7 DAYS IN THE CORE OF SERRA DA ESTRELA

IMMERSION IN THE SPLENDID NATURE, IN THE CORE OF SERRA DA ESTRELA

The highest mountain of Portugal, classified as a global geopark by UNESCO.

An astonishing tour of several walks, guided by an experienced biologist, in one of the highest and emblematic natural areas of the mountains of Portugal. A dip in authentic nature, between forests, glacial valleys, lagoons, fluvial beaches, agricultural terraces, historic and rural villages, rivers and streams, waterfalls, rocks… meeting wildlife and local traditions… A journey through yet unknown places, nature’s real treasures to awaken emotions, rejuvenate and connect with people and traditions, handicrafts and mountain gastronomy.

Difficulty level: 3 / 5 (Moderate to Difficult)

Comfort level: 3 / 5 (Charming Hotel)

Suggested itinerary

(fully customisable in length, experiences, accommodation, …)

SEIA: gateway to the most imposing and extraordinary mountain of Portugal, the Serra da Estrela. 

Accommodation and dinner: In Seia, in Lobos Village (charming three-star accommodation)

Maximum altitude. 1725 m – minimum altitude. 1570 m. 

The Lagoa Comprida (the long lagoon) is the biggest lagoon of Serra da Estrela’s central plateau. It was built from a natural lagoon and is currently Serra da Estrela’s main water tank. The previous glacial lagoon was used to build one of the largest dams for electric supply in the region.

Nave Mestra: a treasure in the shape of a giant ship not to be missed! A magnificent scenery where high altitude pastures, pure and crystalline waters, granite rocks and one of the most unusual houses in the mountains predominate. An unmissable paradise on Earth!

Pass by several enchanting lagoons along the way.

The fluvial beach of Loriga: To relax, at the end of the walk, transfer to Loriga’s fluvial beach (16km)

A natural area of great beauty, in the middle of nature, that collects pure, crystalline and cold waters from the Ribeira da Nave. 

Lunch: Restaurant “O Vicente” in Loriga.

Accommodation and dinner: in Lapa dos dinheiros’ village, in the Casas do Lapa (4-star Hotel & Spa)

Maximum altitude. 1992m – minimum altitude. 826 m

Garganta de Loriga:

Of glacial origin, this valley offers a grandiose landscape with countless stone blocks, relics of the huge glacier that occupied Estrela and moved along this valley. During this tour, we will observe a succession of depressions/cavities/craters such as “covão Boieiro”, the Meio, the Nave and the Areia, where several wildlife species, rare and typical of the mountain landscape, stand out. 

Torre:

The “Torre” (tower) is the highest point in Portugal, with 1993 meters of altitude. There we come across a 7 meters tall tower, built during the reign of D. João VI, for the mountain to attain 2000 meters of height. 

This place offers an impressive view over mountainous valleys, and blue waters of the rivers and lagoons surrounding Serra da Estrela. Whatever the season, this place offers a memorable spectacle.

Cab transfer until Loriga to retrieve the car. 

Transfer to Penhas da Saúde 30.4 km.

Lunch: picnic 

Accommodation and dinner: in Penhas da Saúde, in Pousada da Serra da Estrela (4-star Hotel)

Transfer from Penhas de Saúde to Covão da Ametade. 

With a lenght of 13km, we are in one of the largest glacial valley in Europe, a natural paradise on the remains of the last glaciation period/ice age.

The landscape is made out of granite stone blocks, and at the bottom of the valley we come across the blue and agitated waters of the River Zêzere, the green pastures and their flock of sheep and goats always with their loyal guard dogs, a typical race/breed of this mountain. We will also come across traditional mountain shelters made of stone with thatched roofs made of rye straw.

The priceless biodiversity with rare and specific species of flora and fauna, makes the extraordinary beauty of this place, and it will leave you speechless!

Covão D’Ametade

An old glacial lagoon of exceptional beauty, the source of the river Zêzere, one of the most romantic and magical places in Serra da Estrela, a necessary stop for nature lovers. 

Manteigas

Village located in the Zêzere valley, in the middle of an enchanting landscape, Manteigas is fantastic with its white houses and is famous for its textile industry. In this village, the flocks of sheep produce the wool that is used.

Lunch: picnic

Accommodation and dinner: in Manteigas, in Vila Gale Serra da Estrela (4 stars)

Manteigas: Private visit of the Burel Factory

A Portuguese textile company that offered a new life to Manteigas, retrieving the old factory of Lanifícios Império and its 19th century machines. This factory produces “burel”, a traditional woolen fabric famous throughout the country.

