8 days
Duration
258 km
Distance
Medium
Difficulty
Alentejo
Location

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Sleep in castles, palaces and farmhouses
  • Internationally awarded wine tastings
  • Cycle Portugal through beautiful landscapes with vineyards, olive groves, cork oaks
  • Évora historical centre, classified by UNESCO as World Heritage Site; Mediaeval villages
  • Delicious regional Portuguese gastronomy from the Alentejo, always present at our unique gourmet picnics and selected restaurants.

 

DESCRIPTION

The Castles and Wine BIKE TOUR will live up to its name.

Most nights will be passed either in a castle or an old convent, now beautiful charming hotels.

Along the way, the great ancient city of Évora, world heritage site, and small fortified hamlets will tell the stories of wars with moors and Spain. The border is right there on the other side of Alqueva, the biggest artificial lake in Europe.

The loveable Alentejo people, at first shy, the Mediterranean typical gastronomy along with the wonders of cork, marble, olive oil and other crafts will enrich your experience. And the wine… well come and judge for yourself…

All this in safe backroads with some easy bits off the asphalt riding, with us by your side.

We will be pleased if you chose to Cycle Portugal with us!

You can make this trip:

  1. with us in a guided bike tour getting all the interpretation and companionship
  2. with us, having the support car guiding you
  3. with friends in a self guided biking tour.

Additional information

Tour typeCity, Heritage, Inland, Landscape
1

Day 1

Arrival
Early arrival to airport.

Transfer to Arraiolos, medieval village with a beautiful castle.

6 p.m. – Welcome drink and first briefing of your bike tour

Welcome drink and dinner included in van guided and guided tours only
Accommodation – your choice between:

Pousada de Arraiolosbuilt in a wonderful 16th century convent, with swimming pool, 2 kms from Arraiolos

Casa do Plátano, a very charming guest house in the village centre

2

Day 2

Arraiolos Route
 Cycling from Arraiolos to Évora.

The bike tour starts cycling through Arraiolos village, famous for its carpets, pastry, and its rich historical centre. Climb to the castle, one of the few round shaped in the peninsula, and conquer its unforgettable views from there.

Riding through secondary undulating roads we reach the cheese farm, where they also produce local liqueurs. A really tasty stop!

It’s now time to visit a winery where there is a fantastic private carriage collection. We will have our lunch here.

We reach our final destination, Évora, riding in the ecotrail, a green lane built on top of an old railway, traffic free, great for cycling.

 Distance: 42 km, if you sleep in Évora. 35 kms, if you sleet at our guesthouse
  Total ascent: 400 mts
 Difficulty: medium
Terrain: rolling terrain, some dirt roads.
 Wine tasting, cheese tasting and picnic included in van guided and guided bike tours only.
Dinner not included.
Accommodation:

Monte do Serrado de Baixo, our lovely guesthouse, with swimming pool (charm)

Hotel Mar de Ar Muralhas, 4*, in Évora historical center, with swimming pool (charm)
LUXURY OPTION

You may upgrade your stay to the 16th century recovered convent, Hotel Mar de Ar Aqueduto

3

Day 3

Megalithic Route
Cycling around Évora

If you are intrigued by the evolution of our kind, puzzled by the enormity of some Neolithic constructions or wondered about the magical meaning of some pre historical sites, than this bike tour day is for you. The biggest dolmen and one of the most important cromlech in Europe with over 5000 years of history are waiting for you.

The ride finishes in Évora, where you will have the chance to wonder around and get immersed in this ancient pre-roman settlement. One of the highlights will be the visit to the surreal XIII century bone chapel.

 Distance: 45 kms, if you sleep in Évora. Also, 45 kms, if you slept at our guesthouse, with a transfer at the beginning of the day.
Total ascent: 500 mts
 Difficulty:  medium
Terrain: flat terrain, some dirt roads. A more demanding climb in the end that can be avoided with the transfer when you sleep at our farm.
 Picnic and ticket to bone’s chapel included in van guided and guided tours only. Dinner not included.
Accommodation in same hotel

4

Day 4

The Valley of the Degebe River
Cycling from Évora to Reguengos de Monsaraz.

Leaving Évora toward the rising sun a more baren landscape will keep us company.

On this bike tour day ride between olive groves to reach the small and traditional village of Nossa Srª de Machede.

After a pause for a cold drink or coffee a visit to an old working leather factory. After lunch the mysterious castle of  Valongo will provide shade while it unveils its roman past. A calm ride through easy backroads sets the tone to the day’s final destination. Before dinner a visit to a local distinct winery where the scent of the brewing clay pots fills the air with the ancient knowledge that makes great wine. Dinner is an unexpected surprise

Distance: 50 km (if you slept in Évora) or 57 kms (if you slept at our guesthouse)
Total ascent: 500 mts
Difficulty: medium
Terrain: undulating roads
Lunch and dinner included in van guided and guided tours only.
Accommodation: Solar de Alqueva, with swimming pool
LUXURY OPTION

You may cycle 10 kms more and stay at Herdade de S. Lourenço do Barrocal, a charm country hotel with an architecture prize. Having dinner there you may try the wine and olive oil done by the estate. If you chose this option we recommend that you stay for 2 nights, and we will adapt your cycling route to Monsaraz.

