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Sintra

This municipality is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its vast 19th century Romanic monuments.

TravelCurious Tip

Don’t drive — parking spots are scarce. Take a train from the beautiful Rossio Station in the centre of Lisbon instead

Sintra is a town and municipality found in the Lisbon Region of Portugal. With its cooler climate among the pine covered hills of the Serra de Sintra, it once attracted Lisbon’s elite, who built the extraordinary palaces and gardens that remain there today. Before them, it was where Celts worshipped their moon god, and where the Moors built a formidable castle, so Sintra’s fairy-tale setting has clearly always bewitched us. Its heady mixture of history and fantasy has made it a World Heritage Site.


Spoilt for Choice

There are really more palaces in Sintra than can be seen in a day. Among the highlights is the Monserrate Palace, which combines Moorish and Gothic styles, with an Italian twist, and has remarkable gardens that are a dreamscape of waterfalls and tropical flora. Another is the Quinta de Regaleira, built at the close of the 19th century, which sprouts turrets and towers like glorious mushrooms. Its garden is full of mythological symbols, with statues of gods set among mysterious wells and grottoes.


The Star of the Show

Among an embarrassment of riches, the standout attraction is surely the Pena Palace. Built in the 19th century by a king who wanted his royal retreat to resemble something from an opera, it is painted in vivid colours, with the sort of pomp and mythical design that brings to mind Mad King Ludwig’s Neuschwanstein castle in Bavaria.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Lisbon
Sintra City Hall
An unusually flamboyant town hall, and one of the most prominent landmarks in the town of Sintra.
Castle of the Moors
Built between the 8th and 9th centuries, this military outpost in Sintra played a key role in the Reconquista against Arab rule.
Sintra National Palace
A striking and eclectic mix of architectural styles, this is most likely the best preserved medieval palace in all of Portugal.
Quinta da Regaleira
This romantic UNESCO World Heritage Site displays the wealth and extravagance of the Portuguese elite.
Well of Initiation
This ceremonial well features a spiral staircase into a tunnel system that connects it to other monuments and caves around the park.
Portal of the Guardians
One of the main features is the Portal of the Guardians which stands at one end of a courtyard. This long curved structure is flanked by two towers with a central pavilion, hiding the entrance to a tunnel that leads to the Initiation Well.

Related Tours

Private Day Trip: Sintra, Pena Palace, Cascais and Cabo da Roca
Step into a world of hilltop castles, fairytale palaces, and jaw dropping views of the Atlantic  on this cultural, historical, and visual feast. Just 20 miles from the centre of Lisbon, Sintra is a town in the foothills of Portugal’s Sintra Mountains home to Pena Palace. Cape Roca or Cabo da Roca is the cape which forms the western most point of continental Europe and Cascais is a charming coastal town known for its pretty sandy beaches and busy port. On your private full day tour, you will:

  • Travel in the comfort of the private vehicle and guide from Lisbon
  • Enjoy a fully guided private tour of the Pena Palace, including the Palace interior (Palace and Park tickets included)
  • After free time for lunch in Sintra town, you will enjoy a relaxing afternoon with a drive through Sintra Natural Park.
  • Admire the cliffside views at Cabo da Roca, as you stand on the western-most point of continental Europe. 
  • Enjoy a guided walk through the charming seaside town of Cascais.
  • Hop back in your private transport for an easy transfer back to Lisbon.

Your all-inclusive private excursion led by an experienced local guide starts early with pick up from your hotel in Lisbon to ensure that you avoid the queues and crowds at Pena Palace, which will guarantee you get to visit the interior rooms of the Palace. Today Portugal's most famous attraction, the Pena Palace was built in the 19th century as a summer home for Portuguese royalty. It was built by King Ferdinand II who had a very flamboyant and larger than life taste. It is an adaptation of 16th-century monastery ruins and an imitation of a medieval fortress. The Palace boasts spectacular views over the natural park and Lisbon (on a clear day). 

After your morning tour, enjoy free time for lunch in Sintra town after which you will enjoy a scenic drive through Sintra Natural Park to Cabo da Roca, the westernmost point of Continental Europe, before heading to Cascais a charming coast town home to the medieval Nossa Senhora da Luz Fort and the Citadel Palace, a former royal retreat. On the day of your visit, your guide will give you the option to customise the afternoon part of your tour, either spending a short amount of time in both locations or favouring more time in one of these, if there is an activity you particularly want to do!

