DISCOVER THE DOURO REGION BY BIKE, THE MAGICAL LANDSCAPES, THE VINEYARDS AND THE PEOPLE, ALWAYS WITH THE DOURO RIVER AS BACKGROND.
Your biking holiday in the Douro will acquaint you with fascinating, magical natural surroundings, the best cuisine and some of the world’s finest wines including, of course, Port Wine for which the region is famous. Visit Pinhão, around which most of the famous Port wine estates are located, and Peso da Régua, the International Capital of Wine and Vineyards. The accommodations are chosen with the greatest care, and each in their own way offers you a taste of local life and customs. You will stay in a time-honoured hotel with a view of the river canyon, on a traditional olive oil estate, in an elegant townhouse, and on a farm (wine estate), a Douro manor where you may assist the owner in the kitchen if you wish so. Day 1 – Miranda do Douro 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 that unfold along the way like a painting of green trees and grey and brown rocks, hills, and mountains, crowned by a blue sky. The Douro River Canyon and it’s over 200 meter-high cliffs also offers a fascinating landscape. The small town of Miranda do Douro, with its typical whitewashed houses, its Roman origins, and narrow cobbled streets deserves an exploratory walk. Day 2 – Miranda do Douro to Mogadouro The first stage of your biking holiday takes you through some of the eastern parts of the International Douro Nature Reserve. Wilderness and radiant landscapes are its most striking characteristics. The stretch you shall cycle along is a gentle one, across a highland plateau. This is a quiet land, populated by over 170 species of birds, wild boars, and the occasional Iberian wolf. Even the farmers shepherd their goats and cattle in silence. Study the skies to see an Egyptian vulture or a Bonelli’s eagle. – Arrival at Café Montanha, in Mogadouro – Transfer at 15h00 to the accommodation Day 3 – Mogadouro to Torre de Moncorvo Today you will gently follow the path of a former railway track. The eco trail takes you past forests and across a typical agricultural landscape. The few woods you will cycle through are scattered around. Although the shepherds you meet will not be able to understand you, they are extremely friendly and happy to pose for photos. You will cycle along olive and almond groves until you reach medieval Torre de Moncorvo, the Capital of Blossoming Almond Trees. In Torre de Moncorvo, you will be warmly greeted by your host at an elegant townhouse. Your host takes great pride in the accommodation she offers and, if you are lucky, you will get a chance to enjoy her homemade liquors, which go beautifully with the locally-grown Moncorvo almonds. Day 4 – 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 down 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 farm, or farming estate, producing traditional and organic olive oil. For dinner, you will be served some of the finest local cuisine – homemade cheeses, sausages, baked bread and olive oil, home-grown oranges and of course, homemade wine. Apparently, in the middle of nowhere, it is so quiet, the night sky is so clear, that stargazing walk after dinner is an absolute must. Day 5 – Vila Flor to Sabrosa The Alto Douro Winemaking Region is famous for its wines. First and foremost is Port Wine, but the region also produces world-famous red wines from the Touriga grape. The terraced vineyards, so typical of the region that is listed as a Unesco World Heritage Property, are a delight to the eye. The neatly-kept wine estates, or quintas, rise proudly amidst the vineyards, their names clearly visible to everyone who passes. You will enjoy arriving at the river’s edge and putting your bike on a Rabelo boat that in earlier days transported barrels of wine downriver to Porto. As you relax in the sun and photograph the surrounding landscape, the Douro region will once again enfold you in its magic. Pinhão, where most of the famous Port wine estates are located, is the next stop. Don’t forget to visit the beautiful train station. The seventeenth-century house where you will spend the night is located on the hillside, above the town. – Transfer to Samões in the morning – starting point – Transfer on a rabelo boat to Pinhão at 11h45 – Transfer from Pinhão train station to the accommodation in Sabrosa at 15h00 Day 6 – Sabrosa to Peso da Régua It will not be easy for you to say good-bye to your kind landlady. First, the biking route will take you through the back roads of the Douro, then you will cycle gently back to the riverside. The views are nothing less than breath-taking, as if the Douro Valley, knowing that it is the last stage of your biking holiday, wants to ensure that you will never forget its magical beauty. At the end of this beautiful day, you will arrive in Peso da Régua, the International Capital of Wine and Vineyards, at the centre of the Port wine-growing region. Here, 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
EQUIPMENT FOR THE ACTIVITY
EVERYTHING NOT MENTIONED AS INCLUDED
Wear: comfortable athletic clothing, hat, jacket, and sunscreen.
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