Sintra Portuguese town near Lisbon
Sintra Portuguese town near Lisbon is only 30 kilometres west of Lisbon near the coast. The bus tour also took me to Casais another interesting destination.
Sintra has become a major tourist centre, visited by many day-trippers who travel from the urbanized suburbs and capital of Lisbon. In addition to the Sintra Mountains and Sintra-Cascais Nature Park, the parishes of the town of Sintra are dotted by royal retreats, estates, castles and buildings from the 8th-9th century, in addition to many buildings completed between the 15th and 19th century, including the Castelo dos Mouros, the Pena National Palace and the Sintra National Palace, resulting in its classification by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1995.
I have copied all this information from Wikipedia.
The earliest documents describe a built-up town in the 11th century by the Arab geographer Al-Bacr (who was later supported by the poets Luís de Camões and Lord Byron). The Moors built their castle atop a nearby promontory around the 8th-9th century. When Afonso Henriques finally captured Sintra (after the fall of Lisbon) in 1147, he ordered the construction of the Church of São Pedro de Penaferrim, within the castle walls. In 1493, Christopher Columbus sailing for the Spanish crown, was blown off course by gale force winds and fearing for the survival of his ship, spotted the rock of Sintra. Despite the awkwardness of seeking safe harbour in Portugal, Columbus had no choice under the circumstances and sailed from there into the port of Lisbon.
The National Palace is the best preserved medieval Royal Palace in Portugal, having been inhabited more or less continuously at least from the early 15th up to the late 19th century. It is an important tourist attraction and is part of the Cultural landscape of Sintra, designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The National Palace of Sintra is the only surviving intact medieval royal palaces of Portugal. Most likely, it was built on the former residence of of the Muslims wallis, and since the beginning of the Portuguese monarchy, monarchs had a palace here. Much of the palace dates from the times of King John I, who sponsored a major building campaign starting around 1415.
Inside the Palace.
The history of the Palace goes back to the times of Islamic domination, when Sintra had two different castles. One of them, located on top of a hill overlooking the town is the so-called Castle of the Moors, which is now a romantic ruin. The other, located downhill, was the residence of the Moorish rulers of the region. Most buildings around the central courtyard – called the Ala Joanina (John’s Wing) – date from this campaign, including the main building of the façade with the entrance arches and the mullioned windows in Manueline and Moorish styles, the conical chimneys of the kitchen that dominate the skyline of the city.
Sintra National Palace.
During the 19th century, Sintra became again a favourite spot for the Kings and the Palace of Sintra was frequently inhabited. Queen Amélia, in particular, was very fond of the Palace and made several drawings of it. With the foundation of the Republic, in 1910, the Palace became a National Monument. In the 1940s, it was restored by architect Raul Lino, who tried to return the Palace to its former splendour by adding old furniture from other palaces and restoring the tile panels. It has been an important historical tourist attraction ever since.
Check out this short video,
Here is the exact location, N 38° 47.846 W 009° 23.436
The Palace kitchen.
Looks like it has not changed in hundreds of years.
Imagine the meals that were prepared here.
Thanks for visiting my Sintra Portuguese town near Lisbon photo blog.
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