Barlavento, discovering the west 

If you are a trail lover or wish to explore the Algarve through hiking, you'll enjoy this reading. With sunny weather all year round and a very interesting geography, the region is a great place to hike. With many different types of landscapes, approximately 40% of its total area has conservation status. From the sandy dunes, lagoons and wide beaches, to the rich fauna and animal life, not forgetting Ria Formosa and Ria de Alvor, following the Algarve trails is a beautiful way to enjoy one of the most inspiring regions in the world. Let's start with Barlavento trails, in the west part of the region.

Praia do Telheiro – Costa Vicentina
Location: Praia do Telheiro, Vila do Bispo
GPS Coordinates: 37°01’43.3″N 8°59’15.8″W (decimal degrees)
37.028683, -8.987735
Grade: difficult
Type: linear trail. This trail is not signposted
Lenght: 6200 meters / 3.85 miles
Average completion time: up to 3 hours
Best time to visit: all year round. May not be advisable on stormy days
Activities: nature walks and hikes, birdwatching




Castelejo – Costa Vicentina
Location: Castelejo, Vila do Bispo 
GPS Coordinates (decimal degrees): 37.091138 N, -8.932220 W
Grade: easy
Type: loop trail, signposted trails
Lenght: 3500 meters / 2.2 miles
Average completion time: 1.5 hours
Best time to visit: all year round
Activities: nature walks, BTT, birdwatching




Pontal da Carrapateira – Costa Vicentina
Location: Carrapateira, Aljezur  
GPS Coordinates: 37º 11’ 31,846’’ N, 8º 54’ 01,015’’ W (start)
Grade: moderate
Type: circular; asphalt and dirt tracks. This trail is not entirely signposted
Lenght: 19000 meters / 11.8 miles (longer walk)
Average completion time: up to 7 hours
Best time to visit: all year round. May not be advisable on hot days
Activities: nature walks and hikes, birdwatching, swimming in summer




Bordeira Trail – Costa Vicentina (natural park trail)
Location: Bordeira, Aljezur 
Coordinates: 37.198568 N, -8.863443 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: easy / moderate (short version), moderate (long version)
Type: loop and out & back trails, dirt and gravel tracks
Length: shorter trail: 5000 meters / 3.1 miles, longer trail: 14000 meters / 8.7 miles
Average completion time: up to 2 hours (short trail), up to 5 hours (long trail)
Best time to visit: all year-round. Especially good in spring for botanical species. Avoid the longer trail during very hot days
Activities: birding, nature walks, hiking, cycling & other outdoor activities, sightseeing




Barragem da Bravura trail – Lagos
Location: Barragem da Bravura / Barragem de Odiáxere, Lagos 
Coordinates: 37.201454 N, -8.698751 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: moderate
Type: loop trail, dirt and gravel tracks
Length: 8800 meters / 5.5 miles
Average completion time: up to 4 hours
Best time to visit: all year-round. Avoid during very hot days
Activities: nature walks, hiking, cycling & other outdoor activities, sightseeing, non-motorized watersports


Alvor boardwalk & estuary trail
Location: Alvor, Portimão 
GPS Coordinates (decimal degrees): 37.126415 N, -8.596040 W
Grade: easy
Type: loop trails, signposted paths
Lenght: about 5200 meters / 3.2 miles, boardwalk only: about 3.0 kilometers / 1.9 miles
Average completion time: 45 minutes – 2 hours, depending on the chosen route
Best time to visit: all year-round
Activities: nature walks, cycling, running, birding




Trail of Headlands - Lagoa
Location: coastline between Praia do Paraíso, Carvoeiro (in the east) and Praia do Molhe, Ferragudo (in the west), Lagoa
Coordinates: Praia do Paraíso: 37.096976 N, -8.474910 W; Praia do Molhe: 37.110069 N, -8.519072 W (decimal degrees) 
Grade: medium difficulty. Some steep stretches are difficult
Type: linear trail (out & back). Signposted trail
Length: 12-13 kilometres / up to 8.1 miles, there and back
Average completion time: up to 4-5 hours
Best time to visit: all year-round, except on hot, windy or rainy days
Activities: birding, nature walks, sightseeing


Seven Hanging Valleys Trail – Lagoa
Location: Lagoa, encompassing the coastline between Marinha Beach and Vale Centeanes Beach, Lagoa  
GPS Coordinates: 37°05’24.635″N / 8°24’46.181″W (start); 37º05’28.799″N / 8º27’14.762″W (finish)
Grade: moderate / medium-high difficulty. Some stretches can be more difficult for elderly or very young visitors
Type: linear trail (out and back). This trail is signposted
Length: 12000 meters / 7.46 miles (out and back, total)
Average completion time: up to 4-6 hours
Best time to visit: all year round; may not be advisable on stormy or windy days
Activities: nature walks and hikes, birdwatching, swimming in summer


Pera Marsh – Salgados Lagoon Trail - Silves
Location: Salgados, Pera/Praia Grande, Silves and Albufeira 
Coordinates: 37° 5′ 41.8086″ N, -8° 20′ 5.6076″ W (lat/long);  37.094947 N, -8.334891 W (decimal degrees) 
Grade: easy / moderate
Type: linear trail (out & back)
Length: about 5500 meters (3.4 miles)
Average completion time: up to 2-3 hours
Best time to visit: all year-round
Best time for birdwatching: spring, autumn and winter. All seasons offer good birding opportunities 
Activities: birding, nature walks, cycling, running & other outdoor activities, sightseeing, water sports, extreme sports


Sotavento, discovering the east 

Following our last incursion on the trail world, it is now known that the Algarve can also be the place of choice of everyone who is up for more that sun and sea. So, after the Barlavento trails (the western part of the region), it is now time to set sail to Sotavento, the eastern side. 

