Alentejo Cycling Holiday

  • 4.8
    (11 reviews)
  • Category

    Cycle Touring
    Self Guided or Guided
  • Grade

    Leisurely
  • Duration/s

    3, 4, 5, 6 or 7 nights
  • Start / Finish

    Évora / Évora
  • Distance

    137 miles/220 kms
  • Themes

    EbikeFamilyWine Lovers
  • Accommodation

    Comfort
  • Tour code

    040-101CPT
Price From £343

Overview

A very comfortable single-centre cycling holiday in Portugal, staying in a gorgeous Alentejan guesthouse that is set in its own peaceful grounds just outside the medieval walled town of Evora. Enjoy daily rides into the beautiful surrounding countryside. Charming villages, historic towns, olive groves, vineyards and lakes await. The daily routes can be tailored to meet your specific ability level.

There are a variety of cycle routes to choose from and your congenial hosts will be happy to recommend detours, shortcuts and extensions to tailor rides to your particular requirements.

The surrounding countryside is perfect for leisure cycling with quiet lanes and tracks leading you through a peaceful, rural landscape of vineyards & meadows punctuated  by small towns and villages that seem to appear just when you feel like a break.

The guesthouse - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

The guesthouse

The guesthouse makes a welcome sight at the end of the ride, especially the outdoor swimming pool and sun loungers. The lovely rooms are simple but well appointed, each with their own individual style.

The nearby town of Evora is a historic city with a maze of narrow streets and alleyways to explore. The main square has a lively buzz about it with a wide choice of outdoor bars, restaurants and cafes.

Leisurely cycling along quiet lanes and paths on gently, undulating terrain.

Itinerary & Map

Leisurely cycling along quiet lanes and paths on gently undulating terrain.

On this cycling holiday you can choose from the menu of daily rides which are listed below. Your local hosts at the guesthouse will happily listen to your riding preferences and make ecommendations as to which you are likely to enjoy the most – even customising them specifically to your needs where necessary.

 

View larger map

Day 1: Arrival Evora

Guesthouse lounge - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Guesthouse lounge

On arrival in Evora your charming hosts will meet you and bring you to the guesthouse, just outside the town. After settling in they will chat through the next few days, introduce you to your bikes and answer any questions you may have. You will then enjoy a lovely Alentejan meal before retiring in preparation for the next day’s adventure.

Route 1: Arraiolos, 22/28/43 or 47 miles / 36/45/69 or 75 kms

Arraiolos - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Arraiolos

Today’s route follows a lovely quiet greenway cycle path along the route of an old disused railway line. After riding through rolling countryside you will pass small farms and eventually reach Graca do Divor, a beautiful, well preserved village painted in the traditional colours of blue and white. represented. Continue to Arraiolos, another lovely old village, this one guarded by a hilltop castle. The village is known for producing wonderfully intricate, embroidered carpets using an old traditional method. The views from the castle are worth the climb and we can also highly recommend trying the delicious Pasteis de Nata, little egg yolk tartlets. A must to visit is the lovely winery (€6 entrance fee). It is not only a winery but also home to an amazing private collection of carriages and a great place to look around. Then a few miles down the road is a cheese farm, which also produces some very good liqueurs. You can take part in an optional tasting session at the Cheese Farm for a fee of €11 per person to be paid locally. You will then be picked up and transferred back to the guesthouse or cycle back depending on which distance option you have chosen – see below.

Distances:

22 miles/36 kms: If you opt for the  complete itinerary described above plus the transfer back to the guesthouse from the cheese farm. Easy route.

28 miles/ 45 kms: If you ride as far as the winery and then retrace your route to the guesthouse. Leisurely route

43 miles/ 69 kms: If you ride as far as the winery and the cheese farm and then retrace your route to the guesthouse. Moderate route

47 miles/ 75 kms: The itinerary described above and then via a different route back to the guesthouse. Moderate/Challenging route

