Sintra served as a mountain retreat for Portugal's royals and elites for hundreds of years and as such, is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site full of castles, palaces, forts, and mansions. Our second day in Lisbon, we decided to take my co-worker's advice and hop the train to Sintra. There's way too much to see in Sintra on just a day trip though, and we quickly became overwhelmed trying to figure out which sites to visit. However, we kept seeing a place called Quinta da Regaleira and it had the best reviews out of everything in Sintra (five stars from 9,829 reviews on TripAdvisor) so we were like obviously we have to go there!
As many of you know, Justin and I just got back from a quick trip to Europe, during which we visited Madrid, Barcelona, and Lisbon over the course of a week (a bit crazy I know). I have to say, I fell in love with Portugal and as far as cities go, I liked Lisbon quite a lot more than either Madrid or Barcelona. With Spain being its more famous neighbor, Portugal doesn't end up on people's travel radars as often as it should. Here's six reasons you should add Lisbon to your travel list.
When I was eight we left our home in Africa and returned to the United States. Our tickets were to take us back by way of the Netherlands, and so my parents decided that this would be the perfect opportunity to stop and explore Europe. And so they planned a two week stop over in which we would drive through seven European countries in a VW camper van. We had been living as volunteers in Tanzania for seven years and so money was definitely tight. This was budget travel at its best which meant that there was no staying anywhere but the camper van and that we spent the whole time doing covert camping so we wouldn't be saddled with campground fees.