is the capital of Portugal, there are few attractions in the city. Primarily, this is due to the fact that in 1755 the city was completely destroyed by the earthquake, and it was rebuilt only at the end of the 18th century.
First, we visited
- a medieval castle, where the Portuguese kings lived from 15th till the end of 19th.
You can recognize the Royal Palace in Sintra by the two old conical chimneys. The main part of the palace was built by King Joao I at the end of the 14th century on the site of the former residence of the Arab rulers. The palace permanently became the summer residence of the Portuguese monarchs. King Manuel I had slightly rebuilt the palace in the Moorish style. The palace was declared a national monument in 1910.
The interior of the palace looks quite modest, but tiles made in Seville in the 15th-16th centuries serve as a wonderful decoration. The Arab influence is noticeable in the carved wooden ceilings, especially beautiful in the chapel, where you can also admire the unique ceramic floor and of the 15th century.
The famous swan-room has a beautiful ceiling and majestic chandelier.
The bedrooms of the kings surprised with its extremely small size of the bed. King Sebastian at the end of the 16th century was sleeping on such a couch.
The bed length is about 1.80 m., the width is about one meter.
In the next photo, there’s a room of Julius Caesar, named in the 16th century in honor of the great Roman general.
This is a bedroom of King Alfonso VI - the pattern of modesty and abstinence.
The kitchen takes a special place in the palace. It has quite a large room, where in addition to a variety of furnaces, there’s a space for roasting a whole lamb or pig.
The kitchen has natural ventilation. One of the two cone-shaped tubes, which are the hallmark of the palace, is a pipe of this kitchen.
Then we got into the hall Manuel, named after King Manuel I in the beginning of 16th century.
The next point of our destination was the Palace of Pena, which at first glance may seem medieval, but it’s not. Actually, it was built in 1840 as a summer residence of the king.
The palace stands on a high cliff above Sintra and there are quite a winding and steep road running to it. After ascending the wall of the palace, you can admire the beautiful views of the Sintra and its environs.
Unpleasantly, I was surprised that it was prohibited to take photos inside the palace, but one could, if desired, buy (for EUR 20) an album with the description of the palace and photos of the interiors. Pena National Palace together with the National Palace of Sintra, about which I spoke a little earlier, were recognized as UNESCO World Heritage monuments.
While we examined the interior of the palace, the weather turned bad: out of nowhere came running pretty low clouds, which turned out to be right at the Palace of Pena, standing on a rock.
Unfortunately, the weather got worse. Although, we were going to visit the westernmost point of the Eurasian continent - Cape Roca.
The road to Cape Roca runs through hilly terrain with stunning views. However, we didn’t go there because of the bad weather…
Cape Roca is a cliff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The height of the cliff is 460 feet (140 meters). Portuguese poet Luis Camoes said that "Cape Rock is a place where the land ends and the sea begins". Sadly, there was a thick fog and strong biting wind.
There’s a stela set in the cape. This is the traditional place for photography.
Then we went back. I was surprised that after driving 12-15 miles (20-25 km) in the direction of Lisbon, the fog melted away and the bright sun appeared.
Before returning to the hotel, we drove through the center of Lisbon and took a walk along the promenade. The 25 de Abril Bridge in Lisbon, which crosses the confluence of the River Tagus in the Atlantic Ocean, is very much similar to the bridge "Golden Gate" in San Francisco, California. Lisbon bridge is in the list of the Top-20 longest suspension bridges in the world. The length of its main span is 3320 feet (1013 meters), and the total length of the bridge is 1.4 miles (2.3 km) away.
On the other bank of the river Tagus in Lisbon, a giant statue of Christ rises majestically. A 28-meters figure of Christ with outstretched arms was mounted on a pedestal of 278 feet (85 m) height.
It was time to go back to our hotel.