Explore Pristine Coastline and Portugal’s Best Kept Secret

Discover a wonderful new side to Portugal’s Algarve coast with a weeks walking in the beautiful and unspoilt National Park – ‘Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina’. Located on the South West coast of Portugal, this hidden gem is one of Europe’s best preserved coastlines, offering all the beauty of the Algarve but with none of the crowds.

Highlights:

  • One of Europe’s best preserved coastlines
  • Enjoy fresh delicious seafood daily
  • High-quality accommodation
  • Quiet and traditional Portuguese villages
  • Rare and unique birds and animals
  • The largest number of priority plant species in Portugal
  • Part of the GR path network (GR-11)

Why The Rota Vicentina

This walk will take you across sand dunes, over wild clifftops, along pristine creamy beaches and through idyllic hidden coves, before reaching Cape St. Vincent, on Portugal walking holidays to the south westernmost point in Europe. As well as beautiful coastline, the National Park is also home to a wonderful array of Mediterranean flora and fauna, whilst keen naturalists may spot a number of rare birds and animals including the fishing eagle, white stork and the otter.

RouteGR11 – Rota Vicentina
Duration7 nights
Length77 miles (124 km)
GradeEasy to Moderate
Comfort4/4
AvailabilityJan – June,
Sept – Nov
Price from£650 p.p.
CodePOR-RV

The Path

algarve-alantejo-map
Starting in Almograve, this path has been designed to allow you to enjoy the best that the National Park has to offer. As you make your way south along the coastline, you will have the opportunity to enjoy a combination of circular walks that will take you inland, as well as linear walks along the coastline, ensuring a diverse range of landscape. You will pass through the villages of Zambujeira, Odeceixe, and Carrapateira, spending a couple of nights in each village before arriving at your final destination Sagres on the Cape Saint Vincent.

We have planned our walks perfectly to last 4-5 hours each day, leaving you with plenty of time to indulge in the traditionally relaxed Portuguese lifestyle. You will also find that all the walks are perfectly way-marked as they are part of the network Rota Vicentina. The route does include some short but steep sections from beach to cliff, however the majority of the path is flat.

The Accommodation

All of our accommodation has been personally selected to ensure that you end each day in perfect comfort. You will stay in a range of beautiful and relaxing hotels, the majority of which are located in quiet, rural areas with uninterrupted views, allowing you to sit back and enjoy the Portuguese landscape in complete peace. All accommodation is at the top end of the market with en-suite rooms and most feature a swimming pool and the option of dinner. You will be staying at each hotel for two nights, helping you to fully relax into your holiday. If you are keen to explore some of the local village life, you will also find yourself in easy distance of a number of small villages.
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Itinerary: Walking Almograve to Sagres

Days: 6 (7 nights) | Distance: 77 mi (124 km) | Difficulty: Easy to Moderate | Comfort: 4/4 | Price: from £600 p.p.

  • Day 1

    Arrive Zambujeira

    Arrive in the village of Zambujeira where you will be met and taken to your first night’s accommodation in a beautiful rural hotel just outside the village. Relax by the pool, enjoy the sunshine with a cold drink or wander down to one of the nearby beaches. Finish the day with a delicious in-house evening meal.
  • Day 2

    Almograve / Cavaleiro to Zambujeira

    12.9 mi (20.7km) or 7.3 mi (11.7km)

    The walk starts with a day of wonderful cliff side walking as you follow the Rota Vincentina coastal path to Zambujeira. A taxi will pick you up in the morning to take either to Almograve if you would prefer a longer 13 mile walk, or Cavaleiro if you would prefer a shorter 7 mile walk. From there you will be following the coastal path back to your accommodation, taking in a spectacular range of sea views along the way and with the opportunity to see the lighthouse at Cape Sardao.
  • Day 3

    Zambujeira to Odeceixe

    12.4 mi (20km) or 10 mi (16.2km)

