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HIDDEN DELIGHTS OF THE WESTERN ALGARVE

from £1125
The western Algarve's varied geology helps produce a rich diversity of scenery from mountains to limestone escarpments and sea cliffs.
  • Product Code 26170
  • Holiday Type Walking Holiday
  • Grade Grade 4
  • Holiday Duration 7 Nights

Guided Walking Holidays - Walking in Portugal's Western Algarve

The western Algarve offers a glorious mix of coastal, mountain and inland landscapes. The varied geology produces a rich diversity of scenery from granite mountains to dramatic limestone escarpments and sea cliffs, all greatly complemented by the local flora and fauna. Experience this journey with Ramblers Walking Holidays. 

We stay in two contrasting centres on Portugal’s south coast. From historic Silves we enjoy a levada walk beside the Rio Arade, which passes through orange and lemon groves, and exploring the old town. Another day will be spent in the hills of the Serra de Monchique, offering outstanding views. Carob and olives are cultivated on farms and small holdings, along with oranges and other citrus fruit, pomegranates, almonds and an abundance of other produce. We visit local villages where working life continues as it has for centuries.

As we head to our second centre of Burgau, we’ll enjoy a fantastic coastal walk between Alvor and Portimão en route. Burgau is a quiet village with a selection of restaurants and bars to while away the evenings. From here we will continue our search for the hidden gems of the Western Algarve. A coastal walk will take us from Luz to Lagos, encountering some typical Algarvian villages as we go, and head to the edge of Europe, walking in the Parque Natural de Costa Vicentina, the most south-westerly point of Europe, and the last sight of land for explorers setting forth on their historic voyages.



You might like to take a look at our Algarve Odyssey holiday combining a week in Tavira, Pearl of the Algarve with our Hidden Delights of the Western Algarve holiday.

Holiday Highlights

  • Admire the spectacular sea cliffs and maritime scenery.
  • Explore the inland Serra de Monchique mountain range.
  • Visit the Costa Vicentina Natural Park and Cape St Vincent.
  • Enjoy the flexibility of opt out points on many walks.
  • Admire the abundance of springtime flowers and autumn fruits.
  • Dine in restaurants with Portuguese dishes and local wines.
  • Explore the cobbled streets of historic Silves, topped by its Arab castle.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Gatwick to Faro (British Airways)
      Airport transfers
      En suite accommodation with breakfasts taken at the hotels
      Dinners taken in local restaurants
      All local transport costs.
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised program, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 4

  1. Day 1

    Fly to Faro and transfer by road to Portimao, taking approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour. Depending on arrival time, we may have an orientation of the town. A relaxed dinner is taken at the hotel this evening.

  2. Day 2

    Our walk today begins along a levada beside the Rio Arade and continues through the orange and lemon groves which are a feature of the landscape here. The Silves canal or levada runs from the Barragem do Arade to supply the rich orange groves of the river valley. We finish in Silves itself where we have time to explore this historic town. Approximately 12km (7miles); 3-4 hours; 0m Ascent/Descent.

  3. Day 3

    Today we head into the hills of the Serra de Monchique. Our walk offers panoramic views of some of the most beautiful parts of the Algarve. The mountainous area of the Serra de Monchique stands in complete contrast to the rest of the Algarve. This is a green wooded area, decked in cork, chestnut, pine and eucalyptus trees. The day includes time to visit the town of Monchique. Here you will discover traditional skills and handicrafts still being practiced. The famous Medronho, distilled from the Strawberry tree, distinctive hand knitted sweaters and the unusual wooden chairs all suggest the character and uniqueness of this area. Morning Walk: Approximately 3.4km (2.1 miles); 1.5 hours; Ascent 120m; Descent 100m. Afternoon Walk: Approximately 9.5km (6 miles); 3-4 hours; Ascent 200m, Descent 500m

  4. Day 4

    Today we will transfer to our next centre of Burgau. However we do have a full programme with a fantastic coastal walk taking in the superb sandy beaches and dramatic headlands between Alvor and Portimão, including the much photographed beach at Praia da Rocha, one of the best in the Algarve. After a lunch stop, we continue by foot, along the coast, walking to our next accommodation close to the small village of Burgau. Our luggage will be taken separately by coach, and those that prefer not to walk can also take the coach transport. Approximately 13.5km (8miles); 3-4 hours; Minimal Ascent / Descent.

  5. Day 5

    We continue our coastal theme with a spectacular walk starting from the small village and resort of Luz. On this walk we follow a coastal path to Lagos, visiting on the way Ponta da Piedade where the famous sea caves are to be found and visited by many small boats carrying visitors from nearby Lagos. The walk finishes in Lagos and we will have the afternoon to sightsee in this attractive town that was an important Roman settlement called 'Lacobriga'. A variety of ancient Roman ruins remain, including the old slave market. The town centre, which is enclosed within 5th century walls offers a modern and well equipped marina that dominates the sea front and the town is now firmly positioned as a centre for tourists from all over the world. Approximately 12.5km (7.5miles); 3-4 hours; Ascent 100m; Descent 100m.

  6. Day 6

    We head back inland for a walk that takes in the villages of Barão de São João and Barão de São Miguel. These charming, rural and peaceful villages are characterized by the typical white houses with a coloured band around the windows and doors. This and the traditional Algarve chimneys demonstrate the many years of Moorish occupancy of the area. Approximately 14km (8.5miles); 4-4 ½ hours; Ascent 150m; Descent 150m.

  7. Day 7

    Our final day on the western Algarve fittingly culminates at Sagres, the most westerly point on the Algarve. This area of intensely dramatic cliffs, opening onto a vast horizon of sea and sky, was the last sight of Europe for the explorers setting forth on their fearsome voyages beyond the horizon. We can also visit Ponta de Sagres, a giant finger of rock pointing to the ocean, and Cap St Vincent. It was here that Prince Henry the Navigator established his fortress and began the “age of discoveries” sending ships to explore the world. Approximately 13km (8miles); 4-4 ½ hours; Minimal Ascent / Descent.

  8. Day 8

    Depending on the flight time, there will be free time before taking the transfer to the airport for the flight back to the UK.

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Gatwick to Faro (British Airways)
  • Airport transfers by road c. 1 hour
  • We can offer regional flight options and often there will be up to two transfer vehicles (which may include coaches, minibuses or taxis) from the airport to the hotel and vice versa which will minimise any waiting time at the overseas airport
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights this may be Premium Economy, Business or First Class. Most low-cost carriers also have extra legroom seats.

Trip Map

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Hotel Globo

From 2019, we will stay the Hotel Globo, located in the historical centre of Portimao, close to all the local facilities and sights. Rooms are all en suite with air conditioning and there is a lovely panoramic view from the breakfast room. You will also find a bar and gym/sauna on site.

 

 

 

 


Hotel Santa Catarina

The Hotel Santa Catarina, a 3 star hotel close to Praia da Rocha beach in Portimão, offers a bar and restaurant, and is only a 10 minute walk from Portimão marina. All rooms are en suite with TV, minibar, safety deposit box, A/C and free wifi. With the beach being so close at hand, it is perfect for an after walk dip in the sea!

 

 


Quinta do mar da Luz

Located only 1km from Burgau beach the Quinta do mar da Luz offers a stunning cliff top location and wonderful views of the sea. Set in verdant lush gardens it offers a tranquil retreat after a day’s walking, where you can cool off in the outdoor pool (unheated) or relax with a drink at the bar. The bedrooms all include TVs, air conditioning, tea and coffee making facilities, safes and complimentary Wi-Fi. We take breakfast in the restaurant which is a great continental as well as English buffet breakfast.


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