Peneda-Gerês National Park

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The Peneda-Gerês National Park (Portuguese: Parque Nacional da Peneda-Gerês) is the oldest and biggest national park in Portugal and is located in the Viana do Castelo, Braga, and Vila Real Districts. It was created on 8 May 1971 due to its national and international scientific interest, with the aim to protect the soil, water, flora, fauna, and landscape, while preserving its value to the existent human and natural resources. Education and tourism are also goals of the park.

Getting there

Peneda-Gerês National Park is easily reached from Porto. Though public transport is possible, it’s not the ideal way to reach Peneda-Gerês National park since many sights are difficult or inaccessible without your own transportation or private transfer. 

From Porto

Duration: 1 hour and 15 minutes by car 

Driving or going by private transfer is the best and most convenient way to reach Peneda-Gerês National Park. The quickest route is on the A3 Highway, where you’ll stay for the majority of the 66-mile (107 km) journey. You’ll cross the Cávado River before merging onto the IC28 Highway. As you near the National Park, you’ll cross over the Limia River and drive alongside the river for several kilometers. This route has tolls.

When to visit

In winter the highland temperatures average about 39ºF (4ºC) and snow is common; river valleys average perhaps 46ºF (8ºC). In summer the highlands average 57ºF (14ºC) and the river valleys 68ºF (20ºC). Rain is a strong possibility, especially in the highlands, where it rains 130 days a year.


Park website


Park size

703 km²

Park founded


Useful links

Casa da Calçada (Amarante)


Map of Peneda-Gerês National Park

Image gallery of Peneda-Gerês National Park

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Sights in Peneda-Gerês National Park

Some national parks contain more than just natural wonders. This list shows you some of the sights that are located in the national park. This includes museums, cathedrals, bridges, dams and much more.

Visitor/Information centres in Peneda-Gerês National Park

Most national parks have an associated visitor centre to help visitors. They are usually open most of the year but some close in the off-season. You will often be able to find information on all the activities in the national park. A visit to the visitor centre is often recommended before venturing into the park.

Hiking trails in Peneda-Gerês National Park

Almost all national parks have some opportunities for hiking. You can see some of the more popular trails here. You should get local information for detailed information on all trails of the national park.

Wildlife in Peneda-Gerês National Park

These sections shows you some of the characteristic wildlife to the national park.

Bears in Peneda-Gerês National Park

Bears in Peneda-Gerês National Park

Few bears in the park

This national park has bears and you need to take the necessary precautions. It is however unlikely that you will come across a bear.