11 Days - 11 Nights
|Total Time||12 Days|
|Hotel Overnights||11 Nights|
|Total Distance||2000 Kms|
|Riding Days||8 Days|
|Breakfast||11 Included breakfasts|
|Riding Season||May to Sep|
Madrid,Lisbon, Portugal’s capital city, Lagos, Seville, Malaga, Granada
Good handpicked mid-range quality hotels on twin sharing basis for 11 nights
Welcome traveler, to a spectacular mix of culture, history, temperate climate, crystal clear seas, panoramic views, regional gastronomy, beautiful sunsets and off course great biking roads. This in a nut shell is the awesome tour of South Western Spain and Portugal.
You should plan to land in, Madrid at around noon as the hotel check in normally is at 2 pm. Your guides will be at the airport to receive you and take you to the hotel. Do a quick check-in into your hotel, You will then have time to rest and visit the city until we meet up again in the evening for a welcome briefing in the hotel. As each city in Spain, Madrid also offers unique and fascinating things to experience and discover. It is a city of elegant boulevards and expansive, manicured parks and is renowned for its rich repositories of European art, including the Prado Museum’s works by Goya, Velázquez and other Spanish masters. There is a huge amount to see and do here, be it food, Flamenco dancers, historic landmarks as well as excellent nightlife in terms of bars, clubs and entertainment.
In the morning we pick up the bikes and ride out to Extremadura on E- 90, a western Spanish region, off the beaten track, but a treasure cove of historic places and natural environment, comprising of mountains, forests, lakes and reserves, notably Monfragüe National Park and Cornalvo Natural Park, both sheltering diverse birdlife. Along the way we visit, the walled hill top town of Galisteo, a town completely surrounded by walls, on offer is a quite walk in the streets and spendid view of the countryside from the ramparts and another must do is, town of Montanchez, a hill town with a magnificent castle, before we reach one of Spain’s best kept secrets and our destination of the day, Mérida, located on the major trade route during Roman Empire and capital of once Roman province of Lusitania, is the finest ensemble of Roman ruins, including aqueducts, theaters, circus and a bridge over the Guadiana River. You would like the simplicity of this place.
Heading west, leaving Merida as the rolling landscape of Extremadura, cork and oak terrain seamlessly blends into the Portuguese region of Alentejo, characterized by long sweepers, rolling hills and castle fortresses on every hilltop towards Lisbon, evoking conquests and battles of the years bygone- full of the heroism and romance. Roman, Moor and Christian Influences can be seen everywhere, which have shaped the people and nature of this region over the centuries, , upon which Portugal struggled to become a nation. We stop for lunch at Evora, a delightful city with intriguing history and traditions going back generations. It makes an absorbing experience which is highly recommended. Moving on towards Lisbon, experience more of whitewashed houses, slow paced life and unhurried coffee.
Today you can explore Portugal’s capital city, figuring in top 10 must visit cities, along with a glorious weather year around, this second oldest city in Europe, still shares many bonds with its intriguing past. Palaces, churches and monumental castles all make up its rich history. Built atop seven hills, and once home to explorers like Vasco da Gama and Magellan, it offers an incredible variety of attractions which hold appeal to all tastes and senses. At night you’ll discover the vibrant nightlife in the countless restaurants and bars. It’s old, it’s modern but it’s always fascinating.
This is another long day with lot of riding and sightseeing. We ride out of Lisbon, along the Atlantic coast, on the back roads passing through the towns of Sesimbra and Alcacer do Sal onwards to Sines, a scenic drive offering great places for photography. Further along the way, we continue to ride the beautiful Southern Portuguese coast and visit the Cape St. Vincent lighthouse, famous in maritime history for its strategic location. The ancient Greeks called it Ophiussa (Land of Serpents), The Romans called it Promontorium Sacrum (or Holy Promontory). They considered it a magical place where the sunset was much larger than anywhere else This cape is the southwestern most point in Portugal. The cape is a landmark for a ship traveling to or from the Mediterraneans. The cliffs rise nearly vertically from the Atlantic to a height of 75 meters. We now head for our destination for the day Lagos, a city with buzzing atmosphere, stunning beaches and unique rock formations set in turquoise Atlantic ocean.
