5 minutes drive (or as part of the 7 Fontes walk) from the Quinta, the trail walk of Fonte da Benémola crosses a legally protected landscape composed of woodland, meadows and traditional farmland on the banks of the little river Menalva, deep in the Algarve’s Barrocal. Contrary to most other watercourses in the Barrocal, the stream that feeds this fertile valley is not seasonal and here freshwater springs, watermills, dams, channels and ancient wells punctuate the leafy countryside. Water flows throughout the year, supporting a vibrant ecosystem composed of many distinct plants and animals. The lush banks are covered by white willow, poplar, tamarisk, and ash trees. These arboreal species are accompanied by fragrant shrubs that include lavender, mastic, thyme, rockrose, laurestine, oleander, rosemary and strawberry trees. Further afield there are also olive, almond, orange cork oaks and carob trees. Spring brings swathes of colour and perfume to the valley, a time when many of the abundant little orchids also start to flower. There are informative boards along the trail showing the type of flora and fauna to be seen and also about the traditional agricultural buildings you pass. There are 2 carparks so that you can choose a longer or shorter route.