Monserrate Palace Gardens, Sintra Portugal

Monserrate Palace Gardens, Sintra Portugal.

Monserrate Palace Gardens, Sintra Portugal

Not very far from the historic centre of Sintra is one of the most beautiful architectural and landscape Romantic creations in Portugal. Namely, the Park and Palace of Monserrate, unique representatives of 19th century eclecticism. The Palace combines gothic and Indian influences. As well as Moorish suggestions together with exotic and plant motifs. They extend harmoniously to the exterior. The gardens have received species from all corners of the world. They were planted according to their geographical origin. The front lawn of the Palace provides a well-deserved rest. While at the same time discovering one of the richest Portuguese botanical gardens. Monserrate Palace Gardens, Sintra

History. The Palace and adjoining gardens take their name from a small chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Monserrate. Friar Gaspar Preto built it in 1540, after visiting the sanctuary of Monserrate, close to Barcelona in Spain. The church maintained its activity until the 18th century. But at the beginning of which the church abandoned the chapel. Nevertheless, in 1718, the estate of Monserrate was assigned to Caetano Melo e Castro. He was Commendatory of the Knights of Christ and Viceroy of India.

 

Monserrate Palace Gardens, PortugalSeverely damaged by the 1755 earthquake, the estate was then rented to a wealthy Irish business man. His name was Gerald de Visme and he commissioned the construction of a Neo-Gothic palace where he resided for a short period. In 1794, the English writer William Beckford settled in Monserrate. He redecorated the palace and landscaped the gardens. In 1809, Lord Byron visited the place and described it as the ‘first and foremost beautiful place in the Kingdom’. You can find this in his narrative poem Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage .

In 1856,  another wealthy Englishman, Francis Cook bought the abandoned estate. Later he became 1st Viscount of Monserrate. He built a fabulous Oriental-style palace, with revivalist elements. So, it became the perfect testimony of the Neo-Romanesque architecture and of the superior creativity of architect James Knowles Jr. The area surrounding the palace became an exotic garden with plants from all over the world. An English gardener, James Burt did the landscaping of the garden

Presently the garden is an important Botanical garden.

Monserrate Palace Gardens, Sintra Portugal.

 Read about other famous gardens and parks around the world.

 

 

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