We are all just visitors here.
I'm not great at playing tourist, but our hostess at the Lisbon Story Guesthouse described a week's worth of must-sees in the nearby city of Sintra. With one day left before heading home, I chose two venues, and we hopped on a morning train stuffed with tourists. Great people-watching!
Upon arrival in Sintra we were encouraged to get on a bus which would shuttle us around to various popular locations. Why? So we wouldn't waste time walking! Ha! The crowd jostled their way to the line at the bus stop. (Moo!) Russ and I peeled off and happily hiked through near empty streets and beautiful wooded trails past the ancient Castle of the Moors to the top of the hill, where the Palacio da Pena sat, in all its opulent glory.
There, we shuffled through room after room of amazingly intricate and ornate finery along with many, many other folks. Was it worth the entrance fee? Probably, but after an hour or so I'd had enough. We bypassed the cafe and gift shop and wound our way downhill through lovely gardens of fountains and pools with black swans.
Tired and satisfied, we skipped site #2, the Quinta da Regaleira, and took a mellow, late afternoon train back to Lisbon. Perhaps if we return to Portugal, we will take on another tourist destination. Most likely, we will wander, roam and explore.The most intriguing experiences reveal themselves to me when I'm not absolutely sure where I'm going, or how to get there.