The Historical Way Stage
Pedra da Agulha seen from Canal beach, Vale Figueira’s vast sand stretch revealed during low tide and a succession of hills and valleys, confirm the most aggressive and inaccessible side of this coastal area. Upon arrival, a privileged view over Bordeira beach’s sand dunes and the creek that meets the ocean here, in a setting that repeats itself over and over again and characterizes Vicentina Coast’s beaches.
In this admirable section there is the constant and simultaneous presence of the hills and the sea, pristine nature and the unique presence of man. It’s practically a step-by-step summary of what Rota Vicentina has to offer: the power of the sea pouring over ancient cliffs or on quiet sandy beaches, undergrowths full of colour and aromas, an extraordinary biodiversity of fauna, tranquil woods of cork, wild olive and oak trees, meadows cultivated by man at his leisure, visited at night by boars and badgers, a spring which erupts in flowers and colourful insects, a fall that has mushrooms and edible wild plants, points of contemplation at sea level, at the top of the cliff, in the intimacy of the woods or on top of a hill. It is worth while taking a longer look at Canal Beach and the village of Bordeira.
The undergrowth which populates much of this section is rich in cistus and lentiscus, the fruit of which is a delicacy for seed eating birds. On the rocky beaches lashed by the sea it is common to find rocks, well rounded by constant erosion from waves and tides. These are pieces of dark rock from the cliffs, often decorated with white stripes of quartz, in geometric designs. Heading inland between spots of pine and eucalyptus on clay soils, cork oaks, strawberry trees and farmland where cattle graze, the presence of small holdings announce your arrival at a village. After passing the village of Bordeira, the view over the valley of the Bordeira River and the estuary, where it joins the Carrapateira Rivers highlights once again the beauty of the region.
Where to start
At the parking area on the top of the beach of Arrifana, heading along the road in the direction of Vale da Telha and Aljezur, until you enter the dirt track on your right.
In the village centre (Largo do Comércio), heading along the road to Monte da Cunca, where you should join the path to the right.
Rules and Recommendations
Refreshments along the way
At km 9 at Monte Novo and at km 19, in the village of Bordeira.
Take advantage of the Circular Routes of Bordeira and Carrapateira to stay a few more days in to get to know these unique areas.
This is a long route and you can find supplies at the start and middle (around km 9).
Pay attention to the signage as there are intersections with several Circular Routes.