This tour takes place within two protected areas along the coast from Alentejo to Algarve, meandering through authentic fishing villages along the sea. Imagine yourself riding by some of the most beautiful and well-preserved beaches in Europe. Now add the feeling of adventure when discovering pirate hideouts, a rich culture and a cuisine that serves the best the sea has to offer. The coast, characterized by turquoise waters, rugged rocks and stratified cliff faces buffeted by coastal winds for centuries, is perfect for exciting cycling!
The southwestern Portuguese coast has the distinction of being one of the least developed and best-preserved coastlines in Europe. The protected area of the Southwestern Alentejan and Vicentine Coast Natural Park (Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina), basically runs from south of Lisbon to Sagres Point in the Algarve. We will also discover the Ria Formosa Natural Park that stretches from Faro Beach to Carcela Velha in the Algarve. It is a hotspot in the winter for the migration of European birds. The “natural park” protected area designation is very different from a national park: it allows villages and human habitation within while protecting its natural and cultural patrimony. And stimulating economic well-being for those who live there. The result is a laid-back, beautifully natural coastal experience.
We will discover nine cycling circuits from Grândola (Alentejo) to Vila Real de Santo António (Algarve), roughly 285 miles of largely traffic-free roads. From coastal regions of Alentejo to the Algarvian Mountains, we will discover golden sandy beaches and rugged cliffs. We also should have enough time to explore the numerous fishing villages we encounter along the way.
People have been occupying this territory since Paleolithic times. We will experience ancient Roman ports, medieval castles, tasty meals of fresh fish caught locally and traditional artisanal crafts, sold by villagers.
Other activities on our tour include country picnic lunches, visits to pristine beaches and surfing areas, vistas of lighthouses and the open sea, a visit to the ruins of an ancient Islamic fishermen’s settlement!
Come join us on this exciting natural adventure for a unique look into the past and the present of a region that has maintained its authenticity for centuries!