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10 Must-See Attractions in Sintra 

From its fairytale-like palaces to its lush forests and picturesque landscapes, this small town is a great place to explore and discover something new. Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, there’s something here for everyone.

Welcome to Sintra, Portugal – a destination full of beauty and charm!

Here are the top 10 things to do and must-see attractions in Sintra, Portugal that you won’t want to miss out on.

Make sure you’ll see the entire collection in Framey App, including addresses, opening hours, and contact information!

1)  Quinta da Regaleira

If you’re looking for a truly enchanting experience, be sure to visit Quinta da Regaleira. This incredible neo-Manueline monument is like something out of a fairy tale, with its fantastic gardens, grottoes, lakes, and spiraling staircase leading down to a well nearly 30 meters deep. The palace was once the home of millionaire António Augusto Carvalho Monteiro, the top coffee importer of the time, and was completed in 1892.

Despite its grandeur, the real magic of Quinta da Regaleira is in its blending of architectural styles. From the Gothic to the Renaissance and beyond, this palace is a harmonious mix of design elements that will leave you feeling as if you’ve stepped into a wonderland.

Visiting Quinta da Regaleira is a must-do while in Sintra. However, you may have to wait a bit at the ticket counter as this attraction is quite popular. Once you’re allowed in, you’ll find that everyone is spread out in the garden, so there’s plenty of space to explore.

Getting to Quinta da Regaleira is relatively easy. It’s about a 25-minute walk from the train station, and only about a 10-minute walk from the center of town. Alternatively, you may take bus 435, which departs a few feet from the train station.

As you make your way to the palace, be sure to stop by Cascata dos Pisões, a small waterfall that’s sure to capture your imagination. 

With so much to see and experience at Quinta da Regaleira, it’s no wonder that this attraction is on our top 10 list of must-see attractions in Sintra.

2)  Moorish Castle – 10 Must-See Attractions in Sintra 

One of the most iconic attractions in Sintra, the Moorish Castle is a true gem that transports you to a different era. Built by the Moors in the 9th century, this castle sits atop a mountain, overlooking the stunning Lisbon coast. The castle was even more significant than St. George’s Castle in Lisbon as it served as an essential lookout point, keeping watch over the region.

Apart from its historical significance, the castle features secret passages and a large cistern, which were vital during sieges. As you wander through the castle, you’ll feel like you’re stepping back in time and witnessing history come to life.

If you’re planning to visit, be sure to check out the castle’s opening hours, which are 9:30 am to 6:30 pm, with the last admission being one hour before closing time. A typical visit to the castle takes about one to 90 minutes.

The Moorish Castle is located on a mountaintop, which means you’ll need to take a 13-minute bus journey to reach it unless you’re up for an hour-long climb. Bus 434 departs from outside the train station and also goes up to Pena Palace after stopping by the castle gate. To get to Pena after the castle, you can walk up the road for just over 10 minutes or wait for another 434 bus to pass.

Overall, the Moorish Castle is a must-visit attraction in Sintra, Portugal. 

It’s not just an essential historical landmark but also a beautiful structure that’s worth exploring. With its unique features and fantastic views of the Lisbon coast, it’s sure to be a highlight of your Sintra experience.

3)  Pena Palace

One of the most popular and stunning landmarks in Sintra is the Pena Palace, a flamboyant and colorful 19th-century palace perched on a hilltop above the town. This magnificent palace is a true masterpiece of architecture and design, featuring a blend of Gothic, Manueline, and Moorish styles, with intricate stonework, turrets, and domes.

Visiting Pena Palace is a must-do activity for any Sintra itinerary, although be prepared for large crowds and long waiting times, especially during the peak season. To make the most of your visit, it’s best to arrive early in the morning when it opens at 9:00 am and avoid the crowds that tend to arrive later in the day.

To get to the Pena Palace, you can take a bus from the town center, which departs from outside the train station. Alternatively, if you’re up for a challenge, you can hike up to the palace from the center of town, although it’s a strenuous hour-long climb.

Once you arrive at the palace, you can explore the stunning interior, which is filled with opulent rooms, elaborate decorations, and stunning views over the surrounding landscape. Make sure to take plenty of photos, as the palace is incredibly photogenic from every angle.

All in all, visiting the Pena Palace is an unforgettable experience that should not be missed when visiting Sintra. 

Despite the crowds and waiting times, it’s well worth the effort to witness this breathtaking monument of Portugal’s history and culture.

4)  Pena Park – 10 Must-See Attractions in Sintra 

The Pena Park in Sintra, Portugal is a beautiful natural environment that combines both human and natural beauty. King Ferdinand II began the construction of the park in 1839 to create a perfect fantasy forest, and the park today boasts an array of exotic plant and tree species from all over the world.