    The coastal walking continues on day 3 as you leave your accommodation in Zambujeira and head to your next destination, the village of Odeceixe. Joining the Rota Vincentina again, the path will bring new landscape and scenery as you exchange cliffs for sand dunes, rocky shores and beaches. You will also pass through the small fishing village of Azenha do Mar before ascending a final steep section to reach your accommodation in Odeceixe. The walk is 12 miles but for those wishing for a slightly shorter walk, there is again the option of getting a taxi to a nearer starting point and shortening the walk to 10 miles. Your accommodation is again located in a quiet, rural location with uninterrupted views out to the sea. Relax in the garden or the pool and drink in your surroundings.
  • Day 4

    Circular walk Odeceixe

    8.3 mi (13.3km)

    Day 4 offers a small break from coastal walking with a circular walk in the region around Odeceixe. The walk begins by heading inland through local farmland and then onto open landscape filled with heather and fragrant shrubbery. You will then loop back round to the coast, following the old ‘Fisherman’s Path’ until you reach the beach at Odeceixe. From here you have the choice of either spending the rest of the afternoon on the beach or heading back to your accommodation to make the most of their beautiful outdoor area.
  • Day 5

    Chabouco to Carrapateira

    9.6 mi (15.5km) to 14.7 mi (23.7km)

    For the next section of the walk, you will be taken by taxi to the small hamlet Chabouco and so will avoid a more urbanised area of the coastline. Here there is the option of 2 walks depending on tidal levels. If the tide is low, you will continue along the coastal path until you reach the beach at Carrapateira, one of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal. If tide levels are high then you will head inland for a slightly longer walk through the valley of Bordeira until you reach Carrapateira. Here you will find your third accommodation, an indulgent boutique hotel, which again is in a quiet, rural area with large grounds and uninterrupted views.
  • Day 6

    Circular walk Carrapateira

    7.2 mi (11.6km) or 12.7 mi (20.4km)

    Day 6 is spent in the area around Carrapateira and you will having a more relaxing day with a shorter 7 mile circular walk or a completing a 12 mile circular walk. The shorter walk will take you through the sand dunes before finishing at the picture-perfect beach in Carrapateira, where you may want to just relax in the clear blue sea. Alternatively for the longer walk, you will begin by walking along the coast before heading inland through beautiful valleys and hidden villages where you may like to stop for a lunchtime pizza (located in Pedralva).
  • Day 7

    Vila do Bispo to Sagres

    8.6 mi (14km)

    For your final day of walking, you will start in Vila do Bispo following the coastal path as far south as it can go until you reach your final destination, Cape Sao Vicente, the south westernmost point in Europe. The path will take you along quiet fisherman’s paths, rocky cliff sides and long sandy beaches to reach a point where the sea views are spectacular and sweep round in all directions. As you come to the end of your walk, you will have plenty of time to celebrate and relax in your final night’s accommodation, perched high above the sea just outside the town of Sagres. This beautiful hotel has both an indoor and outdoor pool, spa facilities, a bar and restaurant and plenty of areas to relax with views out to the sea. It even has its own surf centre for those who still have the energy. A perfect relaxing end to the holiday.
  • Day 8

    Depart From Sagres

    Your walking trip comes to an end after breakfast. Airport transfer or additional nights at the hotel can be arranged upon request.

Click ' + ' signs to view a detailed daily breakdown

Prices fromSeason 1
1/11/17 – 20/12/17
3/1/18 – 8/2/18
1/11/18 – 30/11/18
Season 2
9/2/18 – 21/3/18
1/4/18 – 27/4/18
25/9/18 – 31/10/18
Season 3
22/3/18 – 31/3/18
Season 4
21/12/17– 2/4/17
28/4/18 – 24/6/18
13/9/18 – 24/9/18
Season 5
25/6/18 – 15/7/18
1/9/18 – 12/9/18
Two people sharing (p.p.)£650£700£760£795£850
Single person in a party£1005£1100£1205£1275£1385
Solo person£1110£1210£1315£1385£1495

  • Price Based On

    The price quoted is inclusive of ~

    • 7 nights bed and breakfast
    • luggage transfer, transfers to/from the path where necessary
    • a Destination Manual and Road Book (route notes) showing directions to your accommodations
    • Three evening meals (Nights 1,2 and 5)
    • Taxi transfer from Odemira if arriving by bus
    • 24 hour assistance

