Pilgrim trail Multi-stage route

Caminhos de Santiago Alentejo e Ribatejo - Eastern Way

Pilgrim trail · Portugal
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Turismo do Alentejo, ERT
  • Cabeça Gorda, Beja
    Cabeça Gorda, Beja
    Photo: Upstream, Turismo do Alentejo, ERT

Journeying on the Ways is to relive that history in the traces that the passing of time failed to erase, it is making the traveller a witness to a narrative revealed in its tangible and intangible heritage, in its lands, towns and curiosities, its cuisine, peoples and customs, those that have gone and those that continue to be, and who by taking part are unable to resist the enchantments revealed along the way. 

To experience the Caminhos de Santiago Alentejo e Ribatejo is more than a journey, it is an experience like no other, which marks us, and which we treasure. One we will want to repeat.

Distance 402.3 km
103:45 h
3,614 m
3,638 m
495 m
9 m

Not far from where we set off, the Eastern Way takes us to Mértola, where the castle is practically a mustsee.

Founded on far more ancient structures, it was built in Christian times, its keep going up in 1292 by order of Dom João Fernandes, Master of the Order of Santiago. It is an archaeologically rich site and a prime location to look over the city and its surroundings.

Further ahead, Beja reveals itself to be a wonderful place to observe nature, above all the birdlife, its county lines serving as the place of ‘pilgrimage’ for about two hundred species. The opportunities for birdwatching are substantial, species such as the osprey, scrub robin or blackbellied sandgrouse gracing the most attentive with their presence.

Through its Azulejo pannels, a legacy of five centuries of tile painting that also tells the history of the city, Beja offers us flashes of colour, indoors and out.

A homage to the art of working in clay awaits the visitor in Évora, in the form of an actual village going by the name of Aldeia da Terra (Earth Village), considered by many as the funniest in Portugal.

This 3D cartoon strip is a marvel of well-observed, irreverent good humour.

Not to be missed is Igreja de São Tiago (St James Church), rebuilt in the 17th century but which still has traces of the Manueline period, such as the battlements of the south wing. With a single nave, the domed roof greets us with magnificent frescos, painted with sacred and profane decorative motifs.

Évora has a lot to offer its visitors, such as Praça do Giraldo square, baptised in homage to Geraldo Geraldes the Fearless, to whom the reconquest in 1165 of Évora from the Moors is attributed.

Baptised the ‘white city’ of the Alentejo, Estremoz has its own 16th century church, the Igreja de Santiago, which is known to have existed since the reign of D. Afonso III (1245-1279, and celebrated for its bell tower, triangular marble gable with a cross, the 18th century picture window and over the doorway, the cross of the Order of Aviz. The medieval castle in the centre of town stands out for its keep that is 27 metres high, one of the best preserved in the whole country. In 1336, this became the last resting place of Queen Santa Isabel, who died in her chambers there.

In Crato, Mosteiro de Flor da Rosa monastery is one of the most original and intriguing Gothic buildings in the country, now home to a Pousada hotel.

Dating from 1356, this monument consists of three separate structures: the church-fort in the Gothic style, a Gothic castellated palace and convent priories. Meanwhile Crato, influenced in days of yore by the presence of Megalithic shepherds and their habits and culture, also reveals traces of other stories in its dolmens, or antas. As a matter of fact, in this municipality alone over 70 have been documented, most prominent of all being the dolmens found at Anta do Tapadão and Anta do Crato, designated national monuments.

As we come to the end of the Eastern Way, there’s still time to visit Nisa, with its 17th century pillory, which looks today much as it did then; the shrine of Ermida de Nossa Senhora da Graça, famous for its religious procession which takes places every Easter, or the traditional red clay ceramics, pitchers and jars decorated with small white stone flower motifs.

Highest point
495 m
Lowest point
9 m

Track types

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Safety information

Todos os utilizadores dos Caminhos de Santiago Alentejo e Ribatejo devem ter presente o seguinte código de conduta.

  • Não saia do percurso marcado e sinalizado.
  • Não se aproxime de precipícios.
  • Preste atenção às marcações.
  • Não deite lixo orgânico ou inorgânico durante o percurso, leve um saco para esse efeito. Se vir lixo, recolha-o, ajude-nos a manter os Caminhos limpos.
  • Cuidado com o gado, não incomode os animais.
  • Deixe a Natureza intacta. Não recolha plantas, animais ou rochas.
  • Evite fazer ruído.
  • Respeite a propriedade privada, feche portões e cancelas.
  • Não faça lume e tenha cuidado com os cigarros.
  • Não vandalize a sinalização dos Caminhos.

 Em zona de percurso urbano, as marcas de sinalética são de uso exclusivo a pedestres. Outros meios, como a bicicleta, deverão respeitar a sinalização de trânsito.


