Bike Across Portugal Plus! the Coast

Bike Across Portugal Plus! the Coast

Explore Portugal's south-central lands and west coast with undulating wheat fields, cork and eucalyptus trees, olive orchards and vineyards. As the western outpost of continental Europe, this region harmonizes centuries of ancient, Roman, Arabic, Medieval and Renaissance influences, delicately framed by stunning beaches and endless blue sky. Highlights include:
  • Beautiful, serene historic hotels
  • Roman ruins, rural paradise
  • Alqueva reservoir, one of the world's best places for stargazing
  • Artisan centers of pottery, winemaking and marble work
  • Rugged coastline, surfing and the continent's most southwestern point
***Sound like a great tour but you don't have enough time to do the entire ride? Check out Bike Across Portugal tour which includes the first 8-days of this itinerary.***

Tour Dates & Prices

Date
Price
Private Room Fee
Note
Sep 15-26, 2018
USD$4650
USD$650
Sold Out! Wait List Available.
Oct 13-24, 2018
USD$4650
USD$650
Contact Us for Availability.
Apr 20-May 1, 2019
USD$4850
USD$650
 
May 11-22, 2019
USD$4850
USD$650
 
May 25-Jun 5, 2019
USD$4850
USD$650
 
Sep 14-25, 2019
USD$4850
USD$650
 
Sep 28-Oct 9, 2019
USD$4850
USD$650
 
Oct 12-23, 2019
USD$4850
USD$650
 

* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the private room charge. This charge will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available it will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.

Trip At-A-Glance

  • Length / 12 Days
  • Avg. Distance / 58 (32 miles) per riding day
  • Difficulty / 201 - 301
  • Countries / Portugal
  • Price / From USD$4650
More Photos
  • Tour Summary
  • Daily Itinerary
  • Map
  • Reviews
  • Similar Tours
Tour Summary

Daily Ride Summary

Distance

1 No cycling today.
2 20-31 mi / 32-50 km
3 34 mi / 55 km
4 43 mi / 68 km
5 36 mi / 57 km
6 58 mi / 93 km
7 46 mi / 74 km
8 23 mi / 37 km
9 28 mi / 45 km
10 45 mi / 72 km
11 30 mi / 48 km
12 No cycling today.
  • Highlights
    Roman cities, Undiscovered roads, Wine tasting, Portugal's historic Pousada luxury hotels, Active marble quarry, Star-gazing, The ceramics of São Pedro do Corval, Medieval town of Evora, Costa Vincentina National Park, Algarve, Bicycle to the "end of the world"

    Keep in Mind: We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.

    This is a rural region and on some days there will be fewer towns throughout the ride than other regions in Europe.
  • Includes
    11 nights' accommodation; 11 breakfasts, 1 light/picnic lunch, 9 dinners with wine; shuttle from and back to Lisbon; 2 wine and one olive oil tasting; 2 or 3 bilingual tour leaders; van support

    The Usual (Included with every ExperiencePlus! tour)

    • Superb tour leaders who are fun, bilingual and avid cyclists.
    • Help with flights, trains and pre/post tour hotels.
    • Comfortable lodging in 3-4 star hotels. 
    • All breakfasts and at least half of your dinners.
    • Use of a high quality 27-30 speed bike.
    • Full van support to carry luggage – and tired cyclists, too! 
    • Special events like wine tastings, cultural visits and chocolatiers.
    • All tips and gratuities at tour hotels and group meals.
    • Unique routes, marked with our famous chalk dust arrows.
    • Daily mileage options.
    • Detailed route map and free use of our traveling resource library.

    What's not included:

    • Transportation to and from the bicycling tour including airfare, or train travel
    • Helmets - we ask that you bring your own to ensure the best fit
    • Meals not listed in the itinerary
    • Tour Leader gratuity

    See the complete list of what's included with every ExperiencePlus! Tour.

  • Countries
    Portugal
  • Begin/End
    Elvas / Algarve
  • Arrive / Depart
    Lisbon, Portugal - Lisbon Portela Airport (LIS)
  • Total Distance
    488-632 km (301-390 miles)
  • Avg. Distance
    58 (32 miles) per riding day
  • Difficulty
    201 - 301
    Gently rolling hills, some longer days but with minimal elevation gain. 3 days have shorter steep climbs.
  • Terms
Daily Itinerary

DAY 1: Meet in Lisbon, Shuttle to Elvas

Highlights: Elvas and its medieval walls

After arriving in Lisbon, you'll take our morning shuttle east to Elvas, a fortified city just a stone's through from the Spanish border. After a light lunch along the way, the tour leaders will fit bicycles, and lead a safety briefing, then it's off on a short loop ride around Elvas' impressive Roman Aqueduct, its well preserved 16th century walls, and its other fortifications. Tonight's hotel is built into the city's walls, and has a beautiful pool-a great spot to relax before or after your sumptuous welcome dinner.

