This time we are in Penha Garcia. Una Penha García is a Portuguese parish of the council of Idanha-a-Nova and, in turn, belonging to the district of Castelo Branco. To reference it in front of Spain, we can say that it is, horizontally, after the Sierra de Gata.
It is a small town that does not go unnoticed. If you enter Portugal from Coria you see it built on the side of some rocks. And getting into it is really nice. It is a very quiet rural world.
Today’s route, PR 3 IDN Rota dos Fosseis, is really beautiful and sees the best of Penha García. But it is a walk of just 3 km. It is located within the framework of the Naturtejo Geopark that aims to promote tourism. The route is perfectly signposted. It leaves from the center of Penha García, although we have left from our accommodation, Casal da Serra and we have joined the PR on the descent to the dam.
The first thing we see is, coming down from the esplanade of the castle, the entrance to the Guta da Lapa, then we continue on through the climbing area. They have several points used by the Penha García Climbing School. On this path, if you look closely you can see Fossils. To be exact, it is rather the field of Ichnology, which is a discipline that studies the traces or signs of activity left in sediments or rocks by living organisms. And although the route is that of the fossils, it is really the Penha García Ichnological Park, where the crucians stand out, that is, the tracks that trilobites traced on the seabed hundreds of millions of years ago.
We arrive at the Barragem de Penha García, the dam built on the Ponsul River and just before its gorge. We go down the other side of the river where we can see the huts of the water mills where the cereal was ground and also in one of them we see and they explain to us how these crucian fossils were formed. All very interesting.
At the end, we follow the path that takes us to the Praia Fluvial de Penha García, decorated by the Fonte do Pego, a waterfall due to the previous detour that has been made to the Ponsul River.
After enjoying and refreshing. We continue PR ahead and we go up to the Castle of Penha García, dating from medieval times, specifically at the time of the Christian Reconquest of the Iberian Peninsula, it is supposed that it was started by D. Sancho I, within the fortification policy that he developed in Beira, faced with the threats posed by the Kingdom of León to the East, and the Muslims, the South.
And from the castle we close the route returning to our accommodation.
Max elevation: 590 m
Total climbing: 205 m
Total time: 01:58:04