8-day Guided walking tour of the “Hidden Rivers” in northern Portugal

The certified guides from Be Cool Travel will take you on this truly special and spectacular 8-day guided walking tour of the “Hidden Rivers” in Northern Portugal, a magnificent adventure taking in the sights, sounds, scenery and beauty of the Tamega, Paiva and Vouga rivers.




Trip Duration

8 days

People per Guide

Trip Level


Offer Period

Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec

Type of Trip



  • Explore the truly beautiful Tamiga, Paiva and Vouga rivers - "the hidden rivers"

  • See the wild, diverse and stunning flora and fauna all around

  • Discover the quaint towns of Amarante and Aveiro, "the Venice of Portugal"

  • Walk through lush fields, valleys, vineyards and wetlands


This 8-day walking tour of the “Hidden Rivers” in Northern Portugal is an absolutely amazing and delightful adventure, as I will guide you through the many treasures along the banks of the mighty Tamega, Paiva and Vouga rivers, with quaint little towns and villages, marvelous countryside, fields and wetlands, and a beautifully diverse range of flora and fauna all featuring.

The Tamega, Paiva and Vouga rivers are located in the North of Portugal, not far from the metropolis of Porto, and are some of the most magical, breath-taking and picturesque places in the country, as their difficulty to access has resulted in minimal human infraction, and therefore the diverse flora and fauna has been allowed to grow and thrive.

We meet on the first day at Porto Airport, and from there we transfer to our hotel in Amarante.

We begin walking on the second day by heading along an Ecovia path that was once a spectacular narrow-gauge railway, winding our way through fields and vineyards with lovely views over the Tamega River.

We continue the next day by exploring more of the Tamega River, as well as Amarante itself, before moving on to the majestic and rugged mountains overlooking the Paiva River, the wooden boardwalks giving us access to the truly wild and exquisite terrain and scenery abound.

The final dew days are spent in Aveiro, “the Venice of Portugal”, close by to the idyllic Vouga River and its associated wetlands, lush valleys and rolling hills.

The penultimate day finishes with a boat ride down the estuary of the Ria de Aveiro, a pleasant and charming way to round off proceedings before we head back to Porto Airport on day 8, weary and content at the divine scenes we have witnessed over the week.

You will not regret joining this tour and all of its sights and sounds – book now to experience this unique adventure!

For a different way to explore Northern Portugal, try our 8-day guided multi-activity tour in Peneda-Geres National Park, here!

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Price includes

  • Guiding fee
  • Accommodation
  • Transportation from your hotel/airport (if in area) to the start of the trip and back
  • Transport during the trip
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
 Does not include: Any services not listed as included, flights to and from Portugal, meals, tips/gratuities, baggage or personal insurance (except as outlined), admission fees to castles & attractions or events (except as outlined), personal expenses, supplements, guide services inside monuments


  • Day 1Arrival to Amarante

    Transfer by road from Porto airport to Amarante.

  • Day 2Ecovia do Tamega: Canedo – Cruz de Baixo
    This is a beautiful and scenic walk along a paved Ecovia, once one of the most spectacular narrow gauge railway lines in the country. The route passes through isolated villages, field systems and vineyards and offers breath taking views over the Tamega River.
    We pass through the attractive small town of Celorico de Basto where those wishing for an easier day can finish the walk.
    Distance: 12.2km or 14.5km, Ascent/descent: minimal


  • Day 3S. Salvador do Monte and the Tamega River
    We begin at the lovely small stone church of S. Salvador do Monte and descend on quiet lanes and wooded tracks to the edge of the River Tamega.
    A riverside path then leads along the grassy margins of the river Tamega before arriving at the S. Gonçalo Bridge in Amarante.
    This walk is especially designed to arrive back in Amarante in time for a late lunch and provide more time to explore this fascinating town.
    Distance: 8.4km, Ascent/descent: +75m, -300m


  • Day 4Transfer day to Aveiro via Passadiços do Paiva
    A big and full day in every way. Spectacular journey down the Tamega valley & across the Douro River.
    We then travel into the mountains to walk the famous Passadiços do Paiva. This 8km stretch of wooden boardwalks give access to an otherwise inaccessible section of the glorious Paiva river cascading between crags and frothing over rocks as it navigates through some of the most beautiful and rugged scenery in the north.
    After our walk we have a well-deserved break in a café before continuing our journey to our next centre, Aveiro, the Venice of Portugal.
    Distance: 8.2km to bar dos Passadiços by the bridge at Espiunca
    Ascent/descent: + 150m, -200m


  • Day 5Sernada Ecopista
    Today we meet the Vouga River. We shadow this gentle river as it meanders to Sernada do Vouga surrounded by woodland and rolling hills.
    Sernada do Vouga where we finish our walk is an old railway junction and a stop on Portugal´s only remaining narrow gauge railway line.
    Distance: 10.5km, Ascent/descent: minimal


  • Day 6Sernada-Macinhata-Fontinha
    We return to Sernada do Vouga and continue to follow the river as it quietly flows through a rich open valley.
    Little villages enrich our walk, farmers tend their fields and trees offer shade as we accompany the river Vouga towards the sea.
    Distance: 12km or 14.5km, Ascent/descent: minimal


  • Day 7 Salreu nature circuit /boat trip Ria de Aveiro
    The Rio Vouga now forms the grand estuary of the Ria de Aveiro.
    This massive area of wetlands has been a haven for thousands of years for animals, birds and people alike.
    Our walk is designed to appreciate and understand the importance of this natural habitat.
    But, of course, the only way to finish our week is to take a boat ride through this stunning watery landscape.
    A fitting climax to our exploration of northern Portugal’s hidden rivers
    Distance: 8km, Ascent/descent: nil


  • Day 8Departure

    Transfer from hotel to Porto airport.


Other details

Skill level required

First time

Fitness level required

Open to everyone

Meeting point

Porto Airport


Hotel accommodation every night

More info

Each day breakfast will be taken in the Hotel before leaving for the day’s program.

We will usually leave the Hotel between 9.00 am and 9.30am.

On our return to the Hotel each day we will have time to relax and change before dinner which is usually taken at 7.30pm.

Each evening the guide will give a preview of the next day’s program.

Day’s program is subject to alteration due to weather and local conditions.


About the Guide


We are Portugal's most trusted walking and cultural company and have been providing services to clients from all over the world for more than 10 years.

All of our trips are fully customisable. We can always work with you to put together exactly what you had in mind. We will listen to you and take care of all the planning and logistics using our local expertise and contacts.

Based on experience, we know that many groups like to mix their activities with some more leisurely aspects, such as good food and cultural highlights. We are happy to put that together for you as well.

Contact us for a truly memorable experience in Portugal!



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