(00351) 913 988 888
ARE E Greater Lisbon E Sintra


Sintra / Visiting / Things to do / Living in Sintra

Photo -> 01-sintra-portugal.jpg

Sintra is a portuguese municipality and town with a total population of 385 000, known for its historic palaces, Romanticist architecture, and UNESCO World Heritage status situated within the Greater Lisbon region. The city center of Sintra is imposingly marked by the towering presence of the Palácio Nacional de Sintra. Dominating the town’s skyline with its iconic twin chimneys, this palace is a testament to Sintra’s regal past. As you wander through the town, narrow, winding streets reveal themselves, many of which are paved with cobblestones, reminiscent of a bygone era where horses and chariots were the primary mode of transportation.

The ambient charm of these ancient pathways, combined with the overhanging balconies adorned with flowers and the occasional local boutique or café, lends the town a quaint, timeless appeal. Recognized by its UNESCO World Heritage status in 1995, Sintra seamlessly integrates its historical significance with urban development. Beyond its charming streets, the town proudly showcases its 19th-century Romanticist architecture, with landmarks such as Palácio da Pena, Quinta da Regaleira, Castelo dos Mouros, and Palácio de Monserrate standing as enduring symbols of its rich heritage.

In close proximity to Sintra, additional attractions include the panoramic Cabo da Roca, the architecturally significant Palácio de Queluz, and the tranquil Convento dos Capuchos. For those seeking coastal experiences, Praia das Maçãs serves as both a beach and town destination. The broader region features the Sintra-Cascais Nature Park, emphasizing the natural beauty of the Sintra Mountains.

Where is Sintra located inside Portugal?

Photo -> 02-sintra-location-in-map-sintra-portugal.jpg

The town of Sintra is situated inside Sintra-Cascais Natural Park within the Greater Lisbon region of Portugal in west center portugal. From Sintra, Lisbon is a short 28.4 km away. In comparison, Porto is 332 km to the north, Faro is 299 km to the south, and Madrid, Spain lies 646 km to the east. The nearby west coast’s Praia Grande is just 12.8 km from Sintra. As for its boundaries, the municipality is bordered to the north by Mafra, to the east by Loures, Odivelas, and Amadora, to the southeast by Oeiras, to the south by Cascais, and to the west by the Atlantic Ocean. Spanning an area of 319 square kilometers (approximately 16 by 19 km, with its longest coastal stretch measuring 21 km), Sintra had a population of 385,000 as of 2021. The Pena Palace, situated in the Serra de Sintra, stands at an altitude of 528 meters, making it the highest point in the Sintra municipality and offering panoramic views from Cascais, Lisbon, and ocean around.

Travel to Portugal, get to Sintra

Travel to Sintra, whether you’re arriving from Europe or another continent, Portugal’s major airports in Lisbon, Porto, or Faro are your gateways. If landing in Lisbon, Sintra is a short drive away. You can reach Sintra in approximately 22–35 minutes, covering a distance of 29 km via the A37 highway. For those coming from Porto in the north or the Algarve in the south, it’s roughly a 2 to 3-hour drive to Lisbon. Once you reach Lisbon, simply set your course for Sintra… 30 minutes away from Lisbon

What are the highlights of Sintra?

Exploring Sintra is a highlight in itself due to its unique landscape compared to the surrounding areas. As you arrive in the town center, you’ll immediately notice the presence of palaces and horse-drawn carriages gracefully navigating the streets, creating a romantic ambiance where nature seamlessly blends with the urban environment. Sintra, celebrated for its rich history and breathtaking architecture, offers a wealth of attractions for tourists. Below, we’ve listed Sintra’s top places and attractions to visit, arranged by popularity.

Photo -> 02-map-sintra-portugal.jpg

1. Palácio da Pena (Pena Palace): Palácio da Pena, or Pena Palace, is a vibrant and Romanticist castle situated atop a hill in the Sintra mountains. Constructed in the 19th century by King Ferdinand II, it is a remarkable architectural masterpiece that amalgamates various styles, including Neo-Gothic, Neo-Manueline, Neo-Islamic, and Neo-Renaissance elements and inspired by the Castles of Louis II of Bavaria and the spirit of Wagner. The walls of Pena Palace are painted in a vibrant array of colors, including shades of red, yellow, and blue, which contribute to its whimsical and fairy-tale-like appearance. Once here, we can glimpse Pena Park, which surrounds the palace, an expansive and lush forested area featuring a diverse collection of trees and plants from around the world. Within the Pena Palace, visitors have the opportunity to explore its many rooms, each
uniquely decorated and preserved in its 19th-century grandeur. The palace offers stunning views from its windows and terraces, providing panoramic vistas of the surrounding landscape, including the vast ocean and the charming nearby cities. Pena Palace and its captivating park together create an unforgettable experience, making it a must-visit destination for those exploring the beauty of Sintra.

Photo -> 03-sintra-portugal.jpg

2. Quinta da Regaleira (Regaleira Palace): Quinta da Regaleira, also known as the Regaleira Palace, is a remarkable estate located in Sintra, constructed in the late 1800s and showcases a unique blend of architectural styles, including Manueline, Gothic, Renaissance, and Romanesque. The property covers 4 hectares and features lush gardens, lakes, caves, and enigmatic structures with rich alchemical, Masonic, Templar, and Rosicrucian symbolism. Notable elements include the Patamar dos Deuses, adorned with statues of Greco-Roman gods, and the Poço Iniciático, an underground gallery with a spiral staircase representing the Divine Comedy’s nine circles. The symbolism relates to themes of birth, death, and rebirth associated with the earth. The property also includes the Chapel of the Holy Trinity, known for its Gothic and Manueline design, and the Tower of Regaleira,
designed to create an illusion of being at the center of the world. The entire estate is a captivating blend of cultural, philosophical, and esoteric influences, making it a significant attraction in Sintra.

