Nestled amongst the pine needles of the forest floor of Portugal’s Barão de São João National Forest are numerous stone faces carved in-situ to smile up at passing hikers.
Created in 2012 by local artist and teacher Deodato Inácio Santos, the faces are part of the larger “Walk of Poets” which includes other carvings and lines of poetry that enhance a trail through the preserve.
In the summer of that year, Santos organized an explosion of art that turned the small town of 800 residents in the western Algarve into a living gallery. Though much of the art from that summer was temporary, the faces remain as a part of the legacy of that transformation.
Know Before You Go
From the town of the same name, head up the hill to the preserve parking area. Follow signs for the Passeo dos Poetas; the faces are on the left side of the trail, about a 10 minute walk from the picnic pavilion.
The hiking trail is of easy difficulty, and is generally well maintained. Even those with some mobility issues should be able to access the site.
Approximate location: 37°08'27.1"N 8°47'24.2"W