How to avoid disappointments in Sintra

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Ever since seeing those fairytale-like pictures of Sintra I wanted to go there so badly. In 2015 it was finally time for me to visit the lego-like castle Peles and all the other beautiful places. If only I knew the things I know now about Sintra…

Getting there

Getting to Sintra from Lisbon was super easy as trains go there regularly and quite cheap. Trains also run till 10 (?) p.m. so you also don’t need to worry about getting back home.

Getting around

Now that’s where my day started to get reaaally bad (after I missed two (!) trains which made me think it couldn’t get better…)… And I mean reaaaaaaally bad.

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this photo didn’t capture my mood in the slightest

So I arrived in Sintra and OF COURSE started my way by foot. It wasn’t a bad descision; I made my way from the train station to the town centre (don’t expect too much) and from there to the Quinta da Regaleira castle. From there I started to walk to the Pena castle… one of my biggest. Mistakes. Ever. There were tourist buses all around but those 10 or 15 bucks were simply too much so I started the signed walk up the hill to Pena castle. I started to walk… along a nice and signed path first, then next to a street, then without any path over some rocks and dense bushland and then I still walked and walked and walked and walked… and that’s where the pictue was taken. I was dehydrated, sunstroked and my feet were sore, I looked up and saw that the Pena castle was F***ING FAR AWAY FROM ME! But I didn’t want to give up so I forced myself to go further to finally arrive at an official looking booth. And here I found out that there were still 500-something steps ahead of me and, even worse, that catching the bus from here, after walking 3/4 of the way, would still cost the same as from town! Well that was enough for me, I started crying like a toddler and made my way down without visiting Pena castle. So if there’s one advice I can give you it’s catch a bus to get to Pena castle!!!!  Its name as „palace of sorrows“ became a whole new meaning to me…

Entry fees

Well that’s another point that knocked me out when arriving at the ticket booth of Peles castle as the entry was sooo expensive (I think 16€ for students and 20€ for adults) so just be prepared. And if you’re prepared then enjoy. :-) I still regret a bit that I haven’t made it to Peles Castle but my visit to the Quinta de Regaleira was as sweet as I imagined it. It’s a wonderful place.

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Stay adventurous,

Marlena

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