Photo -> 05-sintra-portugal.jpg

3. Castelo dos Mouros (Castle of the Moors): Located at an elevation of 466 meters in Sintra, en route to the Palácio da Pena, this historically significant fortress is renowned for its exceptional panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Originally constructed by the Moors during the 8th and 9th centuries, this hilltop Moorish castle is a prime example of medieval Moorish military architecture. It offers visitors the opportunity to explore well-preserved ruins, fortified walls, and watchtowers while taking in breathtaking vistas that encompass Sintra, the Pena Palace, and the lush Sintra Mountains. Often included as part of a comprehensive visit to Sintra’s renowned landmarks, such as the Pena Palace and Quinta da Regaleira, the Castelo dos Mouros stands as a testament to the region’s rich history and natural beauty.

Photo -> 06-sintra-portugal.jpg

4. Palácio de Monserrate (Monserrate Palace): Palácio de Monserrate, also known as Monserrate Palace, is located within the enchanting Parque de Monserrate, approximately 15 minutes by car (7.3 km) from the downtown area of Sintra. Is a captivating architectural blend of Gothic, Indian, and Moorish architectural styles, a true testament to the eclectic spirit of the 19th-century Romantic era. Inside, visitors are treated to breathtaking interior design, while the palace’s surroundings are equally enchanting. The lush gardens feature an impressive array of trees and plants from around the world, creating a serene and diverse landscape. The atmosphere within and around the palace is truly magical, making it a must-visit destination. Additionally, for those who enjoy a leisurely stroll, a scenic 2km walk back to Sintra is possible, offering a delightful way to appreciate this architectural gem and its remarkable natural setting.

Photo -> 07-palace-of-monserrate-sintra-portugal.jpg

5. Sintra Town Center: The historic center of Sintra offers an immersive experience in the local atmosphere, allowing you to bask in the town’s unparalleled charm. Begin your exploration by patronizing local bakeries and authentic Portuguese cuisine restaurants, where you can indulge in a delightful array of flavors. As you meander through the labyrinthine, cobblestone streets, the town’s rich history and captivating architecture will unfold before you. Be sure to pay a visit to the tourism board for invaluable information and recommendations, or embark on your independent journey of discovery. In the vicinity of the town center, you’ll also encounter remarkable architectural wonders, such as the Sintra Town Hall, adding another layer of fascination to your Sintra adventure.

Photo -> 08-town-hall-sintra-portugal.jpg

Photo -> 09-sintra-portugal.jpg

Photo -> 10-sintra-portugal.jpg

6. Palacio Nacional de Sintra (National Palace of Sintra): The Palácio Nacional de Sintra, centrally located in the town of Sintra, is a historic monument known for its architectural significance. Distinguished by its iconic twin conical chimneys, the palace has played a central role in Portugal’s history, having served as a royal residence for several centuries. Its architectural style blends Moorish, Gothic, and Manueline influences, reflecting the diverse cultures that have influenced Portugal over the years. As a testament to its importance, the palace remains one of Sintra’s most visited landmarks.

Photo -> 11-sintra-portugal.jpg

7. Sintra Tram (Sintra Tramway): Sintra Tram is an enchanting adventure, a scenic journey from Sintra to Praia das Maçãs, meandering through picturesque landscapes for approximately 45 minutes, covering nearly 13 kilometers. You’ll be treated to views of plane trees, vineyards, and orchards along the way, concluding at Praia das Maçãs, one of Sintra’s renowned coastal gems, where you can indulge in fresh seafood at excellent local restaurants. If you’re up for it, take a leisurely 20-minute coastal stroll to the Azenhas do Mar viewpoint, where you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking vistas of houses perched on the cliffside. When it’s time to head back, hop on the Sintra Tramway again and hop off at the Adega Regional de Colares. Here, you can explore a winery that produces the historic Colares wine, complete with the option of a guided tour and a delightful tasting session. Finally, return to Sintra on the tram, and if your schedule allows, consider a visit to MU.SA –
Museu das Artes de Sintra, located conveniently near the tram’s starting point, housed in a former casino, showcasing figurative art from the Municipal Collection of Contemporary Art, along with photography, a municipal bookstore, and a gallery hosting temporary exhibitions by national and international artists.

Photo -> 12-sintra-portugal.jpg

8. Palácio Biester (Biester Palace): Biester Palace in Sintra, an emblem of Romanticism, was built in the late 19th century by architect José Luiz Monteiro and adorned by renowned artists. Its diverse architectural influences reflect historical and artistic significance while blending seamlessly into the Romantic landscape. Surrounded by the lush Biester Park, the palace offers captivating views of the Moorish Castle and the sea. Beyond its façade, the palace holds intriguing secrets and spiritual dimensions, entwining art, religion, and mysticism, making it a fascinating cultural labyrinth to explore.

Photo -> 13-sintra-portugal.jpg

9. Palácio de Seteais (Seteais Palace): The Seteais Palace, an elegant 18th-century palace situated near the town of Sintra, now operates as a luxurious hotel. It was originally constructed for the Dutch consul Daniel Gildemeester on land granted by the Marquis of Pombal. Today, it is owned by the hospitality company Tivoli Hotels & Resorts, which runs a luxury hotel within its historic walls. Designated as a Property of Public Interest since 1947, the palace’s construction was made possible by the substantial fortune accumulated by Gildemeester, who was granted a diamond export monopoly by the Marquis of Pombal.

