Portugal: Big Adventures in a Small Country

Amongst all the perks of visiting Portugal, one of them is surely the fact that it's a small country. With only 800 kms long you can wake up in the northern mountains, have lunch in the plains at central region and enjoy the sunset at a beach in the south. But if you're looking for some action and adventure you also have a considerable amount of options. Just choose your scenario, your favourite element and go for it.

Hiking in Geres
Peneda-Gerês is the only National Park in Portugal and one of the most beautiful regions in the country. The woods are made of a heavy green all year round. There is a considerable amount of marked hiking trails that lead you right to the heart of the forest where you can feel the immense power of nature.

Trekking in Serra da Estrela
One of the few regions where the snow falls in winter, Estrela is the highest mountain in mainland Portugal. A place of many legends and mysteries, it is mentioned in the classic book Moby Dick as having a lake on top where shipwrecks emerge. Embarking on a few days trekking in this Natural Park means a deep connection to the earth, the silence and beauty. With more than 300 kms of marked trails, there are many options you can choose from according to your fitness level.

Paragliding in Serra de S. Mamede
Castelo de Vide hosts one of the biggest international paraglide events in the country, the Open XC. With excellent conditions for all levels of experience, you can give it a try and dive into Alentejo plains from the top of Senhora da Penha. The view from there is unique and is worth admiring. If at last minute you get cold feet, just let go and trust the wind.

Surfing in Ericeira
A small fisherman's village, one of the best places in Lisbon region to try delicious Portuguese seafood and a very popular surf spot. It doesn't matter if you are an experienced and well-equipped surfer, if you're taking your first steps or if you're just curious about this sport. The surf schools and surf camps will help you with whatever you might need to truly connect with the ocean and the waves.

Rock climbing in Sagres
Put on your harness, secure your knot and keep stick to the rock. Sagres, in the southern region of Algarve has a few of the most beautiful climbing spots. With cliffs along the coastline, well marked and fully equipped this is the perfect spot to experience all the elements at once: the wind, the sun, the earth and the ocean.

Silvia is an awarded writer and a traveller with more than 15 years experience. Although her journeys have been taking her a bit everywhere in the world, Lisbon is her hometown, is the city where she always returns to unveil and write about its never ending wonders.

More from this author:
Why is Lisbon the Best City to Have your Flight Delayed?
Sesimbra: A Paradise for a Hot Summer Day in Portugal
Best Places for Freelancers to Work in Lisbon