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Capela dos Ossos, Evora

4.3
#1 of 998 in Things to do in Alentejo
Must see · Religious Site · Church
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View the human skulls and bones decorating the interior walls of Capela dos Ossos. A Franciscan monk built this chapel in the 16th century to encourage contemplation about the afterlife and our fleeting time on earth. At the entrance to the Church of St. Francis, you will find this small chapel, which contains the skeletons of approximately 5,000 monks. Skulls and bones cover the eight pillars inside the structure, as well as its walls, and two skeletons hang from ropes. The ceiling is brick and painted with themes of death. Though not for the faint of heart, this site represents a look into a particular time and belief system. Inspirock's itinerary builder makes planning a Evora trip simple and quick.
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Capela dos Ossos reviews

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  • Exactly as described, every square inch is covered in bones. My wife was a bit skeeved, but I thought it was impressive. 
    Exactly as described, every square inch is covered in bones. My wife was a bit skeeved, but I thought it was impressive.  more »
  • The building was a few hundred feet behind the Peacock Hotel where we stayed and thus an easy walk. The chapel is next to the Church of St. Francis and you should take the time to see both, cost... 
    The building was a few hundred feet behind the Peacock Hotel where we stayed and thus an easy walk. The chapel is next to the Church of St. Francis and you should take the time to see both, cost...  more »
Google
  • Sure, it’s a little macabre, but the history and uniqueness is worth the trip. The story about why the bones were used, the poem within, and the inscription above the door are beautiful. It’s a fairly small room, especially considering it’s supposedly made up of 5,000 corpses, and most people were in-and-out in less than 5 minutes. The entrance fee is €5, cash or card, and includes some other artifacts, a nativity museum upstairs, and a nice view of the town from the balcony.
  • This was a very cool experience. It's a small room but it contains thousands of bones and along each wall there are small plaques with the history of the chapel in both Portuguese and English. The architecture is beautiful and sombre. Be aware, it's cash only and there's no ABM on site.

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