Exploring Portugal’s Wild Side
Uncover the quieter, more rural side of the Algarve on a journey through the historic municipalities of Alcoutim, Castro Marim and Vila Real de Santo António as you follow the Guadiana river along the Spanish border. This is a protected landscape, recognised for its rich biodiversity and abundance of wildflowers – best experienced by taking to the backcountry roads where you can experience the magical qualities of Portugal’s rural idyll firsthand. Wherever the route takes you, you’re never far from the water on this route with trails that border the sea, lakes streams and river on your way along the Guadiana waterway.
- Explore the Amazing Medieval Walled Town of Mértola
- Beautiful Riverside Routes in the South of Portugal
- Soak up the Warm Waters of the Algarve’s Beaches
- Routes that Take You Through Picturesque Rural Villages
- Witness the Wildlife and Flowers of the Guadiana Valley
- Roman Ruins and Grand Moorish Architecture
|Duration||7 nights/6 days walking|
|Length||66 mi (106 km)|
|Grade||Easy to Moderate|
|Availability||Jan - July, Sep - Dec|
Why Choose Guadiana?
The Guadiana Valley remains a hidden gem of the Iberian Peninsula, far less visited than the neighbouring Algarve but, thanks to this relative obscurity, the Guadiana Valley is abundant with impressive archeological remains that give the area its timeless quality. Making your way along the route, you’ll encounter the medieval hilltop castle of Castro Marim, the medieval town of Alcoutin, the 12th century Moorish Mosque in the walled town of Mértola and the Roman ruins that are found on the third day of your journey on the way to the charming farming village of Junquiera. Venturing out of the cobbled streets of the historic towns and villages you visit en-route, your trail brings you out among the magical atmosphere of the Guadiana Valley National Park as well as the Castro Marim and Vila Real de Santo António Marsh Natural Reserve – the latter being a popular spot for birdwatchers with sightings of flamingos, spoonbills, avocets and black-winged stilts.