SO MANY MILES TO WANDER
I try to get to know more about my country, not only about Lisbon where I live and where there is so much to discover but also about the rest of this small and beautiful country. Not far from Lisbon, about one hour by car, I found out a boat trip on Tagus River, with Rio-A-Dentro (translating it means something like into the river) and decided to do it and learn more about this part of the river.
Drive from Lisbon, (forget about public transport) towards to Escaroupim, a small village, one of the Avieiras villages that can be found at Tagus river. These villages are known for the wooden and colorful houses, and also for the stilt fishing ports (check my post: A port of stilt fishing). The fishermen from a place called Beach of Vieira, used to move to this part of Tagus river during winter time looking for better weather conditions. Also, here they would find more abundance of fish.
Next to the pier at Escaroupim there are some tables and benches, so bring some food and drinks and have a peaceful picnic next to the river, before you start your boat trip.
The trip started at pier of Escaroupim, on one of the boats of Rio-A-Dentro, a quiet boat since it is electric, so no noise and no pollution. This way you can only listen to the sounds of nature. Waiting for me was Rui and Luis, the two brothers to whom Rio-A-Dentro belongs to. Rui was the captain that took me into the river. For the bird enthusiasts there are bird watching tours.
Just in front of the pier we can see Island of Herons. Here, at the end of the day, it’s possible to observe different kind of birds arriving to the island to spend the night. Birds such as: Cattle Egrets, Glossy Ibis and Cormorants, among others.
We go ahead towards Valada, a village where till some years ago was still possible to see Frigates and Varinos full of goods heading to Lisbon. Varino is an ancient vessel cargo transportation, iconic in the Tagus River; nowadays these vessels are used for leisure.
Time for a swim, we head to an island that will disappear in a short time, we stop the boat and we jumped out in our swim suits. And don’t be lazy, depending the tide we might not have a lot of time on the island, since it will disappear with the incoming tide.
Approaching the Island of Horses, we see beautiful brown ones, the much known Lusitano horses. Keep your eyes open, because not far away we will pass Palhota’s village, a typical stilt village Avieira.
We will continue our zigzag through the river, observing birds, fish jumping in the water, some fishermen on the river bank, families at a picnic or at a secluded beach.
And to finish this nature trip, enjoy a beautiful sunset.