Recent construction of an eco pista footpath system on both sides of the river offer lovely peaceful wanderings through the pastoral landscape and small hamlets between Cerveira, Valença, Monção and beyond.
The same footpath is used for the Portugues coastal Camino de Santiago from Viana do Castelo which then aligns with the river after the town of Caminha, following delightful lanes along the ancient route offering wonderful sea views and over the river to Spain.
Also close to Caminha on higher moorland is the Serra d'Aga, a wilder landscape with goats and horses wandering free.
The Peneda Geres National Park is about an hours drive. Here you'll witness local farmers and people attending a way of life easily recognisable from centuries ago.
As well, the locality has a number of old small villages and towns of some interest. Historical Tuy in Spain
has a notable cathedral and is on the central Portuguese Camino de Santiago>as is Valença
just across the river with it's magnificient castle and walled town.
Viana do Castelo on the Portuguese coast has some fine architecture dating from the 15th cantaury and featured in Portugals first voyages of discovery.
All of these are about 30 mins drive and further afield one can discover Vigo, Baiona (Spain), Monção, Ponte da Lima and Braga (Portugal).
Upon a hill top above A Guarda is one of the biggest intact Celtic villages in Europe, testimony to this regions protected nature on the Atlantic extremity of Europe.
Generally speaking the area is very rural with many small family farms and vineyards.The famous Albarinho grape grows all along the hillsides of the Rio Minho and there are numerous boutique wineries hosting tourism and tasting during the summer. Abundant fine seafood is available everywhere with the Galician octopus, Portuguese bacalhau (cod) and lamprey eel being specialities.
The little Spanish fishing port of A Guarda near the mouth of the river has many good seafood restaurants.
During the summer there are numerous octopus and sardine festivals around the region along with fairs and markets of all kinds where local sausage, hams, cheese, breads, cakes, preserves and honey are displayed. At these events you're likely to hear traditional music featuring the Galician Gaita bagpipe.
The local beaches Caminha
(12km away), Moledo
(22km) (Portuguese Atlantic coast), and A Guarda
(45km) (Spain)are known for surf activities and competions and from Cerveira it's possible to rent canoes, kayaks and bicycles to further explore the riverside where otters, heron and raptors are commonly seen.
Higher cultural events can be discovered between Viana do Castelo
. Once you've sampled the area I think you'll agree it's an undiscovered gem of the Iberian NW.Valenca
- Ponte de Lima
- Serra D'Arga