Friday, June 29, 2012

Queluz / 奎樂茲


Queluz is a city located in the Sintra Municipality. It takes about 20 minutes by car to reach there from Lisbon. We hadn't planned to visit the Queluz National Palace. However, the train service to Sintra was disconnected because of a strike that day, and Vitor insisted that we go to Sintra on the very day. He asked for help from his taxi driver friend, who kindly added the palace to our agenda. 


I ran into the children that were on their field trip...

The palace is one of the largest Rococo buildings in Europe built in the 18th century. 



The Queluz National Palace is compared to Portugal's Versailles. But compared with the majestic, Baroque-style Versailles, the palace is far smaller and more exquisite. 


Jamor River flows through the palace. The walls of the canal are decorated with blue tile art. 


The palace functioned as a summer treat for Dom Pedro of Braganza, who later married his niece Queen Maria. After he passed away, she was incarcerated in the palace because of her worsening madness. 


The architectural style of the palace reflects the extravagance of Portuguese culture following the discovery of gold in Brazil in 1690. It also reflects the carefree and flamboyant lifestyle of the newly-enriched aristocrats, who hired many artists and craftsmen to satisfy their needs. 


Religion was of great interest to Dom Pedro. After his death, the chapel became Queen  Maria's permanent retreat until the escape to Brazil in 1807 because of French's invasion into Portugal. 


The palace isn't that small because it takes about an hour to walk around inside...


The tile decoration is seen practically everywhere...

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