Aqueduto das Aguas Livres, Lisbon

4.3
#201 of 1,193 in Things to do in Lisbon
The Águas Livres Aqueduct is a historic aqueduct in the city of Lisbon, Portugal. It is one of the most remarkable examples of 18th-century Portuguese engineering. The main course of the aqueduct covers 18 km, but the whole network of canals extends through nearly 58 km.
The city of Lisbon has always suffered from the lack of drinking water, and King John V decided to build an aqueduct to bring water from sources in the parish of Caneças, in the modern municipality of Odivelas. The project was paid for by a special sales tax on beef, olive oil, wine, and other products.
Construction started in 1731 under the direction of Italian architect Antonio Canevari, replaced in 1732 by a group of Portuguese architects and engineers, including Manuel da Maia, Azevedo Fortes and José da Silva Pais. Between 1733 and 1736, the project was directed by Manuel da Maia, who in turn was replaced by Custódio Vieira, who would remain at the head of the project until around 1747.
Custódio Vieira conceived the centerpiece of the aqueduct, the arches over the Alcantara valley, completed in 1744. A total of 35 arches cross the valley, covering 941 m. The tallest arches reach a height of 65 m, and many are pointed, reminiscent of arches in Gothic style. It is considered a masterpiece of engineering in the Baroque period.
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Aqueduto das Aguas Livres Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
264 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Although we had been to Lisbon many times we had never seen the aqueduct until this year, taking the bus from Sete Rios. Beautiful aqueduct. Will have to walk across it some year.  more »
  • This was a great sight to see from afar as that is the only way to see it in full as being up close one cannot get the scale of it  more »
Google
  • The aqueduct is really nice and provide a nice view, but there was nothing else to see. The entrance should be free if we will only be able to have a walk on the top of it.
  • Great experience with awesome views. There are two paths. First path is over the valley. They had an open path through the aqueduct where you may view the water rivulets. You may cross through to the second path with view of the bay and bridge. The walk is only 2km. Nice scenic walk with a breeze to help cool you down.

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