Sintra
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The 7 best places to see in Sintra

This beautiful town just along the coast a short distance from Lisbon is filled with history and sightseeing at every turn. A visit, whether as part of a longer stay in Portugal or a destination in its own right, will keep you busy with its charming sights.

Seteais Palace
Photo: www.GlynLowe.com@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Seteais Palace

This hotel is located within a historic palace, which dates back to the 18th century. This spot offers amazing views across the Moorish Castle and Pena Palace from the hillside.

Castle of the Moors

Castle of the Moors

This medieval castle is one of the reasons this beautiful region is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Peaceful year-round, this is a good place to get away from the busy town.

Quinta da Regaleira

Quinta da Regaleira

Like something from a Tim Burton movie, this estate is breathtakingly ornate. Don't miss the initiation well or the aquarium for a really special attraction.

Pena Palace

Pena Palace

This colorful site looks most impressive on a sunny day, when its yellow, pink, and terracotta facade is particularly vibrant. An adult ticket for the palace and park is €14.

Monserrate Palace

Monserrate Palace

An exotic villa with tropical gardens that are worth walking around, even in the sun and heat. The buggy tour offers a more sedate way to see the site without the legwork.

Sintra Mountains

Sintra Mountains

Known locally as the Serra de Sintra, this 10-mile range is popular with rock climbers, as the western face is bathed in evening light. Also suitable for walkers and explorers.

Praia da Adraga

Praia da Adraga

This beautiful beach is often voted one of the best in Portugal, and is many locals' choice over closer strips. A 7.5-mile car journey away from town, it's a favorite with surfers.

Planning Your Sintra Visit

When to go?

Sintra offers good weather year-round, but the best times to visit are spring and fall, when you can avoid the crowds and extreme temperatures of the summer season.

How long do I need?

A few days in Sintra is enough to see the sites, then add as many days as you want to relax on the beach.

Lisbon to Sintra

It's very easy to get to Sintra as part of a longer trip to Lisbon. The trains are quick, regular, and cheap. The area offers a historic, quiet alternative to Lisbon's bustling center, and the beaches are prettier and calmer. You can also rent a car to get there for relatively cheap--book online for the best deals.

Good to know

  • Language
    Portuguese
  • Currency
    Euro (€)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+01:00)
  • Country Code
    +351
  • Best time to visit
    Sintra tends to stay cooler than Lisbon because of the elevation and the abundant shade provided from the lush landscape -- so even summer isn't unbearable. Weekdays are better than weekends to visit the sights and avoid the traffic congestion through the narrow and steep streets.

Things to Do in Sintra

Top Attractions in Sintra

Cities in Portugal

Other Sightseeing Options in Sintra

Want to discover all there is to do in Sintra? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Sintra

Wonderful tour with an excellent guide. A great way to see the area.

Our tour of Sintra and surrounding areas with Feliciano was a highlight of our visit to Lisbon. Feliciano is an excellent guide: knowledgeable, friendly, easy-going, and accommodating. He will take you off the beaten path so that you can experience this lovely region as few tourists do and yet still see the main sights that attract so many tourists. His knowledge of the area and its history is substantial, and you will not only learn a lot from him but also benefit from his familiarity with the hot spots in Sintra, which can get very crowded. If one pastry shop is too crowded to try the local delicacies, he knows another one nearby that is not crowded. And on a day when we saw huge crowds at the Tower of Belem and the Cabo da Roca lighthouse, Feliciano took us to an old convent with spectacular views of the region where we saw fewer than a dozen people and to a local beach where we saw one other person. Absolutely worth the price! Thank you, Feliciano! We hope to see you again.

Sintra: Private Half Day-Tour of Key Highlights Reviewed by Robert, 07/02/2019

An overpopulated but worthwhile attraction

Huge queues everywhere. It’s what I call a “crocodile visit”. From queuing at Rossio train station, to queuing in the dreadful traffic up the mountain from Sintra station, to queueing up the top to the palace to queuing to go into and around the palace. But it’s worth it. The best part for me was the walk over to the Moorish Castle - much more my style although the clouds spoiled the view. Tips: Book ahead for everything, this will minimise your queuing. Go very early or very late to miss the queues. Get a tuktuk up from the station rather than the bus or taxi as the tuktuk can, mostly, beat the traffic queue. It cost 15 euros for two of us to go up and 5 each to come down. The ride itself was very enjoyable!

Pena Palace & Park Skip-the-Line Entrance Ticket Reviewed by Jonathan, 07/10/2019

Great value and money well-spent when your group and guide match!

My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the group tour of Sintra and Cascais! The great combination of excellent weather, knowledgeable/personable guide (Bruno) and compatible companions (7 of us including a respectful 13 year old teenager from the USA) made the 8 hours fly by. Definitely a memorable highlight of our 6 week European journey through 5 countries! Portugal is a hidden gem with many facets to discover....

Sintra and Cascais with Driver/Guide Reviewed by Darryl, 06/30/2019

The best day tour to Sintra with the best guide

I booked the tour for my fiancé’s parents and ourselves and we had the best time, with our guide Marco leading the way. Marco masterfully switched between English and Italian throughout the tour for other guests, and he made everyone feel included and informed. Sintra is incredible and well worth the trip from Lisbon for the day!

Sintra, Cabo da Roca and Cascais Full-Day Tour Reviewed by Blake, 07/11/2019

Amazing place- glad we didn't have to wait in the ticket line!

Pena Palace and Sintra are so different from almost any other European palace or castle or mansion. The colorfulness and whimsy, along with the incredible details make it worth a visit, even with crowds and heat and uphill walking. GYG tickets helped a lot because the ticket line would have been very long!

Pena Palace & Park Skip-the-Line Entrance Ticket Reviewed by Dante, 07/12/2019