5

Day 5

Conquest of the Castle of Monsaraz
Today’s bike tour destination is the fortified village of Monsaraz, an important stronghold in the defense of our nation just by the border with Spain.

On the way we will visit the famous pottery village of S. Pedro do Corval, where you can see the men making magic with the clay, transforming it into beautiful pots and plates, and the ladies painting them with flowers in an impressive speed.

Then with Spain in sight lunch by the biggest artificial lake in Europe, the Alqueva dam reservoir. Then it’s time to conquer the castle, use all your energy to climb up to Monsaraz! Your hotel is either just by the city walls or inside, either option really nice. See the sunset from the tower!

Distance: 35 km
Total ascent: 380 mts
Difficulty: easy+, except the climb to Monsaraz
Terrain: flat roads, with one ascent to the castle
AccommodationCasa Pinto, a charm bed&breakfast in the medieval castle
6

Day 6

The Sanctuary Route
  Cycling from Monsaraz to Vila Viçosa.

The day’s ride will lead to the marble capital of Portugal and one of the biggest in Europe. The marble triangle will mark the landscape for the next bike tour days. The so called white gold is the main economic driver of the region. Its richness is a constant presence in the wide streets and tall buildings. The picnic lunch and the visit to an impressive fortified sanctuary with an interesting tale will close the morning. Then a rare sight over distinct colored lagoons finishing with accommodation in an aristocratic convent.

Distance: 50 kms
Total ascent: 680 mts
Difficulty: medium
Terrain: undulating, with some climbing
Picnic and dinner included in van guided and guided tours.
Accommodation: Pousada D. João IV, built in a convent, with swimming pool (charm)

7

Day 7

The Marble Route
Cycling from Vila Viçosa to Estemoz.

As the song says: ‘And now, the end is near…’

Today’s bike tour ride is soft so take this opportunity to taste some local delicacies: Petiscos (Snacks).

From tavern to tavern the ride will delight your senses. The rest of the day will be spent in contemplation and admiration until the doors of Estremoz, the final destination of the journey.

Dinner and closing celebrations with some surprises will be held in an old 15th century jail house – only for the nobles!!! And the journey will not be over until you climb up to the marble Donjon tower of the castle where you will sleep!

Distance: 35 kms
Total ascent: 680 mts – possible to cut out some of these climbs even on a self guided tour – paying a small extra fee the luggage transfer will be done in a van that can pick you and the bikes up along the way.
Difficulty: easy +
Terrain: undulating, with some climbing
Lunch, consisting on several Petiscos/snacks and dinner included in van guided and guided tours only
 Accommodation:

Pousada Rainha Stª Isabel, built in a palace, with swimming pool (charm)

8

Day 8

Departure
Transfer to Lisbon airport

Tour extension: We may transfer you to the gorgeous coastline and you may do our ALONG THE COAST TOUR or the WILD ALGARVE

DISCOUNT PRICE IF YOU BOOK TWO TOURS!

We know you want to do several Portugal Bike tours!

Notes

On Van guided Portugal bike tours the guide will be the driver. He/she will guide you from a distance. The car will be near enough so that you can see it on the junctions. The guide will stop at important or interesting places to give history explanations or tell a story. Some people call this a supported tour, though in our case it is more than that because you are actually being guided.

On Guided bike tours groups are accompanied by one or two cycling guides, besides a guide who takes the support car, prepares the picnics and transports your luggage. Lunches are picnic type with traditional foods from the area where we are cycling. Some times we also use local restaurants.

In dinners arranged by us and you can be sure you will try the best gastronomy as we choose restaurants well known by us for its good traditional food. No «touristy» places included!

On van guided or guided cycling tours you can expect full service from your guides. They will do their best to make your holiday an unforgettable one.

Our guides are all Portuguese and know our region very well. They are very service minded and most of them have been working with us for many years. They are bikers themselves and love to go cycling on their holidays, so they know what you expect from them! They will make sure you have a great bike tour in Portugal!

