Sea and Serra - 8 days - 6 walks.

Self-guided walking from Vila Nova de Milfontes to São Luis via Odeceixe.


Itinerary (click walk name to view gallery).

Day one: Arrival  in the Alentejo. You will spend the night at a small hotel close to the castle in Vila Nova de Milfontes with views over the river estuary.

Day two: Vila Nova de Milfontes to Almograve. A walk 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. 150 m - Desc. 130 m. | Scale 3.

Day three: Almograve to Zambujeira do Mar. Heading south from Almograve, passing 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.

Rural guesthouse

Day six: São Teotónio to Odemira. Much of the route follows wide trails witn mild ascents and descents beside the rivers S. Teotonio and  Mira and their sidestreams, with their crystal clear waters which are host to a variety of wildlife, including dragonflies, crayfish and otters. The night will be spent at a family owned pension in the centre of Odemira.

Details: +/- 6 hours | 19 km | Asc. 220 m - Desc. 350 m. | Scale 2.

Day seven: Odemira to São Luis. A walk known as the water section of the Historical Way, where there is an optional but recommended side trail to Pego da Pias pools. The night will be spent near the Alentejo village of São Luís at a rural guest house with use of swimming pool (in season), where you can relax on the terrace and take in the wonderful views of the serra.

Details: +/- 8 hours | 25 km | Asc. 450 m - Desc. 300 m. | Scale 3.

Day eight: After breakfast depart from São Luís.

Fishing harbour

Day four: Zambujeira do Mar to Odeceixe. A walk 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 five: Odeceixe to São Teotónio. A walk along some inhospitable but truly memorable trails, climbing for a last look back at the  ocean before descending into valleys rich in native vegetation. From an open plateau, with  São Teotónio nestled  ahead, you descend through a quiet forest to join an ancient stone track towards the village. (During and after periods of heavy rain part of the trail may be waterlogged. There is a marked alternative route. +/- 5.5 hours | 15 km | Asc. 400 m - Desc. 200 m. | Scale 2.)  The night will be spent in arural guesthouse on the edge of  village, where you can take a dip in the swimming pool after your walk.

Details: +/- 5.5 - 6 hours | 17 km | Asc. 550 m - Desc. 350 m. | Scale 3.

Pego das Pias

General advice and information.

All of the coastal trails involves a significant amount of walking on soft sand. 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 coast, the trail passes quite close to cliff edges. Therefore we do not recommend these walks for persons who truly suffer from vertigo.   

During and after periods of heavy rain, some inland trails may be waterlogged.

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: 26th March 2020. Copyright © All Rights Reserved.