Vale Furado – Légua – Vale Furado 9km

Stunning views on the beach and from the cliffs – September 2017

Magnificent beach near Vale Furado


This trail goes over a beautiful beach with stunning cliffs. The beach between Vale Furado and Légua can be very quiet and is perfect for taking very nice pictures. Once in Légua, you can choose either to go back the same way via the beach or via the forest and cliffs above the beach. The latter route contains a couple of less interesting parts, however, the views from the cliffs more towards the end of the trail, are really nice and rewarding. Check the tides in advance, the beach seems to be only accessible with low tide. Overall a trail you will not forget, very well recommended!

An interesting sculpture on the beach near Vale Furado

Description trail

This trail is derived from the Dutch book “Hart van Portugal, 25 wandelingen door Lissabon en de Estremadura, Coimbra en Beira” by Uitgeverij Op lemen voeten. It is said that you can not do this hike at times of high water and/or very stormy weather, so you need to check upfront what the tides and weather are (for the tides see further below in “General/details” for a link where to check).

The beach between Vale Furado and Légua

The start of the route is in Vale Furado where you can park your car at the parking place in front of Dona Praia Café. The hike starts by hiking down the R. Moinhos and via stairs you will reach the beach.

At the time we made our hike, the fog was just disappearing while the sun was getting through which gave the beach a sense of mystery.

Stairs from the beach towards Légua

The hike continues for ~3,5 km on the beautiful beach with the steep cliffs next to it. Via stairs you then go up to the road into Légua. If you want to stop for a drink you just need to go slightly off track by taking the first turn left where you find a simple café, perfect for a drink or an icecream.

Further, back on the trail, you will leave Légua and enter a forest with pine trees. The resin is being captured of many of these trees in order to produce turpentine. Overall, this part of the hike is not the most interesting but is nice for adding variation to it.

The resin from the trees is used for the making of turpentine – Forest near Légua

The route turns a couple of times towards the motorway and stays on it for a while but goes back into the forest again where the path becomes more and more loose sandy and with more lower vegetation instead of trees.

The last couple of kilometres we got slightly lost and could not find the intended trail anymore. In order to enjoy the great views from the cliffs we went on very small paths towards the cliff in the last 1,5 km before Vale Furado (which is not on the gpx track since it didnot follow a regular path).

Stunning views from the cliffs – Vale Furado

Even if you get lost ~ 2 kms before Vale Furado, you will easily be able to get back to the starting point since there is more than 1 possible way to go. However, the gpx track further below may not be completely reliable for the last 2 kilometres but that shouldnot be a problem for you to get back to Vale Furado.

We had a drink in Dona Praia Café where you can sit on the terrace and enjoy taking a rest after a very nice hike.


Overview of the route Vale Furado – Légua – Vale Furado. For the gpx file, see further below.   -> Vale Furado is located between Peniche and Figuera da Foz. If you decide to take the same route back via the beach you will need to take into account ~1,5-2 hours for the total hike.

Start and Finish: Parking lot just below Dona Praia Café in Vale Furado, on R. Do Vale Furado

Type: circular route

Length: 9 km

Difficulty: easy, however, the loose sand makes the trail rather strenuous.

Terrain: mostly (loose) sandpath, height difference ~130 meter.

How to get there? By car: you can park your car on the parking lot just below Dona Praia Café in Vale Furado, on R. Do Vale Furado. Public transport: not recommended, nothing gets close to either Vale Furado or Légua.

Restaurants underway? Yes, at the starting/finish point (Dona Praia Café in Vale Furado) and halfway (Café Ti Abílio Lda in Legua).

Origin of the route: nr12 from the book “Hart van Portugal,
25 wandelingen door Lissabon en de Estremadura, Coimbra en Beira”.


Bergen 18km – Groene Wissel

Nature area with sand dunes, heather, forest and beach – March 2018

A highland cow – Bergen aan Zee


This hike goes through one of my favorite nature areas in the Netherlands, the Schoorlse Duinen. This area is quite extensive and has a lot of variety. It combines sand dunes, which are the highest of the Netherlands, with forest, beach and open heather grounds. The nice village of Bergen lies on the route and is a good place for a lunch stop or a drink on a terrace. Overall we enjoyed this hike very much in the beginning of springtime and we think it is even better in summertime.

