Start: Celorico da Beira Finish: São Romão
From Porto Airport, you take the metro to the city centre. Then you get a bus from Porto to the historic village of Celorico da Beira. The journey takes about 4 hours. Upon arrival, there is still time to explore this historical town, its castle and Medieval walls.
Challenge: Travel to Serra da Estrela
Villages along the way: Celorico da Beira
Today's route begins in Celorico da Beira, traversing open areas with magnificent views to reach the top of the Serra do Ralo. With the hum of windmills from above, you will enjoy sweeping panoramic views before starting the descent to Linhares. On the way down, you will walk through pine forests, holm oak woods and wide pastures. Once in the medieval village of Linhares we recommend visiting its castle, the Roman Forum and royal houses built by the aristocracy, scattered throughout the town.
Challenge: 16 km, 5.5-6 hrs, 620m ascent, 350m descent.
Villages along the way: Celorico da Beira, Linhares, Folgosinho
After breakfast you have a taxi transfer to the beginning of today's route, in Folgosinho or the chapel at Nossa Senhora de Assedasse (luggage continues to your next accommodation in Manteigas). This walk is more demanding than the previous one, and the sections in ascent and descent are rewarded with spectacular views. You traverse a remote area, with no villages along the way, and will need to enough carry water and provisions for the whole day. The first section is a steep ascent from Folgosinho, along an old Roman Road that ascends through a valley. When you reach the highest point, Portella do Folgosinho, you’ll have views to Pico de La Torre. Continuing through nearly deserted valleys and richly diverse forests, the route ends with a steep descent to Manteigas, a lovely village situated in a lush glacier valley beneath high peaks and full of small shops and cafes.
Challenge: 22 km, 6.5-7 h, 700m ascent, 550m descent.
Villages along the way: Folgosinho, Manteigas
For the next two days you will explore the heart of the Serra de Estrella from your base in Manteigas. Today you can choose between a well-deserved rest day, with a visit to the local trout farm, or a trip to the impressive waterfall at ‘Poço do Inferno’ (the Devil’s Well), walking through Buraco Valley with its strange rock formations. A varied and changing landscape with beautiful wooded sections and magnificent views.
Challenge: 14 km, 6-6.5 hrs, 650m ascent/descent.
Villages along the way: Manteigas
A lovely walk awaits today, to the north of Manteigas. Starting off in ascent, you follow a historic route protected by the shade of a pine forest, to reach Pousada de São Lorenço, (elevation 1290m) with stunning views of Manteigas Valley. Next you follow a dirt track through open terrain and vast colourful farmland. Finally, another descent - with more shade - leads back to Manteigas.
Challenge: 14km , 6 hrs, 630m ascent/descent.
Villages along the way: Manteigas
Today you choose between 2 options:
The first traverses the beautiful glacial valley of Zézere, which leads to La Torre, and you walk through valleys, mountain meadows and forest tracks. At the end of your route, you have an included taxi transfer to your next accommodation, situated in the beautiful mountain village of Loriga.
Challenge: 18 km, 6 hrs, 835m ascent, 110m descent.
The second option begins with a short transfer to La Torre recreation area. This strategic location (at 1.993 m, the highest summit in Portugal) provides magnificent views. You will enter the granite massif of Serra da Estrella, a whole different world with wide glacial valleys which recall the last Ice Age. Your route begins with a gradual descent from La Torre toward the western sector of the Natural Park. Traversing high pastures, narrow lanes, abrupt peaks and crystal-clear lakes, you make your way back to the lovely village of Loriga.
Challenge: 12 km, 4.5-5 hrs, 50m ascent, 1230m descent.
Villages along the way: Loriga
The last walking route on this programme leads inland through wooded areas, passing typical villages clinging to the slopes of the “Mountains of the Stars”. On your way you will pass two interesting sites: Más Tumba and Cabeça da Velha, before you reach the pleasant village of São Romão, with several chapels. Your accommodation for tonight is a renovated traditional “Quinta”, now a beautiful hotel with swimming pool, situated just outside the village.
Challenge: 19 km, 6,5-7 hrs, 775m ascent, 550m descent.
Villages along the way: Loriga, Seia, São Romão
Your arrangement comes to an end today after breakfast.
Challenge: Departure from Portugal.
Located in the historic centre of Celorico da Beira, this hotel was a former 18th century manor house. Surrounded by a quiet and relaxing environment in which you will enjoy the tranquility and comfort of its facilities.
Located in a historical village situated in the foothills of the Serra da Estrela mountains that takes pride in its imposing, powerful castle, whose architecture is essentially military in style. The hotel has 26 welcoming and fully equipped rooms. Meeting room, swimming pool, tennis court, Wi-Fi and private parking.
With a quiet and a welcoming atmosphere this hotel is perfect to escape from routine and to rest in harmony with nature. The hotel has 17 rooms with balconies with mountain views. The rooms are comfortable and their are decorated in a basic but nice way. the restaurant has large windows and panoramic views and it offers a good quality gastronomy including many typical Portuguese specialities as well as international ones.
This hostel is in a unique old house with more than 100 years of history, located in the centre of Loriga.
The property of 18 ha in which this hotel is located spreads along a green valley surrounded by oak forests and with three streams running through it. The hotel is in a former farm that was restored maintainig its original personality.
You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, between April and October.
Arrival in Celorico da Beira
From Porto Airport (OPO), you take the Metro or Bus to O Porto city centre. There is a direct bus run by Rede Expressos. You can also take the Metro (line E to “Trinidade” stop) where you change to line D direction “D.João I”. Get off at the second stop and follow signs to the bus terminal “Rede Expressos” in Rua Alexandre Herculano.
From the bus station in Porto, take a bus to the historic village of Celorico da Beira (2.5-3 hours). More info at www.rede-expressos.pt
From Lisbon Airport (LIS). Get a shuttle bus to Sete Rios Bus Station in Lisbon city (line 96). You can also take a taxi. From the bus station take a bus to Celorico da Beirawith the company Rede Expressos (4.5 to 5 hours trip)
Departure from Sao Romao
To Porto airport from Seia; Take the bus from Seia to Coimbra (direction “Lisboa”), where you change buses to connect to O Porto. From Porto bus station take a bus or taxi to the airport
To Lisbon airport from Seia; Take a bus from Seia to Lisbon, most combinations require you to change buses in Coimbra). Around 4.5 to 5 hours trip. From Lisbon bus station there’s a shuttle service to the airport.
GPS tracks are available on request.
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