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Pena Palace

Marvel at one of Portugal’s 7 wonders in this stunning expression of 19th-century Romanticism in architecture.

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Pena Palace: Our most recommended tours and activities

Lisbon: Pena Palace, Sintra, Cabo da Roca, & Cascais Daytrip

1. Lisbon: Pena Palace, Sintra, Cabo da Roca, & Cascais Daytrip

Escape Lisbon and go on a full-day, guided journey to some of Portugal’s most popular locations stopping at the iconic Pena Palace in Sintra, the awe-inspiring cliffs of Cabo da Roca, and the ritzy seaside town of Cascais. Choose between the shared tour or private tour options. Your journey from Lisbon starts at the famous city of Sintra, whose Romanticist architecture, historic estates and villas, and numerous royal palaces and castles have made it a UNESCO World Heritage site. Enjoy the freedom of choice on whether you want an included entry ticket and tour of the colorful Pena Palace, or whether you prefer to gain some extra free time instead. Arriving early at Sintra means greater chances of avoiding long lines if you choose to go with your guide on a comprehensive tour through its lavish interiors and lush gardens. Marvel at the palace’s fairy-tale-like appearance, beautiful facade and extravagant interior. Next, head over to the center of Sintra and get 1.5-hour of free time to wander on your own. Get recommendations of the city’s must-see locations as well as the best restaurant options for delicious traditional Portuguese dining from your guide. Continue to Cabo da Roca, the westernmost point of continental Europe, and take in the impressive views of the ocean crashing against the high rocky cliffs. If weather permitting, stop at Guincho beach, whose strong winds and high swells have made it a popular surfing destination. Lastly, arrive in Cascais, an elegant seaside resort town on the Portuguese Riviera. Stroll through the lovely city center and make sure to check out Cascais’ luxury marina, its charming fishing port, and a restored fort that houses many local craftsmen. After your free exploration time in Cascais, relax back on board your air-conditioned vehicle, and admire more breathtaking views of the Portuguese coast as you make your way back to Lisbon.

Sintra: Pena Palace and Park Entrance Ticket

2. Sintra: Pena Palace and Park Entrance Ticket

The palace is situated in the eastern part of the Park of Pena, which one has to pass through to reach the steep ramp built by the Baron of Eschwege that provides access to the castle-like building. The palace itself is composed of two wings: the former Manueline monastery of the Order of St. Jerome and the wing built in the 19th century by King Ferdinand II. These wings are ringed by a third architectural structure that is a fantastical version of an imaginary castle, whose walls one can walk around and which comprises battlements, watchtowers, an entrance tunnel and even a drawbridge. In 1838, King Ferdinand II acquired the former Hieronymite monastery of Our Lady of Pena, which was built by King Manuel I in 1511 on the top of the hill above Sintra and had been left unoccupied since 1834 when the religious orders were suppressed in Portugal. The monastery consisted of the cloister and its outbuildings, the chapel, the sacristy and the bell tower, which today form the northern section of the Palace of Pena, or the Old Palace as it is known. King Ferdinand began by making repairs to the former monastery, which, according to the historical sources of that time, was in very bad condition. He refurbished the whole of the upper floor, replacing the fourteen cells used by the monks with larger-sized rooms and covering them with the vaulted ceilings that can still be seen today. In roughly 1843, the king decided to enlarge the palace by building a new wing (the New Palace) with even larger rooms (the Great Hall is a good example of this), ending in a circular tower next to the new kitchens. The building work was directed by the Baron of Eschwege. The 1994 repair works restored the original colors of the Palace’s exterior: pink for the former monastery and ochre for the New Palace. In transforming a former monastery into a castle-like residence, King Ferdinand showed that he was heavily influenced by German romanticism, and that he probably found his inspiration in the Stolzenfels and Rheinstein castles on the banks of the Rhine, as well as Babelsberg Palace in Potsdam. These building works at the Palace of Pena ended in the mid-1860s, although further work was also undertaken at later dates for the decoration of the interiors. King Ferdinand also ordered the Park of Pena to be planted in the Palace’s surrounding areas in the style of the romantic gardens of that time, with winding paths, pavilions and stone benches placed at different points along its routes, as well as trees and other plants originating from the four corners of the earth. In this way, the king took advantage of the mild and damp climate of the Sintra hills to create an entirely new and exotic park with over five hundred different species of trees. The Palace of Pena was designated a National Monument in 1910 and forms part of the Cultural Landscape of Sintra, which has been classified by UNESCO as World Heritage since 1995.