Photo -> 14-seteais-palace-sintra-portugal.jpg

10. Vila Sassetti (Sassetti Villa): Villa Sassetti, also known as Quinta da Amizade, is a historic villa or mansion located near the town of Sintra in Portugal. Villa Sassetti boasts a captivating Mediterranean-inspired aesthetic with its great circular tower in the Romanesque Lombardy style, adorned in warm terracotta tones. Its rich history, beginning with Victor Carlos Sassetti in the late 19th century, and subsequent ownership by luminaries like Calouste Gulbenkian, infuse the property with a sense of timeless allure. Acquired by Parques de Sintra in 2011, the villa has undergone meticulous restoration, preserving its architectural charm and historical significance. This elegant estate, now a cherished part of Sintra’s heritage, enchants visitors with its fusion of nature and architecture and serves as a picturesque link between Sintra’s key landmarks.

11. Chalet da Condessa d’Edla (Countess d’Edla Chalet): The Chalet da Condessa d’Edla, located in Sintra, is a charming and historic alpine-style chalet that served as a romantic retreat for the love story between Elise Hensler and King D. Fernando II. Elise Hensler, a Swiss-born opera singer, captured the heart of D. Fernando II after the passing of his first wife, Queen D. Maria II. The couple’s shared passion for the arts and culture led them to create this private haven amidst the Parque da Pena, surrounded by lush gardens filled with exotic plant species from around the world. The chalet, designed by the Condessa herself, showcases a unique blend of architectural beauty and artistic sensibility. It remained in her possession even after D. Fernando’s passing, a testament to their profound connection. Today, the Chalet da Condessa d’Edla stands as a beautifully restored cultural and historical treasure, offering visitors a glimpse into the enduring love story and
artistic legacy of this extraordinary couple.

12. Parque da Liberdade (Liberty Park): Parque da Liberdade, located in the heart of Sintra, Portugal, has a rich history dating back to its acquisition by the Sintra Tourism Commission in 1936, aiming to provide the town with a public park. This lush green oasis officially opened in July 1937, fulfilling the need for a public space in a town celebrated for its gardens and flowers. What makes it truly special is its remarkable botanical diversity, featuring a wide array of plant varieties that enhance its ecological beauty.

Photo -> 15-sintra-portugal.jpg

13. Caminho de Santa Maria Hike (Santa Maria Pathway Hike): The Santa Maria Pathway Hike is a leisurely nature and heritage trail in Sintra, offering a delightful journey to two iconic attractions: the Moorish Castle and the Park and Palace of Pena. Covering a distance of 1,770 meters and taking approximately 1 hour, this hike is accessible to individuals of all ages and fitness levels. It meanders along well-paved and regularly maintained paths through forested terrain, featuring a gentle incline with occasional steeper sections. Along the way, hikers are rewarded with breathtaking panoramic vistas of the surrounding landscape, making it a perfect outdoor activity for those seeking both natural beauty and historical charm in Sintra.

Photo -> 16-sintra-portugal.jpg

14. Queijadas da Sapa (Sapa Cheesecakes): The Fábrica das Verdadeiras Queijadas da Sapa is a renowned establishment dedicated to crafting the authentic Queijadas de Sintra, a beloved and time-honored sweet treat in Sintra’s gastronomic heritage. These queijadas have a rich history dating back to the 13th century, originating during the reign of King Sancho II. Initially, they were homemade and even used as a form of payment. However, from the 18th century onwards, they began to be produced in specialized queijadas factories, with Sapa being one of the most famous. The Queijadas da Sapa are made from a simple yet flavorful combination of ingredients, including flour and salt for the dough, cottage cheese, sugar, egg yolks, flour, and cinnamon for the filling. This timeless delicacy not only tantalizes the taste buds but also captures the essence of Sintra’s culinary tradition, leaving a sweet imprint on both palates and souls.

Photo -> 17-sintra-portugal.jpg

15. Museu Anjos Teixeira (Anjos Teixeira Museum): The Museu Anjos Teixeira is a cultural institution dedicated to the legacy of Pedro Augusto dos Anjos Teixeira (1908-1997), a renowned sculptor and artist, and his father, Artur Gaspar dos Anjos Teixeira (1880-1935). Pedro Anjos Teixeira’s artistic journey was profoundly influenced by his opposition to the authoritarian regime during the 1940s, leading to his role as President of the Sociedade Nacional de Belas-Artes (SNBA), where he advocated for a more progressive and inclusive artistic approach. His work, marked by Neo-realism, reflects a deep connection to the working class and features a wide range of themes, including sensuous depictions of women, powerful representations of workers, and lifelike portrayals of animals. He was not only a sculptor but also a writer and musician, known for his publications on sculpture and artistic anatomy as well as children’s books. In 1974, Pedro Anjos Teixeira officially donated his and his father’s extensive artistic collections to the Municipality of Sintra, resulting in the establishment of this museum. The museum showcases their sculptural, drawing, medallic, painting, correspondence, and photographic works, offering visitors a unique opportunity to explore the artistic heritage that adorns Portugal’s public spaces.

Since the opening of the museum Anjos Teixeira in 1976, it has provided a space for preserving and exhibiting the works of these two prominent contemporary sculptors. The collection spans various themes, from human and animal anatomy to the documentation of cultural customs and popular figures. The museum has also served as a living atelier, where Pedro Anjos Teixeira taught sculpture to young artists from 1977 to 1992. In recent years, the museum underwent interior improvements, including the use of lighter tones for walls and pedestals to enhance the visibility and appreciation of the exhibited pieces. As visitors explore the museum’s galleries, they will encounter models and maquettes of sculptures that adorn Portugal’s squares, streets, buildings, institutions, and avenues, fostering a deeper connection between the public and the displayed collections.

