What to do in the region

☼    Idanha-a-Velha

☼    Monsanto

☼    Penha Garcia

☼    Proença-a-Velha

☼    Idanha-a-Nova:

- Nossa Senhora do Almortão Sanctuary

- Saturday Alleluia

- Paschal Tradition

- Restaurant Helana

☼    Castelo Branco

- Barrocal Natural Park

- Swimming Pool Beach

- Cargaleiro Museum

- Francisco Tavares Proença Júnior Museum

- Museum of Sacred Art

- Contemporary Culture Centre

☼    Historic Village of Castelo Novo

☼    Gardunha Mountain

Live the region, be from the land

Festivities, Pilgrimages and Handicrafts

Gastronomy and Regional Products

Walking Trails and Tagus International

Festivities, Pilgrimages and Handicrafts

Idanha is known for its traditional festivals and secular pilgrimages, we highlight the Nossa Senhora do Almortão Pilgrimage, the Cruzes Festival, the Santa Catarina de Sena Pilgrimage and, of course, the many Easter celebrations. Easter is celebrated here as in few other places in the world, from night or day processions, large religious festivals, in a mixture of rituals and popular songs. Traditions such as the December wood burning in front of the churches in each village while the people sing the popular Christmas carols, and the Holy Ghost Festivities are something not to be missed. In all these celebrations you can't miss the adufe, a kind of tambourine or drum made of wood and with animal skin that is played at the top of a adufeira hand dance. 

It is also a tradition in Idanha-a-Nova to hold the Boom Festival, an international music and culture festival that has been distinguished several times for its sustainability practices.

Gastronomy and Regional Products

Gastronomy is another of the strong points of this region, with simple dishes that bring with them the millenary taste of past generations. We highlight the Sopa da matança (slaughter soup), lamb stew, wild boar stew, wild boar shank, hare rice, oven-roasted lamb, a panoply of sausages, chorizos, black pudding and buchos, goat or sheep's cheese and wild asparagus. Not forgetting that you can still easily enjoy these delicacies cooked slowly in wood ovens or iron pots. The famous borrachões, these typical dry cakes, are served at breakfast at Casa das Jardas making the delights of our guests.

Walking Trails and Tagus International

The pedestrian trails show the best of the municipality's nature, heritage, culture and history. There are many trails to explore. The trails which are best known as great routes are: GR12-E7 - Rota da Idanha; GR 22 - Rota das Aldeias Históricas; GR 29 IDN - Rota dos Veados; Rota Via da Estrela. Of the small routes we have: PR 1 IDN - Rota dos Abutres; PR 3 IDN - Rota dos Fósseis; PR 4 IDN - Rota das Minas; PR 5 IDN - Rota dos Barrocais e PR 8 IDN - Rota do Boieco, among others.

The International Tagus Natural Park covers an area where the Tagus River forms the border between Portugal and Spain. The Portuguese area covers a total of 26 848 hectares in the municipalities of Castelo Branco, Idanha a nova, Vila Velha de Rodão and Nisa. The site was declared a transboundary biosphere reserve by UNESCO in 2016.

3 Days, 3 Memorable Experiences

Itinerary for 1 day

We invite you to start your tour in this region with a stop at the monumental historical village of Monsanto or, if you prefer, with a walk through the Rota dos Barrocais - a small 4,5 km route through the traditional and urban paths of the "Most Portuguese Village of Portugal" - Monsanto. Then, be sure to visit the historical village of Idanha-a-Velha, where you can visit the Cathedral, the Lagar de Varas and the Epigraphic Museum.

About 20 minutes away from Idanha-a-Velha is Idanha-a-Nova, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that you must visit.

If possible schedule your visit to Idanha-a-Nova for Easter time to experience the Alleluia Saturday, a unique and enchanting religious moment. Or if you prefer something completely different choose the end of July to visit the Boom Festival.

Itinerary for 2 days

Accept our invitation to take a journey between castles and fortresses and make your imagination come true. Walk through the Rota dos Templários and feel part of history. This journey will pass through a total of 9 temples between Castelo Branco, Vila Velha de Ródão, Idanha-a-Nova and Penamacor. Some of these have their roots in prehistory (as is the case of Monsanto and Penamacor), or in the Roman occupation period (Idanha-a-Velha).

Itinerary for 3 days

Visit the Natural Reserve of Serra da Malcata considered one of the last natural refuges of the Portuguese territory, passing through the historical/cultural heritage of Penamacor. The afternoon starts with a walk through the streets of Monsanto up to the Castle, followed by a visit to the Ichnological Complex of Penha Garcia. On the next day, the itinerary starts in Castelo Branco at Cargaleiro Museum. This is followed by a visit to the Episcopal Palace Garden, where the various granite figures and the monumental staircase with the 4th dynasty of Portuguese monarchs up to D. José I stand out. After lunch, a boat tour departing from the quay of Vila Velha de Ródão on the quiet waters of the Tagus River, passing by the Portas de Ródão Natural Monument. You will have the chance to observe the largest colony of griffon vultures in Portugal, as well as other important bird species and wild fauna of this region. On the third day, already in the municipality of Proença-a-Nova, you will have the opportunity to go through history in the landscape, getting to know some of the megalithic monuments of the county: the biggest dolmen of the district is located in this territory. You can also relax in Estância Termal de Monfortinho, one of the oldest thermal springs of the country.