From Lisbon: Quinta da Regaleira, Sintra, & Pena Palace Trip

3. From Lisbon: Quinta da Regaleira, Sintra, & Pena Palace Trip

Embark on a trip back in time on this day trip from Lisbon as you explore the luxurious estate of Quinta da Regaleira, the royal residence of Pena Palace, and the historic landmarks of the town of Sintra. Stop to relax in the seaside town of Cascais. Meet your guide at Plaza Don Pedro IV in Lisbon and drive off to your first stop. Tour the gardens and palace of Quinta da Regaleira, a Romantic construction surrounded by lakes, grottoes, and fountains. Head over to Pena Palace, just a few kilometers away. Discover the ancient castle, which was one of the favorite residences of the royal family throughout the 19th century. Contemplate the fairytale-style building and learn about its history, from the original Convent of the Jeronimos to the castle built from its ruins for Maria II. Enjoy some leisure time to stroll through Sintra and purchase lunch if you're feeling hungry. Your guide will be glad to recommend the best places and most iconic dishes in the area. After lunch, begin a guided tour of the main landmarks of Sintra, and hear about local secrets and stories.  Finally, visit the quaint village of Cascais which is linked to the Portuguese royalty that once summered here. Walk along beautiful beaches, mansions, museums, and photogenic streets. Return to Lisbon at the end of your day trip.

From Lisbon: Sintra, Regaleira and Pena Palace Guided Tour

4. From Lisbon: Sintra, Regaleira and Pena Palace Guided Tour

Benefit from a guided tour inside the Quinta Regaleira and Pena Palace. Fall in love with Sintra, a village full of magic and mystery, the lasting symbol of Portugal's Romantic period and also classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Opt to treat yourself and your loved ones to a private experience with your own guide and pickup from your own hotel. Alternatively, you can get picked up from a convenient location in the center of Lisbon. Accompanied by a tour guide, visit Quinta da Regaleira and enjoy its lush gardens, lakes, grottoes, and enigmatic constructions, including the world-famous Initiation Well. Uncover the mysteries of each place and learn about the orders of the Freemasons and the Knights Templar. During the lunch break in Sintra's old town, you will have free time to explore the historical and charming streets. You will also have time to taste the traditional pastry, travesseiro. After buying your entry ticket with your guide, step into a fairy tale when you enter the romantic Pena Palace and Park. Understand its unique architectural expression of Romanticism. Spot how it blends many styles, including Gothic, neo-Manueline, neo-Islamic, and neo-Renaissance. Stroll around the park with its astonishing variety of plants and trees. Marvel at the palace's amazing views of the castle and the Atlantic Ocean, a perfect way to end the day before returning to Lisbon.

From Lisbon: Sintra, Cabo da Roca and Cascais Full-Day Tour

5. From Lisbon: Sintra, Cabo da Roca and Cascais Full-Day Tour

On this full-day tour you’ll discover Sintra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire the villa that’s surrounded by an amazing natural park, a castle, beautiful palaces and chalets. Take a walk along the medieval streets of Sintra an drive through the national park and see the rare fauna, the unique trees, the Moorish castle, Monserrate Palace and the chalets. Visit Pena Palace, one of the most impressive expressions of 19th-century Romanticism in architecture in the world and one of Portugal’s seven wonders. Say goodbye to Sintra with an optional visit to mystical Quinta da Regaleira, a palace surrounded by luxuriant gardens, lakes, caves and enigmatic constructions that hide obscure alchemist meanings, evoked by Freesmasons, Knights Templar and Rosicrucians. Continue on to the westernmost point of continental Europe at Roca Cape. Travel along the coast and embrace the Atlantic, and stop in Cascais and Estoril, once retreats for the royal family and the European aristocracy.

From Lisbon: Sintra, Cascais, Cabo da Roca Private Car Tour

6. From Lisbon: Sintra, Cascais, Cabo da Roca Private Car Tour

Discover the breathtaking Sintra, Cabo da Roca, and Cascais on a private car tour with a local guide. Explore the old royal summer home of Pena Palace, the enchanting gardens of Quinda da Regaleira, and the charming seaside town of Cascais along your way Listen to stories that surround these beautiful locations nearby Lisbon, taking your time to walk through any or all sights. Sit back and relax as you’re driven along the stunning coastline from Sintra to Cabo de Roca and Cascais. Be amazed by the cliffside views and the vast Atlantic Ocean.

