Sintra travel guide

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Introduction to Sintra

As you explore beyond these attractions, you'll find that this hamlet in Portugal is more than what we see in books and social media. Sintra is a culturally rich and diverse travel destination offering plenty of unforgettable experiences.

Traveling to Sintra is especially rewarding for anyone eager to connect with locals and learn more about their unique culture and traditions.

Easily accessible, Sintra is the perfect base for a memorable and unique vacation in Portugal at any time of the year.

History of Sintra

Sintra, a picturesque city nestled in the foothills of Portugal's Sintra Mountains, boasts a rich history that dates back to the prehistoric period.

First inhabited by the Celts, Sintra was later conquered by the Romans who named it 'Cynthia' after the moon goddess. During the Moorish era, the city became an important strategic point with the construction of the Castle of the Moors in the 8th century.

In the 12th century, Sintra was reconquered by Christian forces, marking the beginning of a grandiose era. The city flourished under the patronage of Portuguese kings, with magnificent palaces and lush gardens springing up, including the iconic Pena Palace and Quinta da Regaleira.

In the 19th century, Sintra became a favorite summer retreat for European nobility and artists, enticed by its romantic landscapes. Today, Sintra's unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty make it a top destination for travelers worldwide.

Local culture and customs in Sintra

Sintra, a picturesque town nestled in the foothills of Portugal’s Sintra Mountains, is steeped in rich history and culture. The locals are known for their warm hospitality and laid-back lifestyle. Portuguese is the official language, but English is commonly spoken in tourist areas. Traditional Portuguese cuisine is a cornerstone of Sintra's culture, with local specialties such as 'Travesseiros de Sintra' (a sweet pastry) and 'Queijadas de Sintra' (a type of cheesecake) being must-try delicacies.

Sintra is home to many festivals throughout the year, with the most famous being the annual 'Festival das Wall' in summer, featuring traditional music, dance, and food. When visiting historical sites, such as the Pena Palace or the Moorish Castle, it is customary to dress modestly out of respect for the cultural heritage. Tipping in restaurants is customary, usually around 10%. Finally, Sintra's residents take a siesta in the afternoon, so don't be surprised if many shops close for a few hours after lunchtime.

Currency information for travelers in Sintra

Sintra, like the rest of Portugal, uses the Euro (€) as its official currency. Currency can be exchanged at banks, ATMs (Multibancos), or exchange bureaus, although banks tend to offer the most competitive rates. ATMs are widely available and usually offer English language options. Credit cards are widely accepted in hotels, shops, and restaurants. However, it is advisable to carry some cash for smaller establishments that may not accept cards. Tipping is customary in Sintra, so keep some spare change handy. The cost of living in Sintra is lower than in larger European cities, but planning a reasonable budget for food, accommodation, and sightseeing is recommended to avoid unexpected expenses.

Language tips for travelers in Sintra

The national language of Portugal is Portuguese, which is also the primary language in Sintra. However, you'll find that a good number of locals, especially those in the tourism sector, speak English to a reasonable degree. Nonetheless, it's always appreciated when visitors make an effort to speak the local language. Learning a few basic Portuguese phrases can enhance your experience. Phrases such as 'Obrigado' (Thank you), 'Bom dia' (Good morning), 'Boa tarde' (Good afternoon), and 'Boa noite' (Good evening/night) will come in handy. Also, when addressing strangers, use the formal 'Você' instead of the informal 'Tu'. This is seen as a sign of respect. Remember, Portuguese pronunciation can be tricky, so using a language app might be beneficial.