16. Museu de História Natural de Sintra (Sintra Natural History Museum): The Museu de História Natural de Sintra, located in a 19th-century building in Vila Velha de Sintra, houses a unique and valuable collection of over 10,000 fossils, minerals, and meteorites gathered by collectors Miguel Barbosa and Fernanda Barbosa over 50 years. Notably, it features the holotype of the pterosaur species Barbosannia Gracillirostris, named after Miguel Barbosa. This collection provides visitors with a journey through geological epochs, showcasing the evolution of life on Earth. The museum’s modern facilities and interactive exhibits make it an engaging educational experience, attracting both national and international visitors interested in paleontology, mineralogy, malacology, and petrography.

17. The MU.SA – Museum of Arts in Sintra: The MU.SA – Museum of Arts in Sintra, housed within the historic former Casino designed by Manuel Norte Júnior and inaugurated in 1924, enriches the cultural landscape of Sintra. With a diverse and dynamic program, it showcases temporary exhibitions, educational initiatives, public sessions, and artistic events, including the prestigious Visual Arts Awards. This cultural institution not only fosters an appreciation for contemporary art and culture but also nurtures its bonds with the local community. Visitors can explore a wide range of artworks, from the Municipal Art Collection to thematic exhibitions featuring both established and emerging artists, along with collaborative projects with other Portuguese cultural institutions, all within the museum’s inviting spaces.

18. Olga Cadaval Cultural Center: The Centro Cultural Olga Cadaval, located in Sintra, is the town’s primary performing arts venue. It features two auditoriums: the Auditório Jorge Sampaio, with a maximum capacity of 1,005 seats, and the Sala de Cinema, accommodating up to 276 spectators. Inaugurated on October 13, 2001, it was originally built in 1945 as the Cine Teatro Carlos Manuel, a cinema designed by architect Norte Júnior. After a fire in 1985, the building underwent extensive renovations and was renamed in honor of Olga Álvares Pereira de Melo, Marquesa de Cadaval, a prominent patron of the arts. Today, the Centro Cultural Olga Cadaval hosts various cultural events, including theater performances, concerts, and film screenings, making it a vibrant hub for the arts in Sintra.

Most Visited Sights Around Sintra

Photo -> 18-map-sintra-sights-sintra-portugal.jpg

19. Cabo da Roca (Roca Cape): Cabo da Roca, known as Promontorium Magnum to the Romans and as the Rock of Lisbon during the Age of Sail, is historically significant. Additionally, the Cabo da Roca Lighthouse, perched 165 meters above the Atlantic Ocean, holds significance as Portugal’s and continental Europe’s westernmost lighthouse. It has been operational since 1772, marking an important development in Portuguese lighthouse construction, being the first purpose-built lighthouse of its kind in the country. The sunset at Cabo da Roca is indeed breathtaking, offering a stunning view of the sun setting over the Atlantic Ocean from its westernmost location. Nearby, you can also find Ursa Beach (Praia da Ursa), which is known for its natural beauty and rugged coastline. It’s a picturesque spot to enjoy both the sunset and the unique landscape of the area.

Photo -> 19-sintra-portugal.jpg

20. Palácio de Queluz (Queluz Palace): The Palácio Nacional de Queluz, an 18th-century palace near Sintra, Portugal, is renowned for its Rococo architecture. It was built as a summer retreat for D. Pedro de Bragança, later the husband and king consort of Queen Maria I. The palace also served as Queen Maria’s place of confinement due to her mental health. Its unique design reflects the extravagant lifestyle of the Portuguese royal family during that era. The palace is famous for its Ceremonial Façade, characterized by classic proportions and exquisite travertine decoration.

Photo -> 20-sintra-portugal.jpg

Photo -> 21-sintra-portugal.jpg

21. Convento dos Capuchos (Capuchos Convent): The Convent of the Capuchos, also known as Convento dos Capuchos, is a historic monastery in Sintra, founded in 1560. Initially created as a retreat for a small community of Capuchin monks under D. João de Castro, it is dedicated to Santa Cruz (Holy Cross). The site received papal indulgences in 1564 and saw royal visits and patronage over the years. By the 19th century, it changed ownership and fell into disrepair. In the 20th century, the Portuguese State acquired and restored the site, opening it to the public in 2001. The convent, with its unassuming and rustic architecture harmoniously integrated into the Sintra Mountains, offers a glimpse into the simple and secluded life of the Capuchin friars, and it is now part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Cultural Landscape of Sintra.

22. Capela da Peninha viewpoint (Peninha Chapel viewpoint): The Peninha Sanctuary, perched at an altitude of 488 meters, is a place of enchanting magic and mysticism in Sintra, Portugal. The architectural complex comprises the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Penha, the hermitage of São Saturnino, and a romantic-revivalist mansion built by António Augusto Carvalho Monteiro in 1918. The sanctuary’s history is intertwined with a legend dating back to the reign of King João III. The story goes that a mute and poor shepherdess lost a sheep and encountered a lady who helped her find it. The lady asked for bread, and miraculously, the shepherdess regained her voice to ask her mother for bread. They found enough bread to feed the entire village, and as a token of gratitude, they built a chapel dedicated to Nossa Senhora da Peninha. The site became a sacred place of worship, and in the late 17th century, Friar Pedro da Conceição had the current chapel erected. It is a place of
pilgrimage accessible from Cascais/Malveira da Serra or Sintra/Colares via EN-247.

23. Quinta da Ribafria (Ribafria Estate): Quinta de Ribafria, a 16th-century estate in Sintra, Portugal, boasts a Renaissance-style manor with a striking medieval-inspired tower adorned by the Ribafria family’s coat of arms. Surrounding the manor is an exquisite formal garden, featuring a unique staircase, water features, and classical statuary, all set against the backdrop of the Colares River and 13 hectares of lush woodlands, including ancient sequoias. The manor, constructed in 1541, is a remarkable example of Manueline civil architecture and includes a 17th-century tower said to have been used for overseeing Penha Verde. After years of neglect, Quinta da Ribafria opened to the public in 2015, offering a cultural and outdoor space for various events and activities, providing a fresh lease of life to this historical gem.

