This was the third time I have been in Portugal but the first time I actually visited Lisbon like a real tourist. The other times were more about relaxing on the beach, drinking Sangria and eating delicious local food.
One of my closest friends who had been to Portugal many times highly recommended me to go to Sintra, and so I listened.
GOING TO SINTRA: TRANSPORTATION AND COST
After spending a few days in Lisbon, we decided to schedule Sintra on a Monday and to spend the day there. I recommend taking the train to go to Sintra because it’s affordable and you get to see beautiful landscapes all way long.
The train station you need to go to is literally in the city centre and is called Rossio Train station. The train ticket only cost €2.15/€1.10 (adult/child) and the price is taken from the Viva Viagem card, which you can easily buy for €0.50 in any metro station and use on any public transport in Lisbon.
ARRIVING IN SINTRA
Sintra is located at approximately 25km to the west of Lisbon and it only takes 30 minutes by train. When you reach the town you have different options: hire a driver, get the sightseeing bus, walk or rent a car.
Since we only had a day in Sintra, we went for option 1. We hired a safari guided-tour driver with a cool jeep to drive us around for €35 per person and, let me tell you – it was worth every single penny because it was definitely a funny bumpy ride, very informative and at our own pace for visiting the main sites.
MUST SEE IN SINTRA
Sintra has many 19th-century romantic architectural monuments and the picturesque little town has also been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Literally, everything in this village is a MUST SEE and if you can spend more than one day in this town, you should!
Our first visit was Quinta da Regaleira, a residence that is an architectural masterpiece with a stunning ornate gothic façade and incredible gardens that are mandatory to see. We stayed here for about 2-3 hours and it was not enough to appreciate everything but enough to be impressed and wish to return.
In the gardens, you can find tunnels, with multiple entry points that include: grottoes, the chapel, the Waterfall Lake and caves. You can also visit the Initiatic wells or inverted towers that resemble underground towers lined with spiral staircases.
CHALET AND GARDEN OF THE COUNTESS OF EDLA
After spending a few hours walking around the fantastic estate of Quinta da Regaleira, we headed to the Chalet and Garden of the Countess of Edla (Jardim e Chalet da Condessa D’edla) for a quick visit.
The chalet is a beautiful house built in the 19th Century – in accordance with the romantic taste of the Pena Palace – for Elise Hensler, the second wife of King Fernando II. Once you arrive, you can tell that this woman was spoilt by the King! I am sure that every girl would dream of a house like this. Wouldn’t you agree?… It was like being in a fairy tale.
PENA PALACE & PARK
Our last stop was the jaw-dropping, Pena National Palace – magnificent castle built on the top of a hill in the Sintra Mountains. I’ve seen so many castles since I moved to Europe, but this one is exceptional. This palace constitutes one of the major expressions of 19th-century Romanticism in the world and it is one of the Seven Wonders of Portugal.
The palace can be seen from many places in Sintra and it’s like anticipation building up until you finally get to be there and live it. It is so breathtaking and unique…
The gardens are as gorgeous and definitely worth a walk through them and chill after a long day!
We were so happy to have planned coming to Sintra and there’s no doubt we will return to see everything we missed like the Castle of the Moors, The Centro Historico, the Vila Sassetti and much more.
Sintra is definitely so much fun visiting with the ones you love!
Let me know if you have already been there and your experience. If you haven’t and have any question, feel free to drop a comment or email me 😉
Thanks for stopping by! 🙂