Summer fun on Portugal’s riverbanks

Exploring the pristine rivers running through forested mountains proves a great alternative to the country’s golden coastline for this young family

José Manuel dos Santos, our guide, was looking a little sheepish. “You have to understand,” he said, “the beach isn’t normally like this.” We were sitting on a low bridge below the pretty village of Avô, right in the centre of Portugal, feet dangling above the crystal-clear River Alva, the sun on our backs, rushing water filling our ears. “You need to picture it full of people.”

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