The highways of the river
The rivers of the Algarve are highways which provide cruises or canoe trips, passing through a countryside full of contrasting landscapes.
The Guadiana River, a natural boundary between Portugal and Spain, is navigable from its mouth to Alcoutim. Starting from Vila Real de Santo António, you pass through Castro Marim surrounded by saltpans, schist rock and a castle that stands proudly above the Nature Reserve, home to over a hundred different species of birds.
At the other side of the region, the Arade River, enlarged by the tributaries, Boina and Odelouca, constitutes the most important water course in the Western Algarve.
Portimão and the delightful fishing village of Ferragudo lie alongside the wide Alvor Esturary, near the marshes - a wetland area of high natural and ecological interest. You can choose to travel up river as far as Silves, or simply meander through the estuary.
Faro, Olhão and Tavira are starting points for cruises on the slow-moving, sinuous channels of the Formosa Estuary, an area officially designated as a Nature Park.
A genuine environmental treasure, there are approximately 18,000 hectares of unique habitat here, protected from the sea by expansive barrier island beaches.
Travelling by boat or caique through these islands and channels lets you see panoramas of rare beauty, leaving you with unforgettable memories.