The most amazing walkways in Portugal (8 walkways)

In this article, we show you the most amazing walkways in Portugal, as well as relevant information you should know before going on the adventure.

Discovering

Any time of the year is great to enjoy the walkways in Portugal. Exercising the body and soul with nature as a background is something increasingly sought after.

Walkways of Fragas de São Simão, Figueiró dos Vinhos (4 km, round trip)

The Walkways of Fragas de São Simão are one of the most recently opened in Portugal. Created in 2020, the 45-minute route is characterized by the landscape that gravitates between the harsh rudeness of the Fragas de São Simão and the agricultural landscape of the valley. The route also leads to a magnificent river beach. Technical difficulty is classified as easy.

Source - Fragas de São Simão

What to do?

The Walkways of Fragas have a splendid river beach, suitable for kids and adults, since it is guarded during the bathing season and has support infrastructure, such as a bar and a picnic park with barbecues and baths/WC.

Moreover, and because it would be like going to Rome and not seeing the Pope, you must visit the shale village of Casal de São Simão, one of the most beautiful schist villages in the Serra da Lousã.

How to get there?

Located in Fragas de São Simão, on the banks of Ribeira de Alge, municipality of Figueiró dos Vinhos, the Walkways of Fragas de São Simão can have three starting points: in the village of Casal de São Simão, in the Fluvial Beach of Fragas de São Simão or in the Fragas de São Simão Viewpoint. You can park your car at any of these locations, but note that spaces are limited.

Google Maps

Sistelo Walkway (22 K, round trip) - Viana do Castelo

The Sistelo Walkway is located in Arcos de Valdevez in Viana do Castelo, very close to the Peneda Gerês National Park. The walkway is part of the Ecovia do Vez, considered the World Biosphere Reserve. The route is about 11 kilometres to each side and you can walk, run or bike.

If once the Sistelo Walkway was one of the best kept secrets of Gerês, with the pandemic it quickly became one of the most emblematic walking routes in Portugal. For many, “the Portuguese Tibet”, as it is also known, is the perfect alliance between nature and sport. To complete the Sistelo walkway, it will take between three and four hours, as it is considered a medium difficulty path..

Source - City Council - Arcos de Valdevez

What to do?

The Sistelo Walkway is part of the recent Coastal Geopark of Viana do Castelo and here you can visit five incredible geosites that you will not find anywhere else. On the Sistelo Walkway, you have some steep ascents and descents that will make your walk an excellent  training exercise.

In addition to completing the route, you can take the opportunity to contemplate the Castle of Sistelo, the granaries, the beautiful mouth of the river Vez and the many viewpoints.

But there is a surprise along the way: you will find three possible spots to bathe in ponds.

How to get there?

To start your journey on the Sistelo Walkway you must choose a starting point: either the Ponte de Vilela or the village of Sistelo. The village of Sistelo is located in the municipality of Arcos de Valdevez, in the district of Viana do Castelo.

Google Maps

Ria’s Walkways — Aveiro (10 km, round trip)

Gone are the times when to enjoy the wonderful landscapes of the Ria it was necessary to resort to the moliceiro. By bike or on foot, since 2018, it is possible to stroll along t the Ria’s Walkways and have a true immersive experience in the city of the ovos moles.

From marshes, to small woods and pine forests, you can glimpse the fauna and flora that surrounds the walkways. Technical difficulty is considered easy, with a flat route and several rest points.

Ria’s Walkways, Aveiro

What to do?

Ria's walkways are an excellent option for family outings, even for those who want to take a chance and take a stroller. As it is a flat path, it is ideal for hiking and for appreciation of fauna and flora. Along the walk, you will find not only some shipwrecks, but also some signs with curious sayings from the inhabitants of Aveiro who are experts in making you burst in laughter.

How to get there?

To start the route on the Ria’s walkways, you must start at the Ribeira de Esgueira pier and end at the Caída Bridge over the Vouga River in Vilarinho.

Google Maps

Orvalho Walkways, Oleiros (8.9km)

In the heart of the Naturtejo Geopark, with the imposing Waterfall of Fraga da Água d'Alta, in Beira Baixa, the Orvalho (Dew) walkway has conquered more and more fans. The circuit has two options, the circular - the walk starts and ends in the same place - and the non-circular - which requires you to do the same route twice, or to choose a taxi upon arrival on the destination.

Source - City Council - Oleiros

What to do?

The Fraga Waterfall of Água d'Alta and Lagoa das Lontras are the two ex-libris of the Orvalho Walkway. The waterfall has also got picnic tables and a diving area for the braver ones. But it is in Lagoa das Lontras where you will find much of the vegetation of the walkway, providing large areas with shade. At the end of the walk, at the top of the Cabeço do Mosqueiro Viewpoint, you can enjoy a privileged view over the region.

