Enchanted by Castles Part 4 (A little bit of Knowledge can make a Difference)

On our way, riding the train to Sintra with a sense of confidence, because now we know what are we doing.  The day start with a magical flow and stress free.  We felt like local! We knew exactly what to do and what to expect, this time we were not afraid of making decisions or afraid of the unknown. Once we walk to the little town that was waiting for us once again, we went directly to the tourist office to get more information about the castles that we were going to see that day; Sintra National Palace, Quinta da Regaleira and Montserrat Palace.

First in our list was the Sintra National Palace, we didn’t need to take the bus because this palace is located on the heart of the town, in the middle of the mountains. The Moorish Castle and the Pena Palace have to look down to see their royal neighbor. A little tip, if you know that you are visiting more than one palace, they offer packages or bundles that may save you and euro or two. We bought a ticket for two palaces Sintra National Palace and Montserrat Palace for 25 euros. Quinta da Regaleira didn’t have that offer.

One of the things that we learn about Sintra National Palace it’s that its 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.  One of the things that highlight my visit was that in the 15th Century King Duarte I had a lot of influence in the construction of the palace and his son Jon I loved this palace. Sooooooo!!! let me tell you! I am Duarte, that means I have royal family in my blood!! 🙂 Discovering that was the best part of visiting Sintra National Palace! LOL

Ok here are some pics…

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Panoramic view
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View of the town and the Moorish Castle from Sintra National Palace

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King Duarte!

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After leaving my royal past, we headed to the bus stop, and we waited like a Pros, but this time we took the 435.  The 435 bus route is in a circle, locals take it to move around town. In its route it pass by this three Sintra’s gems, also it goes by the five-star palace hotel:Tivoli Palácio de Seteais.  Well after we hoped in the bus, no far down we encounter the fascinating view of the Quinta da Regaleira.  Quinta da Regaleira its a creepy looking palace, very Gothic style! The whole property, the Chapel, the Palace, the Towers, tunnels, gardens, fountains, everything have a mysterious feel, was like entering another dimension. I felt like I was in a movie, one of those that you are not sure of the ending…  I will show you a picture so you can have a sense of what I am trying to describe, but the rest of our story I will leave it for Part 5. Next part I will share some videos too, even some silly ones.

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Until the…

xamlinnette 🙂

Enchanted by Castles Part 3

With our tummies full and us rested it, was time for us to continue our last adventure of the day. It was our time to conquer the Romanticist 19th Century Palace. Above Sintra, sitting in a top of a hill, the colored Palace not only was sitting with majesty but also its humble by the beauty of the park that surrounds the Palace. 20131111-182156.jpg

Just looking around I can imagine so many scenarios of those time, like coming in my horse, dress with a huge dress, tight on the top, taking my breathed away. The dress had to be long and big from the waist down.  Then, we can add a touch with white delicate long gloves and a large hair do with tight curls and a hat. Ahhhh life in the past!

We wanted to see the outside of the castle first, the view was mix with low clouds that came for a visit, making the ambience cool and comfortable. At the distance you can see the arabic ruins that we left behind earlier. The cool breeze gave me a feel of freedom and literally I felt free! Of course I was vacationing and knowing that I was investing my time in such amazing experience that involved exercise, history, culture, beauty and time travel!!  Oh yes, I felt free… Well 20131111-182325.jpg

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I just dont know what they where thinking when they decide that this was a nice option for a window… Oh boy!

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Indoor patio

If the outside make you wonder… Wait to see the inside, the furniture, the indoor patios…

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When we finished exploring every corner that was allowed to be explored the only thing that was crossing our minds was all the events that we had to go through to go back to the hotel.  The 434 bus, the 35 minutes train ride, the 30 minutes walk up hill the Avenida Liberdade. At that time was already half of the night and still we were needing to get dinner and sleep to repeat all the process all over again because the next day we were going back to Sintra.  Still at 3 more palaces that we wanted to see.  Actually there were more, but we didn’t have the time to see everything.

