The Pena Palace rises on a steep rock, which is the second highest point of the Serra de Sintra (above the palace is only Cruz Alta, 528m high). The Palace is located in the eastern part of the Parque da Pena, which is necessary to travel to reach the steep ramp that the Baron de Eschwege built to access the building.

The Palace itself consists of two wings: the old Manueline convent of the Order of St. Jerome and the wing built in the nineteenth century by D. Fernando II. These wings are surrounded by a third architectural structure, in which one imagines an imaginary round-walled castle with merlons and battlements, watchtowers, an access tunnel and even a drawbridge.

In 1838 King D. Fernando II acquired the old convent of monks Jerónimos of Our Lady of the Pena, that had been erected at the top of the Mountain range of Sintra in 1511 by the king D. Manuel I and was devoluto from 1834 with the extinction of the orders religious The convent consisted of the cloister and outbuildings, the chapel, sacristy and bell tower, which now constitute the northern core of the Pena Palace, or Old Palace.

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