Best time to visit Sintra

The best time to explore Sintra, Portugal is typically from late spring to early fall, specifically May through September. During this period, the weather is pleasantly warm, with temperatures ranging between 20°C to 28°C, ideal for outdoor exploration and sightseeing. The summer months of July and August often attract more tourists, resulting in higher crowd levels at popular sites such as Pena Palace and Quinta da Regaleira. If you prefer a quieter, more relaxed experience, consider visiting in May, June, or September. Besides the favorable weather, these months also coincide with several local festivals and events, adding a unique cultural dimension to your visit. Notably, the Festival das Artes in July, celebrating music and art, and the Sintra Music Festival in June, are worth planning your trip around. Make sure to check the schedules of these events as they can change from year to year. In conclusion, planning your visit according to these factors will ensure you experience the best of Sintra's rich history, culture, and breathtaking landscapes.

Weather in Sintra

Sintra, Portugal enjoys a Mediterranean climate characterized by mild, wet winters and warm, dry summers. The average annual temperature is around 15°C (59°F). Summer temperatures, from June to September, typically range from 25°C to 28°C (77°F to 82°F) during the day, dropping to a comfortable 15°C to 18°C (59°F to 64°F) at night. The warmest month is August, and even during this peak summer period, sea breezes help keep the heat manageable.

The winter months, from December to February, are rainy and cool, with temperatures ranging from 8°C to 15°C (46°F to 59°F). December is usually the wettest month, so if you're planning to visit during this period, make sure to pack waterproof clothing. Despite the rain, Sintra's winters are relatively mild compared to many European destinations, rarely seeing temperatures drop below freezing. Overall, Sintra's climate is moderate and pleasant, making it an appealing destination year-round.

Local tip for visiting Sintra

Sintra, with its regal palaces and lush gardens, can be a sensory overload during peak tourist times. Here's an insider tip that will help you enjoy the tranquillity of this magical town. Locals recommend visiting early in the morning or late in the afternoon to escape the crowds. The sight of Pena Palace bathed in the soft morning glow or the enchanting Quinta da Regaleira in the peaceful evening light is a truly unforgettable experience. Furthermore, these off-peak hours allow for leisurely exploration and the opportunity to engage with locals, adding depth to your Sintra experience. Remember, Sintra isn't just about ticking off sights, it's about immersing yourself in its unique atmosphere and culture.

Top services in Sintra

On this page, you'll find all the top travel services in Sintra, Portugal. Enjoy the convenience of planning and booking every detail of your trip to Sintra, including flights, accommodations, activities, and more, in one place.

Discover the cheapest and most popular flights offered by a variety of airlines that fly to Portugal. Check out the best things to do in Sintra by browsing over 241 top-rated tours available to you in the hamlet. Compare the rates and services of the 6 types of places to stay and 1 car rental companies offering CDW insurance coverage. We make it easy for you to find and book every detail of your trip to Sintra with this travel guide.

Experience the best of Sintra with an expertly curated and fully customizable itinerary. Get answers to questions about the routes and services offered in Sintra from our free 24/7 customer support.

Continue reading this Sintra travel guide to learn how you can enjoy a stress-free and memorable vacation in the hamlet of Sintra!

Learn more about Portugal

With destinations such as Sintra, a trip to Portugal needs no further explanation. Spanning over 92,225 square kilometers, Portugal is an expansive playground of discovery, offering a wealth of diverse landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and captivating experiences awaiting exploration. From bustling metropolises to historic towns and modern urban hubs, Portugal has something to enchant every traveler.

Thus, a trip to Portugal becomes essential. Whether you're drawn to historical sites, natural wonders, or vibrant cultural experiences, Portugal offers an abundance of treasures waiting to be discovered. There's so much to explore and uncover in Portugal.

Click or tap the link below to discover more about Portugal and its offers.

What to see in Sintra

Expect an exhilarating journey through Sintra, a haven brimming with attractions to suit every traveler’s taste. From historical landmarks to natural wonders, and delectable cuisine, Sintra offers an abundance of experiences waiting to be discovered. Dive into this ultimate Sintra travel guide to uncover must-visit spots and get the scoop on what makes the hamlet so special.