The tour ends in Cascais, after which you'll be dropped back off at your hotel in Lisbon.
All Inclusive Private Tour of Sintra, Pena Palace & Quinta da Regaleira
If you've not yet visited Sintra you're in for a cultural, historical and visual treat. Just 20 miles from the centre of Lisbon, Sintra is known for its spectacular setting and grand Mansions of the Portuguese Elite. On your private full day tour of Sintra, you will:

  • Enjoy an all-inclusive and fully guided tour with an Expert Licensed guide, with all tickets included
  • Travel leisurely by train from Lisbon to Sintra in just 40 minutes, with return tickets included
  • Be immersed in a fully guided tour of the Pena Palace, including the Palace interior and the Gardens 
  • Take some free time for lunch in the Sintra town.
  • Learn about the history of the town on a guided walking tour, where you’ll see spectacular Sintra National Palace from the outside. 
  • Step into the majesty of the Quinta da Regaleira Palace and Gardens, including the Well of Initiation, underground caves, the labyrinth and waterfall
  • Relax on a panoramic drive through Sintra Natural Park with an electric TukTuk, the fastest and most fun way to travel in Sintra! 
Your private tour of Sintra will start at Rossio Train station in central Lisbon, where an early departure means you’ll be one of the first to enter the Pena Palace and will guarantee you get to visit the interior rooms of the Palace.  Today Portugal's most famous attraction, the Pena Palace was built in the 19th century as a summer home for Portuguese royalty. It was built by King Ferdinand II who had a very flamboyant and larger than life taste. It is an adaptation of 16th-century monastery ruins and an imitation of a medieval fortress. The Palace boasts spectacular views over the natural park and Lisbon (on a clear day) as well as beautifully landscaped gardens. Enjoy a 30 minute walk through the gardens to see our favourite section: the valley of the lakes. 

After, travelling back to Sintra town with an electric TukTuk, enjoy free time for lunch after which your guide will take you on a walking tour through Sintra town and the Quinta da Regaleira, another incredible palace with even more spectacular gardens. The resplendent gardens are even classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO within the "Cultural Landscape of Sintra! Commissioned and owned by a well-known Freemason, Antonio Augusto Carvalho Monteiro, the four-hectare property is famous for its enigmatic buildings and underground tunnels. Monteiro filled the property with symbols linked to masonry, alchemy, Tarot mysticism and more. Your guide will expertly guide you through the extensive and puzzling system of tunnels, grottoes, caves, as well as a waterfall and a labyrinth carved into the bedrock! You will of course not miss the Well of Initiation, a spiral staircase composed of 9 levels of 15 steps, often thought to symbolise the nine levels of Hell from Dante's Inferno.

Your day will end with a tuktuk ride back to Sintra train station, where you will catch the train back to Lisbon. 
Private Pena Palace tour from Lisbon (tickets included)
If you've not yet visited Sintra you're in for a cultural, historical and visual treat. Just 20 miles from the centre of Lisbon, Sintra is known for its spectacular setting and grand Mansions of the Portuguese Elite. On your private half day tour of the Pena Palace, you will:

  • Enjoy an all-inclusive and fully guided tour with an Expert Licensed guide, with all tickets included
  • Travel leisurely by train from Lisbon to Sintra in just 40 minutes, with return tickets included
  • Be immersed in a fully guided tour of the Pena Palace, including the Palace interior and the Gardens 
  • Relax on a panoramic drive through Sintra Natural Park with an electric TukTuk, the fastest and most fun way to travel in Sintra! 

Your private tour of Sintra will start at Rossio Train station in central Lisbon, where an early departure means you’ll be one of the first to enter the Pena Palace and will guarantee you get to visit the interior rooms of the Palace.  Today Portugal's most famous attraction, the Pena Palace was built in the 19th century as a summer home for Portuguese royalty. It was built by King Ferdinand II who had a very flamboyant and larger than life taste. It is an adaptation of 16th-century monastery ruins and an imitation of a medieval fortress. The Palace boasts spectacular views over the natural park and Lisbon (on a clear day) as well as beautifully landscaped gardens. Enjoy a 30 minute walk through the gardens to see our favourite section: the valley of the lakes. 

After, travelling back to Sintra town with an electric TukTuk, you will be able to chose to return to Lisbon with your guide, or stay in Sintra for lunch and a leisurly afternoon of further exploration after which you can catch the train back to Lisbon (your guide will g

Your tour will end with a tuktuk ride either back to Sintra train station, where you will catch the train back to Lisbon with your guide, or in Sintra town where you can have lunch and continue exploring at your own pace. If you chose to stay in Sintra, your guide will give you your return train tickets that will be valid all day.  
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