A fabulous hike today. A small footpath route, circular, approximately 11 km. We passed through a couple of small villages, oak forest, pine forest, along the Ribeira de Odeleite, lined with dense areas of bamboo, orange groves, abandoned vineyards, and of course, gorgeous almond trees in the final throes of their flowering. What a great day.
Our route was the PR4, the bottom portion of the map.
We had parked beside the cemetery, located at the top of Odeleite, which you can see in the background.
Odeleite nestled in the valley. We would eventually wind our way through the entire town and way off in the distance you can presently see.
I loved the quirky rooster bell, and the colour of the walls and doorframe.
My enthusiastic hiking companions. Patricia, Gary and Harald.
Simple elegance tucked away in the village.
I love how the buildings follow the curvature of the land.
This was hidden down a small alley.
We had driven for almost an hour to arrive here. The temperature was already at 18 and it was still early morning.
Looking back on the village of Odeleite and the church tower.
A final glimpse of the tower.
Once we navigated the ups and downs of the town, we headed off into the open countryside, which at this hour, was still glistening with morning dew. The only sounds were the birds, the occasional bell ringing from sheep, donkeys, or both, and our chatter.
Although the trail was sinuous, it had relatively little elevation.
These goats were simply laying on the hillside watching us.
I think this baby has seen better days. Patricia suggested there might be a body in the trunk!!
Such lush and gorgeous landscape. Obvious signs of the drought that continues to plague Portugal but still beautiful.
The bells we heard were from this large donkey or mule, not certain.
The seeds of the oleander exploding and looking like a piece of art.
A look back at Odeleite tells you how far we’ve traveled.
We came to a tiny village that didn’t have any name signs. It consisted of about 10 houses, all of them in pristine condition and quite a few dogs about.
I’m always watching for signs of the local flora and today was quite surprised to find several of the gum cistuses in bloom. In my memory, this is early.
We all seem to walk at a different pace on and off and it’s fun for me sometimes to look back and see where the others are. I decided it would be fun to take a selfie with the others holding up the rear.
I like to call this Portuguese snow!!! Tiny daisies that cover the hills at this time of year.
The lavender is starting to bloom.
We stumbled on an old well. We could claim it to be an old Roman ruin but that would be false!!! Gary attempted to push both Harald and Pat in, head first!!! Again false.
A holm oak coming into flower. It will be gorgeous in another week.
Guinea fowl, an entire pen of them.
A cactus flower.
The blue of the sky competing with the door.
These two were quite friendly and talkative.
We stopped at this tiny cafe for a break, both beverage and bathroom.a
Spain just over the horizon and oddles of wind turbine.
Not certain what this tree was, a fruit of some sort. It was literally humming with bees.
WE couldn’t figure out if this had been a well or an oven. Obviously, whatever it was, it was long ago.
By this time we were down in the valley and on level with the river, Riberia de Odeleite. It was so incredibly quiet and tranquil.
Riberia de Odeleite, which feeds into the Guadiana which separates Spain and Portugal.
Dense thick rows of bamboo lined both sides of the banks.,
My travelling companions enjoying a conversation as they strolled in the hot sunny day.
Harald and the Almond Tree…..sounds like a great title for a book.
A cluster of bird of paradise.
I love this shot…….I had rounded a bend and was directly in front of them on the opposite side of a ravine.b
More wild flowers busting into bloom Asphodelus
Once we started up from the riverbed area we arrived at the outskirts of Odeleite but in a completely different part of town.
The opposite side of the village from whence we started. It was hot and we were ready for lunch but what a wonderful experience it had been.
A huge lemon tree, laden in fruit just behind this rickety old gate.
My love of chimneys continues.
And another chimney.
Rock roses or carnations or something entirely different. Didn’t matter to me, they were beautiful.
Because we had parked next to the cemetery, I decided to poke my nose in when I got back to the car. I wasn’t disappointed as it was interesting, and as usual, peaceful.
These usually outline the graves but I think with work going on inside, they had simply moved some of these outside, probably to be reinstalled at a later point.
The entryway was shaded with benches nearby for those who wanted to simply sit.
I have never seen this before. An entire skeleton, minus the head, high on the wall inside but above the gate
Harald pointed out this interesting perspective
And finally, lunch. A much deserved and greatly appreciated lunch. For three of us, borrego da casa. Lamb of the house. Tender, flavourful, plentiful, and soon nothing more than a pile of bones. (I forgot to photograph Gary’s platter of pig cheeks). Hunger will do that to you!!!!!!
I am always grateful for these wonderful excursions into the Portuguese countryside. No two wandering are ever the same, they all leave an imprint on my mind and my soul, and each one leaves me longing for the next one. Stay tuned!!!