Top attractions in Sintra

With its blend of traditional and modern culture, Sintra is more than just a wonderful hamlet in Portugal. It's a hub for diverse experiences, boasting top attractions that range from historical landmarks to modern marvels, offering a glimpse into Portugal's rich heritage and innovative spirit.

Considered one of the most well-known attractions in the hamlet, a visit to this spectacular travel destination is something you shouldn't miss on your trip to Sintra.

For more information about what you can expect during a vacation in Sintra, check out our list of top attractions below. Discover the best places to visit in Sintra, including the fascinating Park and Palace of Monserrate.

Map of attractions

Take a closer look at the hamlet map below for the exact locations of all the top attractions in Sintra.

Things to do in Sintra

You've explored Sintra's top attractions and marked them on your map. So now, it's time to delve deeper and discover the top things to do in Sintra. These activities not only offer excitement and adventure but also provide unique insights into the city's culture and heritage. Take your experience to the next level by checking out the best sights with a knowledgeable guide, embarking on fun adventures unique to Sintra, or learning more about the hamlet's rich history and traditions.

Discover the most popular tours and experiences in the hamlet below.

Most popular experiences in Sintra

A visit to Sintra gets more exciting with memorable experiences. And the hamlet is just perfect for that, with plenty of fun activities. Historical Tours, Bus Tours, Guided Day Trips, and more are just some of the options you could explore to fully immerse yourself and make the most of your time.

In this travel guide, we've included some of the best things to do in Sintra, adding a special touch to your journey in this vibrant hamlet. Explore bustling markets, embark on scenic hikes, sample local delicacies, or immerse yourself in the rich history and heritage of Sintra. Browse this diverse array of unforgettable experiences Sintra offers and let your adventures begin!

Top tours & tickets starting in Sintra

In Sintra, travelers are spoiled for choice with a dazzling array of 18 categories of top-rated tours and tickets. But among this sea of options, one category reigns supreme: Trips & Excursions.

Trips & Excursions offer an unparalleled opportunity to immerse yourself in the heart and soul of Sintra. For example, the fantastic Pena Palace Jeep Safari.

Sintra also offers plenty of budget-friendly tours and activities that promise travelers a unique experience. Sintra Walking Tour - The Portuguese Fairytale, for example, is the cheapest Half-day Tour option in the hamlet. This experience costs around 3 EUR.

Elevate your upcoming Sintra adventure with unforgettable experiences by booking top-rated tours in the hamlet. Uncover the finest tours, activities, and tickets awaiting you in Sintra right below.


All Experiences in Sintra

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Search for things to do in Sintra

Discover the best things to do in Sintra. Choose from 241 fantastic tours and activities available in the hamlet.

Select your dates and number of travelers in the search bar below to receive the best recommendations for your vacation in Sintra. Click the green button to view your options and discover a variety of exciting things to do in Sintra.

What to eat in Sintra

Sintra, Portugal, offers a unique culinary experience that ranges from street food to high-end restaurants. One of the best places to eat in Sintra is the historic center, where you can sample the renowned Travesseiros de Sintra, a delicious puff pastry filled with almond cream, at Piriquita. Another must-try is Queijadas, a type of cheesecake that has been produced in Sintra for over 600 years. Head over to Casa do Preto for this sweet delight. For seafood lovers, Azenhas do Mar is a coastal district offering fresh seafood caught daily from the Atlantic. Don't miss the opportunity to try the traditional dish, Arroz de Marisco, a flavorful seafood rice. At high-end restaurants like Tascantiga and Incomum by Luís Santos, you can savor contemporary interpretations of classic Portuguese dishes. Remember, dining in Sintra isn't just about food; it's about soaking in the culture. So, take your time, enjoy the scenery, and let your palate explore this gastronomic paradise.

Nightlife in Sintra

Sintra, a charming city in Portugal, offers a unique nightlife experience that perfectly blends its rich history with modern elements. The city center is arguably the best area for bars in Sintra, with an eclectic mix of establishments to suit different tastes. Here, you can find everything from traditional Portuguese taverns serving local wines and tapas, to trendy cocktail bars with live music. For those seeking a quieter evening, there are several wine bars dotted around the city where you can sample Portugal’s famous vinho verde and port wines.

