Getting to the Summit
The starting point
for the climb of Poios Brancos lies on the main road
that crosses the Estrela National Park
. This road starts at the village of Manteigas
and finds it's way trough the Zezere valley
, where it finally starts a climb up to Torre (1997m)
. When you follow this road (by car is easiest, but it can also be done by bike), at the end of the Zezere valley
(west side) the road makes a sharp corner to the right
(the first corner when the road is gaining elevation
), this is the point you should start. The description sounds a little vague, but since there are no other sharp
corners before it, it simply cannot be missed
. Another easy pinpoint is that in this corner a side road starts (to the south-east) The location
of the starting point for this route can also be seen as point '1' on the map below.
From this point, start by following the road that starts in the corner of the main road. At your right hand you are able to see the summit
of Poios Brancos
at all time. It is as easy as heading towards it. There is no main route leading towards the summit
, since the ascent is not very steep you can find your own way up
. Getting up the hill requires about one to two hours
. From here it is impossible to miss the granite outcrop
that froms the summit block
of Poios Brancos. On top is a white tower-like structure of about 2 meters high
that marks the actual summit
. Scramble your way up the granite summit block (many routes possible), this will take about 5 minutes. Now you have reached the summit: Enjoy the great views!
is the same way back. Since there is no marked route you can find your own route down as well.
Serra da Estrela Map
Maps and Practical Information
When you go hiking in Serra da Estrela
it is very recommended that you are in the posession of a good topographical map
of the area. The tourist information centres
offer a good map:
1:50.000 Carta Turistica Serra da Estrela
Other options are:
-->1:50,000 Gouveia 17D,
-->Guarda 18C and/or Covilha 20C maps,
-->1:10,000 Viseu Fl17, Guarda Fl18, Covilha fl20,
-->1:200,000 Beiras Fl14 maps.
These are available from the Instituto Geografico e Cadastral
in Lisbon or
regional offices in Porto, Castelo Branco and Coimbra.
Manteigas: Starting Point
is the village closest to Torre. It is possible to visit this nice town to eat or drink something, or to spend the night.
Some info on Manteigas:
It is located inside the Estrela Park and therefore closer to the mountains. It is located at an altitude of 700 meters at the end of the famous Zezere
valley, which is an ancient glacial valley
. From this mountain town you have great views over the Estrela mountains. Especially the view towards Poios Brancos
and the mighty Cantaro Magro
The history of Manteigas dates from the pre-Christian era, but its first charter was granted in 1188
by King Sancho I. Obvious Typical shepherds jackets, wood carvings, tin work, sheep-skin items and granite carving are also among handicrafts that are a reflection of the past. Other flavours from the past and the mountains can be savoured in the roast kid, mountain style stew, bean stew trout, smoked sausages, whey cheese, Serra cheese, milk cakes and Crista cakes, "cavacas" (a kind of hard, sweet cake or biscuit) and "queijadas" (a type of cheese-cake).
Although somewhat further away: Seia and Covilha
are also good destinations when planning a trip to Torre.
How to get there
Access Map Portugal
The main access routes by car are: (See Map at left)