Tourist’s guide to Sintra – the favorite city of the Portugese kings

Sintra (Portugal) is a mountain city in the west of the country and the continent as a whole. It is located near Cape Roca, the westernmost point of Eurasia, and the capital of the state – Lisbon. There are few locals in Sintra – 380 thousand people live in the municipality with an area of ​​319.2 km². More than a million travelers visit this region on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean each year.

Sintra city

Thanks to its unique sights, Sintra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. To fully enjoy all its beauties, you will need 2-3 days, but even one day will be enough to remember this beautiful city forever.

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Foundation History

Portrait of Afonso Enriques
Afonso Enriques

In the 11th century AD, on one of the hills of the Iberian Peninsula, warlike moors erected a fortress, which several decades later was captured by the first king of ancient Portugal – Afonso Enriques. By order of the great ruler, in 1154 the walls of this fortress built St. Peter’s Basilica, so it is 1154 that is considered the official date of the founding of the city of Sintra.

For 7 centuries, Sintra was any place of Portuguese monarchs, so the city has many beautiful castles, ancient cathedrals, fortresses and other architectural monuments. The resort became even more majestic in the 19-20 century, when due to a less hot climate than in other parts of Portugal, representatives of the elite began to move here, everywhere building it with luxurious villas.

sights

Quinta da Regaleira
Palace and Park Complex Quinta da Regaleira

The palace and park complex is considered the most mystical attraction of Sintra (Portugal). On the estate there is a four-story Gothic palace and an unusual park, a Roman Catholic chapel, mysterious tunnels and a “well of initiation.”

For more information about the castle, see here .

  • Address: R. Barbosa do Bocage 5.
  • Schedule: daily from 9:30 to 17:00. Entrance fee – 6 €.

Bonus for our readers! At the very end of the page you can find a map of Sintra with landmarks in Russian, where all the most interesting places are marked.

Pena Palace
Pena Palace

Ask your local resident what to see in Sintra first, and you will hear the same answer. Pena is the real pride of Portugal, a unique castle built in 1840. The total territory of the complex from the palace and the park is 270 hectares, and the height of the mountain on which it is built reaches 400 meters.

Advice! From the terraces of the Pena Palace a panoramic view of the city opens, here you can make the most beautiful photos of Sintra (Portugal).

  • Address: Estrada da Pena.
  • Opening hours: from 10:00 to 18:00 seven days a week.
  • Entrance to the complex will cost 14 euros.

You will be interested: a detailed description of the Pena Palace with a photo .

Castle of the moors
Castle of the moors

It is from this place, the fortress, which the Moors erected in the 11th century, the history of Sintra begins. During its many years of existence, the castle survived a lot: it was the refuge of the Portuguese, Jews and Spaniards, it was completely destroyed during the war by the French army and rebuilt, replacing the medieval style with the Romanesque. The Moors Castle is located at an altitude of 420 meters and has an area of ​​over 12 thousand square kilometers.

  • You can get to the fortress from the center of Sintra in 50 minutes of a calm step.
  • It is open from 10 to 18 every day.
  • Entrance ticket costs from 8 euros.

All details about the Castle of the Moors and its visit on this page .

Sintra National Palace

Built by the Moors more than a thousand years ago, this castle was the residence of the kings of Portugal of the 15-19th centuries. Its main feature is unusual halls: one of them is decorated with images of 136 forty, the second is painted with 30 swans, the third is the oldest monument of Arab culture, and in the fourth to this day the arms of 71 states are kept.

Sintra National Palace
  • Address: Largo Rainha Dona Amélia.
  • Opening hours: 9: 30-18: 00 seven days a week.
  • A tour of the chambers of the kings of Portugal will cost 8.5 euros.

See also: what can be seen in the Sintra Palace today – description with photo.

Note! Admission is free for children under 5 years old in all Sintra attractions, and schoolchildren aged 6-17 and senior citizens over 65 are entitled to a 15% discount on the standard ticket price.

Montserrat

An exotic villa decorates the outskirts of Sintra. Built five centuries ago, it is one of the most famous sights of Portugal in the Romanesque style and amazes with its rich decoration. Near the villa is a huge park with 3000 plants from around the world, which in 2013 was awarded the title of the best historical garden of the planet. In it you can not only admire the beautiful landscapes and fountains, but also enjoy delicious dishes of national cuisine, dance to provocative music, take beautiful photos.

