Our apartment is in the walled city, on a large hill, and across the river, but getting over to the other side of the river is not actually that hard. What’s on the the other side of the river? Well, there’s a park and the other half of Coimbra, but our main interest was of the 1000 year old convent, and after that, thousands of acres of roman ruins, 30 miles away.
The first things you notice when you step into view of the convent is; thats an old building, and that building is really low in the ground. What happened to this amazing building is that is was built on frequently flooded, sinking ground. this doused the building to, over one thousand years, sink about thirty feet into the ground!
Our next stop was the Roman ruins in Conimbríga these amazing ruins date back to 100 B.C.E. Near the end of this amazing civilisation, the Romans thought that they were going to be invaded, and quickly built a 13 foot thick, approximately 15 foot high wall surrounding their city. This wall is beautiful to us, but definitely does not meet up to the standards of the rest of the ruins. this is because the locals built this wall as quickly as possible to protect themselves. The invaders never came. The rest of the ruins are incredible and stretch on for miles (i’ve really got to start using kilometres). You could wander off into unrestricted ruins for hours… …. … ………..