24. Praia das Maçãs (Maças Beach and town): A picturesque beachside town, popular for its sandy shores and fresh seafood.
25. Praia do Guincho (Guincho Beach): A favorite among kite-surfers and known for its wild waves and dramatic landscapes.
26. Praia da Ursa (Ursa Beach): A secluded beach with rugged cliffs and pristine sands, ideal for those seeking tranquility.
27. Praia Grande (Big Beach): A surfer’s paradise with consistent waves and various surf schools.

28. Road N247 (Scenic Route 247): The N247 is a breathtaking coastal road that links Cascais to Sintra coastline and highlights of Sintra. Starting from Cascais, it begins at a roundabout near Boca do Inferno and meanders along the coast, offering stunning views of the ocean next to Quinta da Marinha luxury residential area & golf. Along the way, it passes by notable landmarks like the Farol do Cabo Raso and Guincho Beach before heading towards Malveira da Serra. As it ascends the hillside, the road takes you through charming towns and villages such as Azoia, located near Cabo da Roca, as well as Atalaias, Pé da Serra, Almoçageme, and Vinagre, eventually leading to Sintra downtown and continuing north. The panoramic vistas near Azoia provide a breathtaking view of Guincho, and the lush green scenery evolves as you journey through the Mata de Sintra.

29. Cascais: Cascais is a neighboring town located to the south of Sintra, and it complements Sintra by offering different attractions and experiences, such as its vibrant marina and warmer coastal weather. However, they are connected in some points, bordering the Autódromo do Estoril, sharing proximity to shopping centers, private schools, and other amenities, creating a dynamic and interconnected region.

Photo -> 21-sintra-portugal.jpg

30. Estoril: Estoril, located to the east of Sintra, enhances the region’s allure with its grand casino and provides a captivating fusion of luxury, rich history, and sun-drenched beaches sheltered from the south wind. The town boasts splendid terraces, elegant restaurants, and an atmosphere of glamour, making it a desirable destination in its own right.

Photo -> 22-sintra-portugal.jpg

31. Autodromo do Estoril (Fernanda Pires da Silva Racetrack): The Autódromo do Estoril, also known as the Autódromo Fernanda Pires da Silva, stands prominently in Estoril, Portugal, a picturesque coastal town near Lisbon. Recognized for its rich motorsport legacy, this track once played host to the esteemed Formula One Portuguese Grand Prix, beginning its association with the event in 1984. Named to honor Fernanda Pires da Silva’s contributions to Portuguese motorsport administration, the circuit is celebrated for its intricate design, combining demanding corners, elevation changes, and high-speed straights. While its prominence in Formula One ceased in 1996, the track remains a focal point for diverse motorsport activities, from motorcycle racing to national and European racing series. The years have witnessed a series of enhancements to the track’s facilities, ensuring that it adheres to modern safety norms while offering top-tier amenities for participants and
attendees alike.

Photo -> 23-sintra-portugal.jpg

32. Sintra’s Colares Demarcated Region and Wines: Colares wine is an integral part of the Colares Demarcated Region, one of Portugal’s oldest demarcated regions. This demarcated region encompasses the parishes of Colares, São Martinho, and São João das Lampas, making it the westernmost demarcated region in Europe and the country’s smallest. Its winemaking tradition dates back to the 13th century and has gained acclaim for several reasons: its wines’ longevity, resilience to the local climate, and the fact that approximately 80% of the vineyards are planted in sandy soil. What sets Colares apart is its unique resistance to the phylloxera insect, which ravaged vineyards across Europe in the 19th century. Established in 1908, the Colares Demarcated Region is anchored by the Adega Regional de Colares, the country’s oldest winery founded in 1931. The primary grape varieties used for Colares wine are Malvasia de Colares and Ramisco de Colares, with key producers including
Adega Regional de Colares, Adega António Bernardino Paulo da Silva, Adega Viúva Gomes, and Casal de Santa Maria.

Things to do when visiting Sintra

If you are considering visiting the best of Sintra in an unforgettable day trip, Sintra, along with nearby Cascais, delivers a harmonious fusion of historic treasures and natural wonders. We recommend the drive from Cascais for its own intrinsic value: The journey itself is a spectacle, with the road offering views of the formidable Boca do Inferno, where mighty ocean waves collide with craggy cliffs, spraying water high into the air.

As you continue, the windswept expanse of Guincho Beach beckons before you immerse yourself in the enchanting realm of Sintra. Here, the historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage site, radiates an old-world charm, framed by narrow cobblestone alleys and iconic 19th-century Romanticist structures. Beyond its architectural delights, Sintra promises a diverse range of experiences.

… one day trip from Lisbon

Photo -> 24-sintra-portugal.jpg

  1. Train from Lisbon: Efficient rail connectivity, commencing at Sintra train station and linking to significant hubs in Lisbon like Rossio Station or Estação do Oriente, guarantees a smooth 35 to 45-minute commute. For travelers looking to expand their itinerary, other appealing one-day trip options include the coastal town of Cascais, the UNESCO World Heritage site of Óbidos, or the picturesque town of Mafra, each offering unique cultural and scenic experiences.
  2. Bus Tours: Several companies offer guided bus tours from Lisbon to Sintra. These can be combined with other nearby attractions like Cascais or Cabo da Roca.
  3. Private Tours: For a more intimate experience, there are private tours guided by locals who can share unique insights and stories about the area.
  4. Private Car or Taxi: Taxis provide a reliable and efficient means of transportation. Taxi drivers are often well-trained, familiar with the area, and can offer local insights. The advantage of using a taxi is that drivers typically have extensive knowledge of the region, while some ride-sharing drivers might be newcomers to the city.
  5. Ride-Sharing Services: Platforms like Uber and Bolt operate in Lisbon and can provide direct rides to Sintra. It’s worth noting that while these platforms are convenient, some drivers may not have the same depth of local knowledge as traditional taxi drivers.
  6. Walking Tours: Once in Sintra, consider joining a walking tour for an in-depth look at the town’s history and architecture.
  7. Car Rentals: Renting a car provides flexibility for those wanting to explore Sintra and the surrounding regions at their own pace.

