Visit to Bom Jesus

Braga Travel Blog

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Gardens of Bom Jesus
Before our work began, we had a short tour of Braga, with the highlight being a visit to Bom Jesus. Now, I am the last one to get excited about a trip to church, but this location was so stunning and beautiful it is now one of my favorite places in the world.

I love how Europe is not very crowded. If we had such a gorgeous structure in Los Angeles, you can bet it would be full of people, both locals and tourists, every single hour of the day. But here, it was as sparsely crowded as it was beautiful.

There are 2 ways to get up the hill to the church. One is via the stairs (which I did not take). Apparently at every landing there are statues and a small building that housed a scene of Jesus in the bible.
Bom Jesus
It reminds me of the Franciscan monestary that we have in Malibu, with statues commemorating Jesus' path to the cross.

The other way of getting to this church is via a water-driven "funicular". I don't know what that means, but it's a wooden trolley-looking thing that goes up very steeply and sounds just awful, full of groans and noises. The trip down is even more scary, as you wonder if it's going to stop in time..

I suppose if you were to take the labor of walking up the stairs, you would be rewarded with the sight of the main church, which is gorgeous. The grounds and building remind me a lot of Versailles in France. Not quite as large or ornate, but definitely a similar feeling of grandeur and beauty.

We wandered around bits of Braga that day, visiting Braga Shopping (and having lunch there) and generally just trying to keep the group together.
If I were a group leader, I would have asked everyone to synch their watches upon arrival. What would end up happening is, some people would arrive "on time" and if everyone didn't show up within a few minutes of that, the early ones would wander away, and you'd have this constant ebb of people wandering off and wandering back. Our leader in particular was often late, but it was understandable as he had a lot of administrative and communication to do apart from the group. All I have to say is that leading a team without giving orders and being a total Nazi is not easy by any means!

I was really surprised at this point at what a large city we were building in. I really expected a super-rural area. I expected cornfields and dirt and having to make a fire in a circle of rocks. But here we were with great public transportation, stores open on Sunday (which wasn't even an option in Geneva!) and plenty of people on the streets! Braga was really a lovely place, and as I was soon to see, highly preferable over Porto in many ways.
glennisnz says:
I have been on one of those funicular things in Malaysiaand I also felt the same, its quite scarey and noisy, and you wonder about the maintanience!
This city Braga sounds wonderful.
I have been a supporter of Habitat for Humanity for years (only a monitary supporter not a builder) so its good to hear of people like you going to assist in a foreign country. Good on you.
Posted on: Jan 13, 2008
AndiPerullo says:
Wow, your description of this place is fabulous! It definitely makes me want to visit. Glad you had such an unforgettable experience.
Posted on: Sep 13, 2007
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Gardens of Bom Jesus
Gardens of Bom Jesus
Bom Jesus
Bom Jesus
Organ in church
Organ in church
view from Bom Jesus
view from Bom Jesus
Eileen and Karen
Eileen and Karen
Another shot of the view from the …
Another shot of the view from the…
Ceiling frescoes
Ceiling frescoes
Church interior
Church interior
The stairs to Bom Jesus
The stairs to Bom Jesus
Braga
photo by: Jaina_me