Visitors to the park can explore the shaded footpaths that lead to various attractions that are well-signed throughout the park. The length of your visit to the park will depend on the number of attractions you choose to see and how much walking you’re willing to do around it. Plan for a minimum of one hour to 90 minutes to enjoy the park fully.

Access to Pena Park is via Pena Palace, and you can reach the palace by bus 434. While at the park, you can also take the opportunity to visit other nearby attractions, such as Pena Palace or the Moorish Castle, which is only a short walk away from the top of the park.

If you’re a lover of natural beauty and want to explore an area that combines both natural and human beauty, then Pena Park should be at the top of your list of places to visit in Sintra. 

A stroll through this picturesque park will leave you mesmerized by the wonders of nature and human creativity.

5)  Sintra National Palace

If you want to step back in time and explore one of the best-preserved medieval palaces in the world, then the Sintra National Palace should be on your must-visit list in Sintra, Portugal. Located in the center of the town, this stunning palace dates back to the 9th century when it was built as the residence of Moorish governors.

However, the palace became more popular when it was turned into the official home of King João I in the 14th century. It still stands intact to this day, and visitors can marvel at its medieval architecture and magnificent chimneys.

When you visit the Sintra National Palace, you’ll have the opportunity to explore several different areas, including the kitchen, chapel, and much more. There are also several guided tours available to provide more insight into the palace’s history and significance.

The best time to visit the Sintra National Palace is in the morning when the crowds are less. It is open from 9:30 am to 6:30 pm daily, and the typical visit lasts about an hour. You can make the palace your last stop before heading back to the train station, especially if you’re visiting Sintra on a day trip.

Getting to the Sintra National Palace is relatively easy as it is just a ten-minute walk from the train station down the scenic road known as Volta do Duche. You’ll be able to enjoy the beautiful landscape as you make your way towards this majestic palace.

Overall, the Sintra National Palace is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to learn more about Portugal’s rich history. Whether you’re a history buff, an architecture enthusiast, or simply looking for a new adventure, the Sintra National Palace should be on your travel bucket list.

6)  Monserrate Palace – 10 Must-See Attractions in Sintra 

Monserrate Palace is a fascinating attraction that should be on your Sintra must-see list. It is a prime example of 19th-century European eclecticism and boasts a unique history that has seen the property undergo various transformations over the years. 

Originally built in 1790 by an English merchant as a Gothic Revival mansion, Monserrate Palace has been home to notable figures such as novelist William Beckford, known as the wealthiest young Englishman of his time. He fled Britain after a homosexual scandal and resided at Monserrate for a time. Later, the property was owned by Sir Francis Cook, an English millionaire and art collector, who added his touch to the property and created the current appearance of the palace. 

When visiting Monserrate Palace, be sure to give yourself plenty of time to explore both the palace and its gardens. Depending on how much time you spend wandering around the park, your visit can take anywhere between one and two hours. 

The admission ticket comes with a useful map that can guide you through the palace and garden grounds.

One of the perks of visiting Monserrate Palace is its location away from the historic center of town. This means it is often much quieter and less crowded than other famous palaces in Sintra. You’ll be able to fully immerse yourself in the beauty and history of the palace without feeling overwhelmed by large crowds.

To get to Monserrate Palace, you’ll need to take bus 435 from a stop near the train station as it is not within walking distance from the town center. 

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit Monserrate Palace and add this magnificent attraction to your itinerary.

7)  Queluz Palace

Queluz Palace is one of Portugal’s most remarkable and stunning monuments, known as the “Royal Palace of Queluz” or the “National Palace of Queluz.” It was built in 1747, inspired by the grand palace of Versailles in France, and features extravagant formal gardens. It served as the official residence of the royal family in the late 1700s and was the scene of many opulent courtly events.

For those who appreciate historical landmarks and exquisite architecture, a visit to Queluz Palace is an absolute must. 

The palace is open seven days a week, from 9 am to 6 pm. Visitors are advised to arrive early, as the last ticket is sold one hour before closing time.

Located between Lisbon and Sintra, the Royal Palace of Queluz is easily accessible via the Queluz-Belas train station. The station is on the Lisbon-Sintra line, and there are trains available every 20 minutes from both cities. From the station, the palace is just a short 12-to-15-minute walk away.

The Queluz Palace is a must-visit attraction that provides visitors with an opportunity to marvel at the rococo architecture of one of Europe’s last grand palaces. Its splendid interiors, ornate decorations, and formal gardens are a sight to behold. 

Whether you’re a history buff or simply looking for a great sightseeing experience, a visit to Queluz Palace is an absolute must.