… If Staying in Sintra, start your day trip by…

There are plenty thing to do in Sintra. If you choose to nestle in for a night in Sintra and have a penchant for healthy living, the town offers a delightful challenge for the number one attraction in Sintra. Rather than taking the conventional transport options to Palácio da Pena, you might consider embarking on a vigorous walk from Sintra’s city center. This isn’t just any stroll — it’s a hearty ascent through nature’s embraced Santa Maria Pathway Hike, climbing steadily until you’re rewarded with the palatial view from the top. It’s an exhilarating way to intertwine the joys of physical activity with cultural immersion.

For those inclined to begin their day in Sintra with a touch of sweetness, local culinary offerings provide the perfect treat, with the town’s renowned “travesseiros de Sintra”, a delectable puff pastry brimming with a creamy almond and egg yolk filling, or the “queijadas de Sintra”, which resonate with the flavors of a traditional cheesecake. Once you’ve savored these delights, you might opt for a more relaxed journey to Palácio da Pena, utilizing the myriad of tourist transport options that originate from Sintra’s vibrant center.

Staying in Sintra and getting married

Sintra is a highly sought-after wedding destination in Portugal, celebrated for its enchanting and romantic ambiance. This picturesque town offers an array of majestic palaces, manor houses, and venues that create a dream-like setting for couples looking to tie the knot. Some notable wedding venues in Sintra and its vicinity include Palácio de Queluz, Palácio Marqueses da Fronteira, TIVOLI Palácio Seteais, Sintra Charming Palace, Quinta da Penalva, Palácio de Monserrate, The Quinta – My Vintage Wedding, Cabo da Roca Lighthouse, Ritz Carlton Penha Longa, Casa dos Penedos, and Arriba by the Sea. A noteworthy advantage is that Portugal allows non-residents to have their marriages officially recognized by Portuguese authorities, making it an appealing choice for destination weddings.

Sintra beaches, from north to south

Sintra’s coastline, stretching along the west-facing Atlantic Ocean, is a magnificent display of nature’s beauty. Every beach along this stretch shares a captivating feature: year-round breathtaking sunsets that paint the horizon in hues of gold, amber, and deep crimson. From some beaches, these sunsets can be admired from atop rugged cliffs, while others offer a view directly from the soft embrace of their sandy shores. Facing the western Atlantic, these beaches receive the alisiums currents during winter, making them a magnet for surf enthusiasts, thanks to the challenging waves they bring. While some of these beaches buzz with crowds, seeking the sun and surf, others offer a more secluded experience, allowing visitors to find their own peaceful corner by the vast expanse of the sea.

Photo -> 25-sintra-portugal.jpg

1. São Julião Beach: (top 5 Sintra beach) Located north of Vigia Beach, this 300-meter stretch faces the Atlantic, making it a prime spot for sunbathing and surfing in Sintra.

2. Vigia Beach: A serene escape even during summer, this beach may require a challenging hike to access, but the tranquility it offers makes the effort worthwhile. While favored by nudists, its quiet allure attracts all seeking solitude away from the crowds.

3. Samarra Beach: A compact beach flanked by cliffs, creating a protected bay. Its limited sandy expanse offers a more intimate setting by the water’s edge.

4. Giribeto Beach: Located north of Magoito Beach, this diminutive spot is tucked away and requires navigating through challenging cliffside access. Its secluded nature promises an exclusive coastal experience.

5. Magoito Beach: Spanning 800 meters with dramatic rock cliffs as its backdrop, this beach is perfect for extended strolls. Its striking vistas and captivating shoreline make it a standout on Sintra’s coast.

6. Aguda Beach: North of Azenhas do Mar Beach, Aguda is a tranquil and pristine retreat, known for its raw beauty. It connects to Magoito Beach, allowing for a walk between the two during low tide. Despite the challenging 270-step descent, the serene ambiance of this secluded spot is well worth the effort.

7. Azenhas do Mar Beach: (top 5 Sintra beach) Positioned below a picturesque white village perched on the cliffs, this beach stands as an icon of Portugal’s coastal scenery. Alongside the beach is a natural pool, and the location is renowned for dramatic waves crashing against the rocks. A prime destination for its captivating beauty and charm.

Photo -> 26-sintra-portugal.jpg

8. Maçãs Beach: (top 5 Sintra beach) Located in the town of the same name, this compact beach is a favorite for surfing. Despite its chilly waters, the cleanliness and tranquility stand out. Nearby, visitors can find several restaurants and a spacious parking lot just a short 3-minute walk from the village end.

9. Praia Pequena Beach: Situated north of Praia Grande, this more compact beach offers a calmer atmosphere and attracts fewer crowds. It’s dog-friendly and favored by surfers, though its robust waves may be challenging for those not strong in swimming.

10. Praia Grande Beach: Located below the villa residential area, this vibrant beach is popular for surfing and bodyboarding during the wave season, with milder waves in the summer. The beachfront Arribas Sintra Hotel boasts a swimming pool, and a surf school is conveniently situated nearby.

