A few days in Faro: Capela Dos Ossos

On our third day of roaming the cobbled streets of Faro, we realised just how small the town was. We had explored most of it on our first day and had just a few streets and beaches left that we had not yet stumbled upon. Funnily enough, we stumbled upon this church a few times and I am so glad that we did. From the outside, I gathered that it was a church or some type of holy building due to all the engravings and plaques on the outside. 

I'm going to be honest here that churches, cathedrals and what not really scare me. I don't know why and I can't really explain. I know they are a sanctuary to some and provide comfort for others but not for me so I was a bit reluctant to go in. But I realised we had time to kill and I was desperate to see what Faro had to offer. We paid to go inside, maybe two euro each as a donation and walked inside. 

It was stunning. The carvings were beautiful and the entire interior was superb but it wasn't until we walked outside til I was blown away with the little chapel.

Whilst walking through the chapel we missed all signs hinting that this was not an ordinary chapel but an Ossuary. A place where the skeletal remains of the Carmelite monks are laid to rest within the walls of the chapel. There are many of these Ossuaries over Europe and but I was only aware of one in the Czech Republic so I was amazed that I had stumbled across one in this tiny town.

Now I know that this is not everyone's cup of tea but I found this fascinating. We do not have anything like this in the UK or at least where I'm from. Mathieu walked in and straight back out as the place gave him "the creeps" but weirdly enough I was in my element and couldn't stop snapping away.

At the entrance to the Capela Dos Ossos there is an inscription saying:

Pára aqui a considerar que a este estado hás-de chegar
which translates to
Stop here and consider, that you will reach this state too.

Which I think is quite humbling when you think about it. I was in awe tip toeing around. The crypt is quite small and has 1245 skulls adorning the walls.

I highly recommend this chapel if you're ever in Faro. The walk around can take up to 30-45 minutes and for a small donation to keep the church going you can't say no.

What do you think? Would you have enjoyed this attraction?


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