While the tourist hordes in beautiful Sintra, Portugal, are flocking to Pena Palace, head instead to Monserrate.
The gardens here are massive and have been recently restored. We wandered here for hours without hardly seeing another person.
The palace itself, although not as large as Pena, is just as grand, if not more so. Every inch of the architecture is covered in delicate carving. The Moorish and Indian influences work together to create a cohesive and beautiful design.
We had heard that the gardens of the Monserrate Palace are amazing (and they are), but that the palace was in disrepair and wasn't much to see. Boy, was that wrong info!
The palace has been undergoing renovation and it's a stunner. The hallways are lined floor-to-ceiling with intricate carved filagree and lovely rose-colored marble. Arabian and Indian influences combine with both Portuguese and English styles to create a truly unique (and spectacular) site.