If you have taken a day to visit the sanctuary of Fatima, your legs will be like new and you will find yourself feeling like walking. If you are one of those who did not stop, it is possible that today you feel something more sensitive in your joints, due to the first climbs of the day yesterday. Anyway, we hope you enjoyed the city of the Temple Order because today we have another long stage.
The seventh stage of theCamino de Santiago in Portugal is rich in landscapes. The journey begins with a beautiful trail that runs along the River Nabão, in the shade of a lush Riberano forest. Then it goes across fields dotted with oaks, pines and olives, as well as orchards and fruit trees.
Along the more than thirty kilometres that make up the stage today, we will walk along Roman roads, medieval bridges, charming tracks and, unfortunately, some long stretches of asphalt.
Itinerary Tomar - Alvaiázere
Today's stage is demanding. Not only is it a fairly long stage, slightly more than 30 kilometres, but its layout runs through continuous climbs and descents.
Tomar (Km. 0). Beginning of stage
Practical tips for this section: If you make the Camino Portugues by bike, when you reach the fork of the exit take, you must opt for the urban alternative. The path that runs along the river is one of the few sections on the Camino de Santiago, in its passage through Portugal, which is not suitable for bicycles. Buen Camino!
We abandon Tomar, the beautiful city of the Order of the Temple, by the Rua de Serpa Pinto. We cross a bridge over the river and continue ahead 50 metres to turn left onto Rua do Centro Republicano, which transforms into Rua Fabrica da Fiação.
300 metres later we reach a point where we can choose two options to leave the city. A yellow arrow with a sun drawn indicates the recommended route if the days are sunny. This itinerary follows a nice trail by the river.
Another arrow, with a cloud dropping rain, indicates the alternate path in case of bad weather. It runs along the asphalt of the urban area. The distance is the same for both options, which are joined after two kilometres, just before the medieval bridge of Peniche.
If we take the option that goes by the river (sunny day), we continue straight and continue along a sidewalk that advances parallel to a canal, and then turn onto a dirt track and later on a narrow path. The trail runs along the banks of the River Nabão, surrounded by a thick riverside forest.
800 metres later we begin an ascent among olive trees, which leads us to a dirt track. Follow the path to the left, to reach the bridge in Peniche, where the two itineraries converge.
If the day is rainy and we opt for the urban layout, turn right on Avenida Dr. Egas Moniz, in ascent. At the end of the avenue, turn left on Rua António Duarte Faustino and continue along Rua Principal de Choromela to reach the neighborhood of Casal dos Frandes.
Next to the military barracks we take Rua Coronel Júlio Araújo and, quickly, turn right on Rua Ponte de Peniche. This street becomes a dirt track that, after 600 metres, leads to the medieval bridge of Peniche, where both itineraries are located.
Puente Medieval de Peniche (Km. 3,2)
Practical tips for this section: Throughout this section, you will pass through small localities that have services. In Casais you will find a small café and in Calvinos there is a bar-shop. Buen Camino!
At 200 metres from the bridge, we cross under the viaduct of the motorway and begin a descent that takes us back to the riverbank. Passing by an abandoned house, we make a pronounced ascent, towards an electric tower.
The pilgrim path runs between olive and pine fields. When we get to the road, we take a right turn. A few kilometres later, we arrive at the first locality of today's stage: Casais (km. 7.6).
From this locality, we continue, by asphalt, towards Soianta. After a slope, we arrive at Calvinos (km. 11). From here, we continue in descent, always on asphalt, to the village of Chão das Eiras. After several crossroads, we enter Ponte da Ceras (km 14).
Ponte da Ceras (Km. 14)
Practical tips for this section: At the end of this stage, 200 metres from the crossroads where both routes converge, we will find the Tojal petrol station. The path does not pass exactly through the petrol station, but if you want to make a stop, this is a good place, since in Cortiá there are no services. At the petrol station you will find a mini-shop and a restaurant nearby. Buen Camino!
In this locality, the arrows oblige us to cross the national road N-110. This crossing is quite dangerous because it is made on a curve without visibility and with a tiny hard shoulder. The best thing is to go back a little and cross a bit earlier before the curve so that we have enough visibility and we can cross the roadway safely.
After the dangerous crossroads, we head to Escoural, where there is a huge covered laundry. For a few metres, we will find ourselves walking on a stretch of the Estrada Romana, belonging to the old carriageway.
Turn right, onto Rua das Azenhas. The street soon becomes a dirt track. After passing some houses, we arrive at Rua de Espanha and continue along Estrada das Galegas, Rua do Casal dos Grilos and we return to the dirt track.
