Extend your stay in Portugal by combining Portugal’s Emerald Coast with Wilderness Parks of Northern Portugal
Guided Walking Holidays - Portugal's Northern Highlights
The holiday combines our 'Portugal's Emerald Coast' and 'Wilderness Parks of Northern Portugal' holidays.
Based on the stunning Costa Verde, famous for its mountains, lush green countryside, beautiful beaches and “Vinho Verde”, this is a captivating and unforgettable holiday destination. Our walks are taken along some of Portugal’s finest coast line, as well as meandering through classic Minho villages and lush pastoral valleys.
We’ll explore the dramatic mountains of the Serra d’Ágra, where wild horses roam, and cross the river Minho to Portugal’s Spanish sister, O Muiño, to climb to the sanctuary of Santa Tecla where Celtic history comes alive. This area has been inhabited since pre-historic times and is rich in natural and cultural history ranging from Neolithic to Roman times, with villages full of history for us to visit.
We stay in the coastal town of Vila Praia de Ancora in the North West corner of Portugal. After our walks, there will also be time to relax on the beaches and maybe take a dip in the sea before enjoying the sunset and local cuisine. Our hotel is located in the very centre of this charming town with all facilities within a few minutes’ walk.
The Peneda-Gerês National Park is high country of outstanding natural beauty. Here the air is clear and the waters pure. This park contains some of the most beautiful and varied scenery found in the whole of the country and you’ll find an abundance of rare wild flowers, birds of prey, wild horses and other wildlife.
Our two-centre holiday is centred in the Serra da Peneda and is designed so you visit the most spectacular parts of these mountains. Our varied walks circle dramatic crags and granite landscape of Meadinha and follow ancient trails down the lush river Peneda valley.
Our first centre is in the mountain village of Castro Laboreiro dominated by its ancient castle. Isolated traditional villages with high mountain meadows and rolling moorland stretch to the frontier with Spain to the east. Yet walk out of the hotel to the west and we are amongst towering granite crags and hidden wooded valleys.
We walk across the mountains to our second centre in the remote sanctuary of Nossa Senhora da Peneda. Our hotel, once the pilgrims’ hostel, has been imaginatively converted into a high quality hotel. Set with a backdrop of trees, crags and waterfalls, the grand stairway of the sanctuary descends into the valley below.
The somewhat remote location has protected the park landscape. You’ll not only enjoy the beauty of the region, but also visit many of the ancient hamlets dotted about the countryside.