A pretty picture of a pretty town in a pretty part of Portugal. This is Sintra – a picturesque town about 30 minutes drive north-west of Lisbon (depending on traffic which can be quite heavy in the morning and evening) which was once the royal town of Portugal and described by Lord Byron as a “glorious Eden” and “the most beautiful, perhaps in the world”.
It must still appeal to a lot of people because this is the 430th photograph of Sintra to be posted to TrekEarth!
There are lots of interesting churches, palaces and museums to visit in Sintra, but I enjoyed just wandering around its cobbled streets and taking in the historic atmosphere. Sintra is a very popular destination for day trippers from Lisbon, so parts of the town are quite crowded and touristy, but other parts, as you can see from this photograph, are much quieter and feel more ‘real’.
Sintra’s old town has been gazetted a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The citation for its listing reads thus:
In the 19th century Sintra became the first centre of European Romantic architecture. Ferdinand II turned a ruined monastery into a castle where this new sensitivity was displayed in the use of Gothic, Egyptian, Moorish and Renaissance elements and in the creation of a park blending local and exotic species of trees. Other fine dwellings, built along the same lines in the surrounding 'serra', created a unique combination of parks and gardens which influenced the development of landscape architecture throughout Europe. (UNESCO World Heritage website).
I tried a few alternative exposures for this shot including a fill-flash to light up the tree trunk, but I liked it better without the fill-flash. Although the fill-flash exposed some interesting detail on the tree trunk, it took the eye away from the town in the background. There was no PP necessary except sharpening.
That is not a graveyard in the foreground. It is a small, somewhat overgrown citrus orchard behind someone’s house. From the presence of the cross, I assume one of the family members must be buried there.
Critiques | Translate
devimeuxbe (58557) 2006-08-06 6:02
nice composition with a beautifull light on the village. For me, the tree on the right of the frame is maybe little bit too present. However it was nice too include in the composition. Quiet place, nice picture.
richtersl (3546) 2006-08-06 8:45
There are so many pretty little details in this photo: the solitary cross, the parked cars on the street, the porches, etc.
I agree that the use of the fill flash would have been lit up the tree trunk just a bit too much. But the details are still there so it really looks fine just "as is".
Those tree branches are a perfect frame.
PJE (20758) 2006-08-06 19:57
David you have some interesting contrasts between the green trees and the red tile roofs. Even the tree trunk has nice shadow details. I love the setting..I think its a special place. Thanks for sharing!
vinicio (23423) 2006-08-07 4:59
Nice view in a natural frame, good atmosphere of summer, the image is well composed and the view is relaxant, compliments, also to the useful note.
klennon79 (0) 2006-08-07 14:17
What a lovely view! Very nice sharpness and lighiting. I like how the tree frames the town. The POV creates this interesting zig zag effect. Great depth as well.
riclopes (35577) 2006-08-09 8:56
Excellent note. I have to remember of steal it from you if I'll post anything from here. This is indeed, a fascinating place, almost an oasis, with a very unique architecture, greenery and climate. It can be sunny in Cascais and raining in Sintra at the same time. This is a "pretty" view, well framed by the vegetation and tree and I think that I have similar photos from this same POV (I organize some trekings in this "sierra"). The big chimneys, not seen here, are what impress me more. Thanks for sharing,
Buin (42468) 2006-08-11 13:23
This is a great one (the note too!)- in each respect! A wonderful sight! The frame of the plants works very well in contrast to the red roofs. It like this very much!
Have a nice weekend!
siolaw (38292) 2006-08-16 13:15
A well composed image, full of details, in great colors and sharpness.. i specially like the cross!
leo61 (0) 2006-08-16 14:01
Excellent POV,and a nice view at the city.Nice that you included the trunk to your composition and as Laurent wrote, the cross is a nice detail in the foreground.Good light and verry nice natural colors.
capthaddock (28790) 2006-08-20 1:52
Hi David - great perspective, the use of the tree to frame the right side and fill the sky was a great idea, and wonderful note as usual, it's hard to believe 430 photos have been uploaded from such a relatively obscure location, is this the lusitanian Prague then?
pboehringer (770) 2006-08-21 12:00
Hi David, extremely composition of this lovely town. The foreground is excellent and frames the tower in the disctance extremely well.
Best regards, Peter
- Copyright: David Astley (banyanman) (7789)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2006-07-08
- Categories: Architecture
- Camera: Nikon D100, Nikkor AF-S 24-120/3.5-5.6G ED
- Exposure: f/7.1, 1/250 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2006-08-06 5:43
- Favorites: 1 [view]