Fishermen's Trail - 7 days - 5 walks.

Self-guided walking on the Rota Vicentina from São Torpes to Odeceixe.


Itinerary (Click on images to view larger in gallery.)

Day one: Arrival in the Alentejo. You will spend two nights in the coastal  village of Porto Covo at a family owned inn or small hotel close to the centre of the village, with its picturesque square built by the Marquês de Pombal after the great earthquake of 1755.

Day two: Welcome meeting after breakfast at your accommodation before being transferred to start of the first walk hike from São Torpes back to Porto Covo along the beach, dunes and cliff tops. Depending on the sea conditions, you can follow the beach at the beginning of the route, avoiding the road. You can take the opportunity to go for a swim at S. Torpes, a beach where the water is warmer, it is known locally as the boiler beach!

Details: +/- 3 hours | 10 km | Asc. 120 m - Desc. 100 m. | Scale 2.

06 Beware of the cattle
34 Bridge - max 4 persons!
60 Beach at Foz dos Ouriços
39 Praia do Brejo Largo
40 Dunes behind Praia do Brejo Largo
48 Between Praia do Brejo Largo and Foz dos Ouriços

Day three: Porto Covo das Bandeiras to Vila Nova de Milfontes. Starting from the northernmost point of the Fishermen's Trail, from where you will walk through the wide sand dunes of Ilha do Pessegueiro, Aivados and Malhão beaches and along the cliff tops, discovering secluded coves at every turn. You will spend the night at a small hotel/guest house near to the old historic centre of Vila Nova de Milfontes, close to the castle with its views over the Mira estuary.

Details: +/- 8 hours | 20 km | Asc. 200 m - Desc. 180 m. | Scale 4.

Day four: Vila Nova de Milfontes to Almograve. Continuing on the Fishermen's Trail along the coast with the spectacular views of the Mira estuary from the bridge and equally enjoyable views if you choose to take the shortcut by boat. A relatively short walking day which gives you time to enjoy the area to its full extent, particularly Brejo Largo beach. You will spend the night at a delightful guest house situated just behind the sand dunes at Almograve.

Details: +/- 4.5 - 5 hours | 15.5 km | Asc. 120 m - Desc. 100 m. | Scale 3.


08 Dunes between Foz dos Ouriços and Ponta dos Azulejos
56 South of Entrada do Pau
66 Looking towards Palheiroes do Alegro
68 Between Palheiroes do Alegro and Ponta da Carraca
70 Between Palheiroes do Alegro and Ponta da Carraca
96 Storks nesting at Cabo Sardao
132 Praia da Pedra da Bica
150 Looking south to Praia dos Alteirinhos
151 Looking south to Praia dos Alteirinhos
20 Fishing port - Lapa das Pombas
12 Ponta dos Azulejos
30 Dunes above Arquinho
46 Cliff top Entrada do Pau
84 Dunes behind Ponta da Carraca

Day five: Almograve to Zambujeira do Mar. Heading south from Almograve, passing a scented pine forest to the village of Cavaleiro and the historic Cabo Sardão lighthouse. From the cliff tops you can view the nests of white storks on the rocky crags, something that is unique to this short stretch of coastline. You will spend the night at a small guest house close to the  centre of Zambujeira do Mar.

Details: +/- 6.5 - 7 hours | 22 km | Asc. 200 m - Desc. 200 m. | Scale 3.

Day six: Zambujeira do Mar to Odeceixe. A hike along a coastal path, passing the wonderful beaches of Alteirinhos, Carvalhal, Machados and Amalia en route to the fishing village of Azenha do Mar, with its seemingly inaccessible natural harbour. The trail continues along the cliff tops, through the sand dunes  to reach the majestic Ponta em Branco, with views over Odeceixe beach and estuary and southwards along the western Algarve coast. You will spend the night at a small guest house close to the river in Odeceixe.

Details: +/- 6.5 - 7 hours | 18.5 km | Asc. 300 m - Desc. 300 m. | Scale 3.

Day seven: After breakfast depart from Odeceixe.

DSCF1107 Praia da Amalia
DSCF1082 Praia do Machados
DSCF1068 Praia do Carvalhal
DSCF1078 Praia do Machados
DSCF1167 Ponta em Branco

General advice and information.

All of these trails involves a significant amount of walking on soft sand, particularly on the second stage from Porto Covo to Vila Nova de Milfontes. For walkers unaccustomed to walking on sand, the trails can be quite tiring. The levels of difficulty more reflect the fitness required rather than the technical capabilities.

At several points along the route, the trail passes quite close to cliff edges. Therefore we do not recommend these walks for persons who truly suffer from vertigo.   

Whilst late March until early June is the most popular period for this trail, due to the abundant spring flowers and the nesting storks, in the autumn there is still an array of different colours and fragrances to  experience.

For a stress-free start to your travel, arriving at the start point by early evening on day one is recommended.

Website updated: 6th January 2021. Copyright © All Rights Reserved.