Sintra is located only around 30km west of Lisbon, making it a very accessible destination for travellers coming from Portugal’s capital. Only around 25 minutes from the airport by car or taxi, although given the areas high density of day trippers in summer, the roads can often come to a standstill! Alternatively, there are trains from both of Lisbon’s main stations, Rossio and Oriente, taking around 45 minutes.
Although a large proportion of visitors to Sintra come only for the day, this makes it a wonderfully peaceful place to stay overnight. There are a couple of high end hotels in and around the main town as well as some beautiful small guesthouses. Sintra 1012 Boutique Guesthouse offers gorgeous accommodation right in the middle of the historical centre with rooms from EUR 80 a night.
Sintra is peppered with wonderful local restaurants serving up classic Portuguese tapas style cuisine. Two of the best examples of these are Romaria de Baco, just up the road from Sintra 1012 and round the corner from the tourist office, and Tascantiga, both offering delicious classics and local wines!
All of the restaurants in and around the town offer up an excellent selection of Portuguese wines, both from the Lisbon area and wider afield. A great spot for a glass of espumante whilst soaking up the warm Portuguese afternoon sun is Dona Maria’s beautiful terrace overlooking the National Palace of Sintra.
The majority of people travelling to Sintra come to explore the areas beautiful parks and palaces, including Pena Palace, the Moorish Castle and the National Palace of Sintra. All offer stunning architecture and some incredible views of the surrounding national park. If you are looking to spend longer than a day or two in the area, head to the beach to explore one of Portugals hidden gems in one of the country’s most striking coastlines.
Under an hour from Lisbon this fairytale city is a must visit for anyone exploring the area. Sintra is home to the unique Pena palace amongst other architectural wonders and offers stunning panoramic views of the surrounding parks.