Sintra – Lisbon

When I was doing some research on where to visit in Lisbon I came across Sintra – a Portuguese town just to the west of Lisbon, so we decided to go on a day trip and visit Sintra. I was really looking forward to visiting after looking at all the pretty photos of Pena Palace, and the amazing views from Moorish Castle.

To get to Sintra, you have to take the train from Rossio Station, the journey takes about 40 minutes, and you don’t have to pay for a train ticket if you have the Lisboa card (very handy card). We jumped onto the train with lots of other tourists who were also visiting this little town.

By the time we arrived it was around 11.30am – time to feed our stomachs. John had done some research and found a famous bakery in Sintra called Piriquita and our friend Chris had recommended that we try this special pastry (he warned us that it’s not very photogenic but tastes amazing!) There are two locations and we chose the less busy one to avoid the queues. Using Google maps (and John) we found it.

We went inside and found a table and the waiter gave us a menu – we couldn’t understand it so we had a look at the counter just as the staff brought out a tray of Pacote de Queijadas.

After seeing these we ordered 2 Pacote de Queijadas, Travesseiro and Pastel de Sintra. We found the cakes quite sweet, but John was right it was perfect with a cup of coffee (I don’t drink coffee but had one sip and the bitterness helped with the sweetness from the cakes)

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The Travesseiro is like a puff pastry filled with custard cream

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After feeding our stomachs we made our way to Pena Palace. There is a bus which takes you to the top of the hills where the Palace and Castle is located, but we decided to walk there instead (this was like our gym workout for the day). The weather was nice and hot, and luckily there were lots of trees covering the road leading up to the Palace so the walk wasn’t too bad. Along the way we could see Moorish Castle in the distance.

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After walking for about 40 minutes we finally reached Pena Palace (I’m sure we burnt off all the cakes we ate). You can buy a combined ticket for entry to the Palace and Castle at a discounted price if you have the Lisboa card.

The Palace is really pretty, to me it felt really magical – like something you’d find in a fairy tale.

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We walked around the Palace and took photos of the lovely view.

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We then moved onto Moorish Castle which is around 10 minutes walk away. We walked from one end of the castle to the other, which gave us a breathtaking view of Lisbon. I had fun walking along the Castle walls, they were all steps and slightly narrow.

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After walking around the whole of the Castle we took the bus back down to the town centre and the train back to Rossio Station.

I really enjoyed this day trip – the Palace and Castle are both worth visiting for the breathtaking view of Lisbon.


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