Portugal cycling vacations travel guide


Given that nearly all Portugal cycling vacations are tailor made and designed so that you can get yourself from A to B, it shows how well set up this wonderful country is for pedal pushers. A to B being somewhat accurate, as the Algarve and Alentejo are the most popular regions for cycling, and well, there is always a beach at the end of the trail, it would seem. Life is definitely a beach in Portugal. Especially if you follow its magnificent Ecovia do Litoral Cycling trail, which is littoral loveliness for over 200km along its southern coast all the way to the Spanish border. This Algarve coast is not too taxing either, although there are a few stretches through the foothills of the Algarve Mountains that will make you earn your views and vinho. Northern Portugal cycling is also superb and, particularly outside of the peak summer months when you will have the coastal paths around Porto or Peneda-Gerês National Park all to yourself.

Read more in our Portugal cycling vacations travel guide.

Is a cycling vacation in Portugal for you?

Responsible Travel recommends

Go on a Portugal cycling vacation if…

… you are looking for all-year-round cycling, and with plenty of sunshine. Southern Portugal boasts 300 days of sunshine a year and relatively little rain.
… you enjoy independent cycling, as most of our vacations are self guided, with your luggage transported for you. There are guided family vacations in the north of the country, however. Most vacations are also B&B only, leaving you freedom to budget for other meals accordingly.
… a linear coastal route, dipping in and out of bays and lagoons, is your idea of heaven. The Algarve has it covered, with the Ecovia do Litoral Trail. On your bike, all inclusive resorts – we bring our guests pedalling through the real Algarve.
… you want tranquil, rural cycling with wonderful accommodation. From traditional ‘quinta’ houses to five star hotels, Portugal is not short of wonderful places to stay. And to suit all budgets too.

Don’t go on a Portugal cycling vacation if...

… you want the Tour de France. Most cycling vacations in Portugal take a leisurely pace, usually no more than about 60km per day. There are a lot of beaches and magnificent restaurants to enjoy along the way.
… you don’t like exploring off the beaten track. Apart from some resorts and over-manicured golf courses, Portugal is off the beaten track-tastic.
… you want flashy restaurants and champagne on tap. Portugal is very passionate about cuisine, but not posey about it. From fish to fine wine, pork to pastries, you will never go hungry. The fresh fish in Fuseta and Olhao, in particular, is unforgettable.
… you want to cycle in July and August. Most cycling companies don’t really recommend it, as it gets seriously hot and also the popular routes such as the Algarve are often more crowded. The shoulder seasons are sublime though. In fact all other months are perfect for cycling.

Best time to go on a Portugal cycling vacation


With some regions boasting 300 days of sunshine a year, there are few bad times to go cycling in Portugal except when the temperatures are soaring of course, which is during July and August. Inland Alentejo, for example, can hit 40C during these months, although the coasts do get a cooling breeze. Flowers come into blossom as early as February, particularly in Alentejo and the Algarve, as you cycle through wafts of almond blossom. This superb climate means that cycling vacations for families are a great option for half terms too; especially October, when the sea is still warm.
Photo credits: [Topbox: francois schnell] [Temp chart: Bert Kaufmann] [Helpdesk: Herdade da Comporta ]
Written by Catherine Mack
Portugal cycling vacations, self guided

Portugal cycling vacations, self guided

Tranquility cycling vacations

From 549 8 days ex flights
Cycling vacation in Portugal, self guided

Cycling vacation in Portugal, self guided

A leisurely cycling vacation in the Algarve

From 539 7 Days ex flights
Algarve cycling holiday in Portugal

Algarve cycling vacation in Portugal

Western Algarve self guided biking vacation

From £1269 7 Days inc UK flights
Alto Alentejo cycling tour in Portugal, self guided

Alto Alentejo cycling tour in Portugal, self guided

Cycle on the Alentejo backroads of Portugal countryside

From 1790 8 Days ex flights
Portugal mountain bike tour

Portugal mountain bike tour

Self guided biking tour in Portuguese Historical Villages

From 990 7 Days ex flights
Alentejo & Algarve self guided biking vacation, Portugal

Alentejo & Algarve self guided biking vacation, Portugal

90% asfalt and 10% of the best coastal tracks in Europe

From 600 8 Days ex flights
Algarve self guided cycling tour

Algarve self guided cycling tour

Dramatic coastline to picturesque countryside in the Algarve

From 700 8 Days ex flights
Terceira cycling holiday in the Azores, self guided

Terceira cycling vacation in the Azores, self guided

Self guided cycling vacation on the island of Terceira

From 895 7 Days ex flights
Porto to Lisbon cycling holiday, self guided

Porto to Lisbon cycling vacation, self guided

Family Cycling Vacations in Portugal | Self-Guided

From 895 8 Days ex flights
Family biking vacation in Portugal, 5 days

Family biking vacation in Portugal, 5 days

A leisurely cycling vacation in the North Portugal

From 450 5 Days ex flights
Photo credits: [Page banner: alynst]
Convert currencies