The hotel was just outside of the town of Sintra, a historical town. It was a summer spot for kings, and there are palaces and everything that went with them. We had an afternoon off and decided to look around. All the attractions in the center of town were full of tourists, so we decided to go up the hill and look for one of the older castles.

The day was absolutely steamy. Apparently, the local climate is such that this happens all the time.

Click for a larger version Sintra town center -- sintra-ville.
Click for a larger version House on the road. Some absolutely gorgeous houses in the area.
Click for a larger version Another local house. Very Charles Addams.
Click for a larger version Stream up the road.
Click for a larger version The Castelo dos Mouros

An 8th-century castle, as forbidding as it looks. Lots of walls to run around on, and it must have been hugely unpleasant to be 5-foot-5 and wearing heavy armor. Better suited for wool - with all the steam you'd live wrinkle free.

Click for a larger version Detail on one of the pillars

As they say in the business world, you need to "manage  expectations".

Click for a larger version Panorama!  

You usually build a castle on the high ground, which in peaceful times, is also great for tourists. Again, the day was so steamy that this is as close as we got to the view.