45 independent reviews for Sintra Natural Park accommodation in Portugal

These full and frank independent reviews are from travellers who have booked directly through Responsible Travel. They are not edited by us or any of the companies we work with. Find the real story, from real travellers below.


review 23 Mar 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The peaceful and beautiful Sintra countryside and the warm and kind people.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

We stayed at Quinta Colina Flora, a very well situated Eco-friendly guest house. This was an ideal location for walkers and hikers, especially given that the hosts are so knowledgeable about the walking trails of the area, the local restaurants and events, and are so very helpful in sharing this.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Absolutely. This is a central aim of the hosts at Colina Flora and they put us in touch with local producers and cultural events as well as taking great care themselves to support and develop local community and to live lightly on the earth.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Ideal.

review 10 Jul 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There were so many memorable aspects of the time I spent here, but I think I would single out the amazing breakfasts prepared freshly by Aasta each morning - a real cornucopia of fresh local fruits, healthy cereals, eggs, cheeses, yoghurts, breads, delicious home-baked goodies, and more... Catering for my special dietary needs was no problem whatsoever, so I could rest assured that the food was safe and nourishing as well as scrumptious. The same care and attention to detail is evident throughout - the rooms are all beautifully decorated and impeccably serviced, and Aasta and James are always ready to help in any way they can to help you make the most of your time in what is still, thankfully, a relatively undeveloped and beautiful area of Portugal.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

As other reviewers have said here, don't worry at all about holidaying without a car - you really don't need one. The local bus service is cheap and efficient, and James offers a free shuttle service to enable you to enjoy local beaches and village restaurants / cafes. Do not hesitate to ask him for advice and suggestions for local walks, as they know the area intimately and love to share their knowledge and tips for getting off-road and really immersing yourself in the beauty of the hills and forests surrounding the Quinta. Do bring clothes for chilly days / evenings as well as hot weather gear, because the climate can be quite variable and there is often a mist in the area (which is beautifully atmospheric, and is what makes this region so lush and green!)

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, absolutely. Aasta and James are passionate about not only being themselves an integral part of the local community and economy through the way they run Colina Flora, but also keen to encourage its guests to support local businesses as far as possible during their stay. They are also very mindful of environmental issues, and this is plain to see throughout - from the way the rooms are furnished and cleaned to the maintenance of the garden, pool and buildings. You can definitely have a satisfyingly low-impact holiday here.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A fantastic way to relax and unwind in beautiful surroundings among caring and considerate hosts. Staying here will enable and encourage you to get 'under the skin' of this lovely area of Portugal and its open-hearted people.

review 29 Jun 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

We were able to completely relax and explore our surroundings as James and Aasta have covered all the bases. We wanted a walking holiday without having a pre-planned itinerary so we could decide day to day what we wanted to do. With Sintra and Caiscais readily available from the bus stop 5 minutes walk away and many walks from the door to places of interest such as the Palace at Monserrate and Capuchos Convent it more than met our expectations. The walking was some of the most varied we have experienced in one place from cliffs absolutely covered in wild flowers, beautiful unspoilt beaches to native forest.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Forget about a car. We were picked up by local taxi from the airport for the 40 minute transfer. Local buses were excellent, 2 an hour, and very cheap. We bought on James' advice a multi trip ticket for 7 journeys for 10.25 euros

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. We stayed 11 nights and ate in 8 different local restaurants. During our walk briefings from James, he always highlighted local cafes for a bite to eat or just a coffee en route. We were ferried to and fro from the restaurants in the evenings. Aasta always prepared the most delicious breakfasts with delicious local foods.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent. One of the best we have had. We came home refreshed and reinvigorated.

review 4 Sep 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Most memorable at the accommodation was meeting James and Aasta. They are superb hosts who do not simply offer lovely rooms and food, they go beyond that to make sure their guests feel welcome in Portugal. James hands out hand-written maps for finding your way and makes excellent suggestions for hikes, food and leisure. And he offers to shuttle you to places if you do not have a car. We felt very happy at the accommodation.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Do not expect good weather all the time; bring a sweater and long-sleaved shirts. If you are only staying for a short time do not attempt to take in all the sights and beaches. Less is more.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Absolutely! James and Aasta recommend local restaurants and markets, preserve water and energy in many ways. Everything, down to the soap, is environment friendly.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Despite foggy weather we had a wonderful stay. The room was magnificent and we used the pool when the sun came out.

