This trail takes you through the border city of Alcoutim. It will allow you to discover such iconic sites as the Castle of Alcoutim, the ruins of the Old Castle, the Praia Fluvial, and the landscapes of the River Guadiana.
The trail begins near the Casa dos Condes (currently the Municipal Library) and the Parish Church of São Salvador, guarded by 17th century walls. An alleyway leads to one of the quays on the river, where you’ll find a statue of The Smuggler, inseparable from that of the Fiscal Guard, about 100 meters to the south.
High above Alcoutim and the river are the ruins of the Old Castle, from the Islamic Period. The castle was built in the middle of the 8th century, under the Umayyad dynasty, on the top of a rugged outcrop of schist and greywacke. It was a fortified palace, including a small mosque, built to exert military control over the river mine and extract minerals. The place affords a privileged view on the Guadiana and Spanish lands, chief among which the Castle of Sanlúcar del Guadiana.
The Praia Fluvial de Pego Fundo (Pego Fundo river beach) is inserted in the rural landscape of northeast Algarve, spread along a weir of Ribeira de Cadavais. The shore was created with coastal sands, clear and unusual around these parts. The beach is framed by a landscaped space with support facilities, fitness circuits and picnic park.
A hike along the waterfront leads back to the centre of Alcoutim; it passes by the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Conceição (which houses the Sacred Art Museum) and the Poço Novo Street leads to the ”new” Castle of Alcoutim. Inside the walls, the Archaeological Museum explores the region’s historical roots, which go back over 5,000 years. In the old Arsenal, you can also see a collection of board games and their respective stone pieces, recovered from the ruins of the Old Castle.
Circular trail: yes
Distance: 4,6 km
Average duration: 2h
Cumulative elevation gain: 166 metres D+
Type of path: dirt paths and asphalt roads
Start of the trail: 37º 28' 16.63'' N 7º 28' 18.74'' W