Most Inspirational Moment
Getting my cycling nerve back (I’d crashed on my ebike earlier in the year and broken my wrist) and realising I could mountain bike over the sandy, rocky, bits when you had to use the skills demonstrated on the first day,
Thoughts on Group Leader
Ricardo was very helpful and keen to enable us to have a good experience. He is passionate about this section of Portugal, wanting to share it with others. Each day he asked for feedback on the trip as this was the 2nd time it had run, so they can improve the experience for future trips. He tried his best to make sure people’s needs were met, and looked after us well. Vitor, who was the support, looked after the bikes well. My only suggestion would be they make sure the e-bikes have a large enough battery to make it to the end of the ride and that even if it looks like it has enough battery charge, they are still charged every night. They did provide another battery in the vehicle half way through, but the first days ride was stressful not knowing if I was going to be riding on a heavy ebike without any battery by the end.
Advice for Potential Travellers
There are long sections that are off road, on loose grit, and sandy tracks, at times the bike ground to a halt. You are on mountain bikes for a reason. Ricardo gave us a lesson in how to ride over sand and down a short steep tricky section on day 1, so we knew the technique, the real thing didn’t feel quite so bad (I didn’t even attempt it on day 1 but did manage the real thing) and felt quite chuffed.
I don’t like edges and drops, but the riding on the cliffs was fine, the paths are wide, and not near the edge.
Flight from London on the Sunday was 7 in the morning so got to Lisbon mid morning. The hotel is about 2 miles out, so look up how to use the transport system before you arrive if you want to see Lisbon. As the temperature was 30 degrees and tired from early flight I didn’t bother and wondered around the local area.
We had NO information on arrival, just left at the hotel. The letter with what was happening was provided at the end of the afternoon, but didn’t meet the guide until the following day, even though the letter clearly stated what time we arrived at the hotel. As a solo traveller I didn’t feel it was a great start to the holiday. Trip really starts on the Monday, not the Sunday which is when you are transferred to Setubal and that’s when we had the trip briefing. The last day the flight was end of the day so we had majority of the morning to enjoy the hotel facilities and left after lunch.