review 2 Sep 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The most memorable part of my holiday was the visit to Sintra, it was such a lovely, beautiful place and left me wanting to return because I didn't get to see all of it.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

I would advise other travellers to bring warm clothes, it is stated by james but just incase, it does have a temperate temperature and you never know what you are going to get weather wise. Also have a good pair of walking shoes as there is a lot of walking even just to the nearest town if you do not use the shuttle service.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, I feel it massively benefited all the local people because we ate in all of the local restaurants and food for breakfast was bought from the local markets.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I really enjoyed staying here and I enjoyed the range of walks that are on offer in this area but the thing that really made this stay for me was the people that I met there. They we're great and was nice that we all went to dinner together a few times, was lovely to come away making some new friends.

review 29 Jun 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

We stayed at the B&B in the Sintra area of Portugal and were really pleased with our time there. Excellent vegetarian/vegan breakfasts with homemade produce. Suggestions for places to visit also excellent with guidance and support for directions and use of public transport. It's a beautiful location, especially for walkers. We met some very interesting people (including the owners) during our stay and enjoyed exploring the local area, where we found people very friendly and helpful.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

The B&B sits quite high in the hills and it can get misty at times, this can be almost like drizzle on odd occasions, so do take something to keep the damp off. Having said that, when the sun shines it can be very warm, so sun cream is also advisable. Despite very clear directions and a map we managed to get lost in the woods on a hot day on one occasion, this wasn't a massive problem, but we had very little water with us, so do take plenty of water (and maybe something to provide a little sustenance) if planning a walk on a hot day. Swimwear can be useful, a couple of times we were pleased to use the pool after lengthy days in the heat

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, definitely. We were encouraged to use local restaurants and cafe's and given excellent advice and support regarding local walking and local places to explore. The owners use local, as much as possible, produce in preparing the breakfast choices they provide. They also encourage use of public transport and give lifts if needed. Recycling is also in practice and composting. Also towels are hung outside to dry.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

As rated below, lovely, relaxing holiday and many happy memories.

review 8 Feb 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The walks we walked to local places of interest. The Capuchos Convent and the gardens and Palace in Monserrate, Sintra.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Do utilise local transport. It is a great way to connect with the local community, enjoy the countryside views and it is tremendous value for money.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We frequented local restaurants, shopped at farmers markets and visited places of interest. We were encouraged to shop at local crafts centres and markets stalls.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Enjoyable journey of discovery of another country, sampling local cuisine, visiting historical places of interest and enjoyed the wonderful warm hospitality of the Portuguese people.

review 12 Jul 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

We had a wonderful holiday - the accommodation is beautiful, the swimming pool wonderfully refreshing, everything clean and beautifully decorated. The hosts were very welcoming and arranged an evening at a local restaurant where Fado was performed and was great fun. We only had a couple of days here before continuing our travels but found the environment extremely relaxing and enjoyable. We liked being able to cook our own food in the well equipped kitchen and the breakfasts prepared by our hosts were delicious - made with fresh local / home produce and catering to our many dietary requirements!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take time to relax and not feel any pressure to see all the sights (although there are many nearby). Stay longer than 2 nights!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We visited the local village to buy food at the very well stocked local store, to eat in a restaurant and visit the ice-cream parlour and it felt good to be away form the usual tourist hustle and bustle.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent.

review 22 May 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There are too many positives to select from! Great location, friendly hosts, relaxed atmosphere, comfortable rooms, fantastic breakfasts, lots of local knowledge and advice, easy access to local transport.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

This is a lovely place to stay for a few days if you like walking (and don't mind a few steep inclines). It is ideally situated for visiting the Sintra National Park and palaces and for getting a feel of the local area. The healthy vegetarian breakfasts were a highlight and set us up for the day. Aasta and James did everything they could to make us feel welcome and to get the most out of our stay.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Our hosts support local businesses by buying locally and promoting local restaurants. They recycle and made provision for guests to sort and recycle waste easily. We had no need of a car as we used the local bus service and walked to the village. When we used local restaurants, our hosts provided a shuttle service back to the hotel. We also used the local farmers' market (Saturdays and Sundays) to buy fresh produce and cater for ourselves in the well-equipped outdoor cooking area.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

This was the most relaxing holiday we have ever had. The location was beautiful and there were many moderate walking expeditions to be made in the area. Travel to Cascais and Sintra was straightforward using the local bus service. Our hosts gave us loads of useful advice about walking routes and provided maps, recommended local restaurants and things to see. We thoroughly recommend this accommodation.