11. Adraga Beach: (top 5 Sintra beach) This compact beach, spanning 350 meters, features a restaurant/bar at its entrance, providing a convenient spot for visitors to relax and dine.

12. Cavalo Beach: Located to the south of the larger Adraga Beach, this quaint beach offers seclusion and charm. While accessible from Praia Adraga during low tide, land access is challenging and potentially hazardous. Not recommended for families with young children.

13. Ursa Beach: (top 5 Sintra beach) Located north of Cabo da Roca, this beach extends about 250 meters with additional rocky pathways. Recognized for its iconic giant rocks in the water, it’s essential for visitors to be prepared for the challenging, steep descent. Surprisingly, many find the ascent easier. Suitable athletic footwear is a must, ruling out flip-flops. For the best access, use the southern route starting from Cabo da Roca or a closer roadside point. The beach’s natural ambiance – from the wind and cliffs to the sand and waves – provides a mesmerizing experience. Be ready for intense waves and a slightly chilly sea. The hike typically takes about 30 minutes each way.

Photo -> 27-sintra-portugal.jpg

14. Aroeira Beach: This pristine beach promises an unparalleled view, especially for those willing to navigate the steep and somewhat slippery descent. Successfully tackling this challenge gifts visitors with clear sands, crystal water, and a unique arc resembling a cave. From this vantage point, one can also admire the renowned Cabo da Roca. While the trail isn’t overly complicated, it’s crucial to tread carefully and equip oneself with shoes that offer good grip.

15. Louriçal beach: Located adjacent to Cabo da Roca, this beach is accessible via a modest trail originating from the Cabo. However, caution is advised as the trail, particularly its latter sections, can be challenging. Opting for comfortable shoes is essential for a safer descent. Even if one chooses not to venture all the way down, the panoramic views from the top are rewarding in their own right.

16. Assentiz beach: While access to this beach can be challenging, with parts of the trail assisted by ropes, those who venture are met with pristine sandy shores and captivating views. It’s essential to wear appropriate footwear for the descent. There are two routes to the beach; the one further from Cabo da Roca, towards the south-east, is the recommended safer option. This beach is a hidden gem, offering serene beauty to its visitors.

17. Porto do Touro beach or Guincho Velho beach: This remote beach requires an off-road vehicle or a strenuous hike for access. With its perilous cliffs and rocky shores, it’s not recommended for families or those looking for a casual visit. Only those physically well-prepared should attempt this adventurous spot.

18. Grota beach: A secluded rocky beach where nudism is practiced. Access is challenging, with many visitors losing their way. The sandy area is limited, and it’s often uncrowded. Proper hiking shoes are essential due to the rough and rocky terrain.

19. Abano beach: A serene and secluded beach, less than 100 meters in length, ideal for those seeking solitude with nature. While it’s not suitable for swimming, it offers hiking trails originating from its shores. Located adjacent to Forte do Guincho/Forte das Velas, it’s on the northern side of Guincho beach.

20. Guincho Beach: (Top windsurf beach) Located en route to Cascais, Guincho stands as a testament to Portugal’s vibrant windsurfing and kitesurfing scene. This expansive 750-meter sandy haven is bordered by ever-shifting dunes which, during particularly windy conditions, might spill onto adjacent roads. A quintessential blend of adrenaline and picturesque allure.

Photo -> 28-sintra-portugal.jpg

Sintra Golf Courses

Photo -> 29-sintra-portugal.jpg

  • Penha Longa Resort Golf Course in Portugal showcases 27 meticulously crafted holes set against a striking landscape. The standout Atlantic Championship 18-hole course, designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr., opened in 1992 and swiftly gained prominence, hosting the Portuguese Open within two years. Its design harnesses the natural contours, providing unique challenges and magnificent views towards Cascais, Estoril, and the Atlantic Ocean. The resort’s excellence has been recognized with numerous accolades, including several rankings from Golf World and the title of Golf Resort of the Year in 2017 by Travel & Hospitality Awards.
  • Monastery Course: Adjacent to Penha Longa Golf Course. This 9-hole course was introduced in 1995 offering a diverse experience, marked by fast greens and narrow fairways, while being embraced by the scenic vistas of the encompassing National Park.
  • Belas Clube de Campo: Positioned amidst pristine landscapes, Belas Clube de Campo stands as a testament to sophisticated resort living coupled with impeccable golf course design. Crafted under the expert vision of the distinguished architect, William “Rocky” Roquemore, the golf course encompasses 6,109 meters, presenting 18 strategic holes set to a par of 72.Beyond the greens, the establishment offers a comprehensive suite of amenities:
    • Golf: A premium course attracting enthusiasts and professionals alike.
    • Health Club: State-of-the-art facilities promoting wellness.
    • Tennis & Padel Courts: Four each, with covered options for padel enthusiasts.
    • Skatepark & Climbing Wall: For adrenaline seekers.
    • Restaurante Clubhouse: Culinary delights in an elegant setting.
    • Jardim-Escola João de Deus de Belas: A commitment to education and growth.
    • Amenities: 24-hour surveillance, parafarmácia, minimarket, hair salon, children’s parks, decoration store, and postal service.
    • Real Estate: The latest “Native” project, an exemplary fusion of designs by Saraiva e Associados and Capinha Lopes.
  • Pestana Beloura Golf: Crafted by American golf architect Rocky Roquemore, Pestana Beloura Golf Course caters to golfers of diverse skill levels. The course features 18 holes with a par of 72 and stretches across 5,716 meters. Established in 1994, it’s complemented by the nearby Quinta da Beloura, a luxury villa residential area harmoniously blending into the golfing terrain.

