the village of Fafião it is not explained. It is one of those villages in which the wonderful Gerês is abundant, where the traditions of yesteryear are beginning to be rediscovered and valued.
Softly located in the parish of Cabril, in Montalegre, tourism has been finding the antidote to the unstoppable desertification that, in recent decades, has left these mute villages between abandoned fields and stubborn granite that does not bend.
Fafião is a community village, where you can enjoy Nature in its pure state, listen to its many stories and legends, enjoy the wonderful river and wander through lakes and wells, well “hidden in the heart” of Fafião.
Oh, and know that this is the best time (between May and September) to visit this land, in order to avoid the rain and fog that are characteristic of the remaining months of the year.
Fafião: guardian of the community spirit of Gerês
A clear reflection of the community spirit that animated the village of Fafião, the fojo dos wolves is still very visible and refers to what ended up becoming one of the local symbols.
If, currently, the Iberian wolf is a protected species, in the past it was seen as a threat to populations, especially due to attacks on the herds that shepherds guided in transhumance through Gerês.
The wall of the fojo served to hunt the wolf, cornering it in order to prevent escape. The structure is made up of two high walls that go down a slope full of vegetation. The goal was for the wolves to fall into the pit that existed there, 3 meters deep! The end of the story is what one can guess.
The truth is that this is a practice that has long since been abandoned, but there it remains in the fojo, an important historical landmark and one of the best preserved in the entire Iberian Peninsula.
Currently, the wolf is the ex-libris of the village, even having a festival in its honor. Therefore, combining rest with exploring nature in the wild is the great challenge for anyone visiting Fafião. Explore the cascades (holes) and, of course, the river and lagoons (wells). Follow our suggestions.
Speaking of wells, let’s now talk about the green well, which is actually a lake in the Toco river valley. Its name is due to the greenish tones of its crystalline waters, when they receive full sunlight.
To reach this place, you have to follow a trail of about 2.5kms. When diving in the river, get ready to live side by side with the bogas, the scales and, mainly, the trout.
Another of the village’s ex-libris is, at the same time, one of the largest tributaries of the river Cávado, measuring around 12 kilometers in length. Along its course, the Fafião river is accompanied by unique landscapes, verdant, mountainous, with leafy forests and fluvial beaches with fine white sand.
The river “ends” in the area known as “As Dornas”, mixing with the waters of the river Cávado, equally clear and verdant.
Cávado river viewpoint
In Fafião, you will also find a viewpoint overlooking the river Cávado, located on the road that connects the village to the Salamonde Dam. From here, you can not only have an incredible view of the Cávado River, but also of the mountains and all the surrounding vegetation.
We have already mentioned that the village is also known for its ponds or wells, namely the Pote Pigarreira (or Poços de Fafião) ponds. They are 1.5 kilometers from the town, connecting the village to Cascata de Tahiti, in Vilar da Veiga.
Access is easy and they are one of the most incredible natural pools in which you can dive.
If you are a fan of sweeping landscapes, know that there is another viewpoint in the village that you can visit. This allows you to admire, above all, the surrounding mountains, and the trail is easily accessible and starts at the Picnic Park, in the center of the village.
Where to eat?
It is inevitable to leave some gastronomic suggestions, as it is necessary to gain breath and energy to be able to explore all the riches and charms of this village. O Restaurant Fojo dos Lobos is the main local reference, located at the top of the village. On its menu, Barroso meat stands out.
As starters, you can count on the local flavors: sausage, sausage and roasted blood sausage, accompanied by the best rye bread.
Afterwards, you can taste the more traditional dishes, such as the veal steak from the lameiros do Barroso, grilled and accompanied by the delicious baked potato from Montalegre. In addition, there is even roast veal, steak and chop.
Of course, there are also fish options, such as fried and baked codfish, with onions, mayonnaise and slices and apple puree.
To end with a sweet tooth, surrender to the french toast with red wine, vermicelli, pudding and ant, the most traditional sweet in the region.
Many reasons to discontinue the safety and tranquility of the lands of Gerês, in this beautiful village of Fafião.
Note: images provided by the Municipality of Montalegre