review 22 Mar 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

My stay at the accommodation itself in Colares, Portugal. The house is located within the natural park of Sintra and I was able to take gorgeous walks through the countryside to amazing palaces and monasteries and also by the roaring coastline at Caiscais. The inn hosts were lovely and very helpful. Breakfast was delicious and the accomodations are gorgeously rustic and beautiful surrounded by wild and manicured gardens with view of sea. Delightful small pool.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Stay in small house on property called Rose Room. Very private and large opens to gardens and sea view.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The accommodation is an eco-friendly property. Owners are very conscious of preserving the environment. We were referred to local restaurants on the cliff above the beach and in the immediate village so we had a real taste of local food and met wonderful local people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

5 stars plus! A lovely B&B if you appreciate nature and love to walk. Accomodations and service are outstanding. Hosts very friendly and helpful.

review 13 Mar 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Great accommodation, very welcoming and helpful hosts. Beautiful countryside with very interesting sites to visit.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Stay there and you will get the best tips about what to visit in the area.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Obviously it helped the local community somewhat but unfortunately by flying we did contribute to global warming

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Brilliant, couldn't have asked for more!

review 30 Oct 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

For me,walking along the beautiful rocky coastline within bus or walking distance of the house, but there were many memorable moments. A fado evening that our hosts arranged for us to go to, the market in the local village, a concert in a village church, a day in Sintra, a woodland walk to an old monastery are some, and not to miss out the delicious and plentiful vegetarian breakfasts.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

You don't need a car, there's plenty to see and do, lots of variety, helpful suggestions and service beyond expectation from our hosts.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Certainly. Our hosts made it easy for people to have a great holiday without the need for a car by giving lots of information about local walks and activities, encouraging use of the local bus service and offering transport to local restaurants. They used organic food and organic products and recycled waste.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent. I would give it 5 stars but I don't like the words that go with 5 stars in this evaluation. I would thoroughly recommend it.

review 3 Sep 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Visiting Sintra, a wonderful Unesco World Heritage city, only a half hour bus ride from our lovely B&B. Fantastic historic buildings up and down a mountain. Five palaces, the most recent belonging to the last King of Portugal, Ferdinand 1. Who clearly has a lot to answer for, as he created a model for the Magic Kingdom, more than a century before Walt Disney.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take warm clothes for the evening, the house is high in the hills and it can get cool at night. Go to the Cafe Ocidente - near Caba da Roca, wonderful food, lovely local atmosphere and go to local Adega restaurant run by Roberto - fantastic food, incredibly good value and live Fardo on Friday night.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

definitely benefited local people, they are careful to reduce environmental impacts too.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Lovely place, lovely people and very relaxing. Lots to explore locally and wonderful dramatic beaches (though not all safe for swimming as lots of surf and rip tides - go to Cascais for swimming safely). 7 out of 10

review 8 Jun 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The beautiful walks in Sintra National Park.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared to walk in order to make the most of the excellent, nature-filled location.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, we ate at local restaurants, shopped in the local mini-market and farmers market, recycled all waste, walked or used a shuttle service instead of renting a car.Towels were sun-dried daily but only washed every three days. Quinta the accommodation serves an outstanding organic breakfast too.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

The accommodation is a wonderful, peaceful, well-run, environmentally friendly, clean and happy place with endless opportunities to explore the area and get to know the local culture, food and people. No complaints. Overall rating is very high!

review 31 May 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Very careful, attentive and social hosts

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Walk, go to the beaches by foot.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Not really, we took a car to get there; we benefitted local people by eating local and buying local.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

The accommodation is an amazingly beautiful place, highly recommended.

review 24 Feb 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

This is a lovely place to stay with lovely walks available in the surrounding countryside. The owners were extremely helpful in suggesting walks and providing maps. It was a really relaxing stay but there is plenty to do and places to visit in the surrounding area.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared for all weathers in February. Bring walking boots. There is no need for a car here. The public transport is good and the owners will organise transport to local restaurants if they are beyond walking distance.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definately. We ate in local restaurants and used local transport. All rubbish was sorted.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Great, I would have love to visit again in slightly warmer weather and to stay for longer.

review 1 Sep 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Owners of the property helped us plan wonderful cycling trips in the area through majestic woodland, gorgeous beaches, unspoilt villages and great restaurants. Also wonderful breakfasts.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Makes sure you have walking footwear with you