Where to live in Sintra

Sintra, renowned for its architectural elegance, boasts country estates set amidst nature, palaces, traditional villas, and namesake family mansions. Recently, modern condominiums around the town have gained popularity, particularly in adjacent beach towns and atop mountainous terrains. Sintra appeals to many as a sanctuary from scorching summer temperatures, offering a tranquil haven close to Lisbon. It’s an epitome of a balanced lifestyle: proximate to nature, surfing destinations, and strategically located between Cascais and Sintra. The locale promises an enriching living experience with opportunities for golf, windsurfing, nature walks, and access to esteemed international schools, all while being a stone’s throw away from the bustling Lisbon cityscape.

For those contemplating a move to Portugal, Sintra emerges as a compelling choice, especially if one is drawn to temperate climates, verdant expanses, and the refreshing mountain air. For those inclined towards coastal living or upscale gated communities, residential areas around Sintra, such as Belas Clube de Campo, Quinta do Patino or Quinta da Beloura, are highly recommended. Sintra’s historic core primarily offers grand estates housed in timeless buildings. Places like Praia Grande present a blend of traditional and contemporary medium-sized villas equipped with pools. It’s worth noting that there are more budget-friendly, suburban neighborhoods, often home to the working class, including areas like Algueirao Mem Martins.

Sintra Internatinal Schools

  • Carlucci American International School of Lisbon
  • TASIS Portugal International School

Sintra Residential areas

Luxury areas

  • Quinta da Beloura
  • Quinta Patino
  • Quinta da Penalva
  • Pé da Serra
  • São Pedro de Sintra
  • Portela de Sintra
  • Galamares
  • Almoçageme
  • Monte Santos
  • Colares
  • Praia Grande
  • Penedo
  • Abrunheira
  • Albarraque
  • Alcabideche
  • Azoia

Popular urban areas

  • São Marcos
  • Linhó
  • Algueirão
  • Mem Martins
  • Cacém
  • Massamá

How’s the weather in Sintra (technical)

Sintra, perched atop the peaks of Serra de Sintra and surrounded by verdant greenery, is renowned for its unique microclimate. This historic town, once a favored holiday destination for Portuguese nobility, stands out not only for its elevation but also for its distinctive weather patterns, unique in all Portugal. Characterized by its high humidity and relatively cooler temperatures, especially when compared to nearby areas, Sintra provides a refreshing sanctuary. Even during the heat of summer, temperatures in Sintra tend to hover in the comfortable 20s°C range, offering a respite from the more intense warmth experienced in neighboring regions. The lush landscapes and the consistent maritime climate lend a mystic and ethereal charm to Sintra, making it a sought-after destination for those drawn to both its natural beauty and rich history.

Sintra experiences a temperate maritime climate. The record temperatures, measured over a 30-year period, vary from a chilly -4.0°C (24.8°F) in the winter months to a scorching 41.4°C (106.5°F) during summer. The average highs peak at around 25.3°C (77.5°F) in August, while the lows can drop to an average of 5.2°C (41.4°F) in January.

The town receives a significant amount of rainfall, especially during the winter months. December is the wettest month, with an average precipitation of 127.8 mm (5.03 inches). However, the summer months, particularly July, are much drier with precipitation averaging just 6.2 mm (0.24 inches). In terms of rainy days, Sintra witnesses about 125 days a year with at least 0.1 mm of rainfall.

Humidity levels remain relatively consistent throughout the year, averaging 80%. The sunniest month is July, with about 309 sunshine hours, while December sees the least amount of sun with 128.5 hours.

The data source is the Instituto Português do Mar e da Atmosfera.

Sintra and Cascais neighboring enclaves of Luxury

Sintra and Cascais are two neighboring enclaves of luxury along the Portuguese coast, offering an affluent residential experience within close proximity to Lisbon’s urban conveniences.. These areas boast luxurious villas with spacious gardens and private pools, as well as upscale resorts catering to discerning clientele. Sintra, famous for its lush landscapes, tranquil beaches, and rich cultural heritage, is strategically located to the north of Cascais. Cascais, with a commanding oceanfront presence to the south and west, features a lively marina, exclusive waterfront properties at Quinta da Marinha, and its own share of verdant scenery. Separated by the Parque Natural Sintra-Cascais, these neighboring communities seamlessly blend natural beauty, cultural significance, and a high-end lifestyle, making them a premier choice for those seeking luxurious living with easy access to urban amenities and the
serene charm of the coast. To the east, Estoril provides a convenient scenic road along the river mouth gateway to Lisbon.

Sintra map

Photo -> 30-sintra-portugal.jpg

Exclusive Real Estate Opportunities in Sintra

When considering investment opportunities in Sintra, our agency distinguishes itself not only by offering a diverse range of properties but also by the local and international expertise we bring to the table. Our team comprises individuals deeply ingrained in the fabric of Sintra, possessing extensive knowledge of the area. We are a team of locals and international residents who have chosen to make Sintra our home, connected to the affluent community and educated in the nuances of this unique region. This local and global insight, combined with our dedication to providing exceptional service, ensures that we can offer you a comprehensive understanding of Sintra’s real estate landscape.

Sintra stands apart from the rest of Portugal due to its abundance of historic Manor houses, often situated within private compounds where access is limited to a select few. Many of these exclusive properties are not publicly listed, and some owners choose to sell only after conducting a thorough validation of potential buyers. However, our agency also specializes in more readily available property types, such as luxury resorts within golf condominiums, villas with swimming pools near the coastline, and upscale apartments situated in the town center or traditional residential areas like São Pedro de Sintra, Colares, and Praia Grande. Our local and international knowledge and connections within the affluent community uniquely position us to assist you in exploring these exclusive real estate opportunities in Sintra.

ARE E Greater Lisbon E Sintra