PR1 OLR - Schist Trails of Álvaro - The Meanders of the Zêzere
Aldeias do Xisto Verified partner Explorers Choice
Aldeia do Xisto of ÁlvaroPhoto: Aldeias do Xisto, Aldeias do Xisto
Visit the vast and beautiful religious monuments in the Aldeia do Xisto of Álvaro and contemplate the landscape over the River Zêzere at the viewpoint next to the main church.
Book your stay, experience or meal at Book in Xisto.
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Be careful as it can be warm in the summer and slippery in the winter.
SOS Emergency – 112
SOS forests – 117
Anti poisoning information - (+351) 217 950 143
GNR Police Oleiros – (+351) 272 682 311
ADXTUR - Rede Aldeias do Xisto - (+351) 275 647 700
Tips and hints
The valley of the Zêzere dazzles with its imposing landscape and the river that runs a sinuous and surprisingly deep course created by the system of meanders . The meanders of the river Zêzere are one of the sites of the Natural Park of the Tejo, classified by UNESCO, and make this one of the most beautiful river valleys in Portugal. The surrounding region is full of ecological interest.
The woods of Álvaro have always been of exceptional value, in particular as a sample of the indigenous vegetation that grows here spontaneously. On the surrounding steep slopes there is a monoculture of maritime pine (Pinus pinaster). It is also worth exploring the myriad of rural trails, you are guaranteed to stumble on areas of hidden paradise at the end of deep ravines. Land use shows that the olive has always played an important role in agriculture here, and the olive tree (Olea europea) plays a significant role in the local landscape.
This is one of the white villages of the network of Schist villages, most the houses are plastered and painted. This is proof that the village was once a noble “town” and the capital of the county. This status is a legacy of the passage of Visigoths and Romans and due to the fact it was an important base for the Order of Malta. The Romans were responsible for building one of the bridges that still links the two sides of the stream of Alvélos today. This parish is also marked by the existence of the “pilgrimage route to Santiago” and by the exceptional religious relics. The Chapel of Misericórdia is classified as property of County Value.
- Fish soup
- Fried river fish (Achigã)
- Roast kid
- Evergreen strawberry tree brandy
- Honey cake
- Wine callum
This circular route starts and ends at the viewpoint overthe River Zêzere next to the parish church of Álvaro (Church of S. Tiago). Before starting the 6.2 km walk, while you are still at the viewpoint, take in the surrounding landscape of the valley of the River Zêzere, that is thought to be one of the most beautiful river valleys in Portugal.
Leaving Álvaro towards Gaspalha, the walk first crosses olive groves planted in terraces on the steep banks o the Zêzere until it reaches the road from Oleiros to Pampilhosa da Serra. Cross the road and then the climb starts, passing the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Consolação. Once we reach Gaspalha, it is worth stopping to visit one of the olive oil presses that still exist in the village.
Next, passing through pine woods the path takes us down towards the river Zêzere and the river beach of Álvaro which invites us in for a swim on warm days. This is the ideal spot for a rest or to try some of the local specialities at the restaurant next to the beach. The route then heads back towards Álvaro, following the river, from where we can see some of the brids that live in the zone. After a slight climb we arrive in Álvaro, where we can still visit some of its beautiful chapels.
- 3 Waypoints
- 3 Waypoints
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