The trail meanders along old rural roads, crossing small farms and estates in the region’s hinterland, some already depopulated, where testimonies of the way of life and the local economy of this territory still remain.
Martim Longo is surrounded by pastures, pine, olive and arbutus forest plantations, and plots of cork oak, olive and almond trees with an undergrowth of tall beds of rock rose, Montpellier cistus and rosemary. Dry stone walls divide agricultural property, and announce the proximity of the monte of Fontainhas, currently in ruins.
The trail follows the Barranco da Aldeia, where the vegetation becomes different, forming a curtain of oleander. On the slopes, bushes of cistus alternate with plantations of stone pine and olive trees. There are also recent and large-scale plantations of orchards of cork oak and strawberry tree, along with the installation of hives, activities that are part of the mountain economy.
Before reaching the village of Diogo Dias and near the community well of Silgado, it is possible to continue towards this place, shortening the circular trail. The section to the south of the Silgado valley crosses the villages of Diogo Dias, Azinhal and Barrada, and the landscape bears witness to the region’s mountain economy: walled fields, holm and cork oaks, olive, carob, fig and almond trees, citrus orchards, and small vegetable gardens dominated by vegetables and vineyards.
On the way back to the monte of Silgado, crossing the old junction between it and the town of Barrada, it is worth stopping for a look at the details of the traditional architecture and the old organisation of these montes: the houses made of schist or finished with white mortar and their large vines, communal ovens and wells, dry stone walls and vestiges of vegetable gardens abundant with citrus fruits.
Location: Martim Longo
Type: walking and cycling
Circular trail: yes
Distance: 14 km
Average duration: 5h
Cumulative elevation gain: 335 metres D+
Type of path: dirt tracks and asphalt roads
Start of the trail: 37º 26' 22.55'' N 7º 46' 04.22'' W