Sintra- a Portuguese Fairy tale
I fell in love with Sintra at first sight! When my friends told me about Sintra, I would never imagine that it is actually more beautiful than anyone described it! It’s very popular among the travelers but If you read this blog you will understand why. You will witness beautiful palaces and magical gardens. For a day, It feels like it’s a real fairy tale that came to life!
I visited Sintra twice actually ; once in January and once in July! Read the full guide below to spend a beautiful day at this magical place.
When to go
The climate of Portugal is characterized by mild winters and warm summers so it makes it possible to go for a day trip to Sintra any time during the year. In Sintra, the temperature is a bit lower than Lisbon so don’t forget your jacket/coat even If it’s summer! Since Sintra is that beautiful, you should spend at least a day there.
How to get there?
Take the train from Rossio Train Station, close to the Starbucks. That is the most convenient and cheapest option which costs only €4.45 return ticket! The ride takes approximately 40 minutes and the train leaves every half an hour.
Arriving to Sintra
As you get off the train, some private bus companies will be approaching you to get you to buy their tickets (very expensive).You will have to decide how you are going to visit the various sites of your preference. There are the municipality buses that cost about €12 for a day or €5.50 for one way. ( so If you decide to go by them, just use the day pass). If you don’t feel like paying for the transportation you can walk around Sintra too! It’s definitely possible and recommended.
What I have seen in Sintra:
The colorful Pena Palace:
It’s the most iconic and and popular palace in Sintra with the vibrant colors and some breath taking views. It was built in 1854 as a summer resort for the royal family. You can also see the interior decoration which was preserved until today and even learn about its history. If you walk around the Pena Palace, you will see some panoramic views of Portugal. You can even have a coffee at the castle’s balcony and take buy some souvenirs.
Price: €14 for adults and €12.50 for kids
Castelo de los Mouros:
A medieval castle that should be mentioned. It was built in the 9th centure by the Moors and was restored two centuries ago. Even If I haven’t visited it I have seen it from the top of Pena Palace. I decided not to go as I preferred to visit the other two sites.
Address: 2710, Sintra
Price: €8 for adults and €6.50 for kids
Discover the secrets of Quinta da Regaleira’s gardens
Very hard to believe that this place is real and not a scene taken from a Disney Movie. Hidden tunnels, lakes and mysterious wells. It might look like a palace but it was only a residence of a wealthy family. What is remarkable about this place are the enchanting gardens. Personally, I prefer Quinta da Regaleira over Pena Palace any day since I found it quite unique and magical. The gardens look like a labyrinth and you will need the map to find the most important spots such as the two wells.
Address: R. Barbosa do Bocage 5, 2710-567 Sintra, Portuga
Price: €6 for adults and €3 for kids
Time: 9:30am to 5pm
Cabo da Roca- Visit the most western most point in Europe
If your bucket list goals are big, then you should definitely visit Cabo da Roca – the most western most point of Europe.It is only 40 minutes from Sintra by bus. If you go, you will admire some picturesque views from the high cliffs that are overlooking over the Atlantic Ocean. It is considered one of the best spots in Portugal to see the sunset! It gets really windy at the certain point so dress accordingly!
Tip: Try Queijadas and drink ginjinha
Have you heard about the Portuguese sweet pastries that are made of cheese and really popular in Sintra? You should definitely try them as they are highly recommended. Also, take a shot of ginginha, the cherry Portuguese liquor served in a chocolate cup!