The trail begins in Pereiro, a typical village in northeast Algarve, and traverses old paths among the rural hills of the region. It passes along facilities and infrastructure linked to water management, a scarce resource around these parts.
In Pereiro, visit the Casa do Ferreiro, a museum dedicated to the ancient art of blacksmithing. It presents a collection related to the craft, and shows a documentary which revives the memories linked to the art of iron and fire. Just outside the village, there is a well with a hydraulic pump with a vertical handle.
The landscape is rolling and wide, consisting of holm oak groves, pastures and stone pine plantations punctuated by old windmills in the high hills. A monumental holm oak marks the extreme south of the Pereiro irrigation dam, where, even during dry season, the rushes and cattailscattails and the croaking of frogs reveal small hidden ponds.
Arriving at the Fonte do Zambujo de Cima, you’ll be able to appreciate the elegant lines of the small village’s rural architecture; the fountain consists of a manual hydraulic well with a wheel. You’ll cross a small valley, fertile ground for partridges, wild rabbits and hares.
In Fonte Zambujo and Fonte Zambujo de Baixo, you can see the mosaic of terraced fields, pastures and orchards. There are arbutus, almond, fig and olive trees and small vineyards aplenty. This is a good place in which to spot the Eurasian hoopoe and the azure-winged magpie.
Silveira, an old farmer’s estate (monte), was once an important place in the parish of Pereiro, with seven houses and about seventeen inhabitants in the 18th century. In this typical monte of the Baixo Guadiana, uninhabited for a few decades now, you’ll feel as if the clock were turning backwards.
Back to Pereiro, a small detour will allow you to reach the reservoir of the irrigation dam. In the water you can observe birds like the grey heron, the little egret, the mallard or the water hen. This is also the habitat of the Mediterranean tortoise and, with a little bit of focus, it is possible to observe some of these reptiles appear in the surface of the water.
Type: walking and cycling
Circular trail: yes
Distance: 10 km
Average duration: 3h
Cumulative elevation gain: 260 metres D+
Type of path: dirt paths
Start of the trail: 37º 26' 49.83'' N 7º 35' 38.99'' W