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Hiking trail

Vila Nova de Milfontes to Almograve/Longueira

Hiking trail · Portugal
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Macs Adventure Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Fishermen on the Fishermen Coast
    / Fishermen on the Fishermen Coast
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / The River Mouth at Sunset
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / Historic Vila Nova de Milfontes
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / View Back to Vila Nova de Milfontes
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / Boardwalk to the Sea
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / Overgrown Path in Places
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / Beautiful Views
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / Endless Coastal Views
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • / Winding Clifftop Path
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
m 300 200 100 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km St. Clement's Fort Praia das Furnas

From Vila Nova de Milfontes you must cross the River Mira, and then continue hugging the coast atop cliffs and through sand-dunes to reach Almograve or Longueira (depending on where your accommodation is booked).

moderate
17.2 km
5:30 h
260 m
239 m

There are two options to cross the river as you head south from Vila Nova de Milfontes; you can walk to the nearest bridge or ride the ferry. Walking via the bridge is 4 kilometres longer, much of it a plod along the main road but with the occasional, splendid view across the river and back to town. The ferry runs twice-hourly most of the year, costs a couple of euros, and is a short, pleasant journey that drops you directly on the trail on the far side.

Today’s trail continues hugging the exposed coastline and winding through a mosaic of flora with unbeatable coastal views on your right. The path is generally less sandy than yesterday, though there are still places where you will sink with every step. This section of the Portuguese Coast is gloriously undeveloped, and except for pockets of agriculture and the wonderfully-regular waymarking of the Rota Vicentina, there is scarce evidence of human presence. Many of the beaches and coves you pass are treasures reserved only for those who travel on foot.

You will be staying in Almograve or Longueira tonight, which are 2 kilometres apart. Check your accommodation notes in advance so you can follow the route notes and map to the correct village.

Author’s recommendation

Consider taking the ferry out of Villa Nova de Milfontes to enjoy a short, pleasant journey across the river, and to skip 4km. 

outdooractive.com User
Author
Macs Adventure
Updated: March 04, 2020

Difficulty
moderate
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
50 m
Lowest point
2 m

Rest Stop

O7 Ocean Drive Beach Club

Safety information

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.

Some fields may have cattle in them, though this generally poses no issues; take care not to startle them and to pass around them with a wide berth.

Equipment

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.

Tips, hints and links

Points of Interest

Salt Marshes

The estuary for the River Mira forms a salt-marsh, thanks to a never-ending supply of fresh sediment carried from the river, and shallow water that reduced the number of predators and supports algae and photosynthesis. This ecosystem plays a key role in the food chain with an estimated 70% of marine life important to the fishing industry spending part of their life-cycle here. It also supports bird-life, offering rich feeding and nesting opportunities.

 

Praia das Furnas

Praia das Furnas is the beach on the far side of the River Mira from Vila Nova de Milfontes. Half of the beach faces the river and is relaxed and tranquil, while the other half receives the full force of the Atlantic Ocean and is a great spot for surfing.

 

Food and Drink

You will pass a restaurant after 5 kilometres and after 15 kilometres you will arrive in Almograve where are plenty of options to grab something to eat. There is nowhere to buy food or drink in between and nowhere to refill water bottles, so be sure to bring sufficient provisions.

Start

Forte de São Clemente, Vila Nova de Milfontes (14 m)
Coordinates:
Geographic
37.723057, -8.782797
UTM
29S 519141 4175110

Destination

Almograve or Longueira (Check your accommodation notes)

Turn-by-turn directions

0.00km – Start facing the Fortress (from the land side) and TURN LEFT to walk along the road. If you are taking the ferry across the river, bear right and follow signs for ‘Ferry Boat/Barco’. Otherwise, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON to pass through the No Entry sign after 30 metres.

0.10km – As you emerge into a square by the church, BEAR LEFT then BEAR RIGHT to walk along Rua Sarmento Beires, which is the town's main street. As the road forks after 150 metres, BEAR RIGHT to remain on Rua Sarmento Beires, and pass a No Entry sign. Remain on this road for 850 metres, ignoring all side paths.

1.10km – CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON at the roundabout. At a second roundabout after 400 metres, TURN RIGHT. You are following signs to Odemira at both junctions. This road will proceed to cross the bridge over the river, offering a beautiful view back to Vila Nova de Milfontes.

3.00km – Having crossed the bridge and as a short section of metal vehicle barrier finishes, TURN RIGHT to pass through a gate and into a field. This footpath will wind through trees and skirt along the edge of the field. There may be cattle in this field though they generally pose few issues; take care not to startle them and to pass around them with a wide berth.

