A city painted in all the colors of the rainbow, which hosted a lot of historical events and fascinating legends, the wonderful city of Sintra, located just 30 kilometers from Lisbon, is a tourist destination that must definitely be visited when you reach Portugal. This city boasts some of the most beautiful buildings in romantic style throughout Europe and a history dating back to the Neolithic times. The colorful castles, generations of kings who used to spend their summers here and a thriving culture are just some of the things to discover in this amazing locality.
Here are 5 of the most interesting tourist attractions in Sintra:
Pena National Palace. Considered one of the most impressive castles in the world, Palacio da Pena is the highlight of any visit to Sintra. The palace painted in vivid colors was built at the request of King Ferdinand II in 1842 and is a delightful amalgam of different styles and design influences, ranging from North African to medieval Gothic. The interior is as interesting and extravagant as the exterior, with 19th-century eclectic furniture, in Gothic, neo-Renaissance and neo-baroque style.
To travel to the Pena Palace, you can take the 434 bus or walk on a steep hill, but with a vegetation of unmatched beauty. The palace is opposite the Castle of Moors, which is why both monuments are often visited together. Expect to spend 3 wonderful hours at the palace for a price of about 14 Euro.
Castle of Moors. An amazing fort that can be seen from the center of Sintra, the Castle of Moors is perched on a rocky hill and dates back to the eighth century, when Muslims conquered the Iberian Peninsula, although it was later conquered by Portuguese rulers. The stone walls surrounding the castle and its huge towers are reminiscent of the Great Chinese Wall, with the same impressive views that extend into the Atlantic Ocean in this case.
The entrance ticket to the castle is 8 euros.
Quinta da Regaleira. Another construction that seems to be detached from fairy tales, Quinta da Regaleira is an attraction that is always in the top of the visitors’ preferences of Sintra. This neo-Manueline estate and chapel was designed by architect Luigi Manini and is only 700 meters from the city, being accessible by bus, car or tuk-tuk. The domain was created at the behest of a millionaire who wanted to create a estate reminiscent of Portugal’s glorious past.
The palace contains carved fireplaces, romantic statues and various frescoes. Mostly, however, you will be impressed by the charming gardens. You will also find references to the Knights Templar, the Freemasons and the dark alchemy, all hidden in the ground. Also interesting is the hidden passage that connects several tunnels that run the length of the gardens.
The entrance ticket to Quinta da Regaleira is 8 Euro.
Sintra National Palace. With its conical baskets and opulent interior, the Sintra National Palace is one of the most beautiful buildings in Portugal and, at the same time, one of the most visited tourist attractions around Lisbon. The interior combines Moorish and Manueline style elements, with arabic courtyards, twisted columns and geometric tiles. The palace has Moorish origins, although much of what can be seen today dates back to 1385, when King John I ordered the complete reconstruction of the building. By 1880, the palace would be used by the royal family. Tourist landmarks include the Hall of the Swords, the Hall of the Coopophens, the Golden Chamber and the Arab Chamber.
The ticket to the palace is 10 Euro.
Monserrate Palace and Park. Not far from the historical center of Sintra (just 3.5 kilometers away), a lush 30 hectare park with exotic trees, perfect for a stroll on hot summer days, surrounds the eclectic Palácio de Monserrate, built in the 19th century. With Moorish architecture, the palace offers an interesting combination of Gothic and Indian influences.