Things to do in Lisbon

Plan your visit to Quinta da Regaleira: Essential info, timings and more

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Quinta da Regaleira is a stunning estate located in the historic town of Sintra, Portugal. Known for its enchanting gardens, intricate architecture, and mysterious underground tunnels, it's a must-visit destination. However, planning your visit is essential since it's located just outside of Lisbon and is usually planned as a day trip, unless you're staying in Sintra. Public transport options are limited, and parking can be challenging. Additionally, the estate's vast grounds require sufficient time to explore fully. To make the most of your visit, it's crucial to plan your visit, allocate enough time for sightseeing, and consider guided tours to enhance your experience and uncover the site's rich history.

Quinta da Regaleira

Before you visit Quinta da Regaleira

Quinta da Regaleira is perfect for history buffs, architecture enthusiasts, and nature lovers. Art aficionados will appreciate the intricate designs, while adventurers will enjoy exploring the estate's secret tunnels and grottoes. Families, couples, and solo travelers seeking a unique and enchanting experience should not miss this site. However, those who have mobility issues might find the interiors of the palace challenging to navigate, as it involves a lot of stairs. The gardens and exterior are wheelchair accessible

Best time to visit

To make the most of your visit to Quinta da Regaleira, timing is key. The peak tourist season in Sintra runs from June to September, leading to crowded conditions and long queues. To avoid this, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of April to May or October to November.

Weekends are typically busier, so plan your visit on a weekday to avoid long waits. Arriving early in the morning, right after the site opens, will let you explore at a relaxed pace without the crowds.

Winter visits offer a unique charm, with mist-covered gardens and a cozy palace atmosphere. The site is open daily except on December 25 and January 1, so plan accordingly to enjoy Quinta da Regaleira's unique beauty.

Quinta da Regaleira

Tickets to Quinta da Regaleira

When planning your visit to Quinta da Regaleira, consider the following ticket options. If you're arranging your own transport or staying in Sintra, you can choose between regular skip-the-line tickets or guided tour tickets, both of which let you bypass the queues. We recommend the guided tour as it offers a thorough understanding of the palace's history and answers any questions on the spot. If you're traveling from Lisbon, opt for day trip tickets that include not only Quinta da Regaleira but also other attractions like Sintra, Pena Palace, and Cascais. Plus, all your travel gets taken care of! This makes for a well-rounded and convenient day of sightseeing.

Quinta da Regaleira opening hours

  • Monday to Sunday: 9:30am to 7pm
  • Last admission: 6:30pm
  • Quinta da Regaleira is open every day, including public holidays. However, it may close for special events or maintenance. It's best to book tickets online in advance to avoid any inconvenience.

Doge's Palace Guided Tours

Tips for visiting Quinta da Regaleira

  • Go early: Arrive early in the morning to avoid the crowds and enjoy the tranquility of the place.
  • Wear comfortable shoes: Be prepared for a lot of walking to fully explore the site.
  • Avoid driving: Parking is limited near the palace. Park near Departamento Urbanismo Sintra and take a bus or taxi (using the Free Now app) to get there.
  • Bring snacks: There's only one restaurant on site, so bring snacks if needed.
  • Buy tickets online: Purchase tickets in advance to skip long lines at the ticket counter.
  • Start at the top: Begin your visit at the Initiation Well and work your way down. The Initiation Well is best experienced with very few people around.
  • Summer essentials: Bring a hat, sunscreen, and a bottle of water during the summer months.

Getting to Quinta da Regaleira

🚆 By Train:

Closest station: Sintra station
Take the Lisbon-Sintra train from either Rossio or Oriente stations in Lisbon and get off at Sintra station. From there, it's a 15-minute walk to Quinta da Regaleira. Alternatively, you can take bus number 434 from the train station, which stops right at the entrance.

🚌 By Bus:

Closest Stop: Quinta da Regaleira
Catch bus number 434 or 435 from Sintra's train station or the town center. This bus stops at various attractions, including the Moorish Castle and Pena Palace, before reaching Quinta da Regaleira.

🚗 By Private Car:

Parking location: Parking Quinta dos Lobos
Drive from Lisbon on the A37 motorway towards Sintra and follow signs to the historic town center. Parking near the palace is very limited, so it's best to park your car and use a taxi or public transport. If you must drive, park at Parking Quinta dos Lobos. The cost is €4 for the first hour and €1.80 for each additional hour. Make sure to arrive early to secure a spot.

🛺 By Tuk-Tuk:

Tuk-tuks are a popular way to get around Sintra and can be hired from the town center. Many drivers offer guided tours that include stops at Quinta da Regaleira and other key attractions in the area.

Amenities and accessibility

  • Accessibility: The palace and gardens have ramps and elevators to accommodate visitors with disabilities. However, some areas may be difficult to access due to the historic nature of the site.
  • Parking: Parking near the palace is limited for visitors arriving by car.
  • Gift Shop: There is a gift shop on the palace grounds offering a variety of souvenirs and items related to the palace and Sintra.
  • Wi-Fi: Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the palace and gardens.
  • Toilets: Restrooms are located near the palace entrance and throughout the gardens.
  • Café: A café on the palace grounds sells snacks, drinks, and light meals.
  • Smoking: Smoking is not allowed in any area of the palace and gardens.
  • Pets: Pets are not permitted in the palace and gardens, except for guide dogs.
  • Restrictions: Climbing, sitting, or leaning on any structures, including walls, statues, and fountains, is prohibited. Visitors should stay on designated paths and avoid restricted areas.
  • Photography: Photography is permitted for personal use, but flash and tripods are not allowed inside the palace.

What to see at Quinta da Regaleira

Initiation Well at Quinta da Regaleira
Initiation Well

The Initiation Well at Quinta da Regaleira is a fascinating structure featuring a spiral staircase that descends into an underground grotto. This descent symbolizes a journey through the nine circles of initiation, inspired by Dante's Divine Comedy. Each level represents a step toward gaining wisdom and enlightenment. At the bottom, a small pool symbolizes rebirth and the acceptance of new knowledge.

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Lake park at Dubai Miracle Garden
Labyrinth Caves

The Labyrinth Caves are an extensive system of tunnels with multiple entrances, including caves and grottoes. Exploring these tunnels feels like playing hide and seek in a magical setting. Some areas are so mysterious you'll wonder if you're allowed to be there! These labyrinths are dark and adventurous, requiring a flashlight to navigate. This unique experience adds to the enchantment of Quinta da Regaleira.

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Dubai Miracle Garden
Regaleira Chapel

The Regaleira Chapel, located in front of the grand facade, mirrors the palace's grandeur. Inside, you'll find vibrant murals, stunning stained glass windows, and intricate stucco work. The chapel's artful depictions of figures like Teresa de Vila and Saint Anthony add to its sacred and artistic atmosphere, making it a highlight of your visit.

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Quinta da Regaleira Palace
The Palace

Stepping inside the palace takes you back to the 19th century. The interior and furnishings are well preserved and restored. At the heart of the palace is a beautiful chestnut staircase connecting its three main floors. The staircase, though simple in design, features beautifully carved wood, adding to the palace's charm.

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Quinta da Regaleira - Plan Your Visit