Day 2 on the Rota Vicentina
The Fisherman’s Trail
Praia de Monte Clerigo to Arrifana 13 km/7 miles
I woke up before everyone else on our second walking day. (It’s always an advantage not to have jet lag.)
We didn’t need to get an early start because we were only a covering 7 miles to the next town: Arrifana.
So I wandered out around the little village under the pink sky before everyone got up.
The sun was creeping up high by the time we all headed off. The trail goes right up behind the village. We were all carrying a few snacks, but we didn’t have breakfast at our apartment and there weren’t any open cafes in the village so just headed out and hoped we would see something along the way.
Even on empty stomachs, we started out in awe once again of all the beauty surrounding us.
I particularly enjoyed seeing all the different flowers that were in bloom this time around.
And again, we walked under clear blue skies.
When I first heard about the Rota Vicentina, somewhere I read that it’s probably not the trail for you if you’re prone to vertigo. I have a healthy fear of heights (as I’ve mentioned before), so I keep well away from the edges of the cliffs.
But I walked this time with people who have no such fear. I felt like these gals dangled way too near the edge all week. But thankfully we didn’t lose anyone. And they kept reassuring me that it always looked worse from wherever I happened to be standing.
We also saw several folks fishing here and there along the Fisherman’s Trail. They always had these long poles with super long lines that went all the way out from the cliffs. It seemed like such a wild way to fish.
Stork season was in full swing during March, so we spotted a lot of stork nests on the rocks below us.
Mid-morning, we stopped and hung out in the sun for a little while and shared whatever snacks we had between us.
Then we finally rolled into Arrifana around lunch time, which we were all ready for!
Arrifana is a surfing hub with very fun vibes. We had lunch at the “Sea You Cafe,” which was super yummy. Acai bowls and salads and such.
Then we made our way to the beach for a swim and an afternoon nap in the sun.
It was hard to pull myself away from the beach, but we finally made a move to go check into where we were staying, a place called the Utopia Guest House.
I knew that it was up the road a little bit, but actually it was up the road quite a bit more than I realized.
We discovered this because Kristie headed off ahead of us, ready for a shower and a break from the sun, so she was texting us updates to let us know how far we still had to go. It ended up being about a 40 minute walk, but at a time of day when 40 minutes feels like 2 hours.
So we stopped for a cold drink and a snack on our way at a little pizza spot.
We loved the place so much that we ended up coming back there for dinner. Thankfully it was really close to our guest house, which we finally reached late in the afternoon.
They had a pool and great places to sit outside so we soaked up the last few rays of sun before we got chilly and headed inside.
You can take surfing lessons in Arrifana, so lots of folks come here to learn to surf, but there were also several other walkers staying at the Utopia Guest House. It was our first time to run into other walkers. The Rota Vicentina is not at all busy.
Even though it’s a bit of a haul from Arrifana, we loved the airy feel of this guest house.
It’s very earthy. They did a great breakfast, and they have the whole place decorated thoughtfully with stuff that has washed up from the sea.
We got cleaned up and headed back to the pizza place for dinner, which was delicious.
The sky turned pink while we were sitting at dinner. Another great day in Portugal!
These are the faces of some folks who are about to sleep well after a sun-soaked day.