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes we were advised of local restaurants to eat in and to do tours of local vineyard. Waste was all sorted and recycled. We were encouraged to travel by bicycle. The owner offered a shuttle service which meant visitors including us were less likely to hire cars.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

First class!!

review 18 Oct 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Our stay at Quintra for a short week was fantastic, nice people, great hospitality and service. Located in the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park and close to historic sites at Sintra and around Sintra, and walking distance to the sea (and sea food). Nice people – fantastic nature – historic sites - the sea – hard to ask for more.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

You need to stay for several days to see everything and remember clothes and shoes for hiking. Try many of the fantastic sea food places right at the beach.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes for sure - we spent a lot of money in local restaurants and shops :-) And as above the perfect place to do everything by walking. Furthermore, the accommodation is a small, comfortable, "green" country guesthouse – using / serving organic, locally grown food, and you will only see organic cleaning supplies.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

We needed a break and did that in a peacefully located “green” guest house in the rural hills of the amazing Sintra Natural Park - in other words “Mission Completed”

review 4 Oct 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Staying at the accommodation was a joy and delight. The room in which we stayed (Camellia) was bright, light and large and the grounds were attractive and well cared for. In many ways, the most memorable aspect of the stay was the care from Aasta and James who cared supported and advised all guests and created an atmosphere in which the guests gelled together and formed friendships. And then there were Aasta's breakfasts and the food on Monday nights. I am Wheat and Dairy intolerant and now need to keep strictly to diet. Aasta made this easy and engaged with my difficulty providing me with a week of joyful eating. This included wheat and dairy free biscuits in my room.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

The property is in a quiet area where away from easy attractions on the doorstep where the of walking the hills are numerous. We had travelled with the willingness to hire a car but didn't for two reasons 1. Buses to Sintra and Cascais stopped minutes away and the bus to Cascais stopped by the rail station accessing Lisbon. 2. James is a font of knowledge and works to provide information and solutions and in the nicest way. Additionally he and Aasta put themselves out to drive people to local restaurants or more necessarily pick them up after eating so they can avoid the uphill walk home.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I am not able to fully judge this though it was clear that James and Aasta used local resources, were conscious of the local environmental and were clearly engaged with ecological issues and healthy food production.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

We thoroughly enjoyed our break in a great place where Aasta and James were super supportive and helpful hosts. ( The "I am reborn option is a bit OTT" in my opinion.

review 11 Sep 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Without doubt our most memorable part has to be James and Aastas care of and help to their guests. Their expertise of all things local, historical places, restaurants, walks is second to none. Their care of the environment is reflected every where around the hotel. Most exciting has to have been the 4k walk to Capuchos Convent from the hotel, a wonderful end to a wonderful holiday.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Don't hire a car, use local buses and trains, and walk, walk and walk. Good sensible strong walking foot ware. Take Mosquito repellent just in case.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

All of the above. We used local transport, ate and shopped locally.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

10 out of 10. Perfect for relaxing

review 22 Oct 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

breakfast!! it was truly delicious and I looked forward to it every morning

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

if you want more varied walks then hire a car

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

absolutely, we ate at local restaurants and also attended a local recital

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

very good

review 27 Aug 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

THE BREAKFAST! - absolutely amazing. The location - just so beautiful. I also fell a little bit in love with Lucca - the resident dog

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

I would recommend a day trip to Cascais. It's a beautiful town with some lovely seafood restaurants (bring your swimmers :)) We also visited Convento dos Capuchos which was a lovely walk and a beautiful old monastery. Finally...definitely visit the Tapas restaurant in the village...he has an excellent "business card"

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, James introduced and/or recommended local restaurants and attractions, all of which we were delighted with. The guesthouse itself was also very eco-minded.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was wonderful. We had such a relaxing time, good food, good wine...Nothing was too much trouble for James and Aasta, they made us feel so welcome.

review 7 Apr 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The location--perfect for sightseeing in Sintra, cliff walking, forest trails, beach visits, day trip to Lisbon or Cascais, good and reasonable eating options close by. The accomodation- wonderful scenic views from all the rooms and gardens you could spend hours in. Our hosts, definitely. They did not just provide us with 'bed and breakfast', but were approachable all day .From Aasta making up an extra bed in one of the rooms because three of our children wished to sleep together, doing our daily grocery shopping for us so we could use their self catering kitchen, James organising a rescue taxi pickup when we were at Monserrate Palace, offering shuttles to and from local restaurants on a rainy day, and finally being there to say goodbye at 4:30 am, they made us feel looked after. Everything reviewers have mentioned about the breakfasts is true. Aasta is very aware of nutrition, (she suggested a ginger tea for my 14 year old when he had an upset tummy through too much chocolate and it worked-and he actually liked it), her breakfasts gave us energy without stodge, we could tackle those steep hills .

