Cycling in 'The Real Algarve'

From $1453 per person

****# Based on 16 customer reviews
  • Visit Cabo de Sao Vicente, Europe's most south-westerly point known as the 'Sacred Promontory'
  • Bird-spotter's paradise; endemic and migratory species from Europe and North Africa
  • Superb variety of hotels, all with pools and great regional cuisine
  • Peaceful cycle routes; contrasting coast and the lush green interior
  • Sagres and Lagos - beautiful coastal towns with a rich maritime history

What's included?

  • 6 nights, hotel-to-hotel
  • Departs Every two days from 20 Oct '16 to 23 May '18
  • All continental breakfasts, and 5 evening meals included
  • Managed locally by Headwater employed representative
  • Sustainability rating: 87%
  • Route notes and maps provided
  • High quality bikes provided
  • Luggage transfers between hotels

Excellent for...

Departures from 7 January to 11 February 2017 will be staying at the Pousada de Sagres for the first and last night instead of the Memmo Baleeira, hotel details are included in the Hotels section.

Cycling in 'The Real Algarve'

The western Algarve, a land away from the touristy towns of the central coast, is an area of stunning cliff tops, quiet fishermen's villages and lush green interior. It's also a birdwatcher's paradise and whilst autumn and spring bring in the huge migrations, winter sees numerous endemic bird species. Winter is more akin to springtime in the UK, meaning you can enjoy the warm temperatures and beautiful beaches of the Algarve from September right through to May.

Our six night holiday takes you along quiet roads and sun-kissed cycle tracks. You'll cycle along beautiful coastlines enjoying a mix of golden sandy beaches and rugged cliff tops, and pass through pretty villages, some of which seem unaffected by the outside world. Country lanes take you into the lush green interior passing large reservoirs, alpine-like meadows and rich holm oak forests. Visit the historic maritime towns of Sagres and Lagos; Henry the Navigator lived here, and built his own fortress at Sagres, near to where you'll find Cabo de Sao Vicente, Europe's south-western cape, with its iconic lighthouse and fascinating museum.

We have hand-picked three wonderful hotels all with their own charm. These include a modern 4-star design hotel perched on a cliff in Sagres, a 4-star hotel in Lagos full of Portuguese colonial charm and a hotel in Pedralva, where the village houses have been rustically renovated to create individual rooms. All hotels have pools with Sagres and Lagos boasting covered ones. Most evening meals are included so you can dine on the freshest salads, seafood or excellent meat accompanied by tasty cheeses and chouricos, washed down with a selection of Portuguese wines.

Read press reviews of this holiday in Mail on Sunday.

Day-by-day itinerary

Day 1 - Arrive at Sagres

Arrive at the wonderful coastal town of Sagres in time for dinner at the hotel.

Day 2 - Sagres to Lagos 39km/24.5mi

From Sagres head inland, mostly following the Ecovia, a national cycle trail. Pass shepherds tending their flocks before meeting the coast again in time for lunch. The villages of Salema, Burgau and Luz have great sandy beaches and offer rustic restaurants with al fresco dining; grilled fresh fish with zesty lemon is a favourite dish. You end the day at Lagos and your wonderfully atmospheric 4-star hotel.

Day 3 - At Lagos

Lagos is encircled by C14 walls - the stone work and architecture you'll find hidden within these is a delight. Ornate churches date from the C13, and tangled cobbled lanes lead to new discoveries around every corner. Visit the new marina and the lively fish market (held daily), and join the locals for coffee in one of the many bars. Popular coastal walks lead to Ponte da Piedade lighthouse and from Porto de Mos to Luz, both offering outstanding sea views.

Day 4 - Lagos to Pedralva 51km/32mi or 41km/26mi

You have a choice of routes today, with both taking you along the promenade at Lagos, before heading inland to Odiaxere where you can choose a shorter option that has fewer climbs and takes you through lovely villages on winding roads, giving you a real insight into local life. The longer route takes you past the beautiful Bravura reservoir and pretty alpine-like hamlets and meadows, meeting the coast in picturesque Carrapateira. Then it's on to Pedralva, a village where each house has been restored to create individual hotel rooms.

Day 5 - At Pedralva

Aldeia da Pedralva is a wonderful rural retreat and you could easily spend the day relaxing in the village. If you fancy doing more you can follow one of our routes taking you out along the cliff tops with great views of the coast, or return to Carrapateira to visit the Land and Sea Museum and have a leisurely lunch.

