Though my recent trip to Lisbon was brief, we decided to take a quick daytrip to nearby Sintra. The town is known for its many castles and stunning views.
We woke up early to catch a train out of Lisbon. We used our refillable viva metro cards to take the trip. It cost just a few euro for the roundtrip. At about 40 minutes from Lisbon, a visit to Sintra is doable, even during a short stay.
With many castles to choose from, Pena Palace was the one most often recommended. Once in Sintra, we caught a bus up the winding hill to see the palace. Our bus let us out, and we purchased tickets at €11 per person before making the walk the rest of the way up to the castle. It was a foggy morning, but that didn’t take away from the beauty of the surroundings. The castle sits atop a hill in the Sintra Mountains. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the castle was originally intended as a monastery dedicated to Our Lady of Pena. An abolition of religious orders caused the project to be abandoned until 1838, when King Ferdinand II acquired the property at a public auction and new construction began. The building was completed in 1854 and the palace as it is known now was opened to the public in 1911. The castle’s architecture reflects 19th-century Romanticism. We spent most of the morning exploring the beautifully designed rooms in the expansive castle and admiring the views of the surrounding area.
Whether you visit in rain or shine, Pena Palace and Sintra are must-sees during a trip to Lisbon.
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