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Definitely accept James' advice on walking routes, weather forecasts, and whether or not you need his home grown walking sticks. The walk to Capuchos convent and on to Monserrate Palace is a brilliant all day tour, with the beautiful Palace and gardens at the end of it-get there in time to enjoy both. Almocageme village square and Panedu cyclist refuge for lunches.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Aasta and James recycle, compost, use organic produce not just on the table , but also in the bed and bath areas. They even have a system of napkin rings so guests can reuse their individual napkins without needing to put them through a wash every day. We were encouraged to use local transport, shop at the local market and eat in the local restaurants and cafes.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

As my 17 year old 'too cool to be amazed' son put it--the perfect cocktail of good accommodation , helpful hosts, location, scenic walking, sightseeing and food.

review 6 Nov 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

We had a relaxing holiday, James & Aasta made us very welcome and gave us lots of tips, advice and information on the local area.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

We were pleased we had a hire car so we could explore the area, as we were staying for 7 days and the weather was showery.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent

review 22 Oct 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The most memorable and exciting part of my holiday was the amazing nature surrounding you everywhere. I spent amazing joyful moments in this lovely guesthouse. The owner and his wife are really helpful with the help and advice he provides every morning after the lovely and healthy breakfast. I felt home... It was unforgettable holiday.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Just go...

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was great and unforgettable...!!!

review 22 Aug 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The beautiful scenery, lots of interesting places to visit, lovely warm weather, warm, helpful, friendly people, the best eco-friendly guest house, James and Aasta are the most wonderful innkeepers. They made our stay so special.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Just go!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely! We used local transport or walked everywhere with the help of James' wonderful maps and helpful information. Aasta bought local organic fruit and vegetables and made her own bread and granola which was fantastic and so healthy. They recommended many of the local restaurants for us to eat in. The food was always so good.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Our best holiday ever. We feel so healthy and alive. We have already recommended it to all our friends and family and hope to go back again sometime soon.

review 19 Aug 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Walking through the magical Sintra hills with the mist rising. Watching the sunset at the beautiful Adraga beach.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go for it! This is the perfect guest house to spend a brilliant holiday eating lovely food, exploring a magical area and meeting fantastic people. The surroundings are beautiful and James and Aasta are the best hosts imaginable, offering help and advice, cooking wonderful breakfasts and looking after your every need.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The guest house was environmentally conscious - recycled and cooked using organic and locally sourced goods. There were few chemicals in the pool and it is clear that the owners are very serious about having as little impact on the environment as possible. In addition, they recommend fantastic local restaurants and attractions.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A beautiful place to spend a relaxing and rewarding holiday. The guesthouse is beautifully decorated and the owners take a huge amount of pride in providing the best holiday possible for their guests. The breakfasts are something to look forward to every day and the local area is just wonderful - beaches, palaces, hobbit like Franciscan monasteries... what more could you ask for?

review 7 Aug 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The beautiful views, the amazing walks, the wonderful breakfasts, the dramatic fantastic beach, eating fresh fish at the restaurant on the beach, walking to the village.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take something warm to wear as even in summer it can get chilly in the hills especially in the evenings and early mornings. Go on as many walks as you can as the area is so beautiful. Try the clams and shrimps at the cafe on the beach and the fish soup is great too.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A really great holiday! We loved it and so did our kids (ages 8 and 10 years). Great comfortable guest house in stunning area, lovely friendly helpful hosts, very sweet dog, great pool, brilliant beach, stunning sunsets, fantasitc food and one of the the best things for us was that you don't need a car. The hosts are so generous with endless lifts to and from the beach or village which really helps especially with kids. Also, another good thing as the outdoor kitchen so you can self cater if you feel like it. Really relaxing peaceful place.

review 11 Mar 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The birthday cakes and song I got on the last morning of my stay. A lovely way to start a birthday!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Enjoy the beautiful views. Make sure that you carefully follow the directions to get to there!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

It was not obvious to us at the time. The provision of daily bottled water was a little surprising.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very friendly owners made this a wonderful place to stay. The views from our room were spectacular and almost worth the price alone!

