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Quinta da Regaleira: Sintra’s Underrated Palace

sintra palace

We visited Quinta Da Regaleira in Sintra, Portugal, on a beautiful fall day.

Quinta da Regaleira, an eclectic, almost spooky palace in Sintra, Portugal, was nothing short of amazing. most visitors to Sintra, however, will probably end up passing it over for the more popular palaces. If we weren’t staying within walking distance from it at the historic, luxurious Hotel Tivoli Palácio de Seteais then we probably would have missed it too.

I can’t say that it’s better than Pena, the most famous and lavish Sintra palace, because alas we didn’t make it there. We’re probably the only people who visited Quinta da Regaleira instead of Pena! We didn’t intend for that happen. We were excited that Quinta da Regaleira was so close, so we went there first. We spent over two hours there, which was a large percentage of the sightseeing time we had in Sintra (one real day). Not only is there the main palace building to tour, but the grounds are quite extensive. We had so much fun exploring the sculpture gardens, the chapel, lookout towers, grottoes, fountains and even a waterfall. There are supposedly underground passageways, but we were too timid to try them out. And we had our son, who was 11 months old at the time, in a Bjorn carrier, so that also made us less adventurous.

The palace was completed in 1910 (after 6 years of construction), so it’s practically new compared to other Portuguese monuments — especially because it didn’t even open to the public until 1998. The architecture is a mix of Roman, Gothic, Renaissance and Manueline styles. At times it’s beautiful, at times it’s gaudy (and almost Gaudi-esque), and at times it’s just eerie. There’s plenty to see and it really sparks the imagination. Plus, the views are outstanding.

One of the reasons why we spent so long at Quinta da Regaleira was because I was taking so many photos. Enjoy the slideshow below!

 

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8 Responses to Quinta da Regaleira: Sintra’s Underrated Palace

  1. Micki
    Twitter: barefootnomads
    October 30, 2012 at 8:19 pm #

    What a beautiful palace! It’s everything you’d expect – isn’t it? A little over the top, but lovely to look at!
    Micki recently posted..Defying Tradition: A Travelers Life For Me!

  2. Cat of Sunshine and Siestas
    Twitter: sunshinesiestas
    October 31, 2012 at 11:40 am #

    LOVED this place when I visited with my grandma several years ago. I remember running through all of the underground grottoes, wishing I had brought a flashlight!
    Cat of Sunshine and Siestas recently posted..The Next Big Thing for Sunshine and Siestas

  3. Terry at Overnight New York October 31, 2012 at 2:50 pm #

    What an eerily spectacular palace — and great gargoyles!

  4. Julie Dawn Fox
    Twitter: juliedawnfox
    November 1, 2012 at 11:37 am #

    I’m not surprised you spent so long there. It’s a fantastic place to explore with all its grottos and secret passageways. More fun, in lots of ways, than Pena so you haven’t missed out.

  5. D.J. - The World of Deej November 1, 2012 at 2:29 pm #

    Beautiful place…I would not have pegged this as being in Portugal…
    D.J. – The World of Deej recently posted..The Parade of Homes – Pebble Beach Style

  6. Jennifer November 1, 2012 at 4:39 pm #

    Wow. Outstanding. I hope to be able to spend time there myself, someday.
    Jennifer recently posted..Black Tie Ski Rentals in Colorado — and Beyond

  7. LeX @ LeX Paradise November 4, 2012 at 9:47 pm #

    Agree! palace that full of history! If I drop by Portugal, I will be there! ;)
    LeX @ LeX Paradise recently posted..Fly to South Korea this coming winter with AirAsia X !

  8. Abby
    Twitter: abbytegnelia
    November 7, 2012 at 6:44 am #

    Stunning! I went to Sintra so many years ago and fell in love. We hiked some old palace grounds, and it was just so special. No recollection of exactly where!
    Abby recently posted..Post-adventure high

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