Terrain: gentle rolling roads, 10 kms on dirt roads

Route 2: Wine and Cork, 26 or 46 miles/42 or 74 kms

Cork trees - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Cork trees

Today’s ride leads you north-eastwards through the rolling, rural countryside to Igrejinha, a typical little Alentejan, village with brightly painted houses. Here you can visit a beautiful local winery if you wish (extra cost) before pedalling on to a cork factory. During your rides in Alentejo you will have passed many cork trees. The bark is harvested regularly and now you get to see how it is processed and transformed into many wonderful cork products. In the same village there is an interesting knife factory, which is certainly worth a visit and where you will receive a warm welcome. Here you will see and see how old working styles and traditions remain in place. Afterwards it’s worth making a small detour of 4 kms to visit a nearby sanctuary to admire the floor to ceiling paintings before pedalling southeastwards to the pretty village of Sao Miguel de Macheda. You then return to the guesthouse either by bike or transfer depending on which distance option you have chosen – see below

Distances

26 miles/ 42 kms: The itinerary as described above plus a transfer back to the guesthouse.

46 miles/74 kms: The itinerary as described above and then returning by bike, via a different route, to the guesthouse.

Terrain: rolling roads

Route 3: Megaliths, 28 miles/45 kms plus transfer

Cromlech Megaliths - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Cromlech of the Almendres megaliths

In the morning you will ride into the nearby town of Évora where you can spend the morning exploring. Perhaps enjoy a coffee at one of the many cafes in the picturesque main square, Praca do Giraldo. We also recommend a walk through the public gardens complete with roaming peacocks! Another must is a visit to the impressive cathedral and the rather surreal and macabre bone chapel. Time permitting, there is an option to indulge in some wine tasting (Bookable locally).

You then leave Évora and ride out into the beautiful Alentejan countryside. The route leads you through vast meadows and shady oak forests to the megalithic complex at Zambujeiros. Besides being the largest and oldest collection of megaliths in the world, very little is known about these mysterous stones. Most believe they had sacred meaning for ear;y inhabitants of this region. From here you can also enjoy fabulous views over the medieval city of Evora, the beautiful Church of Mitra and the Roman Ruins at Nossa Senhora da Tourega, which are situated beside a lovely lake. After you have seen enough the route wends its way back through the Alentejan countryside to the guesthouse.

Terrain: Gently rolling dirt roads

Route 4: Valongo Castle, 31 miles/50 kms

Cyclists in Alentejo

Cyclists in Alentejo

Cycle west today through olive groves along a gently undulating road to the small village of Nossa Senhora de Machede. Visit the traditional leather factory and, during the season, an olive oil mill. Follow the quiet road through rolling countryside to solitary Valongo Castle sitting by a small lake in a sea of wheat fields and vineyards – a great photo opportunity! Ride on along a dirt road to the gorgeous Moinho do Alcaide, a beautiful water mill alongside a clear cool river. Follow the river past several other mills to an asphalt road. At this point you can either take the transfer back to the guesthouse or extend the ride by another 10kms to visit a winery (entrance fee including tasting session approx €8 per person).

Terrain: gentle rolling roads. The last 6 kms on dirt road

Route 5: Évora and Surroundings, 15 – 22 miles/25 – 35 kms

Evora - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Évora

An easier day’s riding today concluding perhaps with a cooking lesson! (additional cost). From the guesthouse you’ll cycle to a cheese factory where, besides learing how the product is made you can also taste it! By the way, this is a very different cheese factory to the one you visited on the route 1 ride.

You then cycle into the gorgeous city of Évora where you can spend the day cycling and visiting several monuments suggested by your hosts. The city is classified by UNESCO as World Heritage Site and there is plenty to do and see. After lunch we suggest you climb to Alto de São Bento, a favorite place for locals to sit and watch the sun set.

The riding is easy except for the climb to Alto the São Bento, which you can chose not to do if you like.

Terrain: mostly flat with a  mix of dirt track and tarmac.

Route 6: Monsaraz, 27 miles/43 kms

Monsaraz - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Monsaraz

Only applicable for 6 & 7 night stays.

After breakfast you are transferred to Reguengos, a small village to the east of Evora and from here you set off on the bikes along level roads. After a while you reach the village of Sao Pedro Do Corval. The village is famous for producing lovely hand-painted pottery, which can be purchased in the workshops around the village. Shortly after leaving Sao Pedro Do Corval you will pass several megalithic monuments before arriving on the shore of Lake Alqueva, Europe’s largest man-made lake. A little cafe on the lake-shore is the perfect place for lunch before ascending to nearby Monsaraz, a unique, fortified village on a hill overlooking the lake. You have to climb the road to the village of course, but it’s not that long and the thought of a refreshment in a shady cafe inside the castle walls spurs you on. The 360 degree view from the ramparts of this idyllic little place and the huge lake  is amazing. In the afternoon you are picked up and transported back to the guesthouse.