We continue along the track to a fork with two wooden poles (km. 20.7). In each one there is a blue tile with a yellow scallop and each one indicates opposite directions. The deviation is confusing because, according to the signs, you can take one direction or another indistinctly.
You can choose heads or tails. Or if you are in a group, you can separate to see who arrives first at the meeting point. In our opinion, the deviation from the left is the most direct. It starts with a slight descent, passes behind the Church of Pereiro, crosses a beautiful cork oak forest and arrives again on the road N-110, which we take to the right.
Both routes converge at a crossroads (km. 22.4). At this one, we turn left, by the road N-348, towards Alvaiazere. On the roadside, we reach Cortiça.
Cortiça (Km. 25,7)
Practical tips for this stretch: For the next few kilometres, until you reach today's destination, you won't find any services. Make sure you have enough water. Buen Camino!
In this locality, the arrows indicate that we continue to the right, always on the asphalt. 700 metres later, we deviate by a cobblestone road in the direction of Outerinho. Following the indications of the arrows, we weave along cobbled streets and protected properties with stone walls.
The Pilgrim's Way passes in front of the house of La Casa de Esquina where a dear lady offers water to the pilgrims. Continuing the route, we enter the locality of Alvaiazere, although, from the entrance to the town to the city centre, we still have to go one kilometre more along pavements.
Alvaiázere (Km. 31). End of stage
Practical tips for this section: The Pinheiro Hostel has one of the most original stamps on the Camino Portugues. Its seal combines hot sealing with embossed stamping, handmade.
Even if you are not staying at this hostel, we recommend that you pass by and kindly ask the owner if you can stamp your credential. See you tomorrow!
After today's long stage of and yesterday's intensity, whether you only visited Tomar, or if you took a day to visit the Sanctuary of Fatima, Alvaiazere is a perfect town to rest, both walking and sightseeing.
The locality does not have many places of interest. If you want to walk in the town, you can get close to the Chapel of the Lady of Fetal, the Capelinha da Memoria or the Municipal Museum.
It is worth paying attention to the strange emblem of the town. It depicts a sword crossed by a Saracen cutlass and on both, a flax flower.
Comments Tomar - Alvaiázere
To complete today's stage without any alarms, you will need to consider the following recommendations:
Precautions stage Tomar - Alvaiázere
Today's stage has few intermediate services, so it's important to be cautious and to stock up on enough water before you leave.
Today's tour is quite long and, for those who are not accustomed to long ascents, it can be hard work on the legs. However, the stage can be completed without any problems, by people in any physical condition, cyclists and people with reduced mobility.
In the part of the stage that runs along the river, we recommend the use of insect repellent, especially in summer periods.
Gastronomy stage Tomar - Alvaiázere
For today's stage we recommend the following regional dishes.
Peas. Alvaiazere is the capital of the pea, a type of pulse.
Feijão with Cogumelos ( Beans with Mushrooms)
Feijão Tronpeiro ( Beans with Sausage and Greens)
Feijoada á portuguesa (Portuguese Bean Stew)
Peas with fried Sardines
Meat from Alguidar
What to do Tomar - Alvaiázere
Today's stage does not give us many points of interest. Below we give you details on the few points that will come across your path at this stage.
Bridge of Peniche
The bridge of Peniche is a medieval bridge located in the municipality of Tomar. The bridge consists of two pointed arches and has lateral protections made of limestone, as a buttress.
According to the documents available, the bridge was part of the old road that, during the 16th century, connected Tomar with Coimbra.
Alvaiazere is a Parish of the municipality that bears the same name, belonging to the district of Leiria. The locality has more than 1,800 inhabitants and occupies an area of 32 square kilometres.
The town represents the typical charm of the villages of the Portuguese interior. On its narrow streets, we will find beautiful white farmhouses, manor estates and old noble houses.
The name of the locality, as well as that of the municipality, comes from the Arabs. In fact, when they invaded the Iberian Peninsula in 711, they also seized this locality, which they baptized as Al-Bai-Zir or Alva-Varze.
However, some scholars of toponymy point out that the name comes from the Arabic term Al-Baiaz, which means "Falconer".
In the locality, we can visit the Chapel da Senhora do Fetal, the Capelinha da Memory and the Municipal Museum.
The Municipal Museum of Alvaiazere is intended to disseminate the customs and traditions of the city. The space has a permanent exhibition of traditional crafts. The temporary exhibitions focus on archaeological aspects, from the Paleolithic to the Middle Ages.
Timetable: Closes on Mondays. From Tuesday to Sunday (from 9:30 to 18:00).