Rota Vicentina walking route opens on the Algarve’s west coast
On 11th May 2012 the Rota Vicentina in the Algarve officially opened to the public. The walking trail runs along the rugged western coast of the Algarve to Sagres offering stunning coastal views along the way.
The route runs from Santiago do Cacém in the Alentejo to Sagres in the Algarve and is integrated into the extensive European GR11 route part of the GR footpath network of paths, tracks and trails which connect Sagres to St. Petersburg, travelling throughout Europe and integrating the Caminos de Santiago (The Way of St James).
60% of the land in the Algarve is protected and the new route is part of a tourism initiative created by the Casas Brancas Association in partnership with the Almargem Association to promote areas of the Algarve beyond its popular southern coast. Casas Brancas has developed the route to showcase the diversity of the Algarve’s accommodation offerings, outdoor activities and natural scenery.
The Costa Vicentina is one of the most beautiful and best preserved coastal areas of southern Europe and the majority of the area sits within the Costa Vicentina Natural Park. The park is one of two Natural Parks in the Algarve offering dramatic coves and soaring cliffs before a breathtaking backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean. The main attraction to this area is the natural beauty of its beaches, its unexplored countryside and the abundance of wildlife that can be found here.
Another walking route upon which to explore the Algarve is the Via Algarviana, which is one of the best ways to see the region’s hinterland. Visitors can travel on foot, bicycle or horseback along the extensive 240km network of paths between Alcoutim in the east and Cape St Vincent in the west. Stretching across the entire length of the Algarve, the paths take visitors through the municipalities of Alcoutim, Castro Marim, Tavira, Loulé, Silves, Monchique, Lagos and Vila do Bispo, where there is lots to explore. Each section is divided into 30km stretches so visitors can break up the itinerary, otherwise the full route can be walked in fourteen days, cycled in five days and followed on horseback in nine days.
So for a truly different perspective of the Algarve and its natural beauty, why not explore the region on foot and take in the rural views of the Via Algarviana or the coastal scenes of the Rota Vicentina.
For more information on the Vicentina Route, visit rotavicentina.com.
For more information on the Via Algarviana itineraries, visit viaalgarviana.org.