I’ve had this hike on my list for some time and today it became, finally, a reality leaving me one very happy man! As though I need a reason to be happy……I’m ALWAYS happy.
The trail runs through the mountain village of Monchique and the surrounding landscape to the north. Several “protected” trees are on the route (photos to follow). The forests of eucalyptus, the groves of cork oak all along the Barranco Dos Pisões, which demarcates part of the border between Alentejo and the Algarve, absolutely incredible and the scent!!!! My sinuses were happy throughout the entire walk as the eucalyptus cleared my system out!!
We arrived in Monchique around 11h00, an hour drive from home AND, our clocks went back last night so, an early rise for all of us! Parked the car and then walked around the main square looking for the beginning of the trail.
Just outside the village stands the largest specimen of Norfolk pine, a protected tree 150 years old and 44m tall.
AS is typical here, the signage was lacking a bit but we persevered and we found the various twists and turns and before we knew it, we were above the village and heading up into the enormous forest of eucalyptus and cork oaks.
After crossing the forest we headed down into the valley/ravine and we stopped for our picnic lunch near the Riberia de Seixe.
One of our laughs for the day……there were a few……we were hungry, we had come all the way down the ravine and at the bottom, at a fork in the road was a bus stop……we decided to sit there and enjoy our lunch. Off in the distance we noticed a couple of parked cars but really, thought nothing of it. Enjoy our food and break then cleaned up and headed off. When we arrived at the parked cars there was a beautiful picnic area, right beside the river, with tables etc.. You can hopefully appreciate our giggles.
Our next “landmark” was a huge 150 year old sycamore about 41m tall.
From this point it was back upwards through yet another amazing forest until we reached our second ravine, Barrranco do Carvalho, where we came upon a protected forest of holly, an endangered and very rare plant in Southern Portugal.
Throughout most of our walk today we kept coming across many different varieties of mushrooms. Having watched Fantastic Fungi I’m very respectful of mushrooms and I see them with a completely new eye.
Another funny story…….so……at the bottom of the valley, which was quite lush, we came upon a small area with tables and we decided to take a break
Patricia spotted a splash of colour a short distance away and jumped up to investigate and landed smack dab in the middle of a relatively fresh cow pie!!!!! Didn’t stop her from continuing and finding a gorgeous patch of primroses. Needless to say, that set us off laughing yet again.
Shortly after this we started to see some signs of civilization and I realized we were nearing the end of the hike. It was still a distance down the mountain and into the village but somehow we find ourselves suddenly moving along a bit faster as we know the end is in sight. As I rounded a turn in the road I was overjoyed to see one of my favourite things here…..a large field full of small yellow lupins. I love then and only see them here in the Algarve.
As you can see, no shortage of colour and beauty. Heading back into the village it was wonderful to see enclaves tucked away, active farm life, people working in their gardens etc.. A perfect sunny Sunday afteroon.
I will want to return and do this hike again sometime as, like others, it will look completely different depending on the month I am there. It was truly uplifting to enjoy the gorgeous country side with good friends and to have it be a brand new experience for all of us was a treat.
As we headed back to the car I passed this statue, which I found quite appealing. I think it worthy of my closing shot today.
Although, having said that, I do have one more shot that might also be worthy of a closing shot for the day…….you can decide.
10 thoughts on “Trilho dos Moinhos Monchique”
That hike looked awesome! My kind of hike. I kept thinking of She’ll be coming Around the Mountain When She Comes from the pic of Pat coming up over the hill.
Giggled out loud at both funny stories.
Life is good! XO
I mentioned you yesterday during the hike as I knew you would have loved it. It was new to all of us.
Wow that is a pretty lovely day with absolutely stunning pictures.
Thanks Ken. It was a fabulous hike and quite the eye opener as this was an area that had been affected by previous fires.
What a hike… I’m just mad about a hike like that!!!! It’s fun to see the smiles of friends.
Merci de nous faire partager.
Your ears must have been burning as your name came up several times. You would have loved it.
What a fantastic hike with so much to see, great photos!
Thanks Debbie. It will be a repeat hike for me for sure, maybe a bit later when more things have opened up.
What a wonderful journey I just took while reading your blog, making the pictures large so I could see every detail!!! I felt as if I were there for much of it.
What a beautiful landscape! The pictures were gorgeous. The one of Pat coming up the hill, surrounded by trees… stunning.
The painting on the wall of the woman looking out the window… that’s Pat K in her golden years!! I loved all those paintings.
Oh and never mind Pat M wanting to be there to see the waterfall poppies, she’d be wanting that for her own back yard! LOL
What a stunning hike. My but you are all so blessed to live as you do.
Tanks eh!!! It was a marvelous hike. Much of that area was burned out by forest fires a few years ago and it’s amazing to see an old burnt out root with three or four new eucalyptus trees growing out of it. I have wanted to d this particular hike since arriving here this year and it’s not one I would have done alone so, happy that everybody was interested and the weather cooperated. Yes, we do live life to the fullest no doubt about that.