10 Days

Cape St. Vincent (Rota Vicentina) and Southern Coast Walking Tour (Spring 2022)

May 7 – 16, 2022

This tour takes place almost exclusively within protected areas along the coast from Alentejo to Algarve, meandering through authentic fishing villages along the sea. Imagine yourself walking on some of the most beautiful and well-preserved beaches in Europe. Now add the feeling of adventure when discovering pirate hideouts, a rich culture and a cuisine that serves the best the sea has to offer. The coast, characterized by turquoise waters, rugged rocks, and stratified cliff faces buffeted by coastal winds for centuries, is perfect for relaxing walks.

Check out the full description below!

Tour Price $3,500
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  • Overview
  • Description
  • Itinerary

Tour Info

RATING SYSTEM: Level 3 (rating system info)

DURATION: 10 Days/9 night

Region: Southern Coast

ACCOMMODATION: 3-4 star hotels (or similar)

PRICE: $3500/person (sharing double room)

Single Supplement: $500.00

Up to $200.00 Group Discount may be available

GROUP: Minimum 10 Travelers, Maximum 15 Travelers = Full Group (Discount may apply)

AGE REQUIREMENT: 18 – 80 years old

We will be following all COVID-19 protocols/precautions and staying in accommodations certified “Clean and Safe” (issued by the Portuguese National Tourism Authority).



  • 10 days
  • 9 nights at 3 – 4 Stars hotels (or similar)
  • 9 Breakfasts at the hotel
  • 7 Box Lunches
  • 2 Dinners on Day 01 and 09
  • Alcoholic beverages not included with any tour meals
  • Standard Group Arrival/Departure Transfers: from Lisbon Airport to Hotel in Vila Nova de Mil Fontes on Day 01 and to Faro Airport from Hotel in Faro on Day 10
  • Daily transfers from and to the hotel by Vans, Mini-bus or cars
  • Luggage transfers (one piece of luggage per person)
  • English-speaking Guides (entire trip)
  • 24 hour support line
  • Boat trip on Mira River on Day 02
  • Boat trip to Ria Formosa on Day 09
  • Optional: Visit to the village of Aljezur on Day 05
  • Guided tour of Faro Harbor area, including Vila Adentro (walled castle area) on Day 08
  • GPS tracks and mobile apps guide notes


  • Flight, train rides, museum fees, other not specified in included.


This tour takes place almost exclusively within protected areas along the coast from Alentejo to Algarve, meandering through authentic fishing villages along the sea. Imagine yourself walking on some of the most beautiful and well-preserved beaches in Europe. Now add the feeling of adventure when discovering pirate hideouts, a rich culture and a cuisine that serves the best the sea has to offer. The coast, characterized by turquoise waters, rugged rocks and stratified cliff faces buffeted by coastal winds for centuries, is perfect for relaxing walks.

The southwestern Portuguese coast has the distinction of being one of the least developed and best preserved coastlines in Europe. Also named the Fisherman’s Trail, the protected area of the Southwestern Alentejan and Vicentine Coast Natural Park (Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina), basically runs from south of Lisbon to Sagres Point in the Algarve. This protected designation is very different from a national park: it allows villages and human habitation within while protecting its natural and cultural patrimony. And stimulating economic well-being for those who live there. The result is a laid-back, beautifully natural experience on the coast.

The Fishermen’s Trail within the Vicentine Route is a network of walking trails, totaling more than 240 miles for walking. We will discover seven of those trail circuits with enough time to also explore the numerous fishing villages we encounter along the way. Totaling over 48 miles of walking, we will experience ancient Roman ports, medieval castles, tasty meals of fresh fish caught locally and traditional artisanal crafts, sold by villagers.

We will also have a free day to explore on your own along the coast or spend the day a little away from the coast in Aljezur, a white-washed town with a 10th century Moorish castle, old quarter, views of the Serra de Monchique, and the Mother Church (Igreja Matriz) with its Neo-classical altarpiece, dating to 1809.

Other activities on our tour include country picnic lunches, visits to pristine beaches and surfing areas, vistas of lighthouses and the open sea, a visit to the ruins of an ancient Islamic fishermen’s settlement and boat rides on the Mira River and in Ria Formosa in Faro, another Natural Park!

Delight your eyes and soul with the breathtaking, untouched horizon of the Rota Vicentina. Come join us on this exciting natural adventure for a unique look into the past and present of a region that has maintained its authenticity for centuries!