Terrain: flat roads except for climb to Monsaraz

Route 7: Estremoz to Terena, 13, 19 or 27 miles/20, 30 or 43 kms

Terena village - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Terena village – Alentejo Cycling Holiday

Only applicable for 6 & 7 night stays.

The day starts with a 45 km tranfer from the guesthouse to Estremoz, a market town of narrow winding streets clustered around an ancient walled castle. You’ll notice an extensive use of marble in this small town, this is due to the local marble quarries that make it an affordable building material in this region. We highly recomend climbing to the top of the 14th century marble tower to take in the impressive views.

From here you ride to the amazing Vila Viçosa, where the localy sourced marble gives an aristocratic look to the village. Here you can also visit the Ducal Palace, built between 1502 and 1700, as well as an intersting marble museum.

Continue through marble land to the town of Alandroal, where marble – the white gold –  once again dominates. Here we recomend a stop at a local cafe. The route then leads you to Terena, a beautiful village with a very floral centre. The ride ends in the amazing fortified sanctuary of Srª da Boa Nova. Even if churches are not your thing, we think you’ll enjoy this one! rom here you are transferred back to the  guest house.

 

Dates & Prices

2019 Arrival Dates
Self-guided
Arrivals daily from 1 March to 31 July & 01 September - 31 October 2019
Guided
09 March, 30 March, 19 October

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2019 Prices
040-101CPT
Per person
01 Mar
to
18 Apr
19 Apr
to
24 Apr
25 Apr
to
30 Jun
01 Jul
to
31 Jul
01 Sep
to
31 Oct
Self Guided
3 nights - double/twin £343 £360 £343 £360 £343            
3 nights - single £461 £477 £461 £477 £461            
4 nights - double/twin £450 £473 £450 £473 £450            
4 nights - single £606 £628 £606 £628 £606            
5 nights - double/twin £534 £562 £534 £562 £534            
5 nights - single £725 £754 £725 £754 £725            
6 nights - double/twin £733 £767 £733 £767 £733            
6 nights - single £948 £983 £948 £983 £948            
7 nights - double/twin £785 £826 £785 £826 £785            
7 nights - single £1037 £1078 £1037 £1078 £1037            
Guided
3 nights - double/twin £558 £574 £558 £574 £558            
3 nights - single £675 £692 £675 £692 £675            
4 nights - double/twin £713 £736 £713 £736 £713            
4 nights - single £869 £892 £869 £892 £869            
5 nights - double/twin £899 £928 £899 £928 £899            
5 nights - single £1091 £1120 £1091 £1120 £1091            
6 nights - double/twin £1109 £1144 £1109 £1144 £1109            
6 nights - single £1324 £1359 £1324 £1359 £1324            
7 nights - double/twin £1157 £1197 £1157 £1197 £1157            
7 nights - single £1408 £1449 £1408 £1449 £1408            
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Deposit per person £100

Price Includes

Accommodation in a beautiful guesthouse
3, 4, 5, 6 or 7 x Breakfast
1 x Dinner on 3 night tour, 2 x Dinner on 4 night tour, 3 x Dinner on 5, 6, or 7 night tour
2 transfers on 3-5 night tour, routes 1-5 only. 3 transfers on 6-7 night tour (with 1 transfer on route 6 or 7)
Guide on route 6 or 7 only
Maps & route information
Bike with pannier & lock. See practical information
Pick up/drop off at Évora bus station
Local assistance
GUIDED tours also include; Guide, entrance to Bones Chapel, Évora's Cathedral, Vila Viçosa's Ducal palace
1 Cheese & liquer tasting
2 Wine tastings (1 only on 3 night tour)

Price Excludes

Flights
Additional transfers, €28 payable locally, for routes 1-5 only
Meals not mentioned
Drinks
Entrance fees (self-guided only)

Supplements

Transfer from Lisbon Airport (min 2 people) (£64)
Transfer to Lisbon Airport (min 2 people) (£64)
Electric bike with pannier & lock, 3 nights (£102)
Electric bike with pannier & lock, 4 nights (£136)
Electric bike with pannier & lock, 5 nights (£170)
Electric bike with pannier & lock, 6 nights (£204)
Electric bike with pannier & lock, 7 nights (£238)
GPS device (£43)
Cooking class at Evora (£33)

Practical Information

Bikes

An example of the bikes used on this tour

Examples of the bikes used on this tour

The bikes provided on this tour are modern, alloy framed hybrid models with 27 speeds and comfortable saddle with upright riding position.

