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Showing posts from August, 2010

Right here in the middle of the Historical Center

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No need to take a bus or drive or walk long distances.... Sometimes another day in the car queues or crowded busses do not seem like an attracive choice of things to do. Here are some of my suggestions for a day spent in the town center, walking distance from Casa do Valle.
Once I already blogged about the Museum of Natural History, in town, worth seeing, and interesting to all ages.

Now - The National Palace is the center of Sintra! One of the most visited monuments in all of Portugal, it is easily forgotten by the tourists as it is so close! Its cone-shaped twin chimneys are an exlibris of Sintra - and its tiles (azulejos) are the largest national collection. A summer house of the Queen Mother Maria Pia until the end of the Monarchy (1910), it now belongs to the state and is a host to many concerts, state lunches and exhibitions. Closed on Wednesdays, free entries on Sunday mornings!


The Toy Museum -Started as a private collection of tin soldiers of João Arbués Moreira. It is a…

Running away from the heat

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This winter when it was cold and rainy I promised to myself that I would not complain about the heat if it ever came. The heat DID come, and it has stayed on and on. The normally cool nights of Sintra have been less cool than normal, and all of our clients have slept with their windows and doors open. My poor dog Ruben, who was recently operated on his knee, is suffering the most with the heat.

So what to do? It has been really busy, too, I have been blogging less, though I often think about things to blog about. I have now tried to escape the heat; my morning walks area earlier, and in the shade. And that is what gave me the idea: the shade. Sintra is FULL of tourists. I thank each and everyone for coming, but in this heat I wanted a short escapade from the crowds, and the heat - and that is just what I did; I took a horse and carriage ride to Monserrate gardens!

The trip was wonderful. It let the crowded center of town behind and we dove into the lush, green and cool mounta…