Journal, Travel

Sintra, Portugal-Day 3

Day 3, we visited Quinta da Regaleira and Park & Palace of Pena.

Quinta da Regaleira probably was my favorite spot in Sintra.  It has a palace, chapel, and a park.  The park has lakes, fountains, and an aquarium.  There were many tunnels and goes through caves and wells.

Like this Initiation Well, there were two or three entries that led to this well, and three or more exits through here.  This well was never used for water sources but instead as a ceremonial purposes. 

We walked by the small but beautiful chapel on the way to palace.

We found a blocked exit out of the palace.  I just loved their tile work and architectural style.

Finally at the palace.  I was so overwhelmed by the park I can’t recall what the inside was like 😛

After lunch and maybe a nap, we went up to Park and Palace of Pena.  It was about 2:30pm when we started hiking via Vila Sassetti.  We passed a guy as he was coming down the trail, he asked us if we were going to Pena. We replied yes and he said good luck to us.  We wondered for the rest of the way what he meant.  

We got to the park entrance at 3pm.  There were two entrance fees.  One for the park, and one for the palace.  It was good they broke it down like that in case tourists don’t have enough time to see both, they can always come back.  At this entrance, we were told the line at the palace now is long.  Wait time was about an hour.  It’ll get better at 5pm.  So we had two hours to stroll around the park. 

Park Map from Parques de Sintra website via Google

I had no idea the park was this big.  We started at the bottom middle of entrance on map.  Walked all the way to the upper right side of the map then cut across to the left.  By the end we were kind of burned out, we didn’t see the cross and went to the palace.

Palace in the distance from inside the park.

The most fascinating structure of the park is the Chalet of the Countess of the Edla.  Yellow sidings with cork trims.  We didn’t go inside because it required another entrance fee.

Chalet of the Countess of the Edla

After walking around the park for two hours, we finally made it to the palace.  By this time, we didn’t have to wait to get in the palace.  Standing on this “balcony”, you can oversee Sintra.   Pena palace sits on the second highest point on Sintra hills.  The views were quite spectacular.  

This was a monastery before it was built into a palace by King Ferdinand II.  Find a brief history here!

This concluded our day 3 of Sintra!

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