If you enjoy walking beside water, then this hike is for you! After leaving Odeceixe you’ll join the River Seixe which is on a journey to the sea, just like you. Thankfully your route is more direct than the river which twists and turns lazily through the valley.
You arrive at the coast beside Odeceixe Beach which is considered one of the Rota Vicentina’s finest. At the river-mouth, sandwiched between sea and river, is a sand-bar which shrinks and grows with the tides, and is awash with sun-lovers in a frenzy of surfing, swimming and beach volleyball.
The following section continues along the clifftops and is a feast for the eyes. Admire the Atlantic which shimmers out to the horizon, softly rising and falling like an animal breathing. Closer to the shore, waves shatter and erupt against the cliffs, forcing their way into unexplored coves and crevices.
After pulling yourself from the magnetism of the coast, the footpath strikes across agricultural heartlands beside an irrigation channel. By now a world away from the crowds, you’ll witness Portugal at its most traditional. Farmers watching over a herd of cows or stooping in the fields will raise a hand in a friendly wave.
There are many exposed and unfenced edges throughout the walk. Additionally, some of the cliff-edges may be unstable; be careful and remain on the path.
There are several stretches where you must walk on the road as there is no pavement. Walk on the left side facing the oncoming traffic unless there is a sharp left bend, in which case you should cross to the outside edge to allow drivers the maximum time to see you.
Some of the path is along rocky steps; be careful as these may be slippery, especially when wet.
The section beside the irrigation channel is very narrow; take care on this section.
Tips and hints
Points of Interest
The River Seixe forms the boundary between Alentejo and the Algarve. A sand-bar has formed across the mouth of the river which constitutes Odeceixe Beach, considered to be one of the Fishermen Coast’s most beautiful.
The dazzling blue-and-white windmill (Moinho) occupies a prominent position on one of the most elevated parts of Odeceixe, allowing it to catch as much wind as possible. It was constructed at the end of the 19th century and is still in full working order to mill corn and wheat, though is seldom used. From here there is a beautiful viewpoint to the lower part of the village, and through the River Seixe Valley.
Food and Drink
A small village has built up around Odeceixe Beach, where you can find a wide variety of cafes and restaurants. You will reach the beach after 3 kilometres.
Sturdy hiking boots and a waterproof/wind-break layer are required.
Ensure your phone is fully charged; if you doubt the battery will last throughout the hike, it might be beneficial to bring a power bank.
Make sure you bring enough water. It is recommended to drink 0.75 litres per 1 hour of hiking in hot weather.
Be sure to bring plenty of sun-cream and a healthy respect for the sun.