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Central Portugal & Serra da Estrela (12100G)

Manteigas
Guided Tour Central Portugal & Serra Da Estrela (12100G) - Serra da Estrela
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Description

GUIDED TOUR

Guided Walk

Portugal is a country of astonishing beauty and amazing contrasts. Besides its famous coastline the majority of its mountains and forests are relatively unknown and therefore offer huge rewards to the rambler in search of something special.

Our new holiday is in the Serra da Estrela Natural Park, the mountains of the stars, the highest mountain in mainland Portugal rising to 1993m. The Serra’s landscapes of pine forests, lakes and glacial valleys all enjoy clean, crisp, mountain air. The Natural Park is also the source of the Mondego, Zêzere and Alva rivers. Dramatic crags and ravines make this region stunningly beautiful and a pleasure to explore.

Sheep and goats play a traditional role in the manufacture of the famous Serra da Estrela cheese. Sausages and wine are also important to the local economy as are the smoked produce and embroidered cotton. Craftsman use their skills in basket work using wicker and chestnut. The Serra da Estrela also has its own breed of mountain sheep dog.

The villages of the Serra da Estrela date back to medieval times and evidence of the Roman presence and Arab influence can be seen in the area. This is truly a rambler’s paradise not only for the amazing walking but also for the beauty that graces so much of this stimulating part of Portugal.

Our tour is centred in Manteigas, a picturesque town is in the very heart of a glacial valley. It will be our base for great walking amongst the beautiful scenery that nature has bestowed on the Serra da Estrela Natural Park. There are good paths which cover the park giving the opportunity to discover more of this stunning region.

If you like good walking and magnificent scenery, this new holiday is a perfect choice.
Itinerary

WEEK’S PROGRAM

Each day breakfast will be taken in the Hotel before leaving for the day’s program.

We will usually leave the Hotel between 9.00 am and 9.30am.

On our return to the Hotel each day we will have time to relax and change before dinner which is usually taken at 7.30pm.

Each evening the guide will give a preview of the next day’s program.

Day’s program is subject to alteration due to weather and local conditions.


DAY 1

Arrival


DAY 2

Penhas Douradas to Nave da Mestra

A glorious mountain walk from Penhas Douradas to Nave da Mestra, a historic refuge in heart of the mountains and returning to Penhas Douradas.


DAY 3

Rio Mondego

A walk to visit the valley of the rio Mondego, Portugal’s longest river.

This high fertile valley is home to sheep from whose milk the famous Queijo da Serra is made.

In summer golden fields of rye line the river banks hiding isolated farms and tiny chapels.


DAY 4

Day off

We recommend a visit to Guarda, 40 km distant (about 1 hour’s drive) and Portugal’s highest city.

The drive is incredibly spectacular enabling us to see more of these fantastic mountains.


DAY 5

Manteigas Valley

A walk down the valley from Manteigas following the rio Zêzere. At times following a ridge with dramatic views and then returning along the valley with an opportunity to visit the attractive village of Sameiro and enjoy a break in the local café.

For much of the way a mix of coniferous and deciduous trees will shade our way.


DAY 6

Torre

A walk up to Torre. This walk climbs the highest point on mainland Portugal.

Dramatic paths lead up to the summit giving spectacular views.

This walk is not too long and for those who wish a fuller day there will be an optional walk to Varanda, surely one of finest viewpoints in the entire mountain range.

Clients who do not wish to do the second part of this walk could be transported to Penhas da Saude to explore the area and use the cafés.


DAY 7

Loriga valley

A walk that will start and finish at Torre. A beautiful walk, with great views, that makes the most of this dramatic, rocky landscape. We visit many of the small lakes that abound in this area and are able to appreciate the head of the spectacular Loriga valley.


DAY 8

Departure

After breakfast transfer to airport.
The Hotels
  • Hotel Berne *** (or similar)
Hotel Berne, in Manteigas, offers guest rooms with balconies overlooking forest landscapes of Serra da Estrela. It features a restaurant with panoramic views.

All rooms at Hotel Berne have parquet floors and simple wooden furnishings. They come equipped with a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a hairdryer. WiFi is available in all areas.

Breakfast is served in the breakfast room with its large windows, and includes a selection of fruits, cereals, pastries, juices and yoghurt. There is a bar with a fireplace and billiard table.
What's Included

Accommodation:
  • 7 nights in a twin room (three stars hotel)
  • Single supplement applied in single rooms
Guide:
  • All guided tours
Meals:
  • 7 Dinners taken in local restaurants with drinks included. We are always able to cater for vegetarian or other special diets (Lunches can be bought from local shops)
  • 7 buffet breakfasts at the Hotel.
Transport:
  • Tranfers from Lisbon airport at 12 a.m on first day
  • Tranfers from the Hotel to Lisbon airport at 12 a.m on last day
  • All land travel (as outlined)
  • Dedicated driver and guide
Not Included
  • Any services not listed as included
  • Flights to and from Portugal 
  • Meals, tips/gratuities, baggage or personal insurance (except as outlined)
  • Admission fees to castles & attractions or events (except as outlined)
  • Personal expenses
  • Supplements
  • Guide services inside monuments
More Info

The land only option allows you to book your own transport to and from the holiday. You will normally meet the group at the arrival airport at 12 a.m as long as you arrive there no later than the group. Similarly, on the way home you can return to the airport with the group as long as your departure time is no earlier than that of the group.

This guided tour already includes a transfer departing from Lisboa airport at 12 a.m on arrival and returning to Lisboa airport at 12 a.m on the last day.

If none of this option suits you, please add to your booking a transfer that does. You can also rent a car.

To this tour we only accept transfers departing from Lisbon Airport or Lisbon.

Departure dates:
  • ON REQUEST