In 2016, the parks and monuments under the management of Parques de Sintra welcomed over 2.6 million visits (2,625,011), which represents a 17.52% rise on the previous year and continues the increasing numbers of preceding years.
Similar to other years, the Park and National Palace of Pena again proved the most sought after destination with a total of 1,326,819 entrances. This thus continues to be one of the best visited palaces in Portugal with a rise of 22.54% in relation to 2015.
In terms of the nationality of visitors, 82.19% were international arrivals while Portuguese citizens accounted for 17.81% of visits with the highest proportion of nationalities coming from the United Kingdom (19.49%), France (16.48%) and Spain (14.92%). This heritage site also received substantial numbers of visitors from Brazil, North America, Germany, Italy, Russia and China.
As a means of boosting the visitor dynamics of the National Palaces of Pena, Sintra and Queluz and attracting new audiences, in 2016 Parques de Sintra continued with its Erudite Music Season including the cycles “Musical Evenings in the Palace of Pena”, “Reencounters – Musical memories of a Palace” and “Nights of Queluz – Tempest and Galanterie”, which attracted audiences of 2,531 persons (not included in the visitor total figures).
Manuel Baptista, President of the Parques de Sintra Board of Directors, made a highly positive overview of 2016. “We verified a continuation of the rise in visitor numbers and that reflects a constant increase in the persons interested in Sintra and its surroundings, which well reflects the work done both by the company and the country in promoting and raising its profile”, he stated.
As regards 2017, he added that “this shall be the year of the completion of major recovery and restoration works, in particular the end of the first major program of works on the Palace and Gardens of Queluz, and the further advance of restoration work on the Convent of Capuchos, which had for various years been awaiting this intervention”. In terms of the cultural programming, “new projects shall be targeted so as to be able to reach out to new publics”, the president concluded.