From Lisbon: Sintra and Cascais Small Group Full-Day Tour

7. From Lisbon: Sintra and Cascais Small Group Full-Day Tour

Depart Lisbon and journey by air-conditioned, 8-seat vehicle to Pena Palace atop a rock overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Hear the romantic story of the palace and feel like a member of the Portuguese royal family. Then, head to Cabo da Roca for panoramic views from continental Europe’s westernmost point. Pass the stunning beaches of Cascais, including the scenic Praia do Guincho. Experience the mystery of the Devil's Mouth cave, created by the crashing of the waves on the rocky bluff. Stop in the elegant resort town of Cascais, favored by the nobles of Europe for its idyllic setting. Stroll along the harbor before traveling back to Lisbon.

From Lisbon: Sintra, Regaleira, Cape Roca, and Cascais Tour

8. From Lisbon: Sintra, Regaleira, Cape Roca, and Cascais Tour

Discover Sintra, so-called the “Garden of Eden” by Lord Byron. Tour its paradisiacal streets and gardens and admire the ornate palaces, villas, and estates throughout this colorful city. See Pena National Palace, famed for its romantic architecture and recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site. Located approximately 500 meters above sea level, soak up the stunning city views over Sintra. Continue to Sintra's Quinta da Regaleira and take a guided tour of the palace, lush gardens, lakes, grottoes, and enigmatic constructions. Learn about its connection with the Freemasons and the Knights Templar. Head to Cabo da Roca, the most western point of mainland Europe, passing Guincho Beach. Experience the Portuguese Rivera as you drive along the Estoril Coast and visit the village of Cascais. See why many exiled European royalty choose to live there.

From Lisbon: Sintra Highlights Full-Day Tour

9. From Lisbon: Sintra Highlights Full-Day Tour

Fall in love with magical Sintra, the lasting symbol of Portugal's Romantic period. Its stunning landscape is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage of Humanity site that is begging for exploration. Start the tour by exploring the exotic Pena Park and the magnificent Pena Palace. This remarkable building is complete with different decorative styles, symbols, and intriguing features, and was once the royal family's official summer residence. Walk through Sintra's charming city center. Stop by the decorative Quinta da Regaleira estate. Explore the initiation well as well as its many lakes and fountains, and the aquarium on its grounds. Spend your lunchtime strolling through the historical village. Enjoy a quick stop at local patisseries to try some of Sintra's well-known delicacies. Conclude your journey at the eclectic Monserrate Palace, a glorious estate that once served as a summer residence for the Portuguese court.

From Lisbon: Sintra, Cabo da Roca & Cascais Ful-Day Tour

10. From Lisbon: Sintra, Cabo da Roca & Cascais Ful-Day Tour

This tour will take you to Sintra, a world heritage site, where medieval streets, castles, palaces, and chalets of diverse architectures coexist, inserted in a natural park that shows plants from diverse parts of the world, forming a vast and magical green forest.  Onwards, travel towards the Atlantic Ocean, to discover Cape Roca, the westernmost point of Europe. Travel along the sea and admire Guincho Beach enormous sand bed, which hosts many international surfing events due to gigantic waves. Pass through Cascais, and Estoril, both famous for their cosmopolitan environment, and finally visit Estoril’s worldly renowned Casino and beautiful gardens. Return to Lisbon driving along the Estoril Coast admiring the breath-taking sight of white sanded beaches along the way.

Other Sightseeing Options in Pena Palace

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What people are saying about Pena Palace

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 17,911 reviews

Our driver, Daniel, picked us up at our AirB&B on time in a comfortable, clean minivan. We wanted to end the day in Sintra rather than return to Lisbon so he organized the trip to fit our needs. Daniel took us to the sights we chose to visit and gave us insightful information about each sight. We were taken to a wonderful local restaurant that we wouldn't have know about other wise. I felt well taken care of and highly recommend this tour.

Excellent tour and experience! Diego was very knowledgeable, professional, friendly, and helpful. The bus driver was very nice and the bus was very clean and comfortable. Fantastic!!

Amazing tour of Sintra! Our tour guide Miguel was so friendly and extremely informative. Would recommend this tour to anybody visiting Lisbon.

such an amazing experience. goncalo and filipe were, in one word, legends!! would recommend this trip to anyone who visits Lisbon!

Very comfortable trip, excellent driver. Learned a lot, excellent lunch. Highly recommended!