The bikes also come equipped with a rear pannier, lock, repair kit, odometer, back bag, map holder, water bottle and water bottle holder.

E-bikes, smaller framed children’s bikes, and tag-a-longs are also available.

We suggest you bring your own helmet for safety and hygiene reasons. Alternatively, helmets are supplied on arrival.

Accommodation

Alentejo - guesthouse - lounge

Guesthouse – lounge

Everyone falls in love with the beautiful little guesthouse, which is actually a ‘Monte‘ – a traditional Alentejan farmhouse, set in its own quiet grounds a few kilometers outside Évora.

Inside, the property is spacious and comfortable with a rustic, welcoming atmosphere complete with a large lounge with fireplace and a dining room. There are 4 bedrooms with a mix of double and twin beds and each with their own individual theme and colour scheme.

The Cork Room - Alentejo Cycling Holiday

The Cork Room – Alentejo Cycling Holiday

The garden is a magical place with an orchard, an organic vegetable garden and an ancient olive grove. Huge cork oaks grow among granite boulders and beautiful wild flowers bloom among the rocks. Oh yes, and there is also a lovely swimming pool.

Breakfast is included and some evening meals, depending on which package is booked (see prices section for more details on this). On the nights where a meal is not included you can either pay for a meal at the guesthouse or venture into Évora to try one of the many restaurants there.

 

Getting There

Fly to Lisbon and then take a bus or taxi to Lisbon’s Sete Rios central bus station (approx. 15 min). After that you take the bus directly to Évora (approx. 1hr 45min) where you will be met by your hosts.

Research flights from the UK here

Click here to research bus times between Lisbon and Évora.

Gallery

Current rating for this cycling holiday based on 11 reviews 4.8
  • Date - 15/10/2018
  • Name - Lesley McCowan
  • Service rating -
    4.0
  • Service comment - Good we were communicated with well by the localPortugal group and earlier by flexitreks
  • Product rating -
    4.0
  • Product comment - it was very good- the pool was great at end of a hot day
  • Date - 11/10/2018
  • Name - Gill Saunders
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Ally & team always available and happy to help with planning and any pre-trip queries.
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - We had a fabulous time in Alentejo and found the farmhouse accommodation and food excellent, Joanna at Turaventur bikes was extremely helpful and efficient, and the routes around the region perfect for sightseeing. Everyone agreed it was lovely to have a fixed location for the short few days we were there. Lovely touches too with our bags and ceramic gifts!
  • Date - 07/10/2018
  • Name - Marijke Reid
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Ally and the team were really great and lovely to deal with. The accommodation was fantastic and the bikes were really good quality. The local cycling team were very helpful. The only point to note was the timings of the bookings at the wineries which didn't work as they were very late in the day. Having never done a cycling trip before I didn't think to check this but if you cycle and know how fast you cycle then suggest you ensure you book early and get specific times. This was more my error then theirs and I would definitely recommend Flexi treks and will be using them again
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Quiet roads and pretty villages. We did 2 days of cycling in very different terrains one road and one predominantly eco trail so it was lovely to do both. Accommodation was fab with lovely service.
  • Date - 26/09/2018
  • Name - Allan
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - The usual very friendly and efficient service and all easily organised
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Lovely farmhouse as a base with friendly local support team. Good cycling routes with interesting places to visit. Very nice bikes and nice quiet roads. Terrain was challenging in bits but mainly due to heat which was 30 + every day. Good maps and notes from the Flexitrek's local partner. We had the 'wine room' at Monte do Serrado Baixo which was great - the use of the outdoor swimming pool and very nice breakfasts and evening meals prepared by the team at the farmhouse. The town of Evora which is a short trip away from the farmhouse was really historic and interesting with lots of good eating places and interesting shops.
  • Date - 15/06/2018
  • Name - Liz Wilson
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Ali af Flexitreks was fantastic. She answered all my questions and helped in every aspect of the booking from start to finish. Nothing was too mich trouble. I will certainly book through flexitreks again.
  • Product rating -
    4.0
  • Product comment - Fabulous holiday. Really enjoyed ourselves. The staff were very friendly and helpful. The farnhouse was fabulous.
    A couple of teething problems with the cycling directions/ maps were a bit misleading at times but fortunately could see our destination but missed a couple of the things to see. Gave feedback to staff who apologised as they realised there had been mistakes on the map directions and sorted them straight away.
    Also there was a problem with the meal we had booked with the farmhouse on the last night and we ended up having to have a Take out pizza service as there was no catering staff available. The staff were full of apologies and organised the food to be delivered but we were all slightly disappointed.
    May we suggest that maybe a member of staff could clarify every morning or evening what our plans are for dinner either that day or the following day so there can be no misunderstandings as the Farmhouse is far away from restaurants and shops.
    Overal though we all had a great time and loved the farmouse and the cycling.
    I would also like to thank the staff for letting us arrive at the farmhouse early and also invited us to help ourselves to a buffet they had done for some previous customers. This was really appreciated and we were so grateful as had travelled from Lisbon.
  • Flexitreks response - Service rating : This is really appreciated Liz - thank you so much!

