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      our holidays > Walking Holidays > Portugal & its Islands > Along the Costa Vicentina

Along the Costa Vicentina

Alentejo - golden sands & honey-coloured cliffs
Holiday information
Nights: 7
Grade 2: some short ascents & descents
Terrain: cliffs, sand dunes, coastal paths
Hotels: three rural hotels, three guesthouses
Meals: 7 breakfasts, 5 dinners, 5 picnics
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Extend your stay
Why not add a day or two to explore Lisbon, Portugal’s lively capital, which sits majestically at the mouth of the great River Tagus?
This Holiday in a nutshell
  • self-guided hotel-to-hotel walking, luggage transported
  • wild and unspoiled coastal scenery
  • charming mix of accommodation of character
  • wonderful seafood
  • glorious sunsets over the Atlantic

To explore a truly wild coastal landscape, choose this spectacular walk which reveals the haunting beauty of Portugal’s south-western coastline. Here, on the little-known Costa Vicentina – Europe’s largest coastal natural park – virgin beaches backed by dunes and dramatic cliffs are washed by a restless ocean. The sunsets over the Atlantic are superb, and by day the plentiful sunshine shows the colours of the landscape to best effect: the white-and-blue houses, the turquoise sea, the honey-coloured cliffs, red fishing boats, golden sands, green cliff-tops…

The route was broad and clear with fresh green-and-blue waymarking posts at regular intervals and a delicious sea breeze to cool my progress. From the cliff-tops by the lighthouse Cabo Sardão I could peer down into the storks’ nests and spot bundle-of-fluff baby chicks below.

The pace of life here is refreshingly unhurried, and the beaches largely deserted, attracting egrets and turtles. The sleepy, whitewashed fishing villages offer a glimpse of a way of life that has remained unchanged for decades, and hide rural hotels of great charm and character, which range from luxurious ranch-style hotels to pristine townhouses. Late spring is a particularly special time, when pink thrift carpets the dunes and Europe’s only marine stork colony nests on precarious sea stacks buffeted by the waves.

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