Thursday, November 4, 2010

Secret Passageways and Spiral Staircases

It's almost been a year now since we went to Portugal for Christmas. What a magical trip (but really cold)! There is one part of the trip though, that I can't stop thinking about. Quinta da Regaleira. Don't ask me to pronounce it, because I am hopeless.
This place is located in the town of Sintra, which has many amazing attractions (including the amazing Palacio da Pena). It was mansion and grounds of a wealthy man designed by an opera set designer. If you go, bring a flashlight. This place so so unbelievable. First of all, the architecture was amazing. Second of all, there were SPIRAL STAIRCASES EVERYWHERE (an obession of mine since the age of 3 when my favourite book was the Balloon Tree)!!! Third of all, there are secret passageways and tunnels and hidden doorways and caves and underground lakes and revolving doors, etc... connecting all over the grounds. My biggest regret is that I did not have a flashlight with me and had to stick to the caves and tunnels that were already lit. Oh, how much I missed! Take a look at some of the pictures, but keep in mind that they do not do the place justice at all.

This is the view from the top of the mansion. Somewhere, there must have been a secret passageway to get into that glass room.Looking up from one of the two dry wells. These wells had stairways built into the sides and at the bottom were different tunnels that would take you all over the grounds.
View. It almost looks like the Great Wall of China.
Looking down into another well. There was a rotating stone door at the top of one of these wells that let you out into the woods.
There were structures like this in different places in the grounds. There are spiral staircases and passageways all around these.
One of the lakes that you have to go through a tunnel to get to.
One of the lit tunnels.

The chapel on the grounds. There is a secret underground entrance, too.

Next time I go, I am bringing a flashlight and enough food to last me the whole day. Until then, I will continue to dream about this place.


  1. Great post and photos Kris! I was looking at spiral staircases online when I came across your blog and I'm definitely happy I did because I love posts like this. Thank you for sharing this with us!

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed it. It was the coolest place ever!


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