Peneda-Gerês National Park
Our tour is centred in Pitões das Júnias, the highest village in Portugal. It is surrounded by a magnificent landscape of green upland meadows with a backdrop of formidable granitic crags and silence.
Dominated by ancient granite massifs, the Peneda-Gerês National Park was established as Portugal’s only national park in 1971 and features deep woodlands, ancient archaeological sites and wide open spaces.
Truly one of the most strikingly beautiful and undisturbed places in Portugal, it lies in the extreme northwest of the country, just 2 hours from Porto’s airport by car and a stone’s throw from the Spanish border.
Peneda-Gerês, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a big, overwhelming, wild landscape, formed by glaciers more than 300 million years ago.
A set of mountain ranges act as a natural barrier between the park’s eastern plateaus and the seaward lowlands to the west, and within its more than 700 square kilometres are high windswept plateaus, old growth forests and majestic mountains that shelter an incredible diversity of flora and fauna.
Some of the most common trees and shrubs include oak, holly, yews and silver birches, as well as several endemic species of lily and fern. This all provides ideal shelter to wild goats and a large population of otters, not to mention roe deer, wild horses, golden eagles, peregrine falcons and some of the continent’s last surviving indigenous wolves.
The Park has a real abundance of rivers, reservoirs and waterfalls, and whether your interests lie in walking, bird-watching, rock climbing or a cool relaxing dip in a clear mountain stream, the natural scenery of Peneda-Gerês has much to offer.
It’s also a very rich historical area. Early signs of human presence date from around 3,000 to 4,000 BC, and many dolmen graves and megalithic monuments can be found along the Park. Evidence of medieval times is present in castles and churches located throughout the rustic hill towns and mountain villages, with cobblestone streets.
|Comfortable 4-star accommodation.|
|Sociable evenings spent in local restaurants.|
|The opportunity to walk beyond the intended itinerary and even possibly the grade of this holiday. On some days you may be offered flexible walking options, this will be dependent on local conditions.|
|A fantastic itinerary of walks, developed and perfected by local resident Portuguese tour leaders, very knowledgeable of the region.|
|The hospitality and warmth from the local poulation, whilst enjoying dining out at local restaurants every evening.|
The tour includes
En-suite accommodation in comfortable four-star hotels, beautifully located.
Breakfasts taken at the hotel and dinners in local restaurants.
All transport costs in conjunction with the programme.
Services of a dedicated leader.
The walking and sightseeing programs are integral with each other. However because we have dedicated transport with the group there will be considerable flexibility within the program for individual clients.
A wait at the airport may be necessary to enable all passengers to travel together to and from the hotel.