Bergen, the old ruin church

Description trail

The hike starts in or close to Bergen, depending on where you park your car or which bus you choose (see general/ details for how to get there). We started just outside the village of Bergen and therefore added the Sparrenlaan to this hike. Originally this is not part of the Groene Wissel hike but definitely worth to go through it. The old Scots pines have become interesting shapes which make this lane very photogenic.

Bergen, Sparrenlaan. Impressive old high Scots pines.

A bit further you enter Bergen, nowadays a touristic spot and often the starting point of hike or bike tours through nature. It is also known for the hub of artists, from painters to writers of poetry. Bergen is claimed to have The Light that enables the creation of beautiful paintings.

In Bergen you pass the old Ruin Church, which was initially built in the 15th century. It was burnt down during the Eighty Years’ War (1568-1648) but later on partially rebuilt.

There are a lot of nice terraces in Bergen so it might be a very good stop for a drink or lunch.

Nature area Schoorlse Duinen

Once you leave Bergen, you enter the pine forest. This forest was planted around 100 years ago. At that time the sand dunes only consisted of very lose sand that was easily controlled by the wind. By planting pine trees and marram grass the dunes became a solid barrier and protection against the sea.

The closer you get to the sea, the more open spaces you will see, with somestimes also heather on it.

Bergen aan Zee beach, horse riding

Almost halfway the trail you enter the beach on which you continue the hike for ~3,5 kms. The beach is quite wide and nice. You will see people letting their dogs but also a lot of horseriders who can go very fast in this big open space. I think this place is very photogenic and therefore a good place to take pictures.

Bergen aan Zee beach, a photogenous place

In the summertime, or often already starting beginning of April, the beach tents are open for a drink or something to eat. We were there end of March and they were still busy rebuilding those tents for the new season.

At the end of the beach the path goes back into the dunes again and you can see the village Bergen aan Zee just on the side of it. There we came across the impressive highland cow which even posed for me.

Me in the pine forest in the Schoorlse Duinen nature area.

The hike then continues through the beautiful Schoorlse Duinen with its open spaces and dunes of lose sand and ends in the pine forest and back at the parking spot.


Overview of the route Bergen 18km – Groene Wissel. For the gpx file please see further below

Start and Finish: Bergen center of the village

Type: circular route

Length: 18 km

Difficulty: easy

Terrain: mostly sandpath, sometimes very lose sand, hills of  25-30 height difference.

How to get there? By car: you can easily park your car in Bergen, at parking place Binenhof, but is expensive and can cost you as much as 1,90 EUR per hour. However, we found a free parking spot on the Eeuwigelaan, just outside Bergen (see map). Public transport: You can also get there by bus, several buses go to Bergen, e.g. nr 6 which comes from Alkmaar, busstop Bergen-Plein.

Restaurants underway? Yes, close to the starting/finish point in Bergen and during april-september also halfway on the beach. Alternatively, you can go slightly off track and find restaurants in Bergen aan Zee, next to the beach.


Noordwijkerhout ~8km

Forest, dunes and beach, 14 february 2018

Noordwijkerhout beach

A nice stroll which starts in a forest and goes via the dunes to the beach. On the beach you can see the skyline of Noordwijk in the distance.

Noordwijkerhout, dunes

During wintertime, no beachclub has opened yet on this route. If you want to go for a drink, the Fletcher Hotel Restaurant “de witte raaf” is located close to the parking lot.

Noordwijkerhout, forest with totem poles

In the forest there are lots of trails and some of these contain interesting totem poles.


Overview hiking trail Noordwijkerhout 8km, see for gpx file further below

Start and Finish: Noordwijkerhout, parking lot “Duindamseslag”.

Type: circular route

Length: 8 km

Difficulty: easy

Terrain: mostly sandpath, flat with some 20m hills

How to get there? By car: you can easily park your car on the parking lot “Duindamseslag”, no fees to be paid. No public transport close by.

Restaurants underway? Yes, close to the starting/finish point. On the beach restaurants are only open during the season ~april until ~october.