Itinerary through Sintra Mountains

A complete tour around the mountains, visiting some of its most beautiful and symbolic sites, not to mention the coast sightseeing towards Cape Roca.

Begin this tour by the Palácio da Vila in Sintra. You can take advantage of visiting this famous monument or taste local sweets (walnuts, cheesecakes and "travesseiros"). Then, exit towards Seteais and Monserrate. The road, narrow and winding, will lead you by the Regaleira Palace, a revivalist building of late nineteenth century, with cozy gardens and an atmosphere of mystery. Seteais, a palace dating from the eighteenth century, is a sophisticated hotel also surrounded by gardens. Once made a part of the descent of the mountain, it is a must to stop at the Parque de Monserrate, with unique plant species. The road leads down to Colares. If not during week-end, go up through Colares Velho, with its nice square, visit the church and art galleries and cross the picturesque village of Penedo (attention to the narrow road and traffic on both directions). By this or by the regular road you will come to the crossroads leading to Almoçageme (where you can take the way to the beautiful Praia da Adraga). About 300 meters before this crossroads, near the intersection to Praia Grande, do not miss, on Saturdays and Sundays, the picturesque fair with local products. Past Pé da Serra, and upwards, there is an access, to the right, leading to the well-preserved village of Ulgueira. You can reach Azóia by both roads. Remember that at this location, alongside the main road (EN247), by the cell phone antenna, they have a small market on weekends. Azóia gives access to Cabo da Roca, westernmost point of Europe with its splendid views over the Atlantic Ocean. On Sundays it becomes a real Mecca for 'bikers' of all ages and for bikes of all engine sizes. Drive back by the same road, crossing Azóia until the junction to the left in EN247. After 50 meters go to the right towards Peninha. Once there, it is worth climbing the stairs of the chapel to better enjoy the splendid views of Guincho, Cascais and Cabo da Roca. From here, there are some hiking trails of varying lengths, duly signaled. From Peninha follow by the same road back to the crossroads of Capuchos. Not to be missed, the cells hewn into the rock and lined with cork that were part of the monastery of Franciscan friars, built here in 1560, according to the wish of the son of the Viceroy of India, D. João de Castro. From here follow the signs to Pena Palace, the apex of romantic architecture of the nineteenth century, built by King Ferdinand II. Here the visitor is caught by the charm of the architecture and delighted by the surrounding lush woods and gardens. A very narrow, sloping road leads to the yard of the fair of São Pedro de Sintra, completing this tour. Access Through IC19 to Sintra, starting the tour near the Palácio da Vila (access by São Pedro de Sintra, except on Sundays when fairs are held) To take into account On week-ends and public holidays avoid the center of Sintra, crowded by greater numbers of visitors; alternatively, you may start the tour at Praia das Maçãs. On Sundays there is a concentration of 'bikers' at Cape Roca and a lot of traffic. When With good weather, regardless of season. Length Some 50 km, ending in São Pedro de Sintra Meals Restaurante da Quinta da Regaleira (T. 219106650); Café Pic-Nic, na Ulgueira (T. 219241047)

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