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Serra da Estrela, the capital of snow and much more
Situated right in the Centro region, Serra da Estrela is the mountain range with the highest peak in mainland Portugal. This natural park is an area of rare beauty and a great choice for those who love to take walks between green valleys and mountains.
It is the only place in Portugal where it is possible to practice winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding, or even make snowmen with children —popular with any child on the planet.
But Serra da Estrela is also an excellent option in the warmer months with the many lagoons and secret lakes. This is without mentioning the rocks that seem to have been carved by our ancestors, but which are only the whims of a well-disposed Mother Nature, as is the case of the “Head of the Old Men”.
That is to say that it is a tour that can be done at any time of the year.
A tour and an adventure in the middle of the mountain
Lose yourself in the immensity of the magnificent nature trails, such as the Covão dos Conchos trail, that invite you horse riding or cycling. We guarantee you’ll come across scenarios worthy of a movie. The cascades are enough to leave anyone with their mouths open.
On this tour you will pass through the glacier valleys of Manteigas or Loriga and discover the fresh springs that are both therapeutic and relaxing. Enjoy the various hot baths in the area such as the Aquadomeat the Unhais da Serra Thermal Baths, the country’s first mountain spa and one of the most important in Europe. They provide the perfect combination of luxury and comfort on the mountain.
Of course, here gastronomy is never forgotten. Enjoy a meal with dishes typical of the region in Portugal’s highest village, Sabugueiro, situated at 1200 metres above sea level.
From the delicious sausages and cheeses of the mountains, to roast lamb, fried cod with bread and famous Carqueja rice, it is difficult is to choose. We believe it’s worth sampling the traditional recipes of some of the local chefs in a delicious tasting experience.
We must not fail to talk about the good wines of the Dão region, produced using ancestral techniques left by the Romans and that still delight the specialists today. You will get the opportunity to taste them on this tour.
Serra da Estrela is more than a winter destination
On this tour you will fall in love with enchanted valleys, imposing rock formations, viewpoints, waterfalls, and historic villages. This is undoubtedly one of the best options in Portugal for nature lovers.
We haven’t even talked about Manteigas yet, where you’ll find breath-taking landscapes like the Bear Stone and Zêzere River Valley. That is not forgetting, of course, the city of Gouveia, full of churches and monuments with passionate stories.
All this in a personalized visit to one of the most beloved corners of Portugal.
An invitation to moments of pure tranquillity
On this trip that lasts ten to twelve hours, let yourself be enchanted by the largest protected area of the country in this escape to the mountains.
Here, the bustle of the city is behind you and there is only the silence and tranquillity that the mountain towns offer — and perfect for those who live in the city.
Get ready to walk and join us. Take the opportunity for a relaxing break.
Contact us to arrange your tour.
Complete Operator information, including local telephone numbers at your destination, are included on your Confirmation Voucher. Our Product Managers select only the most experienced and reliable operators in each destination, removing the guesswork for you, and ensuring your peace of mind.
Pinhanços Village - Cheese Maker
Here we will visit a cheese maker that makes cheeses of Serra da Estrela the old-fashioned way. This woman began making cheese at the age of eight with her mother, and never did anything else in her life, continuing a family tradition she inherited from her ancestors.
According to her, in the past only the village of Pinhanços had “about 20 or 30 people" who made cheese: "It was house yes, house no. Now there's only two of us doing it."
Pinhanços is a Portuguese town in Seia, Portugal, with 703 inhabitants (2001). Its settlement dates to the time of the Arabs, as evidenced by the existence of a Moory lunch, of which there are still some graves.
Quinta da Bica (Optional)
According to family tradition, the origin of The Bica Mansion is in a convent that already existed between 1550 and 1650. Since 1650, Quinta da Bica has been part of the Sacadura Botte family.
The property where the mansion is located passes through an impressive portal and high wall that stand out in the landscape. After passing through the portal, enters the courtyard that leads to the mansion, an imposing house of the seventeenth century, which underwent major restoration works inside during this century, although still retains its original outline. Along with the mansion, there is also a beautiful stone fountain that gives name to the mansion - the whole architectural group occupies a large agricultural property that is lost in time.
Seia assumes itself as a privileged place of encounter with nature in its purest state and deserves to be visited by those who come to know the most imposing Portuguese mountain.
