Tag Archives: Sintra

Fun Photo Friday — Lisbon, Sintra, and Cabo da Roca


Today’s Fun Photo Friday presents some of my favorite photos from our Rodrigo Bastos-guided We Hate Tourism tour.  One of the great things about hiring local talent for tours is that you get the inside scoop on all sorts of oddities, such as the Portuguese mistrust of the European Union in general, and in particular the immense dislike for German Chancellor Angela Merkel who is seen below as a puppet master manipulating Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho (left) and former Minister of Foreign Affairs Paulo Portas (currently Deputy Prime Minister).  By the way, Rodrigo tells me that the sailor outfit is a reference to two second-hand German submarines Mr. Portas ordered purchased even after his own armed forces advised that they were unnecessary to Portugal’s overall defense strategy.

Angela Merkel Graffiti

Angela Merkel Graffiti

Those opinions of Chancellor Merkel are not strictly Portuguese, by the way.  Similar resentment is displayed throughout southern European countries hit hard to the Worldwide Great Recession — Greece, Italy, and Spain in particular from what we witnessed on this voyage.

But enough of the politics.  Here’s some more of my favorite shots from this great and exciting tour (Thanks again, Rodrigo, and thank you We Hate Tourism) — click on any image below to bring up today’s slideshow:

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Sintra — Where to go just before the End of the World


Sintra Statuary

Sintra Statuary

Our guide Rodrigo Bastas of We Hate Tourism Tours dropped us off a short walk away from the old town center of Sintra and very near the Câmara Municipal (City Hall), an intriguing structure topped with a magnificent, intricately tiled tower.

Câmara Municipal — City Hall

Câmara Municipal — City Hall

As Rodrigo drove up the hill into the old town we started our trek along the scenic Volta Duche.  We were greeted along the way with many examples of statuary.

Sintra Statuary

Sintra Statuary

There was statuary to admire:

Sintra Statuary

Sintra Statuary

There was statuary to remind you of breakfast:

Starbuck's?

Starbuck’s?

There was even statuary upon which to sit and admire the views:

 

Ursula and a Marble Pillow

Ursula and a Marble Pillow

We also passed what would have appeared to be a Moorish-style bus stop, but Rodrigo had forewarned us that this was actually a Moorish-style fountain.  This structure was built in 1922 by local sculpture Jose de Fonseca.

Fonte Mourisca — Moorish Fountain

Following a short uphill hike of about perhaps twenty minutes we reached the old town portion of Sintra.  There we rejoined Rodrigo who gave us directions so that we could split up and head off in various directions.  Of course no blog about Sintra would be complete without mention of the Sintra National Palace which dates back to 1415 and was in more or less continuous use until as late as 1910.

Sintra National Palace

Sintra National Palace

The two conical kitchen chimneys are depicted in drawings as far back as 1509, as you can see from this Wikipedia image from their article on Sintra National Palace (at this link):

Conical Kitchen Chimneys in 1509

Some of the building in Sintra date back all the way to the 8th and 9th Centuries.  That’s pretty amazing, and makes for little wonder as to why Sintra obtained UNESCO World Heritage Site status back in 1995.  Across from the National Palace was this little tile-covered charmer (date unknown):

Across from the Sintra National Palace

Across from the Sintra National Palace

Of course part of the charm of Sintra is walking the streets and enjoying the architectural details:

A Charming Sintra Street Scene

A Charming Sintra Street Scene

Sintra Balcony

Sintra Balcony

Come back on Fun Photo Friday for a gallery of my favorite Lisbon, Sintra, and Cabo da Roca shots from this particular voyage.

 

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