Typical houses in the Ribeira district, PORTO

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What to See
A few kilometres from Lisbon, on the way to Sintra, a magnificent palace from the 18th century can be found. It was built between 1747 and 1786 at the command of D. Pedro (the son of king João V), in an attempt to recover the glory of the Portuguese monarchy. It is a place of good taste and an example of the lavishness of a Royal Court.
The main façade presents a rare, harmonious beauty, with its Neoclassical proportions softened by the Rococo style windows. This style is particularly present in the royal, intimate interior, the so-called Sala do Trono (Throne Room), with gold-leafed wooded walls and double doors, with its many mirrors and, above all, its golden light that shimmers everywhere. A more domestic room is the D. Quixote room, with its walls covered with paintings of the noble Spanish knight during his adventures. The whole of the decoration was done by inlayers, goldsmiths and sculptors, working with exotic woods from Brazil and marble from Italy.
One must also give credit to the garden, with a huge fountain dedicated to Neptune. To the west, a pavilion with the “lion staircase” gives a scenic ambience to another of the palace’s façades, which follows a stricter neoclassical agenda, and therefore has a more severe look.  (9 am – 5 pm. Closed on Tuesdays. €5. Free admittance Sundays and public holidays until 2 pm).