Walking The Vicentina Coast

Small Group Walking

Duration: 8 Days / 7 Nights

The Rota Vicentina is a long-distance path in SW Portugal, between the city of Santiago do Cacém and the Cape of St. Vincent. The 340 km route forms part of the European footpath network and mixes inland and coastal walking along one of the most beautiful and best-preserved coast lines of southern Europe. It is a rewarding way of seeing the real Alentejo and Algarve regions of Portugal and walk on unforgettable routes full of tradition.

The area has a wild and powerful landscape from the dramatic coast and seascapes to the more intimate and protected feel of the wooded interior.

  • Groups accepted with a minimum of 6 pax

Groups accepted with a minimum of 6 pax.

 

The Rota Vicentina is a long-distance path in SW Portugal, between the city of Santiago do Cacém and the Cape of St. Vincent. The 340 km route forms part of the European footpath network and mixes inland and coastal walking along one of the most beautiful and best-preserved coast lines of southern Europe. It is a rewarding way of seeing the real Alentejo and Algarve regions of Portugal and walk on unforgettable routes full of tradition.

The area has a wild and powerful landscape from the dramatic coast and seascapes to the more intimate and protected feel of the wooded interior.

Rota Vicentina walking

Rota Vicentina powerful landscape from the dramatic coast

We base ourselves in one centre. The comfortable Hotel Enigma with its many facilities is our home for the week. This minimizes the upheaval of continually packing and unpacking allowing more time to enjoy the tour. The centre gives good and easy access to some of the finest sections of this route.

This tour does not set out to cover every step of the way of the Rota Vicentina but rather follows some of the most varied and attractive sections of the trails giving the full flavour of this fascinating region.

We explore the contrasting beauty of coastal and inland sceneries, experience wild and pristine nature, breath-taking views, deserted beaches, the region’s authenticity and rich identity. The mild weather year-round and wonderful food.

Feast our eyes on beautiful landscapes covered in wildflowers and enjoy the traditional ways of living.

We walk in stretches of cork tree forests, soft hillsides, green valleys, along meandering rivers and creeks, in a true journey through time, local culture and nature trails. The route passes through a Natural Park, amongst the most beautiful and best preserved coastal areas of southern Europe, with wild beaches and a fascinating rural culture.

We will visit local villages where working life continues as it has for centuries.

Vicentina Route - Historical Way

Vicentina Route – Historical Way

The characteristic vegetation of the hills includes the Cork oak (Quercus suber) and Strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo).

Because we have dedicated transport there will be considerable flexibility for the group’s activities. Our imaginative “opt out or opt in system” means the walks can be as challenging or as relaxing and easy as you want them to be.

The villages and natural reserves along the route are an essential part of its character and there will be time to appreciate them.

During the week we will discover a coastline of impressive cliffs topped with sandy dunes covered with aromatic Mediterranean flora; rocky islets dotted with white stork nests, the only marine colony in Europe, and small fishing harbours from where fishermen daily face the Atlantic waves.

We will be embracing a paradise of peace and nature as we walk along shaded riverbanks contrasting with open hills where the cork oak is king. On the steeper slopes are the remains of native Mediterranean oak forest, whilst the river Mira valley is filled with birds.

To explore a truly wild coastal landscape, choose this gentle yet spectacular tour which reveals the haunting beauty of Portugal’s south-western coastline.

Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrival to S. Teotónio

Transfer by road from the airport to hotel.

Vicentina Route

Vicentina Route

Day 2 – S. Luis to Odemira Walk (historical way)

This is the lush section of the trail, where a different, green and vibrant Alentejo reveals itself before your eyes, with refreshing water streams and ponds. Much of the route follows the Ribeira do Torgal where forests of valuable species such as ash, willow and alder clothe the banks of the streams. Birds and mammals are abundant in the area. We may well find evidence of Wild Boar, a species quite common in this region. Amongst the undergrowth there are many scented and medicinal plants, such as Genista tridentata found during spring, Oregano during summer and Wild Asparagus during autumn.

Distance: 14.5km (Opt out at 9km) / Ascent/descent: +200m/-230m, highest point: 113m

Ribeira Seixe Walk

Ribeira Seixe Walk

Day 3 – Odemira to S Teotónio walk (historical way)

Today we walk one of Rota Vicentina’s most accessible sections, given the nature of the track, always wide and with mild ascents and descents. We will walk with the river Mira for company, getting in close contact with the beauty of the inland area of this municipality, between the hills and the sea.
The crystal-clear water in the many streams we cross along the way promote a great variety of fauna and flora from otters to birds and dragonflies.

