Luxury Travel tips from sunny Portugal: Belmonte, Sortelha & Linhares da Beira are certainly worth your visit as already mentioned in my last travel article. This time, let me take you …
From Almeida to Faia Brava Nature Reserve and into Castelo Rodrigo: Wild horses, luxurious country lodges & a “secret” brotherhood of “good taste” are waiting for us!
Our journey through the regions of Serra da Estrela & Douro brings us further into the East of Portugal. The landscape changes gradually, as we come closer to the Spanish border. Almeida, another place that in addition to Belmonte, Sortelha & Linhares da Beira belongs to the famous “Aldeias Historicas” (historic villages of Portugal), is surrounded by a star-shaped fort, which was built to ward off the Napoleon army.
Apart from the many gastronomic and cultural highlights, Almeida also offers more sportive activities. “A horse is God’s gift to mankind,” says the Arab. Well, when looking at this beautiful “Lucitano” horse, I can fully agree with what he is saying. In the “Picadeiro d’El Rey”, the riding school of Almeida, I even managed to swing myself on its back! Wow. A moment when the memories of my childhood all came rushing back at me!
One of my favorite spots of this journey is the visit to the nature reserve Faia Brava near the historic site “Castelo Rodrigo“. Nature and hiking lovers will certainly not be disappointed here! In this wild landscape, one feels very close to nature and if you are lucky enough, you will not only see vultures and golden eagles but also wild horses and cattle. You can tell that great value is put on the gentle, sustainable development of the reserve. For guests, (multi-day) hikes, for instance on horseback or by foot, are offered. In addition, you can do bird watching, take photo tours or indulge in other “wilderness experiences“. The NGO, which has already bought 800 acres of land since 2000, is driven by passion for the region. They even make olive oil here, which is obtained from the wild-growing trees.
Our route then takes us on to the historic village “Castelo Rodrigo“. This small town near the nature reserve Faia Brava is located on a hill and wins us over with its historic charm and impressive views. Here, some houses have even been converted into top, state-of-the-art apartments.
The next stop on my journey through magic Portugal is the world-famous Douro valley, as well as Peso da Regua. Follow me “on my tracks” as I tell you all about the beauty of a train ride through Douro valley … !
Disclaimer: We have been invited by “Douro e Estrela” to join their trip through Douro and Serra da Estrela in Portugal. All opinions are my own.