Hiking trail recommended route

PR 4 VLR - The Schist trails of Água Formosa – Discovering the streams

Hiking trail
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Aldeias do Xisto Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
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    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
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    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
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    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
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    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
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    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
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    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
  • /
    Photo: Rita Machado - A2Z, Aldeias do Xisto
m 320 300 280 260 240 220 200 6 5 4 3 2 1 km
Discovering the streams follows the old miller’s and farmer’s paths that lead to the watermills and surrounding woodlands of the Galega and the Valada streams. 
easy
Distance 6.8 km
2:50 h
211 m
211 m
The Schist trail of Água Formosa is a circular route of 7.43 km that only has small climbs, meaning it is easily accessible to all visitors. It follows the old miller’s and farmer’s paths that lead to the watermills and surrounding woodlands of the Galega and the Valada streams. The route follows the stream, and leads to the ancient olive oil press, passing irrigation channels and dams. From here to the village of Vilar Chão, the route passes through a patch of pine trees before rejoining the path we already followed out of Água Formosa. 

Author’s recommendation

Enjoy the beautiful riverside gallery and visit the Conheiras, evidence of ancient gold mining sites.

 

Book your stay, experience or meal at Book in Xisto. 

Profile picture of Catarina Almeida - ADXTUR
Author
Catarina Almeida - ADXTUR
Update: February 18, 2020
Difficulty
easy
Technique
Stamina
Highest point
326 m
Lowest point
220 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

Beware of high temperatures in the summer and slippery terrain in the winter.

 

Useful Contacts

SOS Emergency: 112

SOS Forest: 117

GNR Vila de Rei (police): (+351) 274 898 179

ADXTUR- Aldeias do Xisto Network: (+351) 275 647 700 | (+351) 960 101 873

Tips and hints

Água Formosa is a small village in the Municipality of Vila de Rei (Beira Baixa), characterised by a central nucleus of houses built of schist and separated by narrow streets, located in a narrow valley on the banks of the Galega stream. In recent years the village has been undergoing redevelopment, many houses have been restored or rebuilt and the roads have been repaved. As well as the great interest of the natural landscape around the village, it is also worth mentioning that nearby (1500m) there is an area of Conheiras that bear witness to the ancient gold-mining holdings that date back to the time of the Roman occupation. Given that Água Formosa is the Schist village that is closest to Lisbon it may be considered as a real gateway to the mysterious and enchanted Territory of Schist. Água Formosa is home to a riverside gallery of incredible beauty, where black alder, poplars and willows are of particular note, alongside other typical Mediterranean flora species, such as the strawberry tree, the common myrtle, the butcher’s broom, the common hawthorn, the mastic tree, French lavender, the gum cistus, the salvia cistus and the rock rose. As well as this vegetation, the surrounding area also has many plant species associated with the significant rocky outcrops and other plant species found on the banks of the ponds, watermills and irrigation canals all along the Galega stream. There is interesting wildlife too, you may glimpse the emblematic kingfisher, or the timid red squirrel which finds perfect conditions in the region. The route also offers many excellent opportunities for bird watching.

 

Gastronomy

-Fish soup

- Migas (bread stew)

- Maranho (Goat stomach filled with goat meat mixture)

- Bucho Recheado (stuffed pig’s stomach)

- Roast kid

- Bacalhau à Cobra (salt cod)

- Cozido à Portuguesa (Portuguese stew)

- Smoked sausages

- Tigelada (Baked custard pudding - eggs, sugar, wheat flour, milk and cinnamon) 

Start

Northern car park Água Formosa 39º 38' 6'' N; 8º 5' 56'' W (236 m)
Coordinates:
DD
39.634834, -8.098866
DMS
39°38'05.4"N 8°05'55.9"W
UTM
29S 577329 4387616
w3w 
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Destination

Northern car park Água Formosa 39º 38' 6'' N; 8º 5' 56'' W

Turn-by-turn directions

The Schist trail of Água Formosa follows the old miller’s and farmer’s paths that not so long ago were used to get to the watermills and surrounding woodlands of the Galega and the Valada streams. Leaving Água Formosa the route runs parallel to the Galega stream, following this lovely water course upstream. The path passes a fountain that is still used by the locals even today, and past some substantial rocky outcrops. Further ahead, next to the stream, an irrigation canal will take us to a pool and the ruins of a watermill. The path keeps on following the stream and the next stop is the village’s ancient olive oil press. From here until the village of Vilar Chão the route continues in the shade of a patch of pine trees, but the Valada stream is never far away. Following the ancient path that linked Vilar Chão with Água Formosa, we pass another fountain before taking the path we had already taken that will leads us back to Água Formosa. This Schist trail is a circular route. It is relatively flat and is 7.43 km in length, making it a particularly accessible option. All along the route you will find plenty of opportunity to enjoy the nature, which just begs to be contemplated. 

Note


all notes on protected areas

Coordinates

DD
39.634834, -8.098866
DMS
39°38'05.4"N 8°05'55.9"W
UTM
29S 577329 4387616
w3w 
///appeal.jostle.grained
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

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Difficulty
easy
Distance
6.8 km
Duration
2:50 h
Ascent
211 m
Descent
211 m

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