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02 of 06

Climb the Steps to Bom Jesus do Monte

The Top 6 Things to Do in Braga, Portugal

Cmanuel Photography – Portugal/Moment/Getty Images

On the outskirts of the city lies Braga’s biggest attraction, the Bom Jesus do Monte basilica—and the 630 zig-zagging steps it takes to reach it. Unless the day is particularly hot, don’t be overly concerned about the climb, as it’s not as difficult as it looks. If it does seem too daunting, there’s a water-powered funicular—the oldest of its type in the world—that can take you to and from the top for a few euros instead.

Intricate fountains line the steps, based around the five senses. Water pours from an orifice of each the human-shaped carvings, and they’re an attraction in their own right.

While the neoclassical church at the summit is the goal of the climb, the expansive views over the city and surrounding area are equally impressive. A nearby terrace cafe serves welcome cold drinks and snacks, and there are paths and gardens to explore if you haven’t had your fill of walking yet.

Bom Jesus do Monte is easy to get to by car or taxi, or just catch the number 2 bus from any one of a number of downtown stops. The bus takes about 20 minutes, and runs every half hour Monday through Saturday, less often on Sundays.