The trail starts in Alportel and crosses rural landscapes, a transition zone between the Barrocal and the Serra, where old traditions are still preserved.
The path begins in the small arch under the N2 road. After a few metres, it reaches a path with dry stone walls (dividing rural property), flanked by verdant cork oaks.
After climbing to the Cerro do Alportel, the path continues through cork oak groves. Here you’ll be able to see how cork is extracted from the trees.
In Farrobo, the single-storey houses, the public washhouse and the well with a piston-wheel pump form an interesting architectural ensemble.
The Miradouro das Castanhas offers a panoramic view of the mountains to the north and the hillside surrounding São Brás de Alportel, to the south, with the Algarve's typical dryland orchards, with mostly carob and olive trees.
At Fonte da Tareja, the trail follows along an approximately 2 km long stretch which coincides with the Biodiversity Station of Ribeira de Alportel. In this particularly exuberant riparian corridor, the arboreal curtains of ash trees, poplars and willows alternate with beds of oleander, reeds, rushes and brambles common in these streams. The river also has a remarkable diverse wildlife, with dozens of species of butterflies and dragonflies, such as the rare emerald dragonfly. Some of the many vertebrates that live here include the common kingfisher, or, for reptiles, the common tortoise and the viperine water snake. Monumental carob trees grow in the wetlands. The shaded hills, which naturally face north, are lined with lush cork oak groves, a sharp contrast to the beds of cistus and the sparse pine trees of the sunny slopes.
Passing the water mill and back to Alportel, the trail follows a ridgeline, from where you can see the mountains of the Caldeirão to the north, large cork oaks in the shaded slopes and the ruins of a windmill.
Municipality: São Brás de Alportel
Type: walking and cycling
Circular trail: yes
Distance: 12,3 km
Average duration: 4h to 5h
Cumulative elevation gain: 378 metres D+
Type of path: dirt paths, foot paths, and asphalt paths
Start of the trail: 37º 10' 33.50'' N 7º 54' 33.08'' W