Read the operator's response here:

Thank you for your review. We are grateful for suggestions/comments as we strive to improve our guesthouse. We purchase all of our fresh produce, bread and, as much as is available of other products, locally from organic farmers. We only shop locally never in big change stores. Paper products used are recycled. We provide cloth napkins in lieu of paper ones. We provide bottled water, because many of our guests do not feel comfortable drinking our well water and being rural it is not easy for guests to purchase water for themselves. We recycle and compost as much as possible, even the wine corks, and sort all the trash. We are active members of the local organic cooperative. We suggest/recommend small, family owned local restaurants, cafes, shops, therapists and events. We are now offering refillable bottles, as an alternative choice to bottled water, to our guests who wish to carry well water on their walks.

review 21 Feb 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The area is absolutely beautiful, and the hospitality shown by James and Aasta was the best we have ever experienced (and we have travelled a lot!). We had booked a week's walking holiday with some meals included, and the food was superb, I don't think we managed to walk off all that we consumed! The accommodation was beautiful, we booked the 'Marigold' room, and loved the balcony with the fire pit. The weather was quite mixed when we were there (October) so we enjoyed sitting in front of the fire in the evenings, with a glass of the lovely local wine. This holiday really was just what we needed, a lovely relaxing break, walking in the most beautiful varied landscapes, every walk we did was slightly different, through Sintra's lovely forests, along beaches and beautiful villages. James couldn't have been more helpful, providing us with ideas and routes for walking, as well as sightseeing ideas and things to do.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Just go! You won't regret it.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Definitely. James and Aasta shopped locally, used local people to help with the upkeep of their guest house, encouraged guests to recycle and always recommended local restaurants for places to eat. All of James' restaurant suggestions were spot on too! The fact that Aasta cooks vegetarian food has the obvious bonus for the environment too.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

We loved every minute, James and Aasta have created something very special in the heart of a very beautiful part of the world and we feel very privileged to have been able to share it. Cannot recommend this trip enough!

review 5 Feb 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

This was a really relaxing holiday in a beautiful area of Portugal. The accommodation is in a great location and the standard of the accommodation is very high. The hosts, James and Aasta were very welcoming and quickly made me feel at home. I was also able to take advantage of their local knowledge to find walks I would have otherwise have missed. As well as eating out at local restaurants, I also had some evening meals at the accommodation, which were all amazing.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you are going with the intention of walking, let James and Aasta know as they will be able to help with maps and suggested routes...Portugal doesn't seem to have OS type maps with walkers in mind, but local knowledge and resources ensure that you make the most of this area as a hiking destination. if you are not walking, there's loads of places to visit of interest: Pena Palace, moorish castle, Monserate to name just a few. Make sure you visit the near by villages for restaurants, markets and food shopping. Almocagemes has a great beach and Penedo has a great local bar and restaurant.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Plenty of opportunities to eat locally. If you eat at the accommodation, the ingredients are bought locally. I did not hire a car and found I was able to walk to most places as well as use public transport. I did arrange for an airport transfer to the accommodation, but would now know how to do this journey by train and bus.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A great holiday, thoroughly enjoyed it and have already booked a return visit.

review 19 Dec 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

James and Aasta looked after us brilliantly. We were given suggested walking routes to major sites. Took us all day to complete and then recommendations to great local restaurants - best was when we opted for Aasta's cooking! Peace, time to reset for next stage in the real world.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Wonderful !

review 1 Nov 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The sheer 'wow' factor of the landscape in the Sintra region - incredible variety of forest, beach, village and towns with the wonderful smell of eucalyptus and pine everywhere we went.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared to use the local buses if you don't hire a car, it's well worth it to see places like Sintra. Do try and get out into the forests on bike or foot as well though, it's magical. Watch out for the many guard dogs around - most are chained or don't come off their owner's land but I got bitten on the arm when one dog got it's head through a gate at the bus stop, which I didn't expect. Fortunately no lasting damage or infection but children will need to be told that not all dogs are as friendly as Lucca.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, the B&B used organic and local produce, local staff and organic cotton towels and linen. They also recommended an excellent local tour guide who took us places on bikes we wouldn't have found ourselves. Aasta and James have a fine selection of maps and guide books and lots of really useful local knowledge which really helped and encouraged us to go out exploring from the house.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent! Wonderful country, area and people. Our first holiday together since getting married 3 years ago and it didn't disappoint even though the weather wasn't as warm as we'd hoped.