DAY 2: Bicycle to Vila Vicosa

Highlights: Historic hotel

Consider today's short ride down to the river a warm-up for the excitement of the days ahead! You'll pedal with views into Spain before turning west, riding toward Vila Vicosa through wheat fields and olive orchard dotted with cork-oak trees. This semi-arid region is one of the country's least populated, and is known for its agricultural production, though today's short climb ends at a town famed for its marble. The beautiful rose-colored Vila Vicosa marble can be seen everywhere in town-including the street pavers! This afternoon, you can log extra mileage, visit the marble museum where we learn about the history of production and extraction, or give yourself in to poolside relaxation at your historic Pousada hotel, once a 16th-century convent.

DAY 3: Bicycle to Monsaraz

Highlights: Alqueva reservoir, castles and fortified town of Monsaraz, marble area

Departing the rose-colored city, we'll stop to visit an active marble quarry to learn more about its properties, history and extraction process. Our ride heads south to the castle town of Monsaraz, which overlooks the Alqueva reservoir. The largest reservoir in Europe, this body of water straddles the Spanish-Portuguese border, and was designated in 2012 as one of the first Starlight Tourism Destinations for its ideal star-gazing conditions and exceptionally low light pollution. Enjoy dinner together tonight, then bask in the inky night sky.

DAY 4: Bicycle to Evora

Highlights: Ceramic town, medieval Evora, wine tasting

Today's ride to Evora includes a pleasant stop in São Pedro do Corval, a well-known pottery town where you'll have the opportunity to browse several workshops and visit with the artists who run them. Upon your arrival in beautiful Evora, notice how its Roman aqueducts and ruins blend with the Medieval walls and Renaissance churches. Inhabited for more than 2000 years, Evora is on the roster of most ancient towns in Europe and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You'll spend two-nights here which will allow you to take in some of its most notable sights.

DAY 5: Evora - rest day or optional ride

Highlights: Visit Evora, or take a loop ride to Azaruja

Today's optional ride leaves Evora along a towering aqueduct into the heart of the Portuguese cork industry. We'll visit the factory where cork is transformed beyond bottle stoppers; you'll see purses, dresses, and business cards created from this amazing bark. This evening you'll enjoy a guided walk through the old part of Evora.

DAY 6: Bicycle Evora to Central Alentejo

Highlights: Rolling hills of the Alentejo, cheese tasting

As you leave the city you'll pass through several small towns and the ancient castles that safeguarded them during the 13th century. Your rural destination for tonight is an expansive farm, raising goats and cork. As we get closer to the coast, the wide-open spaces become dotted with sea pines revealing the varied character of the Alentejo. Get ready for a hearty Alentejo dinner.

DAY 7: Bike to Vilanova de Milfontes

Highlights: The beach and a boat ride

We leave rural Alentejo for coastal Alentejo today. As you get to the coast, you'll see signs of more recent Portuguese development including Sines and its industrial harbor which was once famed as the birthplace of Portugal's most famous sailor - Vasco da Gama. At Vilanova da Milfontes, our destination, you'll enjoy views of its amazing beach and the Rio Mira confluence to the sea. We'll enjoy a river boat trip this afternoon.

  • Distance: 46 mi / 74 km
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 8: Vilanova de Milfontes

Highlights: Rest Day

Those who want to get on the bike can enjoy a loop ride towards Sao Luis and Porto das Barcas, and enjoy lunch with a great sea view. Or just spend the day relaxing at our beach resort area and enjoy the amazing views and amenities.

  • Distance: 23 mi / 37 km
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Lodging:

DAY 9: Bicycle the coast of Portugal

Highlights: Costa Vicentina National Park

Coastal hills separate the central Alentejo from the North Atlantic Ocean, and you'll pedal through this rugged area today. A majority of this area, including its beautiful beaches and sheer cliffs, is designated as Costa Vicentina National Park, so there are just a few roads that take you to the coast. We'll loop towards secluded beaches so there are opportunities for picnics and swimming. Or wait and hit the hotel pool, or take the walk from the hotel to the ocean.