MAP

PROFILES

1st cycling day from Arraiolos to Évora

Altitude gain: 591 mt/ 1938 ft
Total Distance: 50,90 km/ 31 mi
Level: medium


2nd cycling day Megaliths (from Évora to Évora)

Altitude gain: 579 mt/ 1899 ft
Total Distance: 49 km/ 30 mi
Level: medium


3rd cycling day from Évora to Reguengos

Altitude gain: 517 mt/ 1696 ft
Total Distance: 48.1 km/ 29 mi
Level: medium


4th cycling day from Reguengos to Monsaraz

Altitude gain: 417 mt/ 1368 ft
Total Distance: 31.6 km/ 19 mi
Level: easy plus


5th cycling day from Monsaraz to Vila Viçosa

Altitude gain: 671 mt/ 2201 ft
Total Distance: 48.2 km/ 29 mi
Level: medium


6th cycling day from Vila Viçosa to Estremoz

Altitude gain: 315 mt/ 1033 ft
Total Distance: 31,2 km/ 19 mi
Level: easy plus

Prices per person – 2019

Departures everyday for all types of Tour.

Come on our set dates and Get a Better Price.

conditions SELF GUIDED TOUR VAN-GUIDED TOUR GUIDED TOUR
Price per person (group tour dates) - - 2 330 €*
Price per person (minimum 4 adults) 806 €* 1 715 €* 2 400 €*
Price per person (minimum 2 adults) 931 €* 2 275 €* 2 740 €*
*plus season supplement if applicable
Included
Accommodation in double room with breakfast
Maps, route instructions and history notes
24h phone support
Personal accident insurance
Luggage transfer
Basic tools
Transfer back to our farm from Megalithic tour (if you sleep at our farm)
VAT tax
Souvenir
Airport transfers
Support car with guide
Bicycle, helmet, back rack and pannier or similar
Water and fruit
2 Picnic lunches
3 Lunch at regional restaurant
1 "petisco's"/snack Lunch
5 Dinners with wine
2 Wine tasting at wineries
Entrance fee at Bones chapel, in Évora
Entrance fee at Évora's cathedral
Entrance fee at Vila Viçosa's Ducal Palace
1st aid assistence
Portugal Best Cycling jersey
Guide
* Season supplement
Easter & Jul 1 to Sep 16 45 € 45 € 45 €
Supplements
Single** 358 € 358 € 358 €
Single** - Easter & Jul 1 to Sep 16 434 € 434 € 434 €
** Single supplement applys for a 3rd person in a group of 2.
Departure different then Saturday 80 € 80 € 80 €
Transfers
Airport transfer to 1st hotel 75 € - -
Airport transfer from last hotel 75 € - -
Rentals
Bicycle rental with helmet, back rack and pannier or similar 100 € - -
E-bike rental 200 € 100 € 100 €
GPS Rental 50 € - -
Phone rental (plus calls) 10 € 10 € 10 €

Discount price if you book 2 tours!

Upgrades:

Upgrade for 5 stars hotel in Évora (from charm hotel price) – Mar de Ar Aqueduto

Double room – 50 € per person for 2 nights;
Single room – 100 € per person for 2 nights

Upgrade for Pousada dos Lóios in Évora (from charm hotel price)

Low season:
Double room 
–  115 € per person for 2 nights;
Single room – 238 € per person for 2 nights

High season:
Double room 
– 131 € per person for 2 nights;
Single room – 270 € per person for 2 nights


Notes:

Not Included: Bikes insurance, Travel insurance, Tour cancellation insurance, and all items not mentioned above. See Terms & Conditions for more details.

Guided group tour dates


Subject to availability, you can do this tour at any date as a private guided tour or as a self guided tour. The fact that a group date is full does not mean you cannot do a private tour on that date. So contact us anyway!

Late June until early September can be quite hot for this tour. For these dates consider the Along the Coast or the Wild Algarve, an Ocean of Fortresses tour.

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Tour Reviews

4.50 based on 2 reviews
11/03/2019

This self-guided cycling tour through the Alentejo region of Portugal was pure delight for us. From the tour operators to the route and unique accommodations we couldn’t have been more pleased. Anyone looking for a cycling tour in Portugal would do well to consider Portugal Best Cycling and the many benefits of touring in Portugal!

11/03/2019

We are a family of four with an 18 year old and a 13 year old. This tour was a comfortable introduction to Portugal with distances ranging from 30km to 50km per day for six days, and a mix of quiet roads and well maintained dirt tracks through undulating countryside. It is was easily doable on the hybrid (mountain) bikes provided, but e-bikes are also offered. Portugal Best Cycling provides rear panniers, kitted with spare inner tube and tool kit. Baggage is transferred daily between the hotels. Every day offered historic towns and castles, Baroque churches and vineyards. There was an interesting visit to a cork factory on the itinerary. Some of the side trips could be skipped if you choose. The accommodation was a mix of three and four stars, with the pousadas being a real highlight – beautiful converted historic buildings. The directions and maps provided are sufficient and it is pretty hard to get lost. The briefing was probably unnecessarily detailed given that we had all done similar trips before. But would be reassuring for first timers.

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