Sunday, May 7, 2022

Transfer from Lisbon Airport to Vila Nova de Mil Fontes, Alentejo

We begin our journey by exploring the charming white-washed seaside town of Vila Nova de Mil Fontes, where the Mira River meets the coast. One of the loveliest villages on Portugal’s west coast, it is located in a sleepy estuary where the Mira River area is home to river otters, martens, dolphins, and various migratory birds. At the seaside, you will observe small fishing activities, surfing activities and beach goers looking for their favorite spot. The town is shadowed by a small castle that was important to the villagers, protecting them from coastal pirates. Relax before we enjoy the kick-off dinner!

Overnight in Vila Nova de Mil Fontes
Meals: Kick-off Dinner



Monday, May 8, 2022

Transfer from Vila Nova de Mil Fontes to Almograve, Alentejo

Walking Tour 1: Almograve to Vila Nova de Mil Fontes, Alentejo (8 mi)

Today we will access a trail at Almograve, where storks nests abound, and return by hiking into Vila Nova de Mil Fontes. We will be able to view Vila Nova de Mil Fontes from a different perspective as we walk northward. This is a day to calm your soul thanks to the impressive views of Vila Nova de Milfontes and the Mira River where it meets the ocean here. It is a short and accessible hiking day so that you may enjoy the area to its fullest.

In some locations along our walk, you will observe farming that stretches right down to the ocean but you will also enjoy other less invasive traces of human presence, such as non-commercial fishing or small Stone-age quarries amongst the dunes. These reminders of Man show his influence in shaping this coastline since time immemorial. Upon our return, we will take a boat ride across the Mira River.

Overnight in Vila Nova de Mil Fontes
Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch



Tuesday, May 9, 2022

Morning Transfer from Vila Nova de Mil Fontes to Cabo Sardão, Alentejo
Afternoon Transfer from Zambujeira do Mar to Vila Nova de Mil Fontes, Alentejo

Walking Tour 2: Cabo Sardão to Zambujeira do Mar (5.5 mi)

On a strip of land that separates the Atlantic Ocean from the Alentejo plains you will find the village of Zambujeira do Mar. The high dark basalt cliffs contrasted with the white brightness of its superb beach makes this sight memorable. During this segment of our journey, with its salty and windy countenance, you can find nesting sites for over twenty species of birds!

Around the Cape Sardão area, keep a sharp lookout for these flocks, especially of the Rock Doves, that are the ancient parents of the common pigeon. Stork nests will be easy to see as will the body surfing at Zambujeira do Mar Beach. Also, we will pass by the Cabo Sardão lighthouse, Tonel Beach, and Porto das Barcas fishing harbor.

Overnight in Vila Nova de Mil Fontes
Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch



Wednesday, May 10, 2022

Morning Transfer from Vila Nova de Mil Fontes to Paraia do Carvalhal, Alentejo
Afternoon Transfer from Odeceixe to Odeceixe Beach, Algarve
Afternoon Transfer from Odeceixe to Arrifana, Algarve

Walking Tour 3: Praia do Carvalhal to Odeceixe (7.5 mi)

Along this stretch of coast, take a close look at the cliffs; note that the sedimentary rocks that were laid down horizontally over eons were then folded and pushed out of shape to create vertical formations. Enjoy one of the most outstanding grandiose views in the entire region: Odeceixe Beach seen from the majestic Ponta em Branco.

We have now entered the Algarve, the most southerly region of Portugal! We will complete our hike at Odeceixe, an attractive white-washed village where the Seixe River and its estuary opens onto a riverbank beach. We then travel to our night’s accommodations in Arrifana, with a beach and fishing harbor that is nestled into the foot of the dramatic cliffs.

Overnight in Arrifana, Algarve
Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch



Thursday, May 11, 2022

Walking Tour 4: Arrifana Loop (7.5 mi)

This loop begins at our hotel and intersects segments of the Pontal da Atalaia circuit before it ends at the hotel again in Arrifana. This journey on the Fishermen’s Trail passes by the Monte Clérigo Beach, the Pontal da Atalaia, and the popular surfing beach at Arrifana; the cliffs are impressive!

Today, also choose Optional Activities that may include mountain biking, surfing lessons, trip on a donkey or spend the day in Aljezur. Aljezur is a charming market town on a narrow river and is overlooked by the ruins of a 10th century castle near its old quarter. A 1755 church is open for visits. The town clearly has Moorish origins shown in its character. Extra activities are yours; we can help.