Sintra’s nightlife is not limited to bars and pubs only. The city is also home to some fantastic restaurants that stay open late into the night, offering a fantastic opportunity to explore Portuguese cuisine. Another unique feature of Sintra’s nightlife is the occasional open-air concerts held at historical venues during the summer months, providing an unforgettable night under the stars. As the city is relatively small, getting around is easy, either on foot or by taxi. Remember to dress warmly for the evening as Sintra can get quite chilly after sundown.

Best Shopping in Sintra

Sintra, a picturesque city in Portugal, offers a delightful shopping experience that blends traditional craftmanship and contemporary fashion. The best place to go shopping in Sintra is certainly the historic Old Town, where quaint cobbled streets are lined with independent boutiques, artisanal shops, and traditional markets. Here you can find a myriad of locally crafted items, such as hand-painted tiles, cork products, and handmade jewelry.

For those who appreciate fashion, Sintra's boutiques offer an eclectic mix of Portuguese designers and international brands, often in beautifully restored historic buildings. Don't miss a visit to Perola de Sintra, a charming store known for its fine selection of Portuguese ceramics and traditional embroidery.

For a more modern shopping experience, head to Sintra Villa Shopping Center, boasting a variety of stores, including Portuguese chain stores and international brands.

While shopping in Sintra, remember that most shops close for a lunch break, usually between 1 pm and 3 pm. Also, be prepared for the hilly terrain of the city, comfortable shoes are a must. Happy shopping!

Best free things to do in Sintra

Sintra, a picturesque Portuguese town steeped in history and splendor, offers a series of delightful free experiences. Among the best free things to do in Sintra is a visit to Quinta da Regaleira. Though the main house and grottoes have an entrance fee, you can roam around its enchanting gardens without spending a dime, marveling at the romantic architecture. Another must-see is the Sintra National Palace viewed from the outside. Its two white chimneys rising above the town's skyline create a spectacular sight. Also, freely explore the historical center of Sintra. Its narrow, winding streets are filled with traditional pastel-colored houses, ancient fountains and various monuments. A hike up to the Moorish Castle is another excellent free activity. Although the castle itself requires admission, the trail leading up to it is free and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. Lastly, don't miss out on a stroll along the beaches of Sintra's coastline, with their wild, untamed beauty and dramatic cliffs falling into the Atlantic Ocean. Truly, Sintra's charm can be freely savored without breaking the bank.

Vacation packages in Sintra

Booking a vacation package to Sintra means spending less time planning and more time enjoying your vacation. A vacation package includes everything from flight tickets, accommodation, and a rental car to 24/7 personal travel support and a carefully planned travel itinerary. You can also take your vacation in Sintra to the next level by adding tours, tickets, and activities to each day of your trip.

Apart from providing everything you need to travel comfortably, travel packages to Sintra also offer full customization. In other words, you can add or remove services at your own convenience to create the perfect vacation for you and your travel companions.

Continue to the next section of this complete Sintra travel guide to explore further details about the vacation options available for your trip to the hamlet.

Top vacation packages in Sintra

Top-rated travel packages to Rome allow you to experience a memorable journey. These packages offer customizable features, ensuring you're guaranteed to have an immersive exploration through the heart of Rome and beyond. Browse a couple of options to uncover the finest ways to explore the city of Rome with ease and excitement.

Get more Sintra vacation ideas by continuing to read this Sintra travel guide and discover the greatest selection of travel packages in Europe. Scroll down to find the best vacation packages in Portugal that match your needs and budget.

Find vacation packages in Sintra

Explore and compare vacation packages, each offering unforgettable journeys to the wonderful hamlet of Sintra. Be sure to act swiftly, as the best flights, hotels, and activities in Sintra tend to fill up quickly. Use the search tool below to find the best travel deals in Portugal. Your customized holiday package to Sintra is only a few clicks away!

