoon. You can travel anywhere in the bus system (including Cartuxa) for under €2 one-way. For more information, visit www.trevo.com.pt (Portuguese).

How do I call/hail a taxi?

One does not necessarily need to hail a taxi in Evora from the street; they are usually found waiting at a number of locations around town. This includes the area around the university, the cathedral, Evora railway station and Praca do Giraldo. Five taxi companies operate from Evora, so you will not go long without encountering one. Fares will range between €5 and €8 no matter where you want to go inside the city center. Taxis are a great way to get around on weekends when the city bus system runs an abbreviated schedule.

NOTE: While Evora does welcome its fair share of tourists, you should not assume that your taxi driver will know how to speak English. Write out your destinations on pieces of paper and give the paper applicable to that specific trip to your driver before departing.

Should I rent a car in Evora?

Perhaps the most flexible way of traveling in and around Evora is by automobile. Europcar car rental is located just outside the ring road, southwest of the Jardim Publico, just off Rua de Viana. If you are taking advantage of self-drive portions of your trip, you will be picking up your car at the airport upon entering Portugal, not in Evora. If you decide to rent a car on your own in Evora, prices will range from €30 to €100 per day depending on the size of car requested.

Parking is not a major issue like it is in other Portuguese towns. Evora offers free public parking in many places, usually around the city walls and the modern-day ring road.

Is Evora a walking city?

Evora is a very walkable city, considering the historic center is located on a plot of land just half a square mile in size. The longest east-west point in the historic center clocks in at .8 miles, meaning nearly everyone can walk to most sights without getting winded. With that in mind, some terrain in Evora is hilly, and the climb to the Cathedral in particular can be draining for people who are not very active at home.

Is Evora a dangerous city? Are there any areas I should avoid?

All levels of crime (ranging from theft to assault) are deemed `low` or `very low` by Portuguese law enforcement. Compared to an already-safe city like Lisbon, crime levels are a third of what you would find in the capital. It is completely safe to walk around any part of Evora during the day, and while we don`t recommend walking around aimlessly at night for no reason, you are not very likely to encounter any problems here.

Even though Evora is safe, take the necessary safety precautions just like you would at home. Take only well-lit and well-populated routes, keep your wits about you, and always look like you know where you are going, even when you may not. Be sure to keep your valuables on your person at all times, and never keep all of your money in one place; split up your cash into various pockets in your clothes.

Which areas are the best for shopping?

The Praca do Giraldo is the jumping-off point for any shopping excursion in Evora. Rua Joao de Deus, on the east side of the square, runs north toward Sao Mamede and is home to lots of shops, including the city`s Zara department store. Rua de Serpa Pinto, on the west side of the square, also boasts many shops, some of them high-end. Shoppers will find themselves in heaven along the Rua Cinco de Outubro, which runs between the square and the Cathedral. Also make note of the area around the Aqueduct; there are open-air markets hosted every weekend which sell authentic Portuguese gifts and souvenirs (some antiques).

Can I pay/tip in US dollars?

The currency of Portugal is the Euro and US dollars are not accepted for payment. Please be sure to have the correct currency on hand or be prepared to exchange your dollars for euros upon arrival. Currency exchange desks and ATMs can be found at your arrival airport and at many locations throughout the city.

I do not speak Portuguese. Do many people speak English?

It is more common to find English speakers in Portugal than it is in other southern European countries, such as Spain. A recent European Union language survey found that 32% of Portuguese people over the age of 18 can speak English on a conversational level or better.

With that said, you may encounter some difficulty finding an English speaker away from tourist areas such as hotels, museums, and the train station. It is recommended to brush up on basic Portuguese phrases before arriving, like basic pleasantries and numbers from 1 to 10. To ask someone if they speak English, say `Fala ingles?`

Note: Do not speak in Spanish to a Portuguese person, thinking they will understand you when you do so. Responses will range from stunned silence to outright hostility; the Portuguese people are proud of their culture and heritage, and such an act will cause nearly everyone to take personal offense. On another note, the vocabulary and pronunciation in Portuguese differs from Spanish more than you may realize.

What are the drinking laws in Portugal?

The legal drinking age in Portugal is 18, whether you find yourself in a pub or a nightclub. Asking for proof of age upon ordering an alcoholic beverage or entering a nightclub is becoming more commonplace, especially if you appear younger. Keep your passport with you as it doubles as proof of age and identification.

If you are renting a car, do not drive after consuming alcohol. A blood alcohol content level of 0.05 is considered the legal limit; penalties can range from fines to a jail sentence of up to one year. Save yourself the potential trouble and heartache.

What is nightlife like in Evora?

Nightlife in Evora is varied, catering to tourists and students alike. Evora is home to one of Portugal`s most famous universities, and many bars around the university will cater to students with fun entertainment options, hot DJs and cheap drink specials. If you are interested in partying like a student, keep in mind that Wednesdays are student nights in Evora. The two main dance clubs in Evora are Cafe da Cidade (located in Sao Mamede on Rua das Alcacarias) and Praxis (located near Praca do Giraldo on Rua Valdevinos). They are open until 2 and 6 a.m., respectively.

If you would like a more low-key nightlife experience, the cafes around Praca do Giraldo buzz with activity until midnight on most nights, and even longer on weekends. Also, take note of the hotel bars, as many of them are perfect places for expats to mingle with locals.