Day 4 - Rota Vicentina to Odeceixe

The stretch of walking from Zambujeira do Mar to Odeceixe has been the best of  four excellent days of cliff top walking. The only slight downer was the final 3km road walk into Odeceixe but this was a small price to pay for what was otherwise a great walk.
Leaving Zambujeira do Mar

The walk is 18km long and with some sandy stretches to slow progress will take at least 6 hours. There is a refreshment diversion offered to the village of Brejão (4km round trip) but a better option is to ignore it and continue to Azenha do Mar where there is a truly excellent fish restaurant. If you're going to have just one midday meal on the trip have it here, but beware the portions are enormous.
Another man fisherman

The walk had many memorable stretches. A lot more beautiful beaches and some more crazy fishermen perched on locations so remote must surely need the tide to retreat before returning to a safer placed.
Nesting stork

There was one secluded beach, empty in March but probably a busy place later in the year, but so pretty that Christine insisted on going for a swim.  A couple of local Portuguese was totally bemused but Christine claimed that it was no colder than the North Sea in the summer, although of course not everyone would regard this as a recommendation.
A mad English woman swimming in March

Generally speaking, today's trail was just a little bit more ambitious than yesterday's and spent much of its time right on the cliff edge where the views down into the crashing waves and along the coast were excellent.  

The final remains of a fisherman
Perhaps the best view was the last one on what I would regard as the Fisherman's Trail proper. From high on the cliffs just before the descent down into the Seixe Valley you get to see the river emerging meandering from the valley, from behind a sandbank and into sea, magic.  Apparently the area immediately around the river is one few remaining seaside habitats for otters in Europe, if so, they have chosen a great place to make a last stand.

The best view so far

After such a great walk it was a shame to have to walk along a road to Odeceixe and like the river the road followed a meandering route. Odeceixe also felt just a little tired as a place with a distinct off-season feel about it.  We stayed in rooms at the Hospedera Firmina Bernardino and the room and a local restaurant, the only one open, were very cold. After 4 days of unbroken sun the weather lucky streak came to an end in Odeceixe and it started to rain.

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