How to get to Sintra

From the arrival airport, travelers can choose from various public and private transfer options to Sintra.

For those seeking the best flight ticket deals to Sintra, knowing the cheapest travel times and which airlines offer the most affordable flights is helpful. Luckily, we provide this information to help you discover the cheapest and most popular flights to Sintra.

Find cheap flights to Sintra

Booking budget-friendly flights to Sintra is a crucial part of planning your trip to the city. This section will guide you through the process, helping you find the best deals for your journey.

Booking in advance is a smart move when traveling to Sintra. Airlines release their best deals months ahead of departure, so early birds catch the lower fares. Consider flexible travel dates while planning your visit to the hamlet. Mid-week and off-peak seasons often offer more wallet-friendly options.

To help you find cheap flights to Sintra, you can use the powerful booking widget below. Enter your departure city, choose between round trip or one-way, pick your fare class, select travel dates, and specify the number of travelers. Click "Search, " and the widget will do the rest. You'll see a list of flights matching your criteria, making your trip to Sintra even more convenient.

Fine-tune your search with filters to sort by price, airline, layovers, and more. Once you've found your ideal flight, click "Book, " and you'll be redirected to the booking page to complete your reservation. Enter your payment details and receive a confirmation – it's that simple!

Remember to book ahead, stay flexible, and utilize the widget's features to make your journey to Sintra both affordable and unforgettable.

Where to stay in Sintra

An essential factor to consider when traveling to a new place or country is accommodation. While visiting a hamlet as fantastic as Sintra is always exciting, any avid traveler knows that accommodations often make or break the vacation experience. The best place to stay in Sintra usually depends on travelers' needs and preferences. However, booking accommodations in central Sintra offers a ton of benefits.

Staying in the heart of the hamlet allows you to easily walk to many of the top sights and dining areas in Sintra and cut down on your travel expenses. Centrally located accommodations are also an excellent choice for travelers in Sintra planning to go on a quick tour or drive to the neighboring regions.

In Sintra, you'll find 6 different types of places to stay, catering to every taste, budget, and reason for travel. For example, honeymooners or travelers on a romantic getaway in Portugal can experience the ultimate relaxation at one of the 5-star or 4-star hotels in Sintra. Travelers whose purpose is sightseeing can also find plenty of mid-range and budget-friendly hotels in the hamlet, allowing access to many of the top attractions in Sintra.

Learn more about the most popular places to stay and the top-rated hotels in Sintra in the following sections.

Popular types of accommodation in Sintra

A trip to Sintra means opportunities to relax at any of the 6 different types of places to stay in the hamlet. While each type offers varying amenities and rates, there is no denying that Sintra provides a great selection of lodging options ready to cater to every kind of guest.

Among all the choices available in the hamlet, Quinta Das Murtas is one of the top picks of travelers in Sintra. Quinta Das Murtas is a stay with an average rating of 3223 stars out of 5 from 4 guests. The guesthouse is located at Rua Eduardo Van Zeller Nº4 and boasts many great utilities, including free wi-fi, airport shuttle, and garden.

Budget accommodations are also incredibly popular among travelers in Sintra. Cheaper alternatives allow travelers to save on accommodation costs and have more to spend on other experiences.

In Sintra, travelers looking for an economical yet top-rated place to stay usually choose Sintra Green Chalet - Bed & Breakfast. For approximately 82 EUR, guests can book a comfortable Single Room at this popular bed & breakfast, which also offers free wi-fi, bar, and more.

Below is a list of all 6 different types of places to stay in Sintra. Select the type you prefer to compare options under each category and find the best accommodation.


