As one of the villages of the high Alpujarras, it is in the heart of the National Park of the Sierra Nevada (Spain) with much of its parish boundary extending up into the high mountain pastures. Its architecture is traditional Berber style, flat roofed houses scattered in a maze of narrow twisting streets, each corner adorned with bright potted flowers and dazzling red peppers hung out to dry. It is one of the more authentically Spanish villages of the area and you would be unlikely to meet any but its Spanish inhabitants whilst strolling through its labyrinthine streets.
Most visitors to the area would arrive in a car - hired or otherwise. It is possible to catch the bus from Granada and Orgiva. The bus company is ALSA, they have a good website with all their destinations and times clearly listed -
Walking is the best option although there are opportunities for horse riding in nearby villages.
Fuente Agria is on the outskirts of the village. There is a parking area with picnic tables etc., a small chapel, or 'Ermita', and a spring from which emerges health restoring but sour tasting water. Below this there is a small gorge, where you can see how the iron in the water has stained the surrounding rock faces orange. A set of steps has been made down into the gorge.
A trek up from the village (90 minutes walking or you can drive if you take the track by the 'Farmacia') will lead you to the 'Junto de Los Rios' and the 'Area Recreativa de Pórtugos.' This is a beautiful spot where two rivers meet and make an impressive waterfall.
A picnic area with tables and barbeque zones have been created and some steps now lead down to the foot of the waterfall. Impressive views from here across the valley.
Also, Pórtugos has three main fiestas: a cultural one during the first week of August where local arts including dramatic presentations are displayed - of particular interest is the demonstration of 'La Parva' where a mule can be seen threshing the wheat as in time gone by; a religious one early in October when the Virgin Rosario is taken from her place in the Ermita and paraded around the streets - accompanied by a phenomenal number of fireworks considering the small population of this village; and another for San Sebastian in January.
This is an excellent place to base yourself for a walking holiday since it is situated in the high Alpujarras, on the lower slopes of the summit of Mulhacen, the highest peak on the Iberian Peninsula. There are countless well signposted footpaths that pass the village, giving every level of walking challenge, from severe high level treks to gentle meandering from village to village along sympathetic mule tracks. If you are attracted to the high Alpujarras but want to avoid the concentration of tourism that can be found in either Trevelez or the villages of the Poqueira Gorge - Pampaneira, Bubión, Capileira - then Pórtugos is a good choice. During your stay it is still very possible you will find yourself the only non-Spanish visitor.
- Cortijo Opazo. For a self catering walking holiday this is an ideal base. The owners, who live on hand, supply their own walking guides for you to use free of charge, and are happy to give advice if needed.
Dried serano ham is one of the main items to sample and purchase, but there is a good selection of other local arts and crafts available from the ham store on the main road.
The Hotel Malagueña and the Hotel Mirador - listed below - both have restaurants. If you are a meat eater, try the dried Serano ham and a portion of Morcilla, a type of black pudding with a light texture and delicate flavour.
It can be hard to find vegetarian cooking but not impossible. Spanish tortilla is always a good bet.
For a local wine ask for Vino Costa. A pinky brown wine with a strong taste and stronger kick. The pinker it is the younger it is - it should be drunk reasonably young. If you order this in a bar the chances are it will have been made by the family who run the bar from their own grapes.
Coffee is almost always excellent and strong.
For a non-alcoholic beverage ask for mosto, unfermented grape juice.
- Hotel Nuevo Malgueño, C. Sierra Nevada, 1, ☏ . Smart hotel situated on the main road that passes the village.
- Hotel Mirador de Pórtugos, Plaza nueva, 5, ☏ . In the central square of the village.
- Cortijo Opazo, C. Atalbeitar, ☏ . Well appointed self-catering accommodation in a renovated farmhouse a short walk from the village (1.5 km). Tranquil location in beautiful gardens.
Portugos town hall
In the nearby area you can source horse riding and mountain biking, whilst the city of Granada and the Alhambra Palace is only 90 minutes away. The Costa del Sol just over an hour's drive, and in the winter months the ski resort of the Sierra Nevada is an option at just under two hours drive.