Showing posts from 2019

Accessibility to Sintra's mountain-top palaces

At the same time as Greta Thornberg visited Portugal and stirred the global warming conversation in Portugal, the City of Sintra announced the ban of private car traffic to Sintra mountain, affecting the accessibility to Pena Palace and the Moorish Castle.  An historic city on a mountain, the traffic in Sintra's narrow, hilly streets has become close to chaotic, taking from the charm of the town, as cars queue bumper to bumper and drivers search for scarce parking spots, making the Sintra experience all too stressful. The new traffic rules seem drastic, but are aimed for sustainability and safety for residents and visitors alike.

The traffic from the Historic Center up to the palaces is already one way, the change now is that only authorized vehicles are allowed to drive up.  These are: residents; vehicles of City Hall, Natural Park and Monte da Lua, as well as the utility companies; Licensed tourist transports, taxis and ubers, as well as all security and emergency vehicles.

So …


Enter the New Year in meditation - relaxed and in harmony with yourself and Nature.
The retreat is the perfect time and place to:

• Rewind, slow down your daily rhythm and reconnect with nature;
• Unplug and appreciate the beauty of Nature;
• Rediscover yourself through Mindfulness;
• Improve your physical and mental health through Shinrin-Yoku;
• Relax and feel energized;
• Strengthen yourself and feel your inner peace;
• Start the New Year with a peaceful and calm mind and an energized body

We have designed this retreat to slow down and waken our senses, connecting to the natural world through yoga, shinrin yoku, meditation and kirtan.

Located in the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park, in the Historic Center of Sintra, a Unesco Cultural Heritage Site, Casa do Valle is surrounded by breathtaking nature and views both to the valley and to the mountain.

Sintra Mountain is known for the perfect harmony between its natural beauty and the human element in the area. A part…

Wonderful Christmas Season in Sintra

Santa Claus and his elves are back in Sintra as we get closer to Christmas: the Sintra City Hall shows solidarity by organizing the Christmas Kingdom in the central Liberty Park in favour of families and animals in need. At the same time, in the middle of the Historic Center an ice-skating rink, a carousel, Christmas market and gospel choirs will be the center of attention.

The Christmas Kingdom will open on the 1st of December at 3 pm as Santa Claus will arrive escorted by motorcycles! The land of elves and fairies welcomes you to join in the activities, games, concerts and wonderful food until the 23rd of December. Even though most of the activities are meant for children, adults will certainly enjoy the the sites of the wonderful park turned into a winter wonderland! Although the visit is free of charge, non-perishable food items or small money donations to buy food are accepted at the entrance for families and institutions in need; as well as pet food that will then be distributed …

Because we all are different!

Hiking in Sintra and its surroundings is wonderful.

Though the most sought after trails are the ones that lead us to the monuments, there are paths for everyone's interests and capabilities. The hiking trails to the monuments avoid the roads and motorized traffic.  Some access-paths are signposted, other paths are marked with the international hiking signs, some are not marked at all, as they pass in the Natural Park of Sintra-Cascais and even through private grounds.

The main areas for hiking are the mountain and Sintra village, the coast and the countryside. There are paths everywhere!  You may want your hike to be circular, where you leave from and arrive to the same spot.  Or you may prefer walking along a linear path, using a local bus or a taxi or the old Sintra tram to return.  You can make your hike short or long, passing by villages or beaches - or simply stay in areas where you are not likely to see anyone else.  Not used to off road walking? Or perhaps you prefer somet…

What will the weather be like?

We get a lot of questions about the weather from our guests before their arrival: Will it rain in May/February/November…? Will the weather be warm enough to eat outside in the evening? What are the coolest temperatures we can expect? Do we need air-conditioning?

As much as we want to answer all of these questions sincerely, not only is it difficult because of climate change, but many of these questions are in fact very subjective in nature. Traditionally, our summers are warm and dry and winters cooler and humid. Traditionally.With the climate change however, there are some slight changes in the temperatures and rain fall.What has not changed is the ABUNDANCE OF LIGHT AND SUNSHINE THROUGHOUT THE YEAR.
It is very, very rare, even in the coldest months, for the temperature to get close to freezing, let alone below freezing temperatures.So no snow or frost is to be expected at any given month.The normal average winter daytime temperatures in Sintra range from 10 to 15ºC (50-60F) and ab…