Small fishing harbours, reddish sand dunes, the scent of pine tree forests and the sight, seen nowhere else in the world, of storks nesting on the cliffs make this walk a true balm for your senses.
The high cliffs you will see during this part of the journey, despite being exposed to the constant salty ocean winds, are the nesting site for over twenty species of bird! These include jackdaw, shag, common kestrel, “pure” rock dove, white stork, peregrine falcon and black redstart. It is worthwhile taking the time to stop and watch these birds especially during spring, around the Cape Sardão area. The rock doves are especially interesting as they are the original species from which all the feral pigeons in the world descend.
If you look carefully along this coastal stretch it is easy to see past climate change written in the rocks. The sandstone was formed when the sea was at least 100 m (330 ft), lower than at present, with the beach over 60 km further west. Prehistoric settlements have been found here with remains of colder climate animals and shellfish, clear signs of a colder, drier past, but it is equally possible to find signs of times when the climate here was warmer, wetter and more tropical, displayed by impressive reddish tones in the sand and sandstone, resulting from the accumulation of iron oxides.
Where to start
At the roundabout (beginning of Avenida da Praia), towards the beach of Foz dos Ouriços along the track to the ETAR (water treatment plant).
Zambujeira do Mar
At the Chapel of Nossa Senhora do Mar, in the direction of the beach of Nossa Senhora and the fishing harbour of Entrada da Barca.
Rules and Recommendations
Refreshments along the way
At km 9.5, you pass through the village of Cavaleiro.
At km 18, in the fishing harbour of Entrada da Barca there are two restaurants.
Shorten this section
From Almograve, you can go straight to the beach saving half an hour of hike.
From the fishing port of Entrada da Barca, you can go to Zambujeira by taxi (4 km).
Between Entrada do Pau and Ponta da Carraca the trail deviates inland entering an area of pine forest in order to avoid a strip of coastline with a high degree of erosion. As a matter of security and environmental preservation, be aware and observe this divergence. We rely on your consideration!
This section overlaps with other routes. Pay attention to the signs.