Watching the weaving work of these old machines starting from the yarn to the final product and observing the manual work of each employee, turns into an extraordinary artisanal and cultural moment.

Lunch: Restaurant in Manteigas

Manteigas: Walk on the Rota das Faias (8 km – Easy)

Whatever the season, walking on the Rota das Faias is to experience moments of great emotions for the beauty of this dense beech forest, planted by the Forest Services of Manteigas at the beginning of the 20th century.

Living this walk in particular in autumn, when the colors of the vegetation along the path warm the eyes and the heart with red, orange, yellow, and brown tones… it is a romantic and enchanting walk in the nature of Serra da Estrela.

Transfer to Lapa dos Dinheiros (36.3 km)

Accommodation and dinner : in Lapa dos dinheiros in the Casas do Lapa (4-star Hotel & Spa)

Lapa dos Dinheiros:

It is said that the great wealth and variety of food offered by the people to D. Dinis (who had stopped there for the night) impressed the king so much that he immediately asked: “How did you get such a rich dinner?”. “With our money,” replied the hosts. Since then, the name of Lapa (built on the rock) became Lapa dos Dinheiros.

 Stopping to cool off on the fluvial beach is a very pleasant moment.

Walk of Cornos do Diabo (13km- circular – moderate)

A walk along the canal of Ponte de Jugais and Ribeira da Caniça, full of stunning landscapes of trees, rocks and water lines. Cornos do Diabo is a large granite rock about 6 meters high with two sharp points at the top that resemble horns.

Lunch: Restaurant O Albertino

Linhares da Beira

Visit this historic medieval village from the 12th century built of granite and of great architectural harmony. A walk out of time through the winding streets and stone walls, to its medieval castle, of which only the enclosure defined by two towers with several floors remains.

Accommodation and dinner: in Linhares da Beira in INATEL Linhares da Beira (Rural and charming Hotel)

To end your stay, relax on the Costa Nova beach and enjoy a quiet ride on a moliceiro in the beautiful seaside town of Aveiro.

Costa Nova: Famous for their colorful striped houses, these buildings were haystacks originally used by local fishermen to store their fishing gear. Over time they were converted into small summer houses.

Lunch: with view over the sea

Aveiro: One of the most beautiful cities on the coast of Portugal, located between the sea and the Ria (estruary), crossed by multiple channels. Here you can live with tranquility to the rhythm of fishing, the moliceiros (typical boat of the Aveiro estuary), the beaches and their sands… the life of the birds that come here throughout the year…

Accommodation and dinner: in Aveiro

Transfer de Aveiro até ao aeroporto do Porto para o regresso a casa.

It includes

– 7 nights in a charming hotel in double room with breakfast included
– Lunch (Picnic) for the 3rd and 4th days of walk
– Transportation during the whole trip as well as the roundtrip transfer to Porto Airport
– Guide (Portuguese, English), nature lover and expert of the Serra da Estrela, during the whole trip.

Does not include

– The plane ticket
– Travel / Medical / Repatriation insurance
– Extras / tips / personal expenses
– Cancellation / Interruption of the stay / Loss of luggage and assistance insurance.
– Everything else that is not included

You can privatise this trip on the dates of your choice, just for you and your travel companions. For a private trip, the price depends on the number of participants, the choice of hotels, the desired date and the duration. In this case, we recommend that you contact us directly and we will be happy to discuss your wishes with you.

In high season, our guides and hotels may not be available. If you would like the guarantee of a guide and the hotels of your choice, we recommend that you advance your programme booking as soon as possible.

Points of interest:

Lagoa comprida, Covão dos conchos, Loriga, the Tower of Serra da Estrela, Covão d’Ametade, Manteigas, Linhares da Beira, Aveiro.

Activities:

Walks, visits to villages.

Optional activities:

Visit of Padaria Loripão (Loriga), visit of a traditional cheese factory (Manteigas), visit of the Natural Museum of electricity in Seia (São Romão)

Accommodation:

7 nights in charming hotels and rural tourism

Transportation:

Rented car

The guide:

Emanuel, our ornithologist explorer

With Emanuel, biologist, ornithologist and explorer, you will learn to recognize several birds through their song, flight, and behavior, but also the most typical trees and plants of Serra da Estrela.

Price for this tour:
1 995€ per person
(customisable in length, experiences, accommodation, …)

– 7 nights and 6 full days
– Double room
– Accommodation in charming hotels
– Transportation
– Breakfasts included

7 DAYS IN THE CORE OF SERRA DA ESTRELA | SóPraSi