The south of Portugal known as the Algarve is bound in the east by the Guardiana River and to the south and west by the Atlantic Ocean. This coupled with a mixed geology and strong influences of the Mediterranean give the region a unique environmental richness that is reflected in the diversity of its landscapes and vegetation. This walking week will show you some of the best that the area has to offer taking you off the beaten track and away from the tourist hot spots and golf courses! We will spend 4 nights in the east in the historical town of Tavira from the town of Tavira and 3 nights in the west in the old seafaring of Lagos.
- An opportunity to walk both ends of the Algarve
- Unique flora and fauna
- Hotels in the heart of two beautiful towns
- The Algarve as it used to be
- Hidden paths and walks away from any guide book
- Boat trip through the Rio Formosa Natural Park
Day 1. Arrival in the Algarve and transfer to your accommodation
Day 2. Transfer to walk along the banks of the Guadiana river and surrounding countryside full of flowers such as purple phlomis, green lavender and several varieties of cistus, 14km. After the walk we will visit the old town of Castro Marim and its castle perched high above the river.
Day 3. Transfer to walk along the Algibre river and its margins – here a different geology offer us a very different flora with beautiful peonies, small ‘naked man’ orchids – in fact the whole area will be awash with flowers and herbs – a treat to the senses, 12km. In the late afternoon we will take a boat trip through the Rio Formosa Natural Park, between some of the sandy islands that make up the park.
Day 4. A circular walk deep in the countryside over traditional hillsides full of carob, cork oaks and olive trees that are surrounded thyme, lavender and rosemary bushes. You will be able to see traditional farming still being practised – a land that time has passed by, 14km.
Day 5. after breakfast we transfer westwards to the town of Lagos and our hotel (about 1.5 hours). After lunch we will make a short transfer for a walk along the Alvor estuary home to a wide variety of birds and salt loving plants. If the tide is right we can watch the locals collecting clams on the mud flats, 8km.
Day 6. transfer to walk around the Pontal headland on the West Coast with its amazing cliff top and sea views at every step. On top of the cliffs you will find a unique geological phenomena of large sand dunes and a unique flora of antirrhinums, large restharrows and parasitic broomrapes – spectacular, 12km.
Day 7. transfer to walk again on cliff tops but these are very different – tall, dark and brooding. Our walk will take us along hidden paths scattered with bright blue lithospernum down to the beach where the large Atlantic rollers provide an amazing backdrop. After the walk we will take a short visit to the Cape St Vincent – regarded by the Romans as the ‘end of the world’, 13km
Day 8. Sadly all good things must end and we return you to the airport or train station.
- 7 nights accommodation in a twin/double room with en suite facilities
- All meals, lunches will be picnics that we will carry with us
- Transfers to and from the airport
- Transport during the week by minibus
- Boat trip on the Rio Formosa
- Walk leader
- Travel insurance
Closest Airport – Faro in the Algarve or travel down from Lisbon by train
Dates: October 26 2019, APRIL 19 & OCTOBER 25 2020
Cost per person: 950 euro
Single room supplement: 170 euro