Day 6 - Pedralva to Sagres 29km/18.5mi or 31km/19.5mi

There's two options today but both routes are fairly short allowing you time to visit the lighthouse at Cabo de Sao Vicente and Sagres Fortress, built by Henry the Navigator. The longer route is on off-road tracks passing holm oak forests. Both routes give great views of the Serra de Monchique passing through Vila do Bispo, a nice lunch stop with its beautiful C17 church. From Vila do Bispo head out across the Vicente peninsula to Cabo de Sao Vicente and the southwestern tip of Europe before following the coast road back to Sagres.

Day 7 - Leave Sagres

Where you stay

During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking. You can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss accommodation options.

If you'd like to keep your bikes with you for any extra nights we can arrange this for you for just £25 per adult per day. Please contact us on 1-800-567-6286 for further details.

Hotel Memmo Baleeira, Sagres   (4 star)

Hotel Memmo Baleeira, Sagres

This design hotel is perfectly situated overlooking the stunning bay on the edge of Sagres. The rooms are minimalistic in design and feature all amenities. The restaurant here prides itself on serving the best of the local seafood, whilst the hotel offers free use of the Turkish bath, Sauna and indoor pool, the perfect tonic after a day exploring this stunning area.

Please note this hotel is not available from 8 January - 10 February 2017 and will be replaced with the Pousada de Sagres.

Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Local facilities:

  • Mastercard accepted
  • American Express accepted
  • Swimming pool
  • Hairdryer
  • Wifi hotspot
  • Television
  • Minibar
  • Air conditioning
  • Safe

Nearby facilities:

  • Shops
  • Banking / cheques cashed
  • ATM / Cash machine

Pousada de Sagres Infante, Sagres   (4 star)

Pousada de Sagres

The Pousada de Sagres, Infante, is a lovely hotel with 270 degree views of the Atlantic sea below. On the west side there are great views of Sagres Fortress and Cabo de Sao Vicente in the distance.

The hotel has a lovely outdoor pool with views of the fortress, there are also massage rooms and a large lounge. The rooms all have balcony or terrace and sea views.

This hotel will be used for first and last night stays between 8 January and 10 February 2017.

Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Local facilities:

  • Mastercard accepted
  • American Express accepted
  • Swimming pool
  • Hairdryer
  • Wifi hotspot
  • Television
  • Minibar
  • Air conditioning
  • Safe

Nearby facilities:

  • Shops
  • Banking / cheques cashed
  • ATM / Cash machine

Costa D'Oiro, Lagos   (4 star)

Costa D'Oiro, Lagos

Tucked away just a kilometre from Lagos old town this lovely hotel offers a relaxing tranquil stay. The rooms are different depending on which villa you stay in mixing a multitude of Portuguese and colonial designs.

Food here is a real Portuguese affair including a complete breakfast section of Portuguese specialities. It is easy to walk to Lagos old town, the Dona Ana beach, one of Portugal’s best and the famous light house at Ponta da Piedade.

Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Local facilities:

  • Mastercard accepted
  • American Express accepted
  • Swimming pool
  • Hairdryer
  • Wifi hotspot
  • Television
  • Minibar
  • Air conditioning
  • Safe

Nearby facilities:

  • Shops
  • Market
  • Banking / cheques cashed
  • ATM / Cash machine

Aldeia da Pedralva , Pedralva   (3 acorns)

Aldeia da Pedralva , Pedralva

This is a magical place, a real find. Just 10 years ago the village of Pedralva was a ruin with houses just left to rot by owners who no longer wanted to live in the countryside. However, Antonio Ferreira, your host at the Aldeia da Pedralva, initially decided to buy a couple of houses, but eventually renovated 24 which have been beautifully restored to create 24 rooms. The village itself is surrounded by verdant nature parks and offers great walking and cycling possibilities. Food here is rustic Portuguese, simple in terms of ingredients but mouth watering in terms of quality, flavour and freshness.

Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Local facilities:

  • Shops
  • Mastercard accepted
  • Swimming pool
  • Hairdryer
  • Wifi hotspot

Extra nights and stop over hotels

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra nights at the start or end, or if you'd like to arrange a stop off point en-route, then we recommend the following hotels.