    Optional extras ~

    • Extra nights in any of hotels
    • Private transfers to or from Faro or Lisbon airports
    • Rest Days ~ Please enquire for extra night prices at each location
    • Airport Transfers
      • Faro Airport to accommodation (Zambujeira)-£117.50
      • Accommodation (Sagres) to Faro Airport-£135

    Not included ~

    • Packed lunches are not included but can be ordered either from your accommodations or locally and paid for direct each day
    • Evening meals on nights 3, 4, 6 and 7. Local restaurants or in-house meals will be easily accessible on these nights and should be paid for direct
    • Flights
    • Postage Overseas ~ £5.00 (Europe), £10.00 (Rest of the World) ~ per walk pack
    • Airport Transfers to and from your accommodation
  • Essential Info.
    • Each day of walking can range in distance from 19km (5.5 hours) to 12.5 km (4 hours). There is an average overall ascent / descent of 150m. Most days include short steep ascents from the beach up to the cliff top, followed by relatively flat terrain.
    • At times, tide levels will affect your route and make it necessary to walk some sections inland.
    • Most of the walks are well way-marked as they are part of the network Rota Vicentina.
  • When To Go

    Best Time To Travel

    This walk can be completed year round but walkers should be warned that during July and August, it can be very hot. April and May are especially beautiful for wildflowers. Winter is pleasant due to the area’s mild climate, though temperatures can get cold at times and there will be rainy or misty days.

    You have the freedom to choose which day they would like their holiday to start on.

    Please note that unlike our UK holidays there are 4 separate price bandings so please check the dates and prices carefully before booking. We will book your holiday in accordance with your requirements.

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    Click to Zoom

    Walkers have the freedom to choose which day they would like their holiday to start on.

    Please note that unlike our UK holidays there are 4 separate price bandings so please check the dates and prices carefully before booking (price band determined by your arrival date).

    We will book your holiday in accordance with your requirements.

  • Getting There

    Getting There

    This holiday does not include flights and walkers will need to arrange their own travel to Portugal. The walk can be reached from either Lisbon or Faro airport. From there, walkers have the option of either using public transport to get to their first night’s accommodation or we can arrange a private transfer from the airport at an additional cost.

    Private transport:

    Taxi transfers can be arranged from/return the airport if required.

    •  Faro Airport to accommodation (Zambujeira)  £155
    •  Accommodation (Sagres) to Faro Airport £135

    Public transport

    The walk can be reached from either Faro or Lisbon airport using a combination of buses. If you prefer to travel by public transport please enquire and we will be pleased to offer further advice

    Some useful websites for public transport in Portugal -

    Trains

    Buses

Reviews

“Having completed this walk, filling in the feedback form on our hotel balcony I showed my wife the invoice: she was astonished at how low the overall cost was! Very good value, well done.”
Gallop  - May '17
“...this was a great walk and we really enjoyed it. The wild flowers in April were quite stunning. The organisation was perfect - all the taxis arrived on time.”
Gilmour  April '17

Read More Reviews...

Why book your European holiday with Celtic Trails?

As with all our walking holidays, Celtic Trails strives to provide a superior holiday by ensuring a personalised service with the best accommodation on offer. We treat every walker individually, and look after each walking holiday on a case-by-case basis. This means that we can create a holiday that is perfect for you, helping to address all your needs and taking the stress out of booking a holiday abroad. What also makes us different is our commitment to providing the best accommodation. We know that accommodation standards vary from country to country, but with Celtic Trails you can be sure that you will be staying in the best accommodation of its type in that area.

Further Reading

Eclipsed by the bustling tourism of the Southern Algarve, Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentin really is Portugal’s hidden gem. To those in the know though there is an awful lot to discover.

Visit Lonely Planet’s page for more inspiration https://www.lonelyplanet.com/travel-tips-and-articles/the-algarves-wild-western-coast or the Portuguese Tourism’s website here https://www.visitportugal.com/en/NR/exeres/40048323-D0A9-4FAC-B8A6-FEFFC9B4267F.

Alternatively if you’re interested in what other people have to say about the area, you may like to take a look at the 5 star ratings provided on trip advisor

Image credit: P Valdivieso under CC BY-SA 2

Enquire About Rota Vicentina

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