Montserrat Palace
Moncerat Park Walk

The palace is a 15-minute drive from the historic center of Sintra; you can get to it by bus 435.

  • Open daily from 10 to 18
  • Entrance fee is 6.5 EUR.

Attention! Tourists who visit this attraction of Sintra are advised to ask the driver in advance when the last bus leaves from Montserrat to save on a taxi and get to the hotel without incident.

Historic Center of Sintra

The center of the ancient city is a real maze of many streets with beautiful houses, magnificent castles, restaurants and monuments. You can better see all the attractions of the city located in this area if you go on your own on foot walk or rent a bike.

Sintra city center

Here you can buy an original souvenir, try asorda or bacagliau, take pictures with street artists and musicians. It is best to come in the evening when the air temperature drops, and the mood of people on the streets rises.

City Hall
City Hall of Sintra

The modern government building of Sintra is located not far from the railway station, on Largo Dr. Virgílio Horta 4. Outwardly, like many others, it resembles a castle from Disney fairy tales: colored spiers, tall towers, painted ceramics and stucco-decorated facade – it is not surprising that many tourists stop near the city hall to examine it in detail.

Unfortunately, tourists are not allowed to enter the city hall, but it is definitely worth admiring the beauty of this symbol of the Great geographical discoveries.

Museum of Aviation
Sintra Air Museum

If there are attractions in Sintra that are really interesting not only for adults, but also for children, then the airplane museum is one of them. How many of us would not like to be in the role of a pilot and feel like a driver of such a powerful vessel?

The Aircraft Museum was opened at the Aero Club of Portugal, created in 1909. Today, there are several dozen exhibits from different eras, the form of members of military aviation, awards and photos of the best pilots in the world.

The cost of visiting the museum is 3 euros, for children and schoolchildren – for free . In addition, all the little travelers at the entrance are waiting for a symbolic gift from the museum’s company store.

Accommodation: how much?

Hotel room 4 * syntras
Sintra boutique hotel

Due to the fact that Sintra is located near Lisbon, and has significant recreational resources, living in it is more expensive than in other cities in Portugal. For example, for a night spent in a double room of a three-star hotel, you will have to pay at least 45 euros. Almost three times more expensive will cost a vacation in a four-star hotel located in the historical center of Sintra, and prices in high-class hotels start at 150 € per night.

Tourists who want to save on accommodation can pay attention to private apartments, the cost of which is from 35 € per day. It is also worth remembering that in autumn and winter prices for holidays in Portugal fall by about 10-15%, which will also favorably affect your budget.

Find out RATES or book any accommodation using this form

How to get to Sintra from Lisbon on your own?

In Portugal, rail and bus modes of transport are very well developed, which cannot but please active tourists. The distance between Sintra and Lisbon is only 23 km, which can be overcome on:

Rossio Station in Lisbon
Rossio
  1. The train. This is the cheapest and easiest way to get to Sintra. From Lisbon Central Station, namely Rossiu Station, from 6:01 to 00:31 every half hour a train leaves in the direction we need. Travel time is 40-55 minutes (depending on the route and number of stops), the fare is 2.25 euros. You can see the exact schedule and buy tickets on the official website of the Portuguese Railway – www.cp.pt.
  2. Bus to Sintra
  3. The bus. It will take you 27 minutes and 3-5 euros to get to Sintra. The bus in the direction we need leaves from the Marquês de Pombal station and goes straight to the Sintra Estação stop. The traffic interval and exact ticket prices are available on the carrier’s website – www.vimeca.pt.
  4. The car. The cost of a liter of gasoline in Portugal on average reaches 1.5-2 €. You can get to Sintra in just 23 minutes on the A37 highway, if there are no traffic jams on the roads.
  5. Taxi. The price of such a trip is 50-60 € in a car for four people.

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Advice! If you have the opportunity to travel from Lisbon to Sintra by rail, be sure to use it. The roads of the capital are heavily congested from 8 am to 11 pm, so your trip can last more than an hour.

Prices in the article are for March 2018.

Sintra (Portugal) is a city of exquisite palaces and picturesque nature. Enjoy its magical atmosphere and bright colors in full!

The sights of Sintra described in the article are marked on the map in Russian.

Aerial view of Sintra, its castles and beaches – all this in a short beautiful video.



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