Pousada Palacio de Estoi, Faro   (4 star)

Pool at the Pousada de Faro

The Pousada de Faro, is situated in the small village of Estoi, just a 25 minute bus journey or 15 minute taxi ride from Faro. Set in the hills overlooking Faro and the coast, this wonderful hotel was born from the ruins of the Palacio de Estoi. A C18 Rococo palace once owned by the viscount of Estoi, it has been painstakingly restored to its former glory and provides a relaxing haven complete with beautiful pool just above bustling Faro and just a twenty minute walk to the Roman excavated village of Milreu.

Whilst keeping an eye to the past, the rooms have a modern fresh feel all of a good size, with views down to the coast. The hotel boasts a large SPA complete with sauna and Turkish bath. There is a nice restaurant offering set menus and a la carte.

Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Local facilities:

  • Mastercard accepted
  • American Express accepted
  • Diners Club card accepted
  • Swimming pool
  • Hairdryer
  • Wifi hotspot
  • Internet access
  • Television
  • Minibar
  • Air conditioning
  • Safe

Nearby facilities:

  • Shops
  • Market
  • Banking / cheques cashed
  • ATM / Cash machine

Hotel Lisboa Plaza, Lisbon   (4 Star)

Hotel Lisboa Plaza, Lisbon

Owned by the same family since 1953, the 4-star Hotel Lisboa Plaza is an imaginatively designed hotel, just off the famous Avenida da Liberdade. All rooms have en-suite marble floored bathrooms, air conditioning, satellite television, direct dial telephones, hairdryers and mini-bar. The public rooms are elegantly furnished and there is a pleasant bar and dining room.

Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Local facilities:

  • Shops
  • Market
  • Banking / cheques cashed
  • ATM / Cash machine
  • Mastercard accepted
  • American Express accepted
  • Hairdryer
  • Wifi hotspot
  • Television
  • Minibar
  • Air conditioning
  • Safe

Travel options

Transfers included from Faro airport at 11:50 Oct & Apr-May, 16:05 Nov-Mar, and back to Faro airport at 09:30 Oct & Apr-May, 13:30 Nov-Mar.

Please call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 or email to arrange connecting flights.

Customer reviews

Everyone who goes on a Headwater holiday will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assessment of all aspects of their holiday - everything from how quickly we answer the phone to how clean the hotels were - plus, of course, an overall rating and comments about their holiday.

Any feedback collected is posted straight to our website - totally unedited. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of our holidays, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.

Reviewed by Mr Daniel on 03/06/2016

First visit to the Algarve and first cycling holiday. Hard work for a couple of days but the rewards matched the effort. Lovely locations and hotels had top quality staff. Our two reps were lovely and incredibly helpful. We have used Headwater only a few times over 20 or so years, but every time the holiday has been special. That is why we have always looked them up when considering a trip overseas.

Reviewed by Mr Milward on 23/05/2016

Extremely well organised , with excellent local representative (Tony) who provided additional information and support without hesitation. Also provided local maps and timetables for my time in Faro which allowed me to enjoy that day, he also informed me about the industrial action at the airport which allowed me to make appropriate arrangements.

Reviewed by Mrs Gibson on 08/05/2016

It was excellent from start to finish. Our reps Tony & Ludmila Lewis made our holiday experience special with their friendliness, humour and knowledge. Please pass on our thanks.I am hoping to book a walking holiday with Headwater next year with my friend please send me a brochure

Reviewed by Dr Davies on 18/04/2016

A very nice holiday. The cycling was generally very good. It is a little hilly so is certainly a grade 2. There was a little bit more off road than we expected and one part of this was a particularly bad track which was slow going. Everything else was fine. The accommodation was good.

Reviewed by Mrs Roper on 12/04/2016

This was a lovely holiday.The wild flowers were magnificent and the scents of orange blossom and fresh herbs will long remain with us.We enjoyed the variety of different tracks and the headland loop at Amado beach was stunning.The bikes were excellent with especially low gears for those hills,and the tour notes were pretty good. The welcome at all three hotels was genuinely warm and the accommodation very comfortable, except at Pedralva,where the bed felt like a marble slab, and gave us a restless 2 nights. The food and wine was fresh, wholesome and very well prepared.We thoroughly enjoyed this break and came back feeling refreshed and invigorated. We will definitely consider Headwater when choosing our next holiday.

Reviewed by Ms Bronger on 05/04/2016

Fun. We enjoyed our visit to Portugal.