3.40km – BEAR RIGHT to leave the field and follow the green and blue markings into the trees. Ignore the tractor tracks that continue ahead.

3.90km – As you enter a field with derelict and graffiti-covered buildings ahead, BEAR RIGHT to skirt along the edge of the field.

4.20km – As you reach a wide sandy road beside a derelict and graffiti-covered building, TURN RIGHT to follow the footpath through a gate and towards the river. There are green and blue markings to guide you.

4.30km – TURN LEFT as you reach the paved road. After 200 metres, just before a few parking spaces and outdoor gym equipment, TURN RIGHT onto the gravel road.

4.80km – At the roundabout beside a restaurant, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON along the gravel road, passing through a no entry sign.

5.40km – Beside the Beach Club hut, and as the gravel road finishes in a car park, TURN LEFT to head uphill on the paved road, following the sign to Almograve. After 300 metres, as the paved road bends left, TURN RIGHT onto the sandy road. As the road forks after 200 metres, BEAR RIGHT to pass into another field and head back towards the sea.

6.40km – BEAR LEFT as the path forks to continue skirting along the edge of the field and following the blue and green markings.

6.90km – TURN RIGHT at a crossroads, following the blue and green markings, to head away from the fields. As you reach the clifftops after 100 metres, BEAR LEFT to walk with the sea on your right.

7.10km – BEAR RIGHT as the sandy path forks, to continue walking parallel to the sea.

7.40km – CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON as the path crosses two wooden bridges. After 100 metres there are two vague crossroads 20 metres apart. TURN LEFT at the second crossroads, following the blue and green markings, and ignoring the minor path that appears to continue along the clifftops ahead.

9.70km – Having skirted beside fields, TURN RIGHT to head through a tunnel of trees, following the blue and green markings. After 100 metres, at a crossroads with the sea directly ahead, TURN LEFT following the blue and green markings. This path will continue through an overgrown section of trees and bushes where you may have to duck and squeeze through a few places.

10.20km – After emerging from the section of overgrown bushes, BEAR RIGHT to walk along the sandy path, still parallel to the coast.

10.90km – As you reach a junction beside the corner of a wire fence, and with a concrete wall and building on your right, TURN LEFT then TURN RIGHT to pass an ‘Unstable Cliffs signpost’ and immediately cross over a wooden bridge, following the green and blue sign for Almograve. Ignore the red and white sign for Almograve that directs you left along the sandy road.

12.40km – As the main path suddenly appears to wind steeply downhill towards a small beach, BEAR LEFT onto a minor track through overgrown bushes that passes above this small beach. This junction is easy to miss, but you will notice the path suddenly beginning to descend.

13.90km – Having headed slightly inland to pass around Praia da Foz dos Ouricos, the path will fork. BEAR RIGHT to follow the path that heads downhill towards the beach, even though this means passing through the green and blue cross, and ignoring the green and blue markings on the left. You are temporarily leaving the main Rota Vicentina trail.

14.10km – Once on the beach, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON to cross over the steam and climb the winding sandy footpath on the far side. Having climbed uphill, BEAR RIGHT to continue hugging the edge of the coastline on your right. You have rejoined the Rota Vicentina trail and there are blue and green markings to follow again.

14.70km – Just before reaching the car park, BEAR RIGHT, and then after 20 metres, TURN LEFT to walk along the wooden boardwalk. After 200 metres, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON to cross over the paved road and resume the wooden boardwalk on the far side. Ignore the green and blue cross, and continue along the wooden boardwalk parallel to the paved road on your left.

(If you are staying in Longueira, follow these instructions to reach your accommodation.)

15.50km – At the roundabout in the centre of Almograve, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON following the sign to Odemira. Remain on this road for 1.6 kilometres, passing through agricultural countryside. Sometimes there is no shoulder to walk on, in which case walk on the left side facing the oncoming traffic.

17.10km – Immediately after passing the Longueira sign, TURN LEFT onto the uphill, paved road. After 200 metres, just after passing a windmill and bus stop on your left, TURN RIGHT onto Rua de Monte Novo, and ignore the sharp right turn.

17.40km – At the staggered crossroads, TURN LEFT and then TURN RIGHT, following the sign for Rural Turismo.

17.40km – Finish at the Rural Turismo in Longueira.

Note


all notes on protected areas

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike


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Difficulty
moderate
Distance
17.2 km
Duration
5:30h
Ascent
260 m
Descent
239 m

Statistics

: h
 km
 m
 m
Highest point
 m
Lowest point
 m
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