Read the operator's response here:

Thanks so much for taking the time to write a review. We have spoken to the owner of the guard dogs at the bus stop and she has assured me that she will put more fencing in place. We were very upset and concerned for our guest over this incident and conveyed this to the dog´s owner. We are very sorry that this happened. We will also warn all of our guests from now on about getting to close to gates with dogs behind them.

review 21 Sep 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Dinner in the garden served by Aasta and James, watching the sun set on the horizon.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Stay for at least three days and consider train to Cascais and then collect a hire car.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Very much so. We had many opportunities to see the impact of local initiative and on our last day had a memorable lunch in a flower packing unit that had been turned into an artist's co-op.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Would love to return. The impact of the holiday remained long after we returned home.

review 18 Sep 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The fabulous breakfasts and suppers Aasta served up.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

The hills are steep and you need to be reasonably fit if walking or cycling anywhere. You can get by without a car by using the local bus service and James' shuttle service to the local village and the beach.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I hope so!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Everything we had hoped for! We wanted a slow-paced, relaxing week with a little bit of sight-seeing and that is what we got.

review 23 Aug 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There cannot be one memorable part of the holiday as there were quite a few. Our hosts were extremely helpful and always willing to give advice on what to do; where to go; and what to see (and eat!) Asta's breakfasts were always a real treat. The area was superb with lots of varied and interesting places to see and explore. The recommended restaurants were extremely good and great value. We would certainly return.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Do take a long sleeved fleece or similar as the evenings could get a little cool.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Our hosts were very keen to conserve and to use local products wherever possible.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Absolutely great. Thank you James and Asta.

review 26 Jul 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The wonderful location with views of the ocean and walks from the house to the forest. Very close to such an amazing array of natural and cultural pursuits also close to a beautiful local village and excellent restaurants. James and Aasta are charming hosts and very welcoming. The breakfasts are superb.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Spend a few days there and don't rush!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes we went to the local supermarket and shops and visited local restaurants. We also supported the green initiatives which James and Aasta adhere to.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent, fab location, great place, stunning scenery and culture - a hidden gem.

review 12 Jul 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

I wasn’t looking for exciting, there were many memorable parts including: the wonderful friendliness of the Portuguese people, great food, wine, beaches. Meeting cool fellow travellers.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Just book it. My meat eating husband suffered slightly with the veggie breakfasts. So meat eaters - be prepared.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

This wasn’t overly apparent to me, but I didn’t investigate. Walking to the village/beach is encouraged. Incidentally, the walk to the beach takes well over an hour.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A wonderful holiday, with very helpful owners.

Read the operator's response here:

Hello! Thanks for taking the time to write a review - which we appreciate. We are so sorry that we did not know that your husband would like to have meat at breakfast. While we do not cook meat, upon request, we do provide ham, smoked turkey and sausages - all local meats and from a local butcher. We mention in our "House Information Book" found in each guest-room (and this is also mentioned on our website) that we avidly support and only shop at the small local shops of our village and at the local organic farms/farmer´s market. We are active members of the local organic food/farm cooperative. We encourage our guests to eat at the small family owned local restaurants/cafes and to also shop at the small village shops. We are also avid recylers -even the wine corks are recycled. There are recycling bins for guests to use and a compost bucket in the guest kitchen. We compost as much as is compostable. The trash is sorted each day. And we have half a solar hot water system in place waiting to be completed with panels and hooked up. Our vegetable garden is growing and fruit trees are being planted in every suitable possible space. We attempt to be as environemntally friendly as possible in the little things, too, such as using only cloth napkins, organic sheets and towels etc etc.

review 13 Jun 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

A wonderfully refreshing break. Our accommodation was spacious with amazing views and a swimming pool near the house. The hosts couldn't have been more helpful to first timer visitors to Portugal. Their local knowledge of the area made it possible to be confident walking (No detailed maps to be had in the shops much to hubbie's surprise!) The hilly area could have been a problem for hubbie who isn't the fittest but he walked downhill and James willingly picked him up for the uphill - No worries! Lovely beach, viewpoints, and interesting monastery all in easy walking distance. Buses to nearby towns an experience to savour - as was the atmosphere and local restaurants etc.etc... I could go on.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