37.513250, -7.525300
37°30'47.7"N 7°31'31.1"W
29S 630329 4152832
Show on Map


37.513250, -7.525300
37°30'47.7"N 7°31'31.1"W
29S 630329 4152832
Show on Map
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402.3 km
103:45 h
3,614 m
3,638 m
Highest point
495 m
Lowest point
9 m


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  • 19 Stages
Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Alcoutim (Algarve) - Mesquita
Difficulty moderate Stage 1
Distance 4.3 km
Duration 1:20 h
Ascent 127 m
Descent 113 m

Coming from Alcoutim, we navigate the Guadiana river always along the Portuguese margin, following the signs of route GR15, until we reach the ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Mesquita - Mértola
Difficulty moderate Stage 2
Distance 24.4 km
Duration 6:32 h
Ascent 278 m
Descent 370 m

We leave the village within the ancient stone walls that already then led people to Mértola. We enter the protected area of the Natural Park of ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Mértola - Amendoeira da Serra
Difficulty difficult Stage 3
Distance 29 km
Duration 7:30 h
Ascent 394 m
Descent 289 m

In a region where hunting is the dominant activity with centuries of history, as in the entire municipality of Mértola, the wealth of fauna ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Amendoeira da Serra - Cabeça Gorda
Difficulty moderate Stage 4
Distance 23.8 km
Duration 6:04 h
Ascent 196 m
Descent 165 m

The origins of Cabeça Gorda village, by now in the municipality of Beja, are unknown. However, there are historical data showing that its creation ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Cabeça Gorda - Beja
Difficulty easy Stage 5
Distance 15 km
Duration 3:45 h
Ascent 108 m
Descent 9 m

It is a short and relatively flat stage until Beja, the capital of Baixo (Low) Alentejo. This will allow us to dedicate some time to discover its ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Beja - Cuba
Difficulty easy Stage 6
Distance 20.2 km
Duration 4:56 h
Ascent 34 m
Descent 138 m

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Cuba - Alvito - Viana do Alentejo
Map / Cuba - Alvito - Viana do Alentejo
Difficulty difficult Stage 7
Distance 51 km
Duration 12:55 h
Ascent 359 m
Descent 354 m

We began this stage at Rua de Serpa Pinto, next to the statue of Christopher Columbus. At the end of the street, at the roundabout, we follow on ...

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Viana do Alentejo - Évora
Difficulty moderate Stage 8
Distance 40.7 km
Duration 10:05 h
Ascent 235 m
Descent 150 m

There is not enough space here to the describe the many obligatory visits that the fascinating Évora offers us: the Cathedral, the countless ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Évora - São Miguel de Machede
Difficulty moderate Stage 9
Distance 23 km
Duration 5:45 h
Ascent 102 m
Descent 166 m

Évora is one of the cities with the richest historical past in the world. We could stay there, or come back a hundred times and, as Raul Proença ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
S. Miguel de Machede - Evoramonte
Difficulty moderate Stage 10
Distance 22.8 km
Duration 5:44 h
Ascent 212 m
Descent 82 m

The walled perimeter of Evoramonte Castle dates back to the beginning of the 14th century when D. Dinis ordered the town fortification.

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Evoramonte - Estremoz
Difficulty moderate Stage 11
Distance 24.3 km
Duration 6:30 h
Ascent 420 m
Descent 364 m

Until Estremoz we will have another journey of long intimacy with the cork oak and holm oak forest, winding through the dark green of the ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Estremoz - Sousel
Difficulty moderate Stage 12
Distance 20.5 km
Duration 5:08 h
Ascent 79 m
Descent 227 m

A village of great historical interest of the Middle Ages, Sousel is a true municipality with history, the same that helps to explain the origins ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Sousel - Fronteira
Difficulty moderate Stage 13
Distance 17.5 km
Duration 4:23 h
Ascent 109 m
Descent 124 m

On the way to Fronteira, an Alentejo village whose vestiges of human occupation date back to more than 10,000 years ago, we can find other vestiges ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Fronteira - Cabeço de Vide
Difficulty easy Stage 14
Distance 15 km
Duration 3:43 h
Ascent 99 m
Descent 78 m

According to legend, it was at the head ("Cabeço") of a hill that the survivors of the plague that followed a Saracen attack took refuge and, ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Cabeço de Vide - Alter do Chão
Difficulty moderate Stage 15
Distance 14.4 km
Duration 3:44 h
Ascent 185 m
Descent 187 m

On the way to Alter do Chão we pass by Alter Pedroso, which was granted a charter in 1216. The castle was probably erected from that date, possibly ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Alter do Chão - Crato
Difficulty easy Stage 16
Distance 13.4 km
Duration 3:28 h
Ascent 155 m
Descent 158 m

The ancient Ucrate was taken to the Moors in the 12th century and donated to the Order of the Hospitaller Knights of Malta soon after.

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Crato - Alpalhão
Difficulty moderate Stage 17
Distance 19.3 km
Duration 4:51 h
Ascent 134 m
Descent 79 m

This stage begins in the village of Crato, having the Mosteiro de Flor da Rosa as a reference, the most important Portuguese medieval church ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Alpalhão - Nisa
Difficulty easy Stage 18
Distance 14 km
Duration 3:26 h
Ascent 27 m
Descent 50 m

The Açafa estate, where Nisa would be born, was donated to the Order of the Temple by D. Sancho I. Around 1290, D. Dinis ordered the refounding of ...

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Pilgrim trail · Alentejo
Nisa - Vila Velha de Ródão (Center)
Difficulty moderate Stage 19
Distance 19.6 km
Duration 5:21 h
Ascent 259 m
Descent 466 m

The vestiges of the past of Ródão are old, very old, mainly of geological nature, dated about 600 million years. Schist and quartzite rocks, ...

Turismo do Alentejo, ERT
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