trekking Schist Villages
Centre Region of Portugal
24 Villages blessed by culture, gastronomy and people.

The Schist Villages Network is a sustainable development project in the Centre Region of Portugal, in partnership with 20 counties, making a total of 24 villages. The tourism business has helped in preserving the culture and prevent human desertion. From the country’s materials, creation is possible: a river becomes a canoeing track, a forest transforms into a walking trail, a tradition turns into a memorable event and all of it develops into an unforgettable memory. You will discover unspoiled crystal clear waters on forgotten river beaches, mysterious castles and monuments, joining nature and culture together in an unique experience. The region is blessed by its people, that remain true to their traditions and arts of crafting until today, with aged untold stories from the past of this land.

The Centre Region of Portugal allows for a Mediterranean climate, with rainy and unstable winters, but warm and sunny summers. Hence, the right season to go to the Villages of Schist is between April and October, which will guarantee ideal temperatures for walking while still allowing you to take a dive in the crystal clear rivers.

The landscape of this region is embellished by valleys, hills and mountains with lush oak tree forests, riverside woods and marshes, that allow for a great palette of flora and fauna. These natural areas are of extreme importance, since they take a great part in the role of protecting biodiversity and ecology, making possible the protection of many endangered species. Along the Villages of Schist, you will also find many river beaches, ideal for a short refreshment and/or picnic during your walking journeys.

Throughout your journey, you will be assisted by signposts along your path, that respect the rules of the Grande Randonnée (Grand Route), in order to be easily interpreted by everyone. This signalling uses yellow and red colours, and are abundant so you won’t get lost. This system and the roadmap that you will receive at the beginning will guarantee that you are safe and are enjoying the trip to its fullest.


1st Day – Lisbon / Coimbra

Arrival at Lisbon Airport and transfer to Coimbra, where you will rest and prepare for the beginning of your journey tomorrow. Accommodation, dinner and overnight.

2nd Day – Coimbra / Espinhal / Ferraria de São João

Transfer to Espinhal in the morning (7km). On to Ferraria de São João on foot, in which you will see a diverse flora and fauna. Emphasis on the chestnut tree, that is one of the oldest species of the region. Accommodation, dinner and overnight at Ferraria de São João.

3rd Day – Ferraria de São João / Gondramaz

Continue your journey to Gondramaz (16km), where the source of the river Alheda is and the harvesting of chestnuts is key for the local business. Accommodation, dinner and overnight at Gondramaz.

4th Day – Gondramaz / Casal Novo / Talasnal

On to Talasnal (12km), passing through the village of Casal Novo along the way. You will get the chance to experience amazing sights of the Lousã mountain range, as well as seeing diverse fauna, such as the wild boar, deer and buck. Accommodation, dinner and stay overnight at Talasnal.

5th Day – Talasnal / Candal / Cerdeira

Your journey today will pass through Candal, on the way to Cerdeira (12km). These villages use schist abundantly not only for houses, but for other structures too, such as corrals. Emphasis on Cerdeira, that is situated right on the slope of Lousã mountain range. Accommodation, dinner and stay overnight at Cerdeira.

6th Day – Cerdeira / Aigra Nova / Comareira

Walk to Comareira, passing through Aigra Nova (10km). You will reach the great cliffs of Góis, that provide as shelter for many endangered bird species as well as deer and buck.

7th Day – Comareira / Góis / Coimbra

Nearing the end of your trip, you will go to Góis and transfer to Coimbra (7km). Get the chance to observe watermills along the way, made out of Schist and operating the wheel in an horizontal fashion, providing a rare sight. On to Coimbra, the city of students (due to its richness in universities and schools), where you will be able to immerse yourself in culture, at one of the oldest cities of the country. Accommodation, dinner and stay overnight at Coimbra.

8th Day – Coimbra / Lisbon Airport (Departure)

note: with the exception of Coimbra and due to hotel capacity, in case of group travelling, the accommodation will take place at Góis during the whole tour (clients will be transferred each day to the next stage).