River beach and waterfall of Segirei
The river beach of Segirei is a peaceful place, very pleasant to enjoy the nature.
The Trás-Os-Montes region does not have long sandy beaches to offer its visitors, but this does not mean that swimming is not an option. On the contrary, it is very pleasant to discover other ways to enjoy the summer and cool off by the water. The river beaches are quite developed and more or less accessible throughout Portugal. Some of them are very crowded in high season, but this one is not, which is a big advantage.
Segirei is a very small village close to the Spanish border and lost in the middle of hills. It takes about 50 minutes to get there by car from Chaves. This may seem like a lot, but I assure you that the journey is almost as worthwhile as the destination: you will pass through small villages typical of Northern Portugal and hills with lush nature, all on small country roads.
The river beach
Once there, there is a parking area. There are also picnic tables and large expanses of grass. The place remains particularly preserved, far from human activities.
The water level varies greatly from month to month and year to year but is never very high at this point of the river. It can go from your calves to your waist depending on the abundance of water, which makes it an ideal place for family swimming.
This river beach has the advantage of being located in the middle of nature, so don't hesitate to explore it by going up the river! For this, I strongly advise you to wear water shoes: the stones are slippery in some places and it is better to avoid hurting yourself in this isolated place. Going downstream, you will cross areas where the water is shallow. Going upstream, there are places where you won't have a foothold.
If water is not your element, you can also take advantage of several trails to explore the area on foot. They don't seem to be marked, so take every precaution not to get lost or enter private land.
Another place that is worth a visit: the Segirei waterfall. Although it is located on the other side of the border, in Spain, it is unofficially considered as belonging to the village. To get there, the easiest way is to enter in your GPS (Waze for example) "Cascata da Cidadela, Vilardevós".
There is no parking near the waterfall, so you will have to park a little before, along a dirt road, or even directly in the village of Segirei if you are not afraid of a little walk.
A sign indicates the entrance of the path to go down to the waterfall, which you can already admire from the road. There are in fact several different ways to go down, some of them being a bit better equipped than others. On the whole they are all practicable without difficulty for cautious adults equipped with sneakers. With young children, it is better to use the paths with stairs.
To picnic, stone tables are available along the first path (the one indicated by the sign).
At the foot of the waterfall, we find ourselves immersed in the middle of nature, between the fresh water flowing and the natural vegetal walls. The waterfall is very impressive seen from below, we notice all the more its height. However, you can't swim at this place because there is no depth.
On the way back up, there is a secure viewpoint and an old stone mill. The ideal place to have a picnic with a breathtaking view of the surroundings.