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Palaces of Sintra




During the nineteenth century Sintra exerted a considerable influence on the development of European Romantic architecture (Palácio da Pena, Monserrate).


However, his interest certainly is not limited to one or two buildings of obvious importance, before diversifies a host of palaces and parks, stately homes with their gardens and groves, of palaces and chalets surrounded by a lush vegetation, the long stretches of walls that meander over the highest peaks of the Sierra, evoking bygone centuries; convents inviting to meditation, surrounded by mossy cliffs and murmuring fountains, the austere churches and chapels, hermitages as well as more "humanized" and popular constitute one and the other poles of secular Faith and Art, and finally, several archaeological ancient times, that brings us to our roots further afield.
It is this uniqueness that underpins the celebrity of Sintra, his international reputation among poets, artists and thinkers. Their difference lies in the exceptional syncretism achieved between nature and the ancient monuments as well as the pioneering architectural dream that raised, particularly in the context of Romanticism.
The Serra de Sintra match him in a convincing way. Viewed from afar (or from an aerial photograph) it gives the impression of a much more natural landscape that stands well Area: a small mountainous forested granite, rising from the countryside (she also intersected by hills and troughs) between Lisbon and the coast. Viewed more closely, and touring it, Sierra reveals a wealth of cultural markers surprising, covering several centuries of the history of Portugal.
This story radiated from the old town of Sintra, chosen as the site of a medieval royal palace, benefiting from a very specific climatic situation in the country (and even for the Mediterranean region): cool summers and winters sweet and sunny. The Court and the nobles of the country established in Sintra and the slopes of the Sierra Norte, along which were erecting sumptuous villas and estates surrounded by gardens and parks of artistic style and luxurious flora. Moreover, the solitude of the Sierra and its forests attracted monks and hermits who enriched the convents and hermitages introducing you to the religious-cultural.
The climax of this extraordinary development of the landscape of Sintra was hit with the reign of King Fernando II of Saxe-Cobourg dynasty-Gotha (1836-1885). Very close to Sintra and its landscape in which harbored great affection, this king-artist implantaria romanticism here in a splendid and unique to the Mediterranean regions. The king purchased the Convent Pena situated on a steep mountain and turned it into a fabulous and magical palace, giving you the maximum dimension that only a romantic vision of a great artistic and aesthetic sensibility of a great dream could. This anticipates, so to speak, the famous Castle Neuchwanstein built by Ludwig II of Bavaria. Furthermore, D. Fernando II surrounded the palace of a large romantic park planted with rare and exotic trees, decorated with fountains, watercourses and chains of lakes, chalets, chapels, fake ruins and traversed paths magical unparalleled anywhere else . The King also took care to restore the forests of the Sierra where thousands of trees were planted, mainly indigenous oaks and pines, cypresses Mexicans, acacias in Australia, and many other species that contribute to the character perfectly romantic da Serra.
Thus evolved the Serra de Sintra cultural landscape of an eminent and singular value. From the point of view more natural, associated components of Mediterranean floras and northern hundreds of trees and exotic flowers in a framework of gardens, parks and forests truly unique.