DAY 10: Bicycle the Costa Vicentina National Park

Highlights: Beaches, sand dunes, and surfers

Despite the attention given the Algarve in southern Portugal, many surfers would argue that the Costa Vicentina boasts some of the best surfing in Europe - and one of the most beautiful beaches on earth. Today you'll ride south, weaving across the main road, through little farm villages and larger towns. Our secluded hotel is surrounded by green hillsides and is located at the gateway of a serene valley. It's about a kilometer from the beach to the hotel and about 800 meters are unpaved so you might prefer to walk the last bit.

October departures are at Aldeia Pedralva, other departures at Casa Fajara

DAY 11: Bicycle to the "end of the world"

Highlights: Cabo San Vicente lighthouse, Sagres fortress, bicycle Algarve

A short ride today allows for plenty of time for one last walk on the beach, or an extra-leisurely ride to Cabo San Vicente - the famed "end of the world," when the world was thought to be flat. Europe's most southwestern point still features a lighthouse and a fortress. From there, it's just a few kilometers to the town of Sagres, the final destination of your cycling adventure in Portugal. Celebrate the spirit of the Alentejo and the Algarve with a lively group dinner and a restful night in another luxurious Pousada hotel, built on Sagres' promontory with a memorable view of the fortress and the beach.

  • Distance: 30 mi / 48 km
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 12: Algarve

Highlights: Tour ends

Meals: B

Stick around and enjoy another day (or two) at the beach, or if you must head home we wish you boa viagem! We'll offer a shuttle (approx 3 hrs) to Lisbon this morning for anyone flying out or heading back to the capitol. Expect to be at the airport by 2:00 p.m. and in the center of town shortly after that.

  • Meals: Breakfast
Map

Map

Reviews

Reviews

  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Awesome. Have been talking about it since I returned.

    Patricia S., Alexandria, VA - April 2017
  • It''s a ride through beautiful scenery on perfect biking roads with no traffic. The daily distances are very comfortable and you never have to worry about getting lost. And the people you meet are consistently friendly and interesting.

    Steve I., Aurora, CO
  • I had a great time!

    Susan B., Groveport, OH
  • It was fantastic. We rode through the flower-filled countryside, ate local food and drank local wines. The route was great with just enough ups and downs.

    John H., Colorado Springs, CO
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Wonderful! Do it! Experience Plus! is the best! All of the guides were extraordinary.

    Linda W., Triadelphia, WV - October 2017
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Wonderful. We fell in love with Portugal and hope to do the Northern Portugal trip sometime in 2018.

    Jim B., Incline Village, NV - May 2017
  • Thanks for the memories!

    Steve S., Pasadena, CA - April 2017
  • A good sampling of the southern region of Portugal and the western coastline. Learn about Portugal''s long history, sample its delicious food, stay in interesting hotels, enjoy pristine beaches, and learn about cork and marble.

    Linda M., Livermore, CA
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? In a word... Peaceful. The countryside is gorgeous, the people are friendly, the food/wine are YUM, the shoreline is breathtaking, and traffic is minimal and courteous. Make it last forever :)

    Jarmila G., Idledale, CO - May 2017
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Experience the real Portugal before it is over run with more tourists. It will happen in the near future.

    Peter P., Tacoma, WA - October 2017
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Beautiful country with diverse scenery. Wonderful history, culture and people. Scenic, low traffic bike routes on good roads. Hotels, food and wine were all very good.

    Anne K., Portsmouth, RI
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Nice road surface, varied scenery, friendly people, beautiful ocean, wonderful food and great guides. I loved all of it.

    Betsy I., Boulder, CO - May 2017
  • Cuisine, culture all while cycling!

    Barbara P., Lafayette, CA - April 2017
  • Yet another great ExperiencePlus! tour. What did I enjoy most? The final dinner as it reflected the culmination of great cycling in an historic country, an experience shared by a collegial group and the great food and wine consumed en route.

    Diane C., Gabriola Island, BC
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Lovely riders that are not super challenging, great hotels, meals, and guides.

    Steve M., Boulder, CO - October 2017
  • Great guides, great route, good hotels, good food and drink, beautiful scenery, and excellent camaraderie among the riders.

    Brad H., Falls Church, VA - May 2017
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? The beginning , middle and everything in between. Superb trip and the guides were very special. You will love it---just follow the chalk (arrows).

    Joey A., Charlotte, NC - May 2018
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? Being out in the countryside, away from heavy traffic and seeing the beautiful views. Once we got to the coast I looked forward to every opportunity to see the high, rocky coastline. I loved learning about marble industry and seeing where it comes from as well as learning about cork, where it comes from and seeing how it is processed. So easy to follow the route with the chalk marks that I love! Beautiful scenery, lovely and comfortable accommodations.

