For those of you who have been to the beautiful city of Tomar, you will probably have visited the one-of-a-kind Convento de Cristo. Often overlooked, however, is the Aqueduto dos Pegões, the aqueduct built to channel water to the castle. But have no fear: I temporarily overcame my vertigo and took lots of photos for you.
Though it is considered to be one of the most important public works of the 17th century in Portugal, the Aqueduto dos Pegões isn’t as popular as it should be. This makes me sad because it only takes 5 minutes to drive up to it from the city. You can then either stop to admire it or actually walk along it and take in the beautiful countryside all around you. If you have no problem with heights, I highly recommend you walk along it, as it’s the only aqueduct in the country where you can do this. It reaches a maximum height of 30 meters, which is about 29 meters higher than I’m comfortable standing on, so I opted out of this unique experience (something for next time…).
Construction started on it in 1593 by Italian architect Filippo Terzi and ended in 1613. The aqueduct is nearly 6 km long (3.7 miles) and for centuries remained the most important source of water to the monks who lived in the Convento de Cristo. Most tourists will actually be surprised to find such a huge structure in a small city like Tomar.
I strongly urge you to go visit this fantastic monument if you’re in the area, and try not to chicken out on walking along the aqueduct like I did. And please, please, please tell me how it was so I can be even more tempted to try it next time!