Scaling the heights (2)

Campolide is not an area of Lisbon that sees many tourists.  On a mission to find Aqueduto das Águas Livres, as usual I walked, disregarding the guide book advice to catch a bus.  It didn’t look far on the map.  The locals I asked assured me it wasn’t far.  But finding it involved a lot of interesting uphill and roundabout, as you can see from the gallery.

I already had some idea of what I was looking for because we’d passed beneath it on the coach into Lisbon.  Finally, perseverance paid off.

But the garden scarcely revealed a clue of what I was about to experience.

Aqueduto das Águas Livres was a monumental undertaking, designed in the 18th century to bring water to the parched city of Lisbon.  The main course of the aqueduct covers 18km, but the whole canal network extends almost 58km.  Construction began in 1731, the centrepiece a total of 35 arches spanning the Alcantara valley, conceived by Custodio Vieira, the tallest being 65metres high.  Opened in 1748, while still incomplete, amazingly it withstood the devastating earthquake of 1755.

Fascinating, don’t you think?  I thought I’d already used the title Scaling the Heights before, and so it proved, when I managed to Ascend to considerable heights, early this year in lovely Florence.  I do enjoy a good view.

 

87 comments

  1. Wow! Glorious photos of the town and the aqueduct is astonishing – a great skill of engineering and it must have been robust to survive the earthquake. I do so enjoy these travels to Portugal – it almost feels like I’m there! You give us such a treat by sharing your outings! 😀❤️

    1. I had such a good trip, Annika, and we seemed to fit loads of things in. It’s always a joy to share them. Thanks so much for your company, and wishing you a good weekend too. 🙂 🙂

  2. oh wow you had sunny blue skies when you went – so glad you found it, but you are brave walking there. We go the bus there! Did walk back though via Parque Eduardo.

    1. Oh, you daft thing- it would have kept! 🙂 We had half and half skies, depending which way you looked but it was warm. And the darn bus stop was right below us! 🙂 We got back in half the time (through the park and the estufa 🙂 ) Have a great few days, Becky!

  3. I love, or possibly detest, when locals refer to something as being nearby. Which translated can often mean over the mountain and around the block. Still this discovery is well worth the effort. The photo looking through the tunnel is mesmerizing.

    1. The silly thing was that it was much nearer than we thought, Sue. We made a proper pig’s ear of up, down and around. I mean, how can you misplace something that size, but we did! I’m blaming him 🙂 🙂 And then when we looked down from the aqueduct, what should we see but the bus stop? 🙂

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