The Nautical Centre near Monsaraz, Alentejo, Portugal lies amidst the vast network of lakes in the region which borders Spain’s Extremadura. It is a great place to visit and take a ride on a boat for a few hours to see the extent and majesty of the lakes.
Nearby Monsaraz acts as a base for visitors to the lakes and is a lovely little walled town with cafés, bars, restaurants and plenty of museums and galleries to keep you occupied after your jaunt on the water.
Lake cruises from the Nautical Centre are run by Alqueva Cruzeiro between the hours of 10am and 6pm on Saturdays, Sundays and during the holidays, while at other times they are open between 10am and 4pm.
Prices for a cruise vary, starting at 6 euros for 30 minutes, 10 euros for an hour and 15 euros for 90 minutes. All trips must have a minimum of three passengers.
Having seen the lakes from the Mourão and Monsaraz I reckon 90 minutes on the boat will give you plenty to see. After your trip around the lakes you can explore the inlets, or stop off for a picnic at the little table near the jetty.
You can find get more information about the lake trips from Alqueva Cruzeiro’s website:
Or email them: email@example.com
Other activities around the lakes include fishing (something we don’t have anything to do with) and kayaking trips are often arranged by other groups. While at a café in Monsaraz we were invited to join an activity group for some canoeing but unfortunately couldn’t make it (otherwise I’d have written about it by now).
The area around Monsaraz is quite spectacular and full of great things to see, such at the castle at Mourão, the town itself and for the campervanners out there there’s a great wild camp right on the lake with views of nearby Monsaraz.
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