You will be well looked after and Aastra and James will do all they can to help you to enjoy your time there. The house is lovely but be ready to enjoy a bit of walking - It's the best way to soak up the feel of the place. We loved the Adego restaurant but any that are recommended by J and A will be good. Beware mosquitoes!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

All the ingredients that J&A used were bought fresh locally, and we too used the local markets and minimarket. J&A recommend local restaurants and activities, and explained the bus timetables so it was easy to use public transport. Didn't miss the car at all! Recycling was encouraged.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

We loved the holiday - Sun, beach, swimming pool, walks, towns, tourism and relaxation all in one short week!

review 16 Apr 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Being able to catch public transport to most places with a toddler. The fantastic location of the guesthouse. The great innkeepers & their fantastic hospitality.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, the innkeepers belong to an organic farm coop & sourced all their food locally. They recycled and composted everything. They had up to date public transport timetables

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic.

review 13 Jan 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There were lots of memorable parts of the holiday. I loved just sitting on a cliff or a beach gazing at the wild Atlantic breakers, I loved the lush sub-tropical vegetation & flowers, and I found the excursions to Sintra fascinating. As an individual traveller, I particularly appreciated all the extra help, advice and care that Aaste and James gave me every day. James's maps and local knowledge were fantastic. Aaste's breakfasts with homemade granola, fruit salad, muffins, etc were heavenly!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you're going to do much walking - and there are wonderful walks in the hills or along the coast - take walking boots. My trainers were not strong enough. Don't miss visiting the palaces & castles & gardens in Sintra, an easy bus ride of 10 Kms away.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes, all the little shops, the local cafes and restaurants in the village are small local enterprises. Aaste and James are totally committed to organic food and products wherever possible, (including the bedlinen), they recycle everything, are very sensitively aware of & active in pursuing environmental and ethical issues. Everything is recycled, and the cooking is vegetarian - fairly unusual in Portugal.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I would rate if very highly. The Colina Flora is a beautiful place and Aaster and James are very generous, hospitable and kind as well as being environmentally scrupulous. It's very easy to just 'be' there & relax and also it's within 5 minutes of the bus stop that takes you to Sintra, local places, to Capo de Roca (most Westerly cliff in Europe) etc. There is lots to see and do, and the vegetation is magnificent in this part of Portugal which has its own, quite mild, micro-climate.

review 16 Oct 2011

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Opportunity to visit so many historical sites in and around Sintra.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared for walking in different environments - beach, hills, esplanade.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

All food was sourced locally. Local restaurants recommended. Very strong focus on environmental care.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent.

review 9 Oct 2011

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The beautiful location, wonderful mountain air and sea views (and yummy breakfasts).

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

The surrounding area is fantastic for walking. You may want to hire a car if you don't want to rely on the local buses or the generous lifts given by the guesthouse owners.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Definitely.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Really wonderful guesthouse with generous, attentive owners, set in a stunning part of Portugal.

review 17 Aug 2011

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The setting - not just wonderful scenery - incredible views from the hills, and coastline, but such a range of things to see and do. The B&B was just perfect too, the hosts James & Aasta provided the most wonderful hospitality.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

To go for as long as possible! There is so much to see and do, huge variety of places to explore, and in which to relax too, both at the pool/ garden of the B&B, and the neighbouring beaches.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes. I was encouraged to explore by foot or by bus; and to visit the local shops and cafes off the beaten track, as much as the mainstream tourist sites. There were facilities for both recycling and composting at the accommodation; as well as opportunity to refill water bottles at the tap, to minimise plastic waste.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic! I really couldn't have found a better place to stay, in a nicer place to visit!

review 16 Aug 2011

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

It is hard to choose between: the perfect uncrowded beach, some special restaurants, the magic old convent in the forest, and our lovely home with Aaster and James.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

It is perfect for a family with small children, very safe in the walled garden, lovely swimming pool, and very kind hosts. Nothing was too much trouble for Aaster and James - whether it was cooking special children's dinners, giving lifts back to a car stuck in the sand, suggesting walks and visits.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes, it was clear that all the food, and even the soap in the rooms, was sourced locally. And all the restaurants that James carefully drew us maps to walk to, or drive to, were family run, and the main dishes were from local fish.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I would certainly go again - as soon as possible.

Accommodation Reviews

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Unedited reviews from other travellers

I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really
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