We must climb to the place today occupied by the Church of Our Lady of the Annunciation and where once was the Castle of Seia to have the best views of the city. This is only represented on the coat of arms of the city of Seia, by two Castilian towers, the last testimony of its existence, however there is still a small stretch of the Castle Walls. If you travel with kids, give them the joy of visiting the Toy Museum with thousands of toys from Portugal and the world, past and present.
A must visit place, where you can take a trip to the world of Portuguese bread, learn in practice how to do, and get to know the Bread Cycle, the Bread Art and the Social and Religious aspect of bread in the 3 rooms of the Museum.
Sabugueiro - The Tallest Village in Portugal
This is one of the must-see spots in any route of serra da Estrela and has the title of highest village in Portugal, with 1200 meters of altitude. In this village, marvel at the surrounding traditions and natural environment, here you should try the famous Serra cheese, chorizo, and other local handicraft products. Here you can also enjoy several copies of the powerful Sierra da Estrela Dog precious guardian of herds and people.
We can visit the Ethnographic Museum – "Old Oven", Parish Church, water mills, the Mother Church and the Blacksmith fountain, the Bridge over the Alva River, and its River Beach.
Lagoa Comprida - Lagoa comprida River Beach
This is a mysterious place that seems to have been taken from an authentic movie, but it's very real.
In the 20th century, its dam was built, transforming what was a small lagoon into the largest water reservoir in Serra da Estrela.
Covão dos conchos - Walking on a 5 km trail (10 km round trip) - Optional
Covão dos Conchos is a unique cinematic setting. It is a circular opening with cascade on a lake on the mountain. Although it seems natural, it was the hands of the man who made this charm that is a tunnel about 1.5 km long and that serves to drive the waters of Ribeira das Naves to Lagoa Comprida.
The Tower - Serra da Estrela
The Tower is the highest point of the Serra da Estrela and of mainland Portugal. At 1993 metres, Torre is famous for its immense snow sheets during the winter months.
Here is the only snow ski resort in Portugal, so it is the exclusive destination for snow sports. In winter, thousands of tourists every year visit the Tower just to make irresistible games like snowball fights, snow angels and snowmen or else to practice the favourite sport of this region: the already traditional "Sku".
From here, on clear days we can see the ocean.
Covão d'Ametade (On Foot)
Covão d’Ametade is one of the most symbolic and beautiful places in Serra da Estrela.
Here the River Zêzere gains life and is the beginning of the Zêzere Glacier Valley. It is a poorly drained depression, situated in a glacial cavity downstream of the ridge cavity. Although the site is about 1500 meters high, it is not accessible on the harshest days of winter.
Zêzere Glacier Valley
To appreciate it, it is necessary to walk through one of the most scenic roads in Portugal, the fantastic N338, which connects Manteigas to the upper plateau of Serra da Estrela.
Along the 15 km long road, there are several points where we can pull over the car to enjoy, with all the calm of the world, the wonderful landscapes of this authentic enchanted valley
Pit of Hell (On foot)
Climbing parallel to the Ribeira de Leandres and following narrow paths, where there is more than one car, we reach one of the ex-libris of Serra da Estrela and one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the country: The Pit of Hell! Here, in the heart of the Mountain, at 1080 meters of altitude, the waters are icy, as it should be at this time of year. Clear and transparent, we invite you to dive into another time of the year, of course!
Located at approximately 700m of altitude, in a glacial valley of Serra da Estrela, where the River Zêzere flows, the headquarters of the municipality Vila de Manteigas is known for its famous textile industry and, currently, for the development of tourism, given the importance in this area of Serra da Estrela.
Fragão do Corvo Viewpoint - Penhas Douradas
The Miradouro do Fragão do Corvo, located near the Penhas Douradas, at an altitude of about 1450 meters, offers one of the most beautiful views and one of the most stunning panoramas of Serra da Estrela. From this point it is possible to get a comprehensive view of the village of Manteigas and the glacial valley of Zêzere, as well as the city of Guarda and the mountains of Peña de Francia, Béjar and Gredos in Spain.
