The Algarve is Europe’s Hidden Cycling Gem
The Algarve is becoming a highly popular destination for serious road cycling; with its vast open roads and hilly terrain. Boasting over 300 days of sunshine per year, the Algarve is the ideal year round cycling destination.
Each February, the region hosts the annual pro tour event, The Tour of Algarve which is used by many top pro riders to prepare for the Spring Classics.
Whether you are following in their wheel tracks or taking in the dramatic coastal routes or winding through the rolling hills of the Paderne Valley or tackling the challenging climb up to Foia, the highest peak in the Monchique mountain range, the Algarve has something to challenge all levels of rider.
Algarve Cycling Week
Activity: One centre, guided
Bike type: Road bike
Duration: 7 nights, 6 days cycling
Activity Level: Intermediate
Accommodation: 4 star hotel
Daily Average: 95 km
Price: From £590 + Flights
This holiday is ideal for enthusiastic cyclists who want to improve their fitness, whilst enjoying the excellent cycling conditions the Algarve has to offer. Our action-packed cycling programme includes 5 guided tours along scenic cycling routes.
Based in a quality 4 star hotel on the main beach in Albufeira, there will be plenty of time to recover from your day’s cycling, as the hotel features an outdoor pool, gym, wellness and spa facilities, including hydro massage and Turkish bath.
Below is our suggested cycling programme which, from experience, works well for most. However, routes can be altered to suit different groups, varying pace, distance and climbs according to ability.
Day 1: Arrival
Upon your arrival in the Algarve, we will transfer to your hotel accommodation in the lively fishing town of Albufeira. We recommend you plan to arrive Sunday, allowing you to join all of our 5 guided tours during the week starting Monday.
Day 2: Albufeira – Ferragudo: 77 km
After your morning briefing and bike fitting, you will head west along the coastal cycling route through Armação de Pêra, Benagil, Carvoeiro and on towards Ferragudo, a pretty village on the eastern bank of the Arade river. From here you will travel inland to the historical town of Silves, before returning to Albufeira along traffic calmed roads in the picturesque countryside.
Day 3: Albufeira – Benafim: 83 km
Today’s route takes you inland to Benafim, a small town set amongst rolling hills and countryside, away from the hustle and bustle of the traditional tourist resorts. It is a little more challenging, but you are rewarded with superb views of the surrounding area, as well as the chance to savour the peace and quiet of agricultural life, amidst lush fields and cultivated farmland.
Day 4: Albufeira – Malhão: 90 km
Taking yesterday’s experience one step further, you will head into the central Caldeirão hills and join a classic training route up to the Alto de Malhão. It is a fairly long climb of 2500 metres and will test your fitness, but you will enjoy the satisfaction of knowing you have completed an important stage in the pro Tour of Algarve!
Day 5: Albufeira – Querença: 101 km
This is a day to fully appreciate road cycling in the ‘real’ Algarve. Starting from Albufeira you will cycle inland to Tor, a traditional rural village that remains largely unchanged, Gently cruising on low traffic, good quality roads it’s a picturesque circuit, avoiding major climbs and clocking up plenty of kilometres. It’s hard to resist a quick detour to Querença, though; a hilltop village, characterized by white houses and a medieval church. It’s a short, steep climb, but well worth a coffee stop to take in the parochial atmosphere and surrounding countryside views.
Day 6: Albufeira – Foía: 134 km
This is your last opportunity to make the most out of your time in the Algarve. Foía is the Algarve’s highest peak (902 mtrs) situated in the Monchique mountain range. The southern and northern ascent of the Monchique slopes offers several route possibilities, with varied distances and altitude. We also have different options for your return to the coast, with routes between 120 and 160 kms. You can be sure that this last day of riding will take you through contrasting scenery and will be a satisfying finish to our guided group tours this week.
Day 7: Free Programme
Cyclists who arrived on Sunday have an extra day to finish off your holiday. You can spend it at leisure (there are plenty of activities available locally) or, if you opted for bike hire with us, the use of your top quality carbon fibre bike is included for this day. So you can take the opportunity to re-visit some of your favourite places, ending your week’s cycling in the Algarve.
Day 8: Departure
We will transfer you from your hotel for your journey home.
The Algarve is fast becoming the ‘go to’ place for Road Bikers, with it’s quiet roads, challenging routes and mild winter climes. This is the second year of the Algarve Granfondo, a Cyclo Sportive that promises to be very popular amongst Pros and amateurs alike.