Paderne Castle Trail - Albufeira
Location: Paderne, Albufeira
GPS Coordinates (decimal degrees): 37.167505 N, -8.208386 W
Grade: easy / medium difficulty
Type: loop trail. Signposted trails
Lenght: 3900 meters / 2.45 miles
Average completion time: 2 hours
Best time to visit: all year round, except mid-summer
Activities: nature walks, birdwatching




Rocha da Pena – Trail – Loulé
Location: Pena / Penina, between the villages of Salir and Benafim, Loulé
GPS Coordinates: 37.250339 N, -8.097848 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: medium difficulty (some parts are more difficult than others)
Type: loop trail, signposted trails
Lenght: 6900 meters / 4.3 miles
Average completion time: 2.5 – 3 hours
Best time to visit: all year round, except summer. The best time to see notable botanic species is between january and april
Activities: nature walks / hiking, birdwatching


Fonte da Benémola Trail - Loulé
Location: Fonte da Benémola, Loulé  
GPS Coordinates: 37º 11’ 55,360’’N, 8º 00’ 15,759’’ W (start)
Grade: easy / moderate
Type: circular; dirt tracks (predominantly). This trail is signposted
Lenght: 4400 meters / 2.73 miles
Average completion time: up to 2 hours
Best time to visit: spring. May not be advisable on very hot days
Activities: nature walks and hikes, birdwatching




São Lourenço Trail – Quinta do Lago
Location: Quinta do Lago, Almancil
GPS Coordinates: 37.035242 N, -8.027176 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: easy
Type: out & back signposted trails
Lenght: 6300 meters / 3.9 miles (out & back)
Average completion time: up to 2.5 hours
Best time to visit: all year round
Activities: nature walks, cycling, birdwatching




Ludo Trail - Faro
Location: Ludo, Faro / Almancil; Faro & Loulé
GPS Coordinates (decimal degrees): 37.016834 N, -7.988397 W
Grade: easy
Type: semi-loop path. The trail is signposted
Lenght: 6950 meters/ 4.32 miles
Average completion time: 3.5 hours
Best time to visit: all year round
Activities: nature walks, cycling, birdwatching


Pontal Forest Trail – Ria Formosa Natural Park
Location: Mata do Pontal, Rua Henriques Fernando Serrão, Faro
Coordinates: 37.030619 N, -7.976154 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: easy. Secondary loop trail can be difficult
Type: linear trail (out & back) – it merges with the Ludo Trail. Pontal’s secondary trail is a loop trail
Length: 2400 meters / 1.5 miles. Secondary trail runs for 1600 meters / 1 mile
Average completion time: up to 1-2 hours
Best time to visit: all year-round. Especially good in late spring for botanical species. Late summer is the worst time to observe plants
Best time for birdwatching: spring, autumn and winter. All seasons offer good birding opportunities
Activities: birding, nature walks, cycling, running & other outdoor activities, sightseeing




Amendoeira Hiking Trail – Loulé
Location: Amendoeira – Querença, Loulé 
GPS Coordinates: 37.173949 N, -7.963912 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: medium difficulty
Type: loop trail. Signposted trails, paved roads and dirt tracks. Water streams
Lenght: 8000 meters / 4.97 miles
Average completion time: 2.5 – 3 hours
Best time to visit: spring. The best time to see notable botanic species is between january and april
Activities: Nature walks / hiking, birdwatching




Barranco das Lajes Trail – São Brás de Alportel
Location: Cabanas & Lajes, São Brás de Alportel. The trail starts in Cabanas
GPS Coordinates: 37º 14’ 57,932’’ N, 7º 49’ 04,556’’ W (start)
Grade: moderate
Type: circular trail, asphalt and dirt tracks. This trail is signposted
Lenght: 5500 meters / 3.42 miles
Average completion time: up to 2-3 hours
Best time to visit: late winter and spring. May not be advisable on wet or very hot days
Activities: nature walks and hikes, birdwatching




Venta Moinhos Salt Marsh Trail – Castro Marim Natural Reserve
Location: Venta Moinhos Salt Marsh, Castro Marim
GPS Coordinates: 37.235898 N, -7.442784 W (decimal degrees)
Grade: easy
Type: out & back trail. The trail is not entirely signposted
Lenght: 7600 meters / 4.72 miles
Average completion time: 2.2 hours
Best time to visit: all year round
Activities: nature walks, BTT, birdwatching



Find out more here!