Palaces of Sintra
"The village combines the wildness of the western mountain countries with the greenness of southern France," Lord Byron described Sintra. The pearl of Portugal attracts tourists with its mansions, parks and ... the end of Europe.
Lisbon's nearby neighbor, Sintra, delights with its architecture. The buildings are sensitively integrated into the natural landscape, which is especially noticeable on the slopes of the hill. The historic center of the city developed under the rule of the Moors. During the Middle Ages, the center gradually grew tighter as it expanded along the main streets.
Two Sintra chimneys
The symbol of the city is the Palácio Nacional de Sintra . The palace's twin chimneys are 33 meters high, and their bulky contours can be seen from a distance. The building is the best-preserved Portuguese royal palace that has survived since the Middle Ages. Multiple reconstructions resulted in the fact that several styles are mixed in the structure of the castle - gothic, Manueline and Mudéjar (Moorish style).
The palace attracts attention not only from the outside. Its walls house the largest collection of azulejos (ceramic tiles) in Portugal , and the interior is lavishly furnished. Visitors can take photos while wandering between the individual chambers. Admission to the building is paid - the ticket costs approx. 9.5 euro.
Opposite the main entrance to the palace is the Museu do Brinquedo , the toy museum. The impressive collection of dolls, ships, cars, houses with equipment, toy soldiers, etc. has been delighting not only the youngest guests for years. There is really something to admire - over 40,000 exhibits are located on 4 floors. The fact that you can see them today is the merit of an enthusiast who collected toys over the course of 50 years and then donated the collection to the foundation. To visit the museum, you have to pay around 4.5 euros.
A guard looking down the hill
Another place to visit while in Sintra is Palácio Nacional da Pena . This beautiful name is borne by a proud structure perched on top of a hill above the city, one of Portugal's greatest tourist attractions. To get to it, we can cover the route on foot or make sightseeing easier and take a special bus that runs from the gate to the entrance to the palace and back. The journey costs around 2 euros.
The palace is a stunning example of Portuguese romantic architecture. It impresses with its size and colors, and it captivates with the beauty of its interior. Unfortunately, the chambers cannot be photographed. A wonderful garden stretches around the building, covering the uneven terrain with vegetation from all over the world (often with exotic specimens). The entrance ticket to the park and the palace costs approx. 14 euros.
The Quinta da Regaleira, a palace with a magnificent 20th-century garden, is also magnificent. It is so beautiful that it scares you, and at the same time evokes associations with ghosts, vampires and the stories of Edgar Allan Poe.
While in Sintra, it is worth going to Cabo da Roca , where Europe ends. It is the westernmost point of the continent. From it you can admire the cliffs rising above the Atlantic waters to a height of 140 meters, as well as picturesque jagged rocks. The works of human hands, such as the 18th-century lighthouse or the monument, are also beautiful. Before leaving the end of Europe, you can visit the local restaurant and recharge your batteries with a nutritious soup or seafood dish.
Where to stay to have easy access to local attractions and at the same time be able to rest? About 19 km from Sintra there is Camping Orbitur Guinchoza , where guests can use, among others, swimming pool, restaurant and shop. We will pay 7.2-12 euro / day for a motorhome place, and an adult will stay here for 3.9-6.5 euro.
Sintra is just 25 km from Lisbon. So close, yet so different from the capital, this Portuguese city amazes with its style and atmosphere. It is worth visiting them and seeing the fairy-tale mansions surrounded by old redwoods.
A writer by profession, a passion of a cat. One day he will see what is behind the Urals - good to Vladivostok. So far, when he can, he enjoys the sun of the countries of southern Europe. And it's also fun;)