The highest mountains in Portugal

The location of the mountain ranges in Portugal

The mountain ranges in Portugal are primarily located in the northeastern part of the country, near the Spanish border. Towards the south, Portugal becomes increasingly flatter and south of the river Tagus, which runs through the middle of the country, there are almost no mountain ranges. Compared to other countries in the world, the heights of the Portuguese mountains are rather low. In fact, the mountains in mainland Portugal do not exceed 2000 metres. The Serra da Estrela in the centre of the country is the highest mountain in mainland Portugal at 1993 metres. However, the highest mountain in all of Portugal, including the islands, is on the island of Pico in the Azores and reaches an impressive 2351 metres.

Despite the limited geographical extent of the Portuguese territory, there are significant differences in altitude between the north and the south, if we consider the Tagus River as a dividing line. These differences in altitude offer diverse landscapes and interesting opportunities for exploration in the different mountainous regions.

mountain ranges in Portugal
mountain ranges in Portugal

The mountain landscapes in Portugal: diversity from north to south

The north of mainland Portugal is predominantly mountainous, characterized by high plateaus and deep valleys, which are particularly found inland. Several mountain ranges dominate this region, mainly in the northwest and center of the country. The most important are the Peneda, Gerês, Larouco, Marão, Alvão, Montemuro and Caramulo mountains. The mountains of the Cordillera Central can also be found here, including the famous Serra da Estrela and the Açor, Lousã, Gardunha and Alvelos mountain ranges, which reach heights of between 1000 and 1200 meters.

In contrast, the south of the country is characterized by lower mountains, which are usually less than 550 meters high. The landscape here is mostly flat and consists of plateaus and plains. An exception is the Serra do Mamede mountain range near Portalegre, which reaches over 1000 meters.

In the Algarve , especially on the border with the Alentejo region, there are still some mountain ranges such as Monchique and Caldeirão, whose maximum heights are around 1000 metres.

The autonomous regions of Portugal, Madeira and the Azores , are characterized by their volcanic mountain ranges . Particularly noteworthy are the peaks Ruivo and Areeiro in Madeira and the volcano Pico in the Azores.

The 8 highest mountain ranges in Portugal

Portugal's highest mountains (= Serra) offer a variety of different landscapes and sights that make visiting each mountain region an unforgettable experience. Whether you are looking for outdoor adventures, historical discoveries or simply peace and natural beauty, you will find it in the Portuguese mountains. All of the regions mentioned can be reached by car or public transport, although a rental car is often the most practical option for fully exploring the diversity and beauty of these mountain ranges.

Below we describe the 8 highest mountains in Portugal, including their location, altitude and unique attractions.

Serra da Estrela (1993 m)

The Serra da Estrela is the highest mountain range in Portugal, rising to 1,993 metres. This majestic mountain range is located in the centre of the country and is about 320 km from Lisbon. The Serra da Estrela is home to the only ski complex in Portugal, making it a popular destination, especially in winter.

The main attractions include the Torre, the highest point of the mountain range, and the many scenic hiking trails that lead through the impressive landscape. Visitors can also discover the imposing Lagoa Comprida reservoir and the picturesque villages that are perched on the slopes.

Serra do Gerês (1548 m)

The Serra do Gerês rises to 1548 meters and is located on the border with Spain in the north of Portugal. This region is part of the Peneda-Gerês National Park, the only national park in Portugal, and offers a rich flora and fauna as well as idyllic hiking trails.

Visitors to Serra do Gerês can explore numerous waterfalls such as the Tahiti Waterfall and the Arado Waterfall. Historical sites such as the village of Lindoso with its medieval granaries and the Romanesque bridge of Ponte da Mizarela are also highlights. The park also offers thermal springs where visitors can relax.

Serra do Larouco (1536 m)

The Serra do Larouco reaches a height of 1536 meters and is located in the north of Portugal, close to the Spanish border. This region is known for its vast pastures and traditional grazing land.

Some of the attractions in the Serra do Larouco are the ancient Celtic fortifications, the so-called "castros", and the centuries-old pilgrimage routes. The natural beauty of the landscape with wide views of the surrounding valleys is another highlight.