Overnight in Arrifana, Algarve
Meals: Breakfast



Friday, May 12, 2022

Morning Transfer from Arrifana to Carrapateira, Algarve
Afternoon Transfer from Carrapateira to Sagres, Algarve

Walking Tour 5: Pontal da Carrapateira Loop (7.5 mi)

We travel to the village of Carrapateira to begin our tour; today we will observe how the close relationship of the people to the land and to the sea has remained unchanged for centuries. Along the loop, you will encounter viewpoints from the superb vistas of the steep rock escarpment and the long sandy beaches of Bordeira and Amadoandal to the ruins of an ancient Islamic fishermen’s settlement.

Carrapateira is a delight for vacationers, surfers, hikers, fishermen, mollusk hunters, and scientists. Nature is abundant here and you may also see osprey and river otters. The limestone cliffs, which begin here and continue south, have a different character from the basaltic ones we have seen.

Sagres, where we overnight, is the alleged location of Henry the Navigator’s Fortress, School of Navigation and shipyard; it is also where he planned his strategy to “attempt the discovery of things hidden from men.” He did so from 1419 – 1460. The school is no more but the giant pebble Wind Compass (Rosa dos Ventos), that he supposedly used, still remains.

Overnight in Sagres, Algarve
Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch



Saturday, May 13, 2022

Transfer from Sagres to Telheiro Beach, Algarve

Walking Tour 6: Telheiro Beach Loop (6.3 mi)

Telheiro Beach is a spectacular geosite, a place of extraordinary geological significance and interest, one of the largest and clearest coastal unconformities in Western Europe. An unconformity is an abrupt and unexpected shift in rock layers formed during different geological times under different conditions.

The rock at the base of the cliff, horizontal in nature, has been uplifted to form a ‘V’, which is almost vertical. The “missing” intermediate rock layer has been eroded away, leaving an unusual site to observe. The dark shale at the base compared to the reddish sandstone on top of the cliffs is indeed eye-catching and unforgettable!

The ravine, filled with native vegetation, and the rugged cliffs, offer a dramatic panorama of the rocky bay. Kestrels and peregrine falcons are common hunters here and other bird species inhabit the scrub. On the beaches below, you can find body surfers and surfers. This visit offers a fortunate opportunity to experience great forces of Nature in a raw, untamed state.

Overnight in Sagres, Algarve
Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch



Sunday, May 14, 2022

Morning Transfer from Sagres to Marinha Beach, Algarve
Afternoon Transfer from Carvoeiro to Hotel in Faro, Algarve

Walking Tour 7: The Seven Hanging Valleys Trail (6.0 mi)

The Seven Hanging Valleys Trail is a scenic treasure and features a waterfall (in season), very pleasingly fragrant native scenery and breath-taking coastal views of hidden beaches, rock stacks, sea caves and arches. This winding, fragrant loop is a favorite among hikers. Here, the turquoise sea has conspired with the warm-colored cliffs to create the quintessential Algarve seascape…and one of the most rewarding and memorable walks along this sun-kissed coastline.

After the hike, we may have time to explore the Center of Faro, a small area packed with interesting historic architecture, harbor, shops, fish restaurants and museums. Adjacent to the Center, the walled Old Quarter (Vila Adentro) is an easy walk from the harbor. The Old Quarter is filled with history, reflected in its archways, narrow tiled streets, Cathedral and Bell Tower, plazas, pocket parks and classic tiled scenes (azulejos). The Romans called Faro “Ossónoba”, developing it into an important port. The Romans left large floor mosaics, shown in the Municipal Museum. In 1249, the King of Portugal defeated the Moors and Faro continued to be an important city. In the evening, there may be time to hear Portgual’s national music genre, Fado, at a local restaurant.

Overnight in Faro, Algarve
Meal: Dinner



Monday, May 15, 2022

Transfer from Hotel in Faro to Ria Formosa National Natural Park

Today, we venture into Faro, the capital of Algarve since 1756 and the Ria Formosa Natural Park. This park, in the heart of the Algarve between the land and sea, is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Portugal and one of Portugal’s most important areas for aquatic birds. This estuary is composed of a system of barrier islands and is home to a high density of protected biodiversity (fauna and flora) and is an important stop for migratory birds on the East Atlantic migratory flyway. It hosts 20,000+ birds during the winter. Visitors to the estuary and beaches also generate important local tourist income. A guided tour with a local expert will help us explore this beautiful natural area by boat today.

Overnight in Faro, Algarve
Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch, Farewell Dinner



Tuesday, May 16, 2022

Transfer to Faro Airport

Meal: Breakfast

At the designated time, we’ll take you to the Faro airport by private car/van