8)  Azenhas do Mar – 10 Must-See Attractions in Sintra 

Azenhas do Mar is a charming and picturesque village located on the western coast of Portugal, in the region of Sintra. The village gets its name from the watermills that were once powered by a strong stream that flowed into the sea. With its white houses perched on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic, Azenhas do Mar looks like a village straight out of the Mediterranean.

To get to Azenhas do Mar, you can take bus 440 from the Portela de Sintra terminal. The journey takes about 25 minutes, but the service is rather infrequent. Alternatively, you can take bus 441, which has more frequent departures and stops in Azenhas do Mar in about 20 minutes.

Once you arrive in Azenhas do Mar, you can stroll along the cliff-top and take in the stunning views of the sea. If you feel adventurous, you can walk up the coastal road from Azenhas do Mar and discover some of the nearby attractions. Just a short walk away, you’ll find Praia da Aguda, a wild and secluded beach that’s accessed via a staircase. From there, it’s another 15-minute walk over rocks and tidal pools to Praia do Magoito, a beach mostly frequented by locals and surfers.

To the south of Azenhas do Mar is Sintra’s most popular beach, Praia das Maçãs. This long, sandy beach is a great place to relax and soak up the sun. It’s also home to a few bars and restaurants where you can grab a bite to eat or a refreshing drink.

In summary, Azenhas do Mar is a must-visit destination in Sintra, Portugal. With its beautiful architecture and stunning views of the sea, it’s a place that’s sure to leave a lasting impression on you. 

9)  Praia da Ursa

Praia da Ursa is a true hidden gem on Portugal’s coast. Despite being one of the country’s most stunning beaches, it remains almost untouched and deserted most of the time. Located right by Cabo da Roca, Praia da Ursa is the westernmost beach in mainland Europe, and its rugged beauty is nothing short of breathtaking.

Getting to Praia da Ursa can be a challenge if you don’t have a car, but it’s well worth the effort. From Lisbon, take the Cascais train from Cais do Sodré station and get off at Cascais. From there, take the bus 403 of the Scotturb company, which stops in Cabo da Roca in less than 25 minutes. Once you’re there, it’s just a 10-to-15-minute walk along a trail to reach the clifftop above Praia da Ursa.

The hike may be a bit challenging, but it’s worth it. Once you arrive, you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of the jagged cliffs, the sparkling turquoise water, and the golden sand. Praia da Ursa is not only beautiful but also peaceful and quiet, a perfect spot for a secluded swim or a relaxing picnic. 

Overall, Praia da Ursa is a must-visit attraction for anyone exploring Sintra and the surrounding areas. Its natural beauty and seclusion make it one of Portugal’s best-kept secrets. 

So, grab your camera, pack a picnic, and prepare for a day of peaceful relaxation on one of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal.

10)  Cabo da Roca – 10 Must-See Attractions in Sintra 

Cabo da Roca is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Sintra, Portugal. This wild and mystical cape is situated at the westernmost edge of Europe, and it is one of the country’s most iconic attractions. Thousands of tourists flock to Cabo da Roca each year to witness the raw beauty of nature and stand on the westernmost point of the European continent.

Standing 140 meters (460ft) above the roaring sea, visitors can enjoy breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. As 16th-century poet Camões put it, Cabo da Roca is “where the land ends and the sea begins,” as inscribed on a plaque placed here in 1979. The sheer cliff and the lighthouse create a picturesque backdrop, perfect for a photo opportunity.

To get to Cabo da Roca, you can take bus 403 from Sintra or Cascais. The bus departs every 30 minutes from both towns and takes about 20 minutes from Cascais and 35-to-40 minutes from Sintra. Check the bus 403 guide for complete details.

Besides visiting Cabo da Roca, visitors can enjoy other attractions nearby. About 800 meters (half a mile) down the road is Praia da Ursa, one of Portugal’s most stunning beaches. Hikers can also enjoy the beautiful beach of Adraga, which is just over 4 kilometers to the north.

Overall, Cabo da Roca is a destination you don’t want to miss. Its raw beauty and iconic status make it a must-visit location in Portugal. 


Sintra is undoubtedly a must-see destination for anyone visiting Portugal. From stunning palaces and castles to breathtaking views of the coast, this enchanting town has something for everyone. If you’re planning a trip to Sintra, be sure to add these top 10 attractions to your itinerary.


But don’t stop there! There’s so much more to discover in Portugal and beyond. If you’re looking for inspiration for your next trip, why not check out Framey App? It’s a great way to see your friends’ holiday photos and get ideas for your next adventure.


We hope this guide has helped you plan your trip to Sintra. Don’t forget to share your experiences and photos with us on Framey

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