How to get there?

For the circular route you must have as a starting  and arrival point the Dew Parish Council, right in the centre of the village. A few metres away you will see the first point of interest — the Igreja Matriz de Orvalho.

As for the point of arrival, and for those who choose not to circulate, they should aim for the Miradouro do Cabeço do Mosqueiro and take the reverse path. For those who choose the circular path, once at the viewpoint, you should follow the N112 and, in less than 20 minutes, you will be at the Parish Council again.

Google Maps

Carvoeiro Walkways, Lagoa (1.5km with round trip)

The Carvoeiro Walkways are known for the wonderful Algarve landscape. By the sea and embraced by the golden cliffs, the walkways delight those who seek to strengthen contact with nature.

Source - Carvoeiro Walkways, Lagoa

What to do?

Carvoeiro walkways are a great option for late afternoon walks with a sunset view. In addition, you will find in the open air, an amphitheatre, where concerts and other initiatives take place, next to the hermitage and vestiges of the Nossa Senhora da Encarnação Fort.

How to get there?

The Carvoeiro walkways connect the Algar Seco to the chapel and fort of Nossa Senhora da Encarnação. Operating since 2014, it has LED lights, which makes the walkway an excellent option for visitors who prefer to walk at night.

Google Maps

Paiva Walkways, Arouca (17.4 km with round trip)

They are the most visited and awarded walkways in Portugal, with thousands of visitors every year. The wooden structure connects the river beaches of Areinho and Espiunca and has an average duration of 2h30, with intermediate difficulty, due to the sharp ascents and descents.

These walkways are excellent for those who want to exercise and enjoy a beautiful natural landscape. The walkways are inserted in the Arouca Geopark, which has already been recognized by UNESCO as a Geological Heritage of Humanity.

Source - City Council - Arouca

What to do?

These walkways are fantastic for long walks for two, with family or among friends. The Paiva Walkways are on the left bank of the Paiva River, so you can also take the opportunity to dive in the various river beaches that you will find along the way. This river came to be considered the least polluted in Europe in the 90s and remains today as one of the cleanest and most beautiful in Portugal.

In addition, along the route you have  several fantastic geosites to discover - the Paiva Canyon, the Aguieiras Waterfall, the Vau river Beach, the Gola do Salto and the Fault of Espiunca.

Tip: take a breather and enjoy a nice picnic. Along the way you will find several suitable shadows and locations. Be mindful  and take some food and drink.

How to get there?

To start the walk, you can choose the departure in the parish of Espiunca or Areinho, in the municipality of Arouca, in Aveiro. If you want a less steep route, with more descents than ascents, it is best to do the walkway towards Areinho - Espiunca.

Google Maps

Alamal Walkways, Gavião (4km with round trip)

Overlooking the Tagus River and the imposing Belver Castle, the Alamal Walkways are totally the opposite of the city's confusion. The route starts at Praia Fluvial do Alamal and ends at the centenary Belver Bridge.

Although the violent fires of 2017 have hit the walkways, since 2019 they have been reopened and have been the perfect destination for a stroll by the river. Technical difficulty is classified as easy.

Alamal Walkways, Gavião

What to do?

In addition to the practice of exercise, the walkways invite you for a swim in the river beach of Alamal. The beach has surveillance in the bathing season, with excellent support infrastructures, such as bathrooms with showers and parking. For those wishing to stay overnight, they can camp on site — the beach has a green area for that purpose.

How to get there?

The walkways are located in the municipality of Gavião, in the district of Portalegre. The beginning of the wooden structure is located at Praia Fluvial do Alamal and ends at the Belver Bridge.

Google Maps  

Gresso Walkways, Sever do Vouga (3 km)

If you like clean air and walking in communion with nature, the Gresso walkways are an excellent option. The Gresso River is the landscape of those who risk a hike, in a setting where the mountain grove and the crystal clear waters are the protagonists. Technical difficulty is classified as easy.

Gresso Walkways, Sever do Vouga

What to do?

The Gresso Walkways are unique in the beauty they present — which is why you'll want to take every opportunity to take pictures. Don't forget, however, to take advantage of the various shadow spots to enjoy the waterfalls of the Gresso River.

How to get there?

The itinerary starting and finishing point is Sanfins, in the parish of Rocas de Vouga. The circular walkway follows the route of the Gresso River, with its spring in the Arestal mountain range.

Google Maps 

This kind of ride is one of those where you take your backpack and leave all your troubles behind. And it feels so good!

Enjoy your free days and discover the most amazing walkways in Portugal. Follow the Excelente guide and you will not regret it.

The most amazing walkways in Portugal (8 walkways)
Discovering
The most amazing walkways in Portugal (8 walkways)