University City Évora
By Maria Thermann

University City Évora

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Surrounded by orange groves and the beautiful Alentejo wine-growing area, the historic city of Évora is only 131 km distance from Lisbon Airport and a popular day trip destination for tourists. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Évora sees plenty of day trippers, but is sometimes overlooked by property investors as a student lettings destination. Évora University dates back to 1557, and was originally based on the religious Colegio do Espirito Santo.

In 1959, the modern University of Évora was founded. As one of Portugal's most important places of higher education, Évora is therefore far from sleepy, but a vibrant, lively city with a young population. The university offers both undergraduate and post graduate courses.

Évora was founded by the Romans as a trading town. Today some of the city's walled fortifications can still be seen, but these date back to Arab occupation. Take a stroll through the city's narrow cobbled streets and you'll see plenty of beautiful architectural evidence that the city flourished in the 16th century. This is especially evident at the heart of Évora, where the Praça do Giraldo lies, a beautiful square surrounded by wonderful examples of Renaissance buildings.

The oldest tourist attraction in the city is the Roman Temple dedicated to the goddess Diana, but visitors also flock to see the city's cathedral and the Évora Aqueduct, which dates back to the 16th century and stretches for 9 km from the nearest river to the city. It was used to bring fresh water to Évora, which used to be stored in a vast tank that occupied the space where Praça do Giraldo is today.

Évora is connected to Lisbon by rail and road. Bus and train take about 1.5 hours from Lisbon and tickets are inexpensive. The Alentejo region occupies a south-central position in Portugal and is mostly flat land used for agriculture and wine-production. Charming rural villages and historic towns make the Alentejo a wonderful place to explore.

It is possible to find a 3-bedroom village house near Évora for just 68,000 euros, but it is likely to still need some upgrading. In Évora townhouses range from 150,000 euros for an already renovated property to 315,000 euros for a renovation project that converts two smaller townhouses into a large one. Studios start from 35,000 euros.

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