Guided Walking & Sightseeing at Ericeira, Portugal
UNCOVER GREAT COASTAL WALKS AND THE ROLLING GREEN HILLS OF THE SERRA DE SINTRA
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Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.
Portugal’s wild and beautiful west coast has great coastal walks and the surprisingly green hills of the Serra de Sintra. This enchanting area of Estremadura attracted the Romans, Moors, kings and poets and is abundant in leisurely walks, as well as rich history and culture. The rugged Atlantic coast offers delightful easier and longer walks. A guided sightseeing day in Lisbon will allow you to sample this fascinating capital, bursting with maritime history.
- Discover great coastal walks and the green hills of the Serra de Sintra
- Enjoy exploring compact and vibrant Lisbon – once the cradle of Portugal’s opulent empire.
- Visit the Cabo da Roca, the most westerly point in Europe, with a huge variety of flora and fauna
- See Sintra, a small town in the middle of the Serra de Sintra bursting with culture and history, and only half an hour away from Ericeira
- A full programme of guided walks with 2 options every walking day plus 1 full sightseeing day
- All transport to and from the walks
- The services of experienced HF Holidays' leaders
- ‘With flight’ holidays include return flights from the UK and hotel transfers
- 7 nights accommodation in en-suite rooms
- Half Board – extensive breakfast and evening buffet meal
Located in a traditional village in an enviable sea front location, the historic 4-star Hotel Vila Galé Ericeira is a local landmark building, listed for its unique green tiling. Low tide exposes the rocks immediately in front of the hotel and a lovely sandy beach.
|All the 202 en-suite bedrooms are spacious and offer a high standard of comfort.
Each room has:
|Outside the hotel is a swimming pool overlooking the sea and attractive gardens.
The hotel also offers a laundry service and free WiFi.
Our holidays at Ericeira are on a Half Board basis and include breakfast and evening meal.
There is an extensive selection of hot and cold options for breakfast from a self-select buffet.
The evening meal is served in the open, airy restaurant, which offers a varied buffet catering for most diets, including vegetarians. If you have any special dietary requirements, please speak to the hotel staff on arrival.
The hotel has a well-stocked bar serving beer, wine and spirits.
Lunch (payable locally)
You can buy ingredients for your picnic lunch in the nearby shops. On some days it may be possible to visit shops on the walk, or eat in a local café; your leaders will advise you of the options.
The friendly atmosphere of our Guided Walking holidays continues into the evening.
Enjoy a glass of wine or local beer before hearing about the next day's walks. On most evenings you can enjoy the hotel's entertainment programme or take a walk on the beach. Alternatively relax in the bar with a drink and chat with your fellow guests or walk into Ereceira for an ice-cream or coffee in one of the many pavement cafés.
One evening we have arranged for a speaker to come and talk to our groups about this very interesting region.
Our experienced leaders offer the choice of two different walks each day. Choose the option which best suits your interests and fitness.
We provide flexible holidays. Choose easier walking one day and harder the next or just explore independently or relax around the resort. Our leaders are friendly and welcoming making your holiday fun and sociable.
Easier Walks: 4 to 6 miles (6.5-9.5km) generally on good paths and tracks with up to 700ft (210m) of ascent and 1,100ft (330m) of descent in a day.
Harder Walks: 5 to 9 miles (8-14.5km) generally on good paths and tracks with some rougher sections. Up to 1,200ft (360m) of ascent in a day.
Day 1: Arrival day
Depending upon your arrival time you should be able to explore the town of Ericeira where our leaders will show you the local shops, banks and supermarkets. On the first evening our leaders will explain more about the walking and sightseeing programme and there will be plenty of time to meet with your fellow guests.
Day 2: Scenic Coastal Walks
Both groups have a short bus journey along the coast north of Ericeira and walk back to the hotel along clifftop paths enjoying views of the usually benign but sometimes wild Atlantic.
Easier Walk: Our walk will start in the small village of Ribamar with its narrow streets and small cafés. We walk down to the sea and follow a clifftop path, passing dramatic cliffs, ruined forts and sandy beaches. We stop at a popular surfing beach for refreshment before continuing on the coastal path into Ericeira passing the harbour and fishing boats. 6 miles (9.5km) with 400ft (120m) of ascent.
Harder walk: We travel a little further to start our walk in the small inland village of Quintas. Our walk will take us through quiet farmland along sandy tracks and paths and into the village of Ribamar, where we pick up the route of the easier walk. 9 miles (14.5km) with 600ft (180m) of ascent.
Day 3: Mafra – the palace, hunting grounds and monastery
Today’s walks give us the chance to visit Mafra Tapada, the former royal hunting grounds adjoining Mafra Palace. We follow good trails in the rolling hills of this entirely walled protected landscape with a chance of spotting wild boar and deer. In the afternoon a short coach journey takes us to Mafra town where we visit the former royal palace and monastery, a huge 18th century edifice reflecting the past glory of Portugal’s rich kingdom. This is the most important baroque monument in Portugal.
Easier Walk: Our circular trail in the hunting grounds follows a quiet track with wooded sections giving welcome shade. We pass a preserved lime kiln and visit the former royal stables, coach houses and a dining house once frequented by royal hunting parties. 6 miles (9.5km) with 700ft (210m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: Our circular trail in the hunting grounds is similar to but a little longer than the easier walk. We follow a quiet track with wooded sections, passing the preserved lime kiln and visiting the former royal stables, coach houses and a dining house once frequented by royal hunting parties. 7 miles (11 km) with 1,000 ft (300m) of ascent.
Day 4: Rural villages and archaeological museum
Today we travel about 10 miles south of Ericeira to walk in rolling countryside, explore typical Estremadura villages and, if you wish, visit a superb archaeological museum.
