PORTO TO LISBON ATLANTIC RIDE
Blessed with sun-kissed beaches, colourful and vibrant fishing villages and scenic routes through pine forests and dunes, the Atlantic Coast of Portugal offers some fantastic cycling opportunities. Starting from the UNESCO World Heritage city of Porto, this new tour follows easy and mainly flat cycling trails along the blue coastline, with stops in different villages and towns for a full immersion in the relaxed Portuguese way of life. Highlights include a scenic ride through the dunes of the Sao Jacinto Natural Reserve and an overnight in the picture-perfect fortified village of Obidos. After a week of gentle riding and plenty of free time to enjoy some of the best beaches and restaurants of Portugal, a full day is dedicated to the visit of Lisbon, one of the most charming capital cities of Europe.
Include a scenic ride through the dunes of the Sao Jacinto Natural Reserve and an overnight in the picture-perfect fortified village of Obidos. After a week of gentle riding and plenty of free time to enjoy some of the best beaches and restaurants of Portugal, a full day is dedicated to the visit of Lisbon, one of the most charming capital cities of Europe.
• All accommodation
• All breakfasts, one wine tasting and one dinner
• Local bike hire
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Day 1: Start Porto; afternoon orientation tour and guided wine tasting at a Port wine cellar.
Start in Porto. Time permitting, your leader will arrange a short orientation tour in the historic centre. Porto is a UNESCO World Heritage city and a real historic jewel with more than 150 listed monuments. There is plenty to see and for this reason, we recommend travelling a day earlier if you are interested in exploring more of its vibrant centre. Before dinner, we will enjoy a guided visit and wine tasting at a traditional Port wine cellar. Overnight at Hotel Vila Gale or Hotel Cristal.
Day 2: Gentle coastal ride to the seaside town of Furadouro, renowned for its excellent fish. Free time to explore the lively town or relax at the beach.
This morning we leave the hustle and bustle of the city behind and immerse ourselves in the more peaceful atmosphere of the Atlantic shore. Starting from Porto, we will ride along the Douro River until its estuary. We then follow the coast, mostly on cycling paths, enjoying some inspiring views of beautiful sandy beaches along the way. During this ride there will be plenty of opportunities to stop for drinks or snacks in traditional Portuguese cafes, right by the Atlantic Ocean! After following a cycling path which crosses a pine tree forest, we reach lively Furadouro, a seaside town renowned for its excellent fish. Free time for a swim (seasonal), relax in the hotel's spa or enjoy a deserved drink in one of the several cafes and restaurants in town. Overnight at Furadouro Boutique Hotel Beach & Spa or similar.
Day 3: Cycle to Mira via the protected Natural Reserve of the São Jacinto dunes; en route visit to the pretty coastal town of Costa Nova.
Today's ride follows the Aveiro lagoon and the nature reserve of Sao Jacinto, one of Europe's last remaining untouched coastal marshlands and habitat of numerous bird species. We pedal through scenery of sandy beaches, marshland and rolling dunes peppered with grasses and creepers. This is home to a plethora of birds, insects, small animals and unusual flowers and plants. After a short transfer by ferry, we leave the lagoon and continue cycling to the small town of Costa Nova, a picturesque village characterised by multi-coloured striped houses. Our ride ends in the seaside town of Mira, known for its infinitely long beach rated as one of the best in Portugal. Overnight at Macarico Beach Hotel or similar.
Day 4: Follow the Portuguese Silver Coast and ride to Figuera da Foz through a peaceful pine forest.
Today's ride takes us through one of the biggest dune systems in the area covered in a scenic pine tree forest. The route is mainly flat and the roads quiet and peaceful making the cycling very pleasant and relaxing. We aim to arrive in the lively town of Figuera da Foz in the early afternoon. The rest of the day is free to explore the town of Figuera da Foz and its extensive beach (nicknamed 'Rainha das Praias' - Queen of beaches) - there are lots of lovely cafes and bars to enjoy a pre-dinner drink and some excellent restaurants. Overnight at Universal Boutique Hotel or similar.
Day 5: Coastal ride to the village of Sao Pedro do Moel; free time to relax by the beach or explore the town.
Today we enter the Portuguese Silver Coast and ride a cycleway that follows the Estrada Atlântica (Atlantic Road). We’ll be riding mainly through a vast pine forest, which was originally planted in the 15th Century with the aim of supplying naval construction during the Portuguese Discoveries. We reach the picturesque town of São Pedro de Moel in the afternoon, and enjoy some time to relax at the beach or at the comfortable hotel with sea-view. Overnight at Mar & Sol Hotel or similar.
Day 6: Transfer to the famous town of Nazare', where some of the highest waves in the world are recorded annually; pedal to Óbidos, a stunning fortified medieval village.
Today starts with a transfer to Nazaré, one of the most famous fishing towns in Portugal. Here fisherwomen still wear seven colourful layers of skirts, as well as wooden clogs and a traditional black headscarf. There will be an opportunity to enjoy some spectacular ocean views from the popular panoramic terrace. It was in Nazaré's Praia Norte that the world record for the largest wave ever surfed was set, an estimated 30m high! From here we ride all the way to Obidos, a charming small fortified town which resembles a medieval film set. It has been carefully preserved by its inhabitants who take real pride in maintaining the architectural image of the village characterised by narrow winding streets and white-washed houses.
Day 7: Private transfer to Lisbon. Free day for individual sightseeing.
A morning private transfer (approx. 1hr) takes us to the great capital city of Lisbon; here we enjoy a full free day of independent sightseeing. Please note that your leader will leave the group after breakfast and the remainder of the trip will be self-guided, but you will be provided with plenty of tips, maps and directions to make the most of your time in Lisbon. An optional guided city tour can also be booked for a fee. Begin with the two landmark monuments, the Tower of Belém and the Monastery of Jerónimos, both of which have been designated UNESCO World Heritage status. For some great views, head to the old Alfama district and walk from the iconic Praca do Comercio, in the heart of Lisbon, to the elegant neighborhood of Chiado and trendy Barrio Alto. You may also decide to end the trip with a traditional dinner accompanied by traditional Fado music. Overnight at Turim Europa Hotel or similar.
Day 8: End Lisbon.
Operated by: Exodus Trip. Daily private departures available. Small group departures available on set dates throughout the year. CDN$ per person, land only. Other dates available, prices may vary, please contact us for details. Activity level: Moderate.
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