Distance: 17km (Opt out at 8km) / Ascent/descent: +200m/-60m, highest point: 180m

Rota Vicentina group walking

Hike_countryside_vicentina

Day 4 – Circular from hotel walk (historical way)

Our ideally sited hotel is on the Costa Vicentina Historical trail. So today we follow a circular route following both the main & alternative routes of the Historical way through countryside covered with a wide biodiversity of native vegetation This will be a memorable day where we walk along less used trails bordered by rich native vegetation.
From the top of the hills, we enjoy the views over Odeceixe and the ocean. Along the route one is rarely out of sight or hearing of the many birds that make this countryside their home.

Distance: 16.4km (Opt out at 11km) / Ascent/descent:+/-300m, highest point: 208m

Walking Vicentina Route - Historical Way

Vicentina Route – Historical Way

Day 5 – Zambujeira to Odeceixe walk (Fishermen’s trail)

This wonderful coastal walk passes many isolated beaches on the way to Azenha do Mar, a natural fishing harbour. There are outstanding views throughout the walk, particularly over Odeceixe beach as we pass nearby & follow the valley of the river Seixe into the small town of Odeceixe itself.

Distance: 18km (Opt out at 6.5km), Ascent/descent:+/-250m, highest point: 63m

Rota Vicentina walking

Rota Vicentina powerful landscape from the dramatic coast

Day 6 – Ribeira de Seixe walk (Historical & Fishermen’s trail)

On this varied walk we mix the historical & the Fishermen’s trail. The Seixe River and the town beach are good reasons for visiting the Odeceixe area.
The Historical route follows the river Seixe as it meanders past gardens and meadows into the small town of Odeceixe itself. From Odeceixe the Fishermen’s trail passes through a maze of wetlands which provide essential habitat for wildlife & then on towards the sea where the waters from Monchique spill abundantly into the ocean.
We then follow the Fishermen trail south along the coast before turning inland to walk through peaceful farmland.

Distance: 15.5km (Opt out at 8.2km) / Ascent/descent:+150m/-100m, highest point: 101m

Odeceixe beach

Odeceixe beach

Day 7 – Aljezur walk (Historical way/Fishermen’s trail)

This harmonious mix of the Historical & Fishermen’s trails initially crosses pastures and farmland growing sweet potatoes, maize, peanuts and tomatoes, interspersed with areas of pine and eucalyptus trees.
Easy walking underfoot allows us to enjoy the views for miles around with the mountains to the east and the ocean to the west.
Then switching to the Fishermen’s trail, we cross to the beach of Carriagem and follow the coast south to the dramatic mouth of the river Aljezur and the beach of Amoreira finishing in the attractive Moorish town of Aljezur where we have time for a coffee stop and to explore this charming ancient town.

Distance: 15km (Opt out at 9.2km) / Ascent/descent:+100m/-200m, highest point: 114m

Aljezur

Aljezur

Day 8 – Departure

At convenient time departure from the hotel to Airport.

What's included

Accommodation

  • 7 nights in a twin standard room for two pax
  • Shared ensuite room with a travelling companion of the same sex
  • Single supplement available with a surcharge
  • Extra nights available on request

Meals

  • 7 buffet breakfasts at the Hotel
  • 7 Dinners with drinks included

Transport

  • Meet & Greet Airport Transfer to the hotel on the first day – group transfer
  • Transfer from the hotel to the Airport on last day – group transfer
  • All transports to walks and activities (as outlined) with dedicated driver and vehicle
  • Additional transfers available on request at an extra cost

Tour Leaders

  • Dedicated English speaking local tour leader
    The tour leader will assist and guide the group throughout the holidays, handle all the arrangements and other needs that might arise, making sure that you don’t have to worry about planning your days and you can enjoy your holiday
    Each evening, your tour leader will discuss the details and program for the following day

Walks and Activities

  • Walks according to program

Exclusions

Any services not listed as included

  • Flights to and from Portugal
  • Meals, tips/gratuities, baggage or personal insurance (except as outlined)
  • Admission fees to castles & attractions or events (except as outlined)
  • Personal expenses
  • Supplements
  • Guide services inside monuments

Insurance

You must be adequately insured to join our Guided walking and Self-Guided walking holidays. We do not insist that you insure with us but we require that you are adequately insured for the nature of your holiday.

BeCool Travel has partnered with WorldNomads.com to keep you travelling safely. WorldNomads.com Travel Insurance is designed for independent and adventurous travellers, with coverage for overseas medical expenses, cancellation, baggage, and other expenses.

Please consult our Travel Insurance page, where you’ll be able to get more detailed info about insurance requirements and an immediate quote for your trip.