Lisbon to Porto via mainland

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381 km Distance
3,130m Ascent
3,060m Descent

The Camino Portugues / Portuguese Way is a marked trail which travels the length of Portugal from Lisbon to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. It is part of the iconic Camino de Santiago de Compostela; the famous Way of Saint James.

This holiday will see you cycle along the first section of this Camino, from the Portuguese capital of Lisbon it travels North to Porto. The trail starts off in a relatively urban area and moves into the quiet farmlands of the area known as "the Garden of Portugal". You will travel along the Tejo river valley along a trail that also doubles as the Caminho de Fatima. This region of Portugal is soaked in history and tradition and beautiful cities such as Santarem, Tomar and Coimbra. You will travel along the Atlantic coast and through vineyards, valleys and woodlands to finish in the centre of Porto, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Your way on the Camino de Santiago is made easy by clear sign posting. The famous arrow and the scallop shell will show you the way. Also, in our holiday pack is included detailed walking notes and maps making navigation even easier. Although sometime physically demanding, it only requires a reasonable level of fitness. Moreover, if you feel tired and need a rest, you often will find bars and restaurants along the way.

Day 1: Lisbon

The capital city of Lisbon is situated where the River Tejo joins the Atlantic Ocean. It has many sites of historical interests but also benefis from the seaside atmosphere which makes it a perfect place to relax before your walk begins. The city is full of beautiful buildings and squares but probably the most famous of the sites in the city is the Jeronimo Monastery Belem Tower which is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Day 2: Lisbon - Vila Franca de Xira

40km, 50m ASC, 45m DSC: Your cycle on the Portuguese Way will take you out of Lisbon along the famous Caminho de Fatima. As the trail follows the river Tejo through the Parque das Nacoes, the cycling is quite easy. From here you will soon enter the countryside proper by way of a lush valley. The change in landscape will make Lisbon seem like a distant memory! From Santa Iris de Azoia you will cycle along a trail which gradually climbs before dropping down into Povoa de Santa Iria. From here you will follow the River Tejo once again along a national road to the beautiful Vila Franca de Xira, where the famous bullfighting festival is held every year.

Day 3: Vila Franca de Xira – Santarem

62k: The trail from Vila Franca de Xira continues through a region which is famous for bullfighting and horse breeding. The River Tejo continues to guide your way as you move inland to Azambuja. The town is famous for its bull run which is held on the streets of the town every May. From here the trail includes the highest point which is the final destination of today, Santarem. However at just 110 metres high this should not prove to be too difficult. You will travel through vineyards, groves of fruit trees and fields of crops along the way.

Day 4: Santarem – Tomar

59k, 400m ASC, 325m DSC: Your journey from Santarem will see you cycle along tranquil country lanes along the banks of the Rio Tejo, as you head in a north-west direction. You will pass through some beautiful little villages and farm lands of horses and bulls, for which the region is famous. You will pass through Golega and head towards Finca da Cardiga, which is one of the most beautiful manor houses in the country. From here you will continue through peaceful villages which are set in a landscape of small hills. Your finishing point for the day is in the centre of the historical city of Tomar, at the wonderful Praza de la Republica.

Day 5: Tomar – Ansiao

47km, 875m ASC, 900m DSC: Day 5 will see you enjoy a change of landscape as you travel through lovely woodland valleys and along ancient Roman roads and farm tracks. Todays cycling is one of the more challenging on this section of the Camino however it is also very rewarding. From Alvaiazere the trail rises with a sharp climb which is followed by a more gradual descent. The rest of the days cycle travels over rolling hills and through olive groves and crop fields, on the way to todays destination of Ansiao.

Day 6: Ansiao – Coimbra

45k, 550m ASC, 625m DSC: Your cycle out of Ansiao will see you cross the 17th century bridge of Ponte da Cal as you make your way to Netos. There are lots of trees along todays stage of the Camino, such as eucalyptus, pine and olive, which will offer plenty of opportunities for shade. The final part of the stage takes you over the climb of Alto de Cruz de Mourocos which sits at a height of 190m, before dropping down into Coimbra. Coimbra itself is a pretty and energetic city, with one of the oldest universities in Europe.

Day 7: Coimbra – Agueda

48km 220m ASC, 200m DSC: Todays cycle on the Camino will take you through river valleys and urban areas along a relatively flat trail which becomes more chellenging towards the end. There is a climb as you leave Coimbra up to Cioga do Monte. Throughout the day you will see some remains of the old roman road along which this stage travels. You will pass through the town of Mealhada, which sits in an area famous for its vineyards and Avelas de Caminho, which has strong historical links with the Camino de Santiago as you make your way to Agueda which sits on the banks of the Certima river.

Day 8: Agueda – Porto

78k, 800m ASC, 810m DSC: This particular part of the Camino follows the ancient Roman road "Via Romana XVI", through forests of eucalyptus and pine. You will also cross a lovely Roman bridge over the Rio Marnel on your way to Albergia A Velha. From here you will travel through more woodlands and gradually into more urbanised areas, which make up the northern part of the Beira Coast. You will pass through the lovely, historic town of Oliveira de Azemeis, which boasts the Matriz de Sao Miguel church as one of its main attractions. From here the trail starts to cross some rolling hills, before climbing to Sao Joao da Madeira. After this you will pass through the town of Arrifana with its distinctive blue church before making your way onto the preserved cobbled Roman road. before traveling gradually downhill by the Monastery Mosteiro de Gijon, which dates from the 13th century and on to Seixezelo. The end of your cycling holiday will see you enjoy the refreshing breeze of the Atlantic Ocean as you make your way to Porto which is famous for being the capital of the Port wine producing region. The historical city centre is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Day 9: Porto

Cycle along the Atlantic coast, starting from Porto towards Lisbon! This new tour for 2011 became also our easiest one. With routes by the ocean side you have the chance to enjoy the west coast sunny beaches, stopping in one beach bar terrace for a coffee or tasting a grilled fresh fish lunch. Cycle paths, nature conservation areas, the Leiria pine forest and the Alcobaחa UNESCO world heritage monastery are some of the trip highlights, ending in style crossing the Obidos Medieval village gates!



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