Easier Walk: Our walk begins near Alvarinhos and takes us to the archaeological museum near Odrinhas where there is the option of a guided tour of the museum with its extensive collection of locally found Roman artifacts. We continue along quiet tracks and paths which take us to a remote hillside with abundant wild flowers. We visit Cabrela with its typical village café and ancient wells before continuing our circuit which ends in the small town of Odrinhas. 6 miles (10km) with 500ft (150m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: We pass the archaeological museum (which we may have time to visit later) and walk to Odrinhas for a morning coffee. Our route takes us along tracks and a quiet road to Cabrela village with its typical village café and ancient wells. We descend into the valley and walk beside the Cabrela river before heading up to the ruined, deserted and isolated village of Broas. After exploring Broas we walk through Almorquim village and then make our way back to the archaeological museum and the end of the walk. 8 miles (13km) with 900ft (270m) of ascent.
Day 5: Free day
Each week there is a free day when no guided walks are offered. This is an ideal opportunity to relax around the hotel, walk independently or visit local places of interest.
"Don't miss out sampling a local pastry, Pastéis de Nata, a small delicious custard tart"
Day 6: Sightseeing Day
Our day begins with a coach ride to the centre of Lisbon where we meet our local guide who will take us around the principal attractions, historic buildings and places of interest in the city centre. There will also be time to explore, shop or have lunch before taking our coach down the River Tagus to Belem. Here our guide will show us some of the places which represent Portugal’s proud and exciting maritime history and discoveries.
Day 7: Walking to Cabo da Roca
Today both groups travel south of Ericeira to walk to Cabo da Roca, the most westerly point of mainland Europe.
Easier Walk: We begin our day exploring the authentically Portuguese village of Almocageme with its cafés and supermarket. We walk down a quiet road to Praia da Adraga with its sandy beach and dramatic cliffs (and another café!) before making our way up a track to view a cliff- top blowhole – a deep fissure in the rocky cliff where waves create a water spout. We continue up a quiet track to the charming village of Ulgueira where we can enjoy our picnics. After lunch we continue our walk to Cabo da Roca where we can celebrate the lofty views above this windswept headland. 5 miles (8km) with 700ft (210m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: Our walk begins at Rodizio near Colares and takes us through dunes to see the remains of a recently excavated Roman sanctuary, then we walk along a clifftop path to the huge beach of Praia Grande. We continue high above the waves and take a sandy path down to Adraga beach. We detour to view the cliff- top blowhole and take a quiet track to Ulgueira where we can explore before continuing our walk to Cabo da Roca on the route of the easier walk. 8 miles (13km) with 1,200ft (360m) of ascent.
Day 8: Departure Day
Please note that the itinerary outlined is provisional and could be subject to change. A finalised itinerary will be available at the resort and every evening your leaders will talk to you about the next day’s walks.
The beautiful town of Ericeira has its roots in the fishing industry, when it was only a small village. Today, the town has grown and is a popular surfing destination, with stunning beaches, and a variety of shops and cafes to explore. Surfing tuition is also available on the beachfront.
Lying at the mouth of the river Tagus, Lisbon is an ancient city, and one of the oldest in Europe. Its origins are believed to be when prehistoric tribes settled here and built funeral monuments and megaliths. The area has been settled by many people, from Phoenicians to Romans to Moors. It later became Capital of Portugal in the 13th Century. Nowadays, the city is a centre for economic trade, and became European Capital of Culture in 1994.
Take an express bus from Ericeira to Lisbon and use the city’s efficient Metro system to explore attractions such as St George’s Castle, the Cathedral, historic churches, the aquarium, fine shops and several world class museums including the Gulbenkian. A ride on a vintage city tram is also good fun.
Mafra is a small Portuguese town, in which there is a large, elaborate palace. The Mafra palace was traditionally used by the Portuguese monarchy as a second home, due to its proximity to royal hunting grounds. It is one of the largest palaces in Europe and contains a basilica and library. The town itself has a museum, churches and shops.
Sintra is a small town, which historically attracted the nobility of Portugal, due to its mild climate. The town has several world heritage class buildings in this historic town with its former royal palaces, mansions and Moorish castle. The National Palace with its impressive state rooms and kitchens with their distinctive conical chimneys and the fairy-tale Pena Palace is well worth a visit. The town can be reached by bus or taxi from Ericeira.
Did you know?
Cabo da Roca is the westernmost point of mainland Europe at 9° 30' west. Tearaght Island, Co Kerry is further west at 10° 39'
We recognise that everyone’s travel arrangements are unique, so all our holidays to Europe can be booked ‘with flight’ or ‘without flight’, giving you more flexibility and choice.
‘With flight’ holidays – the hassle-free option
Book your holiday ‘with flight’ and choose between Heathrow and Manchester flights to Lisbon airport. For flight times and prices please see the Dates & Prices tab.
If you choose this option we automatically include return transfers between the airport and the hotel. The coach transfer takes approx 45 minutes to the Hotel Vila Galé Ericeira.
‘Without flight’ holidays – the flexible travel option
Alternatively, tailor your journey to suit you by booking your holiday ‘without flight’ allowing you the freedom to book your own flights from your local airport.
If you choose this option, transfers are not included in the price. However, below are some suggestions to help you reach your destination:
Transfers must be pre-booked. Please call 020 8732 1220 for more details
* Please note that HF Holidays is not responsible for your onward travel if you fail to meet the transfer coach
Dates & Prices
We're sorry, there are no dates available for this holiday at the moment. Please check out our other tours and breaks or call our team on 0345 470 8558 to be notified of new dates as soon as they become available.
Prices are per person
- Double room for sole occupancy: £21 per night
- Allow €40 for sightseeing
- All transport to walks is included in the price of the holiday
- Non-member associate fee: £10 per person