Portugal: guided cycle tours, advice on roads and maps, route-planning service for solo trips, listings for campsites and bike shops…you’ll find it all here.
Welcome to Pedal Portugal
Portugal is a wonderful country to visit – gorgeous scenery, friendly people, quiet roads, rich culture and history, cheap wine and some tasty food. It’s also relatively unexplored by many cycle tourists.
And whether you’re the independent sort or looking for guided bike tours and self-guided holidays, this is THE site for free advice and information on anything to do with bicycling in Portugal.
***Read our reviews to see why we get so many repeat customers on our guided tours.***
On Pedal Portugal you will find detailed information on roads, routes and all kinds of other practicalities for cyclists. With the exception of our guided tours and route planning service (see below), all the resources on this site are totally free.
If you’re completely new to Portugal we recommend you take a look at our TOP 10 TIPS first and then browse the following sections:
- The Guided Tours page has the schedule for our biking holidays and links to details of each trip. Alternatively, if you prefer going it alone but want some expert advice on putting it all together then take a look at my Route Planning Service
- The Planning heading covers everything from basic facts about the country to where to buy maps and advice on taking your bike on Portuguese public transport, plus the Advice Form if you’ve got specific questions
- Check out the Information & Listings pages for details of campsites, links to accommodation lists in different towns, where to hire bikes, find bike shops, guided tours etc
- Look under Day Rides for information not just on shorter rides but also on how cycling conditions vary in the different regions of Portugal
- Or try the Touring Routes pages with detailed suggestions for how to see the best of Portugal from two wheels – the map below gives an outline of the routes:
2020 – final places
Our first four tours of 2020 are already fully booked – but we do have spaces on our last two trips of the year:
- 27th Sept-8th Oct – Eastern Frontier – 12 days / €1,460 ***two places available***
- 18th-29th Oct – Border Castles – 12 days / €1,420 ***two places available***
2021 – new dates
- 14th-25th March – Southern Explorer – 12 days / €1,495
- 18th-29th April – Border Castles – 12 days / €1,525
- 9th-20th May – Eastern Frontier – 12 days / €1,625
- 26th September-8th October – Historic Heartland – 13 days / €1,685
- 17th-28th October – Border Castles – 12 days / €1,495
Please note: this is the initial plan for 2021 but we’re open to running different tours if that’s what (enough of) our customers demand! Do get in touch via email@example.com if you want to request particular tours/dates.
We can put together a limited number of custom tours for anyone wanting a tailor-made trip for a closed group.
The links with the summaries below will take you to details of each guided bicycle holiday. To find out what previous riders thought, see our Reviews page.
The Border Castles Tour explores the north-east Alentejo, riding across the region’s rolling farmland, visiting ancient towns and a string of frontier fortresses and ruined castles, plus Neolithic tombs and a rugged natural park on the Spanish border. (Oct 2020 and March & October 2021 departures)
The Southern Explorer Tour explores the hills, rolling plains and historic towns of the southern Alentejo before crossing into the Algarve and on to the south coast. We visit better known tourist sights, as well as heading off the beaten track to places that get few other visitors. (March 2021 departure)
The Eastern Frontier Tour is our toughest bike trip, involving a fairly strenuous route starting from the northern end of the Serra da Estrela mountains, going up towards the Douro valley and then south along the Portuguese-Spanish border to the frontier fortress city of Elvas. (May 2021 departure)
The Historic Heartland Tour provides a chance to explore some of the highlights of central Portugal, from the hill country near the Spanish border to the pine trees and sandy beaches of the Atlantic coast. (September 2021 departure.)
The Algarve Coast & Country takes in some of the most scenic scenery of Europe’s south-west corner, including spectacular Cabo São Vicente. (No dates at present)
The 2019 second edition of The Alentejo Circuit is out now. Based on the popular touring route of the same name this guide has been extensively updated (see below for more information).
This guidebook (first published in 2014) contains details of a six-day tour through the region, starting and finishing in the World Heritage city of Évora, plus a three-day extension out to the Atlantic coast.
Published in 2015, Cycling The Algarve includes a six-day touring circuit of the western Algarve (plus a tiny bit of the south-west Alentejo), a couple of two-day extensions and 10 day rides starting in various towns to the west of Faro.
See the Guidebooks page to find out more and to sign up for updates on future publications.
Route Planning Service
For those who want to stay independent but aren’t sure exactly where to go, my route planning service will set you on the right road – with bespoke rides and touring plans to match your interests and requirements.
Based on information you give me, I can put together a detailed itinerary* that includes carefully-planned routes, information on places to see along the way, plus suggestions on accommodation, and advice on logistics like bus and train travel, bike hire etc.
All you need to do is get yourself there and do the pedalling! For more information, click here.
Please note: There are now two levels to this service – Maps-Only and Maps-Plus.
Browse & Ask
This site is a one-man project – and still developing. The Latest Updates page will show you the most recent additions and revisions to the site.
If you’re just starting your research then our Top 10 Tips is a good place to start with some key facts about cycling in Portugal.
Otherwise, check out the page menus (above), browse the site, look at the information available and – if you can’t find the answers you need – use the Advice Form to ask for help. (But please do look through the pages before using the form as I’m only able to do this in my spare time.)
This is a FREE service but any donations via PayPal – whether $1 or £1 – will be greatly appreciated.
You can follow Pedal Portugal on Facebook – where I’ll flag up useful information, news about our tours and the odd picture to make you dream of Portugal!
Don’t forget to also check out the blog for less frequent but more in-depth posts on cycling in Portugal – there’s a sign-up box on the right.
Feedback and advice from other cyclists is also extremely welcome. So if you’ve got any tips, rides or other information you’re willing to share then please do! (Either via FB, email or a comment left on a relevant page).
I hope you find Pedal Portugal useful. I can’t answer every question but, if in doubt, just go! Portugal is one of my favourite countries and well worth a visit. The roads vary but the people are great, the wine’s cheap and you’ll never forget the views.
Happy cycling! All the best, Huw