    Caroline C., Chapel Hill, NC - May 2018
  • This trip was a fun trip with a really good group of people. The guides were great , informative and helpful. The scenery was beautiful and varied from countryside to seaside. I learned lots about Portugals'''' wines, food, olives and cork trees/industry

    Deb D., Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada
  • Great guides. The (navigational) arrows make the tour much more enjoyable. I enjoyed having the "ridewithgps" maps on my Garmin. We plan to ride again next fall.

    Joe V., Boulder, CO
  • Well organized, Fun, great learning experience. Guides were so good about sharing their country - I loved it.

    Joan M., Lafayette, CO - September 2017
  • Beautiful country - rolling hills/wine country to spectacular beach and seaside cliff scenery; moderately difficult ride; fabulous guides; very friendly, welcoming people; amazing food and wine. Exceptional trip.

    Deena B., Incline Village, NV- May 2017
  • Excellent route, neat country, beautiful, great beer and wine prices. Really impressed with the bike set-up.

    Sonny L., Aurora, CO
  • Wonderful trip. The amount of cycling is enough, but still leaves plenty of time to enjoy the town at the end of the day. Food was amazing with plenty of variety at both breakfasts and dinners. The arrows provide a seamless ride, so no need to stop and examine a map. The coast is an area not to be missed!

    Margaret V., Boulder, CO
  • Wonderful scenery, good roads, and friendly people. Tour leaders went beyond expectations to ensure a safe trip and an enjoyable vacation.

    Dave G., Denver, CO
  • I appreciated the amount of cycling. Your competitors shuttle people frequently, where we cycled the whole distance. We had some favorite hotels, the Herdade do Touril and the Memmo(in Sagres) were fantastic. It''s a real cycling tour full of great experiences and the best leaders.

    Marty S., Princeton, NJ - May 2018
  • Portugal is a must-see and no better way to see it than on bike.

    Jane C., Lucca, Italy
  • Fabulous introduction to a beautiful part of Portugal. The landscape was rugged and pristine, and the people were proud and welcoming.

    Sari R., Glastonbury, CT
  • A pleasant trip through beautiful country. Be sure to go in the spring, the wildflowers are awesome.

    Chris H., Huntington Beach, CA
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? Too hard to pick! A typical excellent ExperiencePlus! trip, with an exceptionally congenial group. Group meals were a lot of fun. Arrows are the best!

    Susan C., Berkeley, CA - April 2017
  • We''ve done self guided and self supported bicycle tours and felt very pampered on this one. Hotels and meals were exceptional in comfort, and more importantly for me, in their variety and display of Portuguese culture. Tour leaders superb, both as personailties and in their conveyance of info on local culture, activities. Very well done.

    Hans J., Lafayette, CO - September 2017
  • This was one of the most enjoyable tours we''ve done - a perfect combination of beautiful scenery, culture, terrain, and the way how it''s run.

    Dana S., Fairport, NY - May 2017
  • Loved the landscape, quiet roads and wild flowers.... very pastoral... good variety of riding.

    Marilyn H., Vancouver, BC
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Ride is through a lot of pretty countryside, with some interesting towns, plus a few days along the Atlantic coast which was spectacular. We also learned a lot about the culture and history of Portugal.

    Phil C., Centennial, CO - October 2017
  • I loved this trip! Loved Portugal! Hotels were varied and wonderful! Food was amazing, wine was outstanding and the guides were over the top!!!

    Jennifer R., Longmont, CO
  • Well worth it! And Portugal did not disappoint!

    Carol S., Pasadena, CA - April 2017
  • I loved everything about this trip, and cannot think of a way in which it could be improved. Best cycling I''ve done on a bike tour. Great food all along the way. Thank you for such an amazing cycling trip.

    Jona S., Ukiah, CA - May 2018
  • Great riding, even better guides, good food, great group.

    Ron C., Berkeley, CA - April 2017
  • As my first experience I can only say that the trip was wonderful. The people I met and the support given for me to achieve each day''s ride was so encouraging. The bikes and support were outstanding the hotels mostly luxurious and the additional cultural aspects additional bonuses.

    Jan R., Mt Waverly Victoria
  • We had full days with great food and wine and leaders that always went above and beyond to please.

    Scott B., Hatfield, PA
  • A great ride.

    Lyndon J., Trafalgar, Victoria, Australia
  • Elvas! Monsaraz! Vila Viscosa - all were delightful hill towns with interesting features. The beach towns - Porto Covo, Touril, Sagres - and rides were great.

    Sandra S., Sacramento, CA
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