Before heading into Portugal, I did a quick Google image search to see where we might like to go. Probably one of the main places that stood out was Sintra. It looked amazing – just like a fairytale. There were three main places we wanted to visit; Palácio da Pena, Castelo dos Mouros and Quinta da Regaleira. But having had such a relaxed few days, the vast amount of tourists in Sintra were a bit of a shock. This was the least busy it was when we were there:
We attempted driving up the steep, winding hill to the castle but there was nowhere to park. For much of the journey, the narrow road was at a standstill with coaches, cars, tuk tuks and a very old T25 having to do numerous hill starts. Needless to say, there is a distinct smell of clutch in the main village of Sintra!
Having parked in the village, we walked to Quinta da Regaleira. It was far busier than we imagined it would be and we almost didn’t go in.
However, Quinta da Regaleira was an interesting place and I was able to zoom into a few features enough to be able to get a few photos that weren’t just of fellow visitors!
The flowers and trees in particular were very impressive.
I’m not sure when ‘out of season’ would be at Sintra, we went on a weekday outside of the holidays, but perhaps we should have got there earlier. If you’re desperate to go to Sintra, I would make two suggestions – firstly, get there early, and secondly, take a look at the public transport options up the hill rather than driving yourself.