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Portugal's Costa Verde (1800G)

Vila Praia De Ancora
Guided Tour Portugal's Costa Verde (1800G) - Costa Verde
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Description
GUIDED TOUR
From The Mountains o The Sea

Based in the stunning Costa Verde (Green Coast), famous for its mountains, lush green countryside, beautiful beaches and "Vinho Verde", this is a captivating and unforgettable destination.

Our walks here will take in some of the finest coastlines of Portugal, meander through classic Minho villages and lush pastoral valleys.

We will explore the dramatic mountains of the Serra d’Arga where wild horses roam amongst the wild granite outcrops.

We will cross the river Minho to Portugal’s sister, Galicia, to climb to the sanctuary of Santa Tecla where Celtic history comes alive.

Free days could be spent exploring Viana do Castelo, the Pearl of the North or take the train up the valley of the river Minho to visit the twin towns of Valença and Tuy gazing at each other across the river or we can visit the town of Caminha, a few miles north of Vila Praia de Ancora, with its ancient central square lined with pavement cafés, the network of medieval streets radiating from it and, on Wednesdays, a lively weekly market attracting locals from all the surrounding villages.

The area has been inhabited since pre-historic times and is rich in natural and cultural history ranging from Neolithic to Roman times, with villages full of history for us to visit.

We stay in the coastal town of Vila Praia de Ancora in the North West corner of Portugal, a lovely small resort. There will also be time to relax on the beaches and maybe take a dip in the sea before enjoying the sunset and the local cuisine.

Our excellent 4-star hotel is located in the very centre of this charming town with all facilities within a few minutes’ walk.
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 in Porto Airport
Transfer to the Hotel. Dinner at Hotel.

DAY 2
Âncora Valley
This gentle introduction to the area is centred on the valley of the river Ancora itself. We walk through lush green fields still farmed in the classic Minho style. Charming villages dot the valley and may enable us to have a civilised coffee for our mid-morning break.
At the centre of the walk is the river Ancora with its many old crossing points and its sparkling crystal clear waters.

DAY 3
Dem Walk
Today we move onto the lower slopes of the Serra d’Arga and walk through villages nestled in the foothills. The high slopes of the Serra d’Arga are above us but our meandering route takes us through the fields and villages along the lower slopes.
We will visit the main village of the area, S. Lourenço de Montaria with its charming, shady square.
After lunch, we descend again into the valley of the river Ancora where the river again accompanies us as it cascades down through rock pools, passes under ancient bridges and gently winds its way through fields.

DAY 4
Caminha - Vila Praia de Ancora - Afife Walk
One of our half coastal and half inland walks. We begin in the historic town of Caminha and the morning is spent following the spectacular rocky coastline arriving back in Vila Praia de Ancora in time for a leisurely lunch. The second half of our walk goes inland along the popular Caminho de Santiago where we can wish pilgrims “Bom Caminho”.
In this walk some clients may wish to join the walk only for the morning and have an easy afternoon, others can have a relaxed morning and join the afternoon walk.

DAY 5
Santa Tecla, Galicia Walk
Santa Tecla where every stone seems to ooze with Celtic history. We ferry across the estuary of the river Minho and walk up the dramatic hillside of Santa Tecla.
The spectacular views from the top of the hillside are made even more interesting by the simple sanctuary at the summit and the remarkable remains of the Celtic settlement.
Although this is not a demanding day anyone who does not want to walk to the top can have an easy low level wander through the charming village of Camposancos and enjoy a stroll along the estuary.

DAY 6
Afife and Carreço walk
Our second day of coastal and inland walking again mixes with the Caminho de Santiago, this time through the villages of Afife and Carreço nestled at the base of the wooded hillside, before we join the coast and follow our favourite section of coastline with golden sandy beaches and protected coves, waves crashing on the rocks where, even today, some people still harvest the seaweed, a final remnant of a once thriving way of life.

DAY 7
Serra d’Arga Walk
Today we go into the mountains. After driving as high as we can we walk up the final section of the northern slopes of the Serra d’Arga before walking across the high-level plateau that forms the summit to Porta do Lobo, the “Gate of the wolf”.
Here we feel on top of the world looking down into the valley of the river Lima and across to the high mountains of the Gerês and Peneda ranges beyond.
From here an ancient stone trail gently winds down the hillside and our walk continues through the iconic Arga villages.
After an easy but rewarding 12km whilst relaxing in the Taberna do Horacio some may choose to finish here while others may continue to a further village for a real full day’s walking.

DAY 8
Departure
Transfer from hotel to Porto Airport.
The Hotels
  • Hotel Meira**** (or similar)
In the heart of the wonderful garden that is the Minho, in a perfect symbiosis between the sea, the countryside and the mountains, combining the simplicity and nobility of its people, the Hotel Meira in Vila Praia de Ancora is a traditional family-run hotel, fully renovated, with swimming pool, free Wi-Fi and all facilities.
What's Included
Accommodation:
  • 7 nights in a twin room (four 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:
  • Transfers from Porto airport at 12 a.m on the first day
  • Transfers from the Hotel to Porto 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 Porto airport at 12 a.m on arrival day and returning to Porto hotel 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 Porto Airport or Porto.

Departure dates:
  • ON REQUEST