    Product : Thanks for the constructive feedback Liz and glad you and your group had a fabulous time overall.
  • Date - 20/05/2018
  • Name - Anonymous
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Very helpful and I didn't need to keep going back to check things..
  • Product rating -
    4.0
  • Product comment - Lovely holiday - fantastic staff and simple accomadation and fantastic cycling.
    Drains not great and we had a blocked sink when we arrived... our shower head didn't sit right so had to hold the shower when using..
  • Flexitreks response - Service rating : That's always good!
    Product : Glad you enjoyed it and sorry about the plumbing issues - which are now resolved by the way.
  • Date - 01/05/2018
  • Name - Julian Harnor
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - god communication about trips etc..
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - great location and accommodation, food etc..
  • Flexitreks response - Glad you enjoyed it Julian.
  • Date - 04/04/2018
  • Name - Jeffery Johnson
  • Service rating -
    4.0
  • Service comment - Great support. No worries about being picked up at the bus terminal once we announced when and where we would arrive
  • Product rating -
    4.0
  • Product comment - It would have been except for the weather, which no one has control over, The only problem we really had was a day scheduled to see a cork manufacturing plant, a knife making company, and a winery, all of which were closed n the day we were scheduled to see them
  • Flexitreks response - Many thanks for the feedback Jeffrey. I'm sorry the weather was less than perfect for you and for the confusion over the opening times of the local attractions.
  • Date - 30/03/2018
  • Name - Chip Treen
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - It was easy to make trip arrangements through Flexitreks via email. They provided the information we needed and resent it when we managed to lose it.
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Very nice tour. The bikes were new, service was good and the meals were very well done. The farm is in a lovely and comfortable rural setting. Staff were friendly and helpful.
  • Flexitreks response - Thanks Chip, we're glad you both had a good time and enjoyed your stay in Alentejo. Thanks also for the email regarding transport options. We'll be sure to pass this on to future customers.
  • Date - 21/07/2016
  • Name - Millie
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - all questions were answered promptly and clearly

    it wasn't clear that the winery and cheese tours had to be especially lined up ahead of time (even though no added cost). luckily the local operator was able to line up one of the two of them for us, and was able to arrange for a great tasting for us (added cost)..
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - enjoyed the hospitality and services provided very much. routes were great. we would never have found them on our own, or any of the interesting little highlights - we stopped at them all..
  • Flexitreks response - We're so glad you enjoyed your cycling break in Alentejo with Teresa - we love this place too!
  • Date - 09/04/2016
  • Name - Anonymous
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Efficient, pleasant and professional
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Accommodation full of character. Staff all charming and couldn't do enough to make our holiday as enjoyable as possible. Good food. Good bicycles
  • Flexitreks response - Many thanks for the lovely review. Ally really enjoyed her stay here too and keeps trying to think up a reason to go back 'on business'!