Rossim Valley Dam and River Beach
In the heart of serra da Estrela, is the highest river beach in Portugal (1400 meters high). Here extends this mantle of water that in summer attracts all nearby tourists. Before the construction of the dam, it was one of the best pastures in the highlands of the municipality of Gouveia. The place was almost always frequented by herds of transhumance, flocks that gathered on these sides of St. John until the feasts of Mr. calvary in August.
Source of the Mondego River - Mondeguinho
The Mondego River is the fifth largest Portuguese and the first that has its course entirely in Portugal. Born in Serra da Estrela, bathes the city of Coimbra and has its mouth in the Atlantic Ocean, near the city of Figueira da Foz. It has a total length of 258 kilometres. When he is born, he is still very small and has the name of Mondeguinho. Its source is located on the site of Corgo das Mós (or Mondeguinho), village of Mangualde da Serra, municipality of Gouveia, at an altitude of about 1525 meters. In the rare case, a river.
Head of the Old man
The Head of the Elder is one of the most sui generis rock formations of serra da Estrela.
Gouveia Village (Optional)
Gouveia is a beautiful mountain town in the centre of the country, home to a municipality, located on the western slope of the great Serra da Estrela, about 700 meters above sea level, where you can see a wonderful panorama of the Mondego valley, and all the wonderful surrounding nature.
Gouveia has a proud heritage, with several monuments, churches, stately homes and old neighbourhoods of traditional mountain streets. Noteworthy is the imposing 17th-century Mother Church, the Church of St. Peter or the interesting 18th-century Church of Mercy, the Pillory, the St. Fountain of Lazarus in 1779 or the historic Convent of St. Francis, now privately owned, built by the Templars.
Village of Folgosinho and its Castle (optional)
At the top of the beautiful village of Folgosinho, on the northern slope of Serra da Estrela, is the sui generis Castelo de Folgosinho. The origins of the castle are diffuse, telling the popular knowledge that the legend prays, its foundation was attributed to the warrior Viriato, who was born here, while other archaeological studies point to a medieval foundation.
Be sure to visit its Mother Church, viriato's house and Pelourinho.
Medieval village of Linhares da Beira and its Castle (Optional)
Medieval village of the century. XII, Linhares da Beira is a true open-air museum, the fruit of the legacy of various eras. In 1169, he received his first floral, attributed by D. Afonso Henriques. But only later, in the reign of King Dinis, was built his imposing castle, a landmark of the village and the main business card of our day. To walk the streets of this museum village is to make a foray into the past, its history and feel the breeze of the Mondego valley and caress our face.
Among the must-see places we highlight its majestic castle, the Diving Fountain and Medieval Forum, the Jewish House, the old Inn, the Mother Church, the Pillory and the Old House of the Chamber and Jail.
???? - Private tour.
✅ - Free Pick-up and Drop-off.
???? - Optional sight-seeing stops along the way.
????️ - Certified Tourist Driver.
????♂️ - English; French; Spanish or Portuguese Speaking drivers with local knowledge.
???? – Chauffer style with code dress.
ℹ️ - Local tips and information - Our friendly drivers are locals and are happy to share their insights or give tips on what to do at your destination.
???? - Free water bottles.
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???? – Tips - Gratuity isn’t included or required, but if you really enjoyed your trip, you can show your driver your appreciation with an optional tip.
???? - Admissions to venues and attractions along the route.
⛈️ - Weather
Exact destinations and itineraries may be changed due to weather, road conditions and the guide’s discretion. If cancelled due to poor weather, a different date or a full refund will be offered. Please check our Terms and Conditions.
???? - Wineries
Included wineries are subject to change based on their availability, private events, and holidays.
???? – Valid ID
It is mandatory to present a valid photo ID for drinking alcohol in wineries. Be aware that the legal drinking age in Portugal is 18 years.
???? - Smoke free.
???? - Personal accident and liability insurance included.
???? - Luggage - Each passenger is allowed to have one checked bag and one carry on. If you’re traveling with more bags or oversized luggage, please inform us.
???? - Big luggage - 29x21x11 inches / 74x54x28 cm
???? - Small luggage - 22x14x9 inches / 56x36x23 cm
What do I need to bring?
????️???? - Make sure to wear comfortable clothes and shoes, and sunscreen if it’s sunny or a raincoat and an umbrella if it’s raining.
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