Serra do Montesinho (Natural Park) (1486 m)

The Montesinho Natural Park is located in the north-east of Portugal and reaches an altitude of 1,486 meters. The park impresses with its diverse flora and fauna, including many rare plant and animal species.

A visit to Montesinho Natural Park offers the chance to discover traditional villages such as Montesinho and Rio de Onor, known for their well-preserved architecture and cultural traditions. The hiking trails through the park pass through stunning landscapes and offer opportunities for wildlife watching.

Serra do Açor (1418 m)

The Serra do Açor is located in the center of Portugal and reaches a height of 1418 meters. The region is known for its dense forests and traditional villages.

Attractions in the Serra do Açor include the Mata da Margaraça Nature Reserve, an ancient forest with impressive biodiversity, and the Fraga da Pena waterfall. The historic village of Piódão, known for its slate-roofed houses, is also worth a visit.

Serra do Soajo (1416 m)

The Serra do Soajo, also part of the Peneda-Gerês National Park, rises to 1,416 metres. This region is known for its well-preserved, historic villages and scenic beauty.

In the Serra do Soajo, visitors can see the Espigueiros de Soajo, centuries-old granaries, and the Soajo Dam, which offers impressive views. There are also numerous hiking trails through the picturesque surroundings.

Serra do Marão (1416 m)

The Serra do Marão is located in the north of Portugal, near the city of Vila Real, and reaches a height of 1,416 meters. The mountain range is known for its unspoilt nature and magnificent views.

Sights include the Chapel of Nossa Senhora do Marão, which offers wonderful views of the surrounding landscapes. The Miradouro de São João da Fraga is another popular viewpoint. The numerous hiking trails through the Serra do Marão lead through varied landscapes and offer phenomenal panoramas.

Serra do Montemuro (1381 m)

The Montemuro is located in the Viseu region and reaches a height of 1381 meters. The mountain range impresses with its untouched nature and picturesque villages.

Some of the main attractions in the Montemuro Mountains include the historic village of Gralheira and the impressive rock formations of Fraga da Pena. The Miradouro da Gralheira offers remarkable views of the surrounding landscape.

The highest mountains in Portugal

Match the number in the above map:

  1. Serra da Estrela 1993 m 
  2. Serra do Gerês - 1548 m 
  3. Serra do Larouco - 1536 m 
  4. Montesinho Natural Park - 1486 m 
  5. Serra do Açor - 1418 m 
  6. Serra do Soajo - 1416 m 
  7. Serra do Marão - 1416 m 
  8. Montemuro - 1381 m 
  9. Serra Amarela - 1359 m 
  10. Cabeco do Gondufo - 1342 m 
  11. Serra do Alvão - 1330 m 
  12. Serra de Nogueira - 1320 m 
  13. Outeiro Alvo - 1314 
  14. Serra do Barroso - 1279 m 
  15. Serra da Coroa - 1273 m 
  16. Serra da Cabreira - 1262 m 
  17. Gardunha - 1227 m 
  18. Serra de Bigorne - 1210 m 
  19. Serra da Lousã - 1205 
  20. Serra de Bornes - 1199 m 
  21. Serra das Torrinheiras - 1191 m 
  22. Serra de Leiranco - 1155 m 
  23. Serra da Padrela - 1148 m 
  24. Serra da Falperra - 1134 m 
  25. Serra do Caramulo - 1076 m 
  26. Candal - 1053 m 
  27. Serra de Santa Comba - 1041 m 
  28. Serra de Montejunto - 666 m 
  29. Serra de São Mamede - 1227 m 
  30. Covão do Milho - 679 m 
  31. Serra da Arrabida - Pico do Formosinho - 501 m 
  32. Serra de Ossa - 553 m 
  33. Serra do Caldeirão - 589 m 
  34. Serra do Monchique - Fóia -902 m

The highest mountain in all of Portugal, including the islands, is on the island of Pico in the Azores at 2,351 meters.

256 mountains in Portugal ordered by height

This map can be helpful for planning a visit to a region in detail. 

Source: https://montanhasdeportugal.blogspot.com/?view=sidebar