Minho Manor Houses

Minho Manor Houses Walk

Day 1 Porto

Arrival at the airport and transfer to your hotel. Settle in and relax.  Perhaps head across the river for a visit and tasting at one of the several world renowned port cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia. Overnight.

Day 2 Porto

Enjoy a walking tour with a local guide. Walking tour with a local guide visiting Sé (Oporto Cathedral), the Church of Santa Clara (outside) and visit to the beautiful Stock Exchange palace, plus a visit to the Lello Bookstore, considered one of the most beautiful in the world. Stop for a gourmet tasting break before continuing along Aliados Avenue to São Bento station, famous for its decorative tile panels.  Finally explore the Ribeira district from where you can see the bridges across the famous Douro.  Afternoon at leisure. Overnight.

Day 3 Porto - Durraes

Transfer by private car to Durrães.  Settle in and relax in your manor house accommodation. Your walking adventure officially begins tomorrow.   Overnight.

Day 4 Durraes

Circular Walk: 8.5 kms, 3hrs
Enjoy a circular walk today via Ponte das Tábuas.   This gentle circuit through forest and farmland leads you, via a chocolate factory which has been in business for over a century, to the Roman bridge of Ponte das Tábuas, criss-crossing the River Neiva along the way. There’s ample time to call in at the chocolatier’s if you so wish.   Rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight.

Day 5 Durraes - Facha

Distance: 12kms, 4.5hrs
After a short transfer to the pilgrim’s church of Nossa Senhora da Aparecida in nearby Balugães, you join the Portuguese Caminho de Santiago as it leads through the bucolic heart of the valley alongside fields of corn, vines and olive trees. Ambling beneath arbours heavy with grapes while tractors plough and harvest the fields that flank your way, enjoy the tranquillity and camaraderie of the pilgrims’ path, following it all the way to the Quinta do Sobreiro in Facha, where you stay overnight.

Day 6 Facha - Ponte de Lima

Distance: 17.5kms, 6.5hrs
Today your path ascends into the parish of Gondim, where the land is given over to neat rows of vines and fruit trees. Descending to the medieval hamlet of Passagem, you reach the banks of the River Lima and join the ecovia (a traffic-free riverside walking and cycling track) which traces the course of the river all the way into picturesque Ponte de Lima, Portugal's oldest town, which is named in part after its iconic Roman bridge (ponte means ‘bridge’). Overnight.

Day 7 Ponte de Lima

A day in lovely Ponte de Lima. You might like to visit the excellent Vinho Verde Museum, housed in an emblematic building in the centre of town.  You can also take a taxi to Lagoas de Bertiandos, where wooden walkways lead across the wetlands. Look for some of the many species of birds which shelter here, before returning to Ponte de Lima along the right bank of the river.  (9.5km, 3.5hr option)
Alternatively take a local bus to Ponte de Barca with its equally splendid bridge spanning the Lima and its compact old quarter.  Much to see and do in this beautiful region! Overnight.

Day 8 Ponte de Lima - Calheiros

Distance: 8kms, 3hrs
Setting out across the graceful Roman bridge, you rejoin the Caminho de Santiago for a short walk which gradually ascends through cultivated terraces and more vineyards to reach the hamlet of Calheiros and the Paço de Calheiros, where you stay for two nights. Overnight.

Day 9 Calheiros

Circular walk: 9kms, 3.5hrs
Our suggested circular walk ascends through woods where wild horses run free, to reach a saddle high above the valley and a hillside path from where you can gaze down over the River Lima, tracing your week-long progress through the valley. Descending through tiny villages, some of whose residents have known the Count of Calheiros since he was a boy, you enjoy panoramic views over the estate before returning to relish its opulent surroundings.  Overnight.

Day 10 Calheiros - Porto

Farewell the town as your journey comes to an end. Transfer to Porto airport.