In part 4, I will share with you how easy was for us the next day, a little bit of knowledge can make the difference. I will talk about The National Palace of Sintra and maybe about Quinta da Regaleira.  I think I might have to do a part 5, I don’t want to overwhelm you with so many pictures and videos. Its better a little bit at a time. Ok… Until then…

xamlinnette 🙂

In Belem, Portugal, the Monastery of Jeronimos its Hard to Miss, as well as Pasteis de Belem

The Sixteenth century monastery is close to the river banks of the Tagus River and in the route of the Tram 15, this tram you can take it from Lisbon to Belem.  On our way to Belem, voyaging the Tram 15 we were looking everywhere to be sure we stop in the right place for us to start our afternoon touring madness.  We had so many things in our list that we wanted to see and only an afternoon to cover everything. On the look out for every little detail of my surroundings, I notice this first long human line in front of this simple building… I didn’t understand what was happening but we pass to quickly to figure it out. Not farther down we saw another long human line, but this time was in front of a majestic building. Looking at my maps and the list of things we wanted to see, I was trying to process what exactly I saw. The first human line was in front of Pasteis de Belem, is the most famous place in Belem where you can try the original, warm recipes of Pastel de Nata. I notice that you can find Pastel de Nata all over Lisbon. It could be a dessert or just a quick breakfast with coffee anywhere you go, but here, in this specific place, is where everything started. If you go to Belem you will never miss this place, I assure you will see it, and you wont have a choice, but to stop and join the crowd to try the deliciousness.

Pastel de Nata

Pastéis de Belém

Pastéis de Belém
Pastéis de Belém

The second human line was in front of the Monastery of Jeronimos. Unfortunately we got to the Monastery too late, they were about to close, but we were able to at least pick inside for free and see the grandiose building from up-close. We weren’t able to see the Monastery that normally have a cost of 7 Euros. Even at that time in the afternoon and about to close the place was pack with people. Let me show you a little bit of what we saw. Here are some pics and videos. After you see my evidence, you will understand why you wont never miss this building if you go to Belem and why is so majestic. Take a Look!

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xamlinnette 🙂

Tram 28

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One of the first things you do as a tourist in Lisbon is ride the tram 28 to have a little taste of what the city is about. After walking more that 30 minutes and had a cold sandwich for breakfast with coffee, we were trying to find our way in Lisbon. With a list of things in hand and a map from my cellphone, we were trying to identify the streets and places we wanted to see that day. It was a beautiful Sunday morning, and while walking around it was impossible not to enjoy the royal blue skies that farther down in our walk, changed to a light blue with thin and puffy white clouds, also there was a little touch of coolness in the air. When we got closer to the Tagus river, the sun was making all the efforts of taking away that refreshing cool air, putting me in a position of taking my sweeter and put it again over and over again.

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Rossio

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Rossio

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Praca Da Comercio

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Praca De Comercio

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Bridge 25 Abril

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Me with the sweeter on 🙂

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Between the battle of taking my sweeter on and off, taking pics in Praca da Comercio, and trying to follow our schedule on time we finally got to the tram 28 stop. Waiting at the stop, more people kept coming and joining us on the wait for tram 28, we were wondering how we were going to fit with so many people there. For my surprise when the tram arrived, my view was of a yellow rectangular box full of standing people smelling each other like sardines, at the stop few of those sardine people left the tram and twice got in. We decide to stayed, I wanted to enjoy the ride and take pictures and all the whole 9 tourist yard! Thanks God for patience, It was worthy the wait, we let 2 trams go by and the thirth one it was ok, we were standing but at least there was enough space for breathing. A little bit farther down in our ride, in one of the stops some people left and we were able to sit by the window and that way we were able to enjoy one of the first things tourist should do when going to Lisbon. Here is a little bit of our ride. 🙂

 

Beautiful View of Terra-cotta rooftops During Sunset

It felt like we were at the top of the world but in reality we were at Castle of São Jorge almost at the top of Lisbon. The sight is decorated by terra-cotta rooftops and the combination of the sunset goodbye.

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xamlinnette