Riding East, it’s time to say goodbye to Portugal, and the serene beauty of the Portuguese landscapes. As you ride on to Andalusian soil, (Andalusia is a large autonomous region of hills, rivers and farmland bordering Spain’s southern coast) a land of culture, history, fiestas, nature areas and excellent food, you get into the western foothills of the Sierra Morena and the Sierra de Aracena, place full of magnificent motorcycle roads, a perfect riding country. After a perfect riding day you’ll arrive at the capitol of Andalusia, Seville.
According to legend, Sevilla or Seville, was founded by Hercules and its origins are linked with the Tartessian civilisation. It was called Hispalis under the Romans and Isbiliya with the Moors. It was under Moorish rule from the 8th-15th centuries, a legacy that shows in its architecture, including such landmarks as the Alcázar castle in Seville. For all its important monuments and fascinating history, Sevilla is universally famous for being a joyous town. You can't come to Andalucia without seeing a flamenco show; here the nightly performances are top-notch. Seville's cathedral, Santa Maria de la Sede, is the largest Gothic cathedral in the world, the tomb of Christopher Columbus, is one of the main attractions of the cathedral. There is plenty more for a visitor to do, time permitting.
On our way to to Malaga two main attractions which deserve a visit are the village of Arcos de la Frontera, one of Andalucia's most dramatically positioned pueblos blancos (white villages), Arcos balances atop a rocky limestone ridge. The town's suffix de la Frontera (of the frontier) was added in 1250 following the Christian conquest, it denotes struggle for territory. Second being, Ronda, despite being Andalucía's fastest-growing town, it retains much of its historic charm, particularly its old town. It is famous worldwide for its dramatic escarpments and views, and for the deep El Tajo gorge that carries the rio Guadalevín through its centre. 18th century Puente Nuevo 'new' bridge, which straddles the 100m chasm below, for its unparalleled views out over the Serranía de Ronda mountains. We finish the day with reaching Malaga City the capital of the Costa del Sol. A must do in Malaga is take a view from the Gibralfaro over Malaga's bullring and port.
Another day filled with exploration of European beauty and nature, we start the day by leaving Malaga and riding north through the Malaga National Park which straddles dramatically beautiful mountainous region of the Axarquía, with its rushing streams and magnificent waterfalls. We then turn back towards south towards blue waters of the Mediterranean or Costa del Sol, The Costa del Sol is the coastline of Málaga province, stretching 150km it is one of Spain's most popular tourist destinations. We’ll continue along the coast, enjoying the beauty of the Mediterranean before climbing into the Sierra Nevada mountains that separate the coast from Granada.
Granada is a city in southern Spain’s Andalusia region, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. It's known for grand examples of medieval architecture dating to the Moorish occupation, especially the Alhambra. This sprawling hilltop fortress complex encompasses royal palaces, serene patios, and reflecting pools from the Nasrid dynasty, as well as the fountains and orchards of the Generalife gardens. Granada was first settled by native tribes in the prehistoric period, and was known as Ilbyr. When the Romans colonised southern Spain, they built their own city here and called it Illibris. The Arabs, invading the peninsula in the 8th century, gave it its current name of Granada.
Today, it’s an easy run for Madrid, A44 and E5 Auto route all the way. A scenic drive through mountain, valleys, vineyards and orange groves on very good motorways. If you have time on your hands a good diversion is Toledo, an ancient city set on a hill above the plains of Castilla-La Mancha in central Spain. it’s known for the medieval Arab, Jewish and Christian monuments in its walled old city. To complete your journey from Toledo, take the AP-41 for 60kms, and take the exit onto the R-5 and continue towards Madrid. As you drive into the city you will witness the magnificent scenery, this is a great opportunity to take a few snaps for great memories. Within an hour, your journey will end in the Famous Spanish City of Madrid.