This 7 day self-guided Douro Valley biking tour in Portugal is of medium difficulty you'll enjoy wine, nature, scenery & traditions in a World Heritage area.
Explore the magical Douro Valley, the natural surroundings, the best cuisine and some of the world’s finest wines, especially Port Wine for which the winemaking region is famous. The 7 day self-guided Douro Valley biking tour in Portugal begins at the easternmost end of the Douro River in the majestic gorge with its more than 200 metres-high cliffs that serve as the border between Portugal and Spain.
Cycle across the highland plateau through the international Douro Nature Reserve, home of over 170 species of birds. Make the most of the breathtaking landscape as you cycle leisurely downriver along old railway tracks through vast forests, almond groves and vine-covered hillsides. Throughout your journey, the Douro Valley will envelop you with its magic, whether you are viewing the river from on high, cycling alongside it, or from a boat.
The Alto Douro Winemaking Region, a Unesco World Heritage Property, is the oldest demarcated and controlled winemaking region worldwide. Unique man-made wine terraces cover the hillsides that rise on either side of the river valley. Many of the world-famous Port Wine estates are located around Pinhão, in the heart of the region, and around Peso da Régua, the capital of the district.
The accommodations are chosen with the greatest care, and each in his own way offers you a taste of local life and customs. You will stay in a long-standing hotel with a view over the river, on a traditional olive oil estate, in an elegant town house and in a family manor house on a quinta (wine estate).
Itinerary for 7 day self-guided Douro Valley biking tour in Portugal
Day 1: Miranda do Douro
Standard starting day: Saturday*
The start of your journey. On your way from Porto airport to the easternmost point of your holiday - Miranda do Douro, enjoy the beautiful landscape and scenery along the way. The landscape of the Douro River Canyon and its over 200 meter-high cliffs is also fascinating. After you arrive, enjoy a walk around the small town of Miranda do Douro, with its typical whitewashed houses and narrow cobbled streets.
Day 2 - Stage 1- Miranda do Douro to Mogadouro
Day 2, the first stage of your biking holiday takes you through the International Douro Nature Reserve, a gentle highland plateau known for its wilderness and landscapes. The stretch you shall cycle will take you across a quiet land, populated by over 170 species of birds, wild boar and the occasional Iberian wolf. Even the goats and cattle make little noise. In the sky overhead, you may see a rare Golden Eagle or an Egyptian vulture.
- Dinner included
Day 3 - Stage 2 – Mogadouro to Torre de Moncorvo
Today’s tour takes you along a former railway line. The ecotrail runs past forests, across fields, a typical agricultural landscape and a few scattered woods. Although the shepherds you meet may not speak your language, they are extremely friendly and happy to pose for photos. Continue along olive and almond groves until you reach medieval Torre de Moncorvo, the Capital of the Almond Blossom Festival. You will be warmly greeted by your host at an elegant town house where you may have a chance to sample her homemade liqueurs, which go beautifully with the locally-grown Moncorvo almonds.
Day 4 - Stage 3 – Torre de Moncorvo to Vila Flor
On day 4, you will cycle alongside the River Douro for the first time. Prepare yourself for stunning views and a magical landscape. The descent to the river takes you through olive groves that produce some of the best olive oil in the world. That night, you will stay on a quinta, or farming estate, producing traditional and organic olive oil. You will be served some of the finest local cuisine for dinner – homemade cheeses, sausages, baked bread and olive oil, home-grown oranges and homemade wine. Located apparently in the middle of nowhere, the quinta is so quiet, the night sky is so clear, an after dinner stargazing walk will prove irresistible.
- Dinner included
Day 5 - Stage 4 – Vila Flôr to Sabrosa
The Alto Douro Winemaking Region is famous for its wines. First and foremost is Port Wine, but the region also produces prize-winning red wines from the Touriga grape. The terraced vineyards, so typical of the region that is listed as a Unesco World Heritage Property, were carved by men from the hillsides. The neatly-kept wine estates, or quintas, rise proudly amidst the vineyards, their names clearly visible to everyone who passes. When you arrive at the river’s edge, load your bike on a Rabelo boat and enjoy the trip to Pinhão, the next stop, around which most of the famous Port wine estates are located. Don’t forget to visit the beautifully-tiled train station. The seventeenth-century house where you will spend the night is located on the hillside above the town and has magnificent views.
- Boat cruise and transfer from final spot to the accommodation included
Day 6 - Stage 5 – Sabrosa to Peso da Régua
The last stage of your biking holiday begins with a trail that takes you along the back roads of the Douro valley and then a gentle cycle path back to the riverside with views that are nothing less than breath-taking, as if the Douro Valley wants to ensure that you will never forget its magic after you leave.
At the end of the day, you will arrive in Peso da Régua, the centre of the Port wine-growing region and the capital of the Douro district. The owner of one of the quintas will welcome you with a fine wine on the terrace and invite you to share a cooking experience with her.
Day 7 – Peso da Régua to Porto
Transfer to Porto airport.
End of the 7 day self-guided Douro Valley biking tour in Portugal.
*For 2-3 people, to start in a different day of the week, a supplement fee applies. This fee isn't applicable to 4 or more persons