San Vicente de Alcántara and Valencia de Alcántara

These two neighbouring towns are situated next to the Portuguese border in western Extremadura. Both are pleasant enough in themselves and have a strong cork-making industry, but their real interest for most foreign visitors lies in their prehistoric monuments.

The San Vicente de Alcántara and Valencia de Alcántara district is renowned for the large numbers of dolmens (megalithic monuments) that can be found in the surroundings of the two towns. These attract a large number of visitors and the local tourist office is working hard to promote trails that lead from one to another.

As for scenery, my personal view is that it's more spectacular over the Portuguese border, so an excursion from Spain to see the village of Castelo de Vide (gorgeous) and Marvao (even more gorgeous) is certainly worthwhile, as are the views, especially from the latter. This area is one of the most beautiful bits of countryside in eastern Portugal.

Finally, I mustn't forget to mention Alburquerque, a small town on the road between Badajoz and San Vicente de Alcántara, which also merits a stop to view its imposing castle.
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