Das 7 Fontes
Das 7 Fontes
GPS track – Walking-in-Algarve – Loulé (LLE PR12)
5.5 mi. Moderate 125m Corcitos
Das 7 Fontes walk (LLE PR12) is a 5.5 mile, medium difficult, circular GPS track in the Loulé municipality, through the Serra do Caldeirão mountain range in the Eastern Algarve.
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Das 7 Fontes walk is an official trail, plottend by the Loulé municipality. It runs through an area that holds large amounts of water in the Serra do Caldeirão. The trail starts in the village of Corcitos (pronounce Korkeetoo) and leads you past 7 important traditional water wells.
Along the trail you find hamlets and small villages, but also wild and uncultivated areas. The area offers a range of wild flowers, mosses and fungus. The true paradise for a botanist. The most important of the 7 wells is the ‘Fonte Benemola’ offers as much as 4 million liters of water per hour. It seldom completely dries, not even in the hottest summer. This source is also nominated to be included in the list of natural monuments in Portugal.
The other “donkeys” or traditional water wheels, offer crystal clear water from the natural subterraneous water supplies. Das 7 Fontes walk is a very diversified walk, because it offers almond tree orchards, impressive rock formations, dry-tropical Agave plants, steep rocky paths, glowing tracks under the trees and last but not least: the fertilising Menalva river that gives life to the whole area.
The Fonte Benemola area offers lovely riverside picknick tables at about three quarters of the route. We advise you to bring your lunch, sit still and enjoy. Look at the water and her inhabitants (frogs, snakes, lizards, salamanders, turtles) floating by.
Epilogue for this walk (2019):
The Portuguese government has given a permission for the construction of an 18 holes golf course in this very important ecological area. According to environmental groups, this will retract so much water from the natural sources that it will damage the local ecosystem irreversibly. The area will loose a unique ecosystem. Again, short term economy gains have won from long term, in our opinion, sensible thinking.