All Hotels in Sintra

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Search for accommodation in Sintra

Finding the perfect stay for your visit to Sintra is made easy with our search tool. With just a few clicks, explore a range of available hotels and accommodations, complete with prices and amenities for easy comparison. Simply input your check-in and check-out dates, along with the number of guests and rooms needed. Start planning your trip to Sintra effortlessly now!

Transportation in Sintra

Sintra, Portugal offers a variety of transportation options for tourists. The city is well-served by public transportation, with regular bus and train services. The local bus service, Scotturb, covers most of the city and its surrounding areas, making it easy to explore the beautiful landscapes and historic sites.

The Sintra Train Station, located in the heart of the city, provides direct links to Lisbon and other neighboring towns. Taxis are also readily available and are a convenient option for short distances or direct travel to specific destinations. It's easy to hail a taxi on the street, or you can use a local taxi app to book a ride.

For those who prefer to drive, there are several car rental companies in Sintra offering a range of vehicles to suit various needs. Driving allows for greater flexibility and the chance to discover off-the-beaten-path locations.

Lastly, for a unique local experience, try the traditional horse-drawn carriages or the tuk-tuks. These provide a fun and unique way to explore the city at a leisurely pace.

Car rentals in Sintra

To navigate Sintra effortlessly, renting a car is an excellent choice. With your own wheels, you can explore every nook and cranny of the destination without relying on public transportation and even venture off the beaten path. On our website, you'll discover a selection of over 1 car rental companies in Sintra, ready to provide you with the perfect vehicle for your travels.

Automatic cars for rent in Sintra start at 45 EUR per day or 318 EUR per week. The cheapest automatic rental car is a Seat Ibiza. If you prefer driving a manual car, you'll find multiple options for rent in Sintra, starting at 26 EUR per day or 179 EUR per week. The cheapest manual rental car is a Fiat 500.

Learn more about the different types of cars you can rent in Sintra, Portugal below.

Popular types of cars for rent in Sintra

Renting a car in Sintra is a popular choice among travelers who want to explore the hamlet at their own pace.

A wide variety of popular car rentals are available to choose from in Sintra, ensuring you find the best car for your travel plans. All car rentals come with CDW insurance for added protection throughout your trip.

Check out all the options available and book your car rental in Sintra for your upcoming adventures in Portugal below.

Search for car rentals in Sintra

Get ready to hit the road and explore the beautiful hamlet of Sintra. Find the best deals on a variety of popular car rentals in Sintra, Portugal, or any other destination in Europe by using the search tool below.

Enter your pick-up and drop-off location, driver's age, and dates. Click the green button to view your options.

Popular destinations to visit after Sintra

The hamlet of Sintra is just one of the many unique and scenic destinations you can visit in Portugal. So if you're itching for another cultural adventure, a relaxing road trip, an action-filled city break, or a memorable weekend getaway, know that Portugal has it all.

Each destination in Portugal offers something unique to experience! Take the opportunity to visit other captivating places in Portugal that are as magical as the hamlet of Sintra. The most popular travel destinations in Portugal are listed below. Click on the name of the place you want to explore next to learn more about it.

All the best destinations in Portugal

When unsure about where to go next, use the map below. This map shows the locations of all the best destinations in Portugal. Use the map to plan your trip and find the best routes.

Domestic flights from Sintra

Experience the authentic charm of Portugal by expanding your travels beyond the boundaries of Sintra. Explore other destinations around Portugal with a domestic flight. A domestic flight is typically a short-haul flight, with the longest duration not exceeding two hours. To find the best flights from Sintra to other amazing locations in Portugal, add the required details below and select 'Search' to view the best domestic flights in Portugal for your chosen dates. You can also jump to the last section of this travel guide to find the most popular domestic flights from Sintra.

Search domestic flights from Sintra

Traveling to another city or region in Portugal? Use the flight search tool below to quickly find the cheapest one-way or round-trip flights from Sintra to different local destinations.

Enter all the necessary information and click or tap on the Search button to see a list of the available domestic flights in Portugal on the selected dates.

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