Reviewed by Mrs Maclehose on 25/03/2015

Excellent cycling on wonderful bikes. Tony and Ludmilla were fantastically helpful and we were especially grateful that Tony picked us up from not the usual collection point. The notes were perfect and we were very lucky with the weather. The suggestions for rest days were also very good. Hotels all fine, especially Memmo. Pedralva rooms could do with better heating and much better lighting but the bar and restaurant areas were very good . Food at Pedralva was excellent. Would definitely recommend the holiday and commend highly Tony and Ludmilla who definitely had a 'nothing is too much trouble' attitude and who clearly enjoy their roles. Thank you very much.

Reviewed by Mr Tweed on 16/03/2015

Seamless from start to finish with excellent opportunities to explore and relax in equal measure.

Reviewed by Mr Shrubsole on 04/11/2014

An absolutely fantastic holiday - you see things on a bike that you wouldn't normally see - birds, flora and fauna and of course local villages with delightful local Portuguese people

Reviewed by Ms MacEachern on 25/03/2014

Surprisingly quiet routes, wonderful scenery and sunshine, excellent food. Pacing suited us with a day's cycling followed by hiking on our rest days. Pedralva was a highlight in all respects from accommodation and surroundings to food.

Reviewed by Mrs Stratford on 16/03/2014

Excellent Holiday and very knowledgeable and helpful Representative.

Reviewed by Mr Rudd on 09/03/2014

A great place for a cycling holiday. The routes were good and varied.

Reviewed by Mrs Pogson on 25/02/2014

Cycling through fantastic scenery in mimosa eucalyptus pine scented warm air within a day of leaving flood & storm ravaged UK - wonderful. Tony & Ludmilla are great hosts. Their warm welcome quickly overcame the effects of a long laborious day long journey via Lisbon - Faro & taxi halves the travel time at little if any overall extra cost. The 2 hotels we stayed in are 2 of the best we've had in 20yrs of Headwater holidays. However Pedralva - it no doubt has it's charms but is basically self catering units more suited to summer use. Compared to our 2 previous stops the welcome here was 'grumpy' & our room was cold gloomy & oppressive - more like a cell with 2 v small windows looking straight out at other houses across narrow streets at eye level so no privacy in the bedroom or sitting area without closing little shutters making it even gloomier. The shower room was unheated & there was no hair dryer. A Youth Hostel style kitchen dominated our sitting area - a dirty hot plate, a dustpan & brush in full view as also a slop bucket (ugh) & the upmarket 'coffee making facilities' were of no practical use as no pods - a simple kettle would be much better & more welcoming. The swimming pool is outdoors & was not available so no 'relaxing by the pool' & given the cold location of Pedralva I doubt would be for many of the Headwater months. I was unable to access wifi on my iPad at the designated spot in Reception - I did on the 2nd night with some perseverance find a tiny area in the Bar where I could get a signal. Ah - the Bar! & it's tender & the food he serves in the evenings are the outstanding highlight of Pedralva - make the most of it - the breakfasts are fairly meagre. We felt Pedralva fell short on many of the facilities promised in the Headwater description.

Reviewed by Mr Edwards on 03/12/2013

We were pleasantly surprised by the professional way everything was handled by office staff. The reps who were new to the area were so helpful and were even working on new tracks as alternatives the night before we would use them. It was a lovely relaxing holiday with just the right amount of activity,also the pleasant weather for time of the year helped.

Reviewed by Mis Polkey on 20/11/2013

Lovely holiday. Headwater made all it very easy. Leisurely cycling - nice mixture of exercise and relaxation. Excellent food and accommodation.

Reviewed by Mr Beaven on 12/11/2013

Excellent organisation and welcome / support from local Headwater reps. Interesting terrain and wildlife.

Departure dates & prices

October 2016 departuresTour only 
Oct 2$1527
Oct 4$1527
Oct 6$1527
Oct 8$1527
Oct 10$1527
Oct 12$1527
Oct 14$1527
Oct 16$1527
Oct 18$1527
Oct 20$1527
Oct 22$1527
Oct 24$1527
Oct 26$1527
Oct 28$1527
Oct 30$1527
November 2016 departuresTour only 
Nov 1$1494
Nov 3$1494
Nov 5$1494
Nov 6$1494
Nov 7$1494
Nov 9$1494
Nov 11$1494
Nov 13$1494
Nov 15$1494
Nov 17$1494
Nov 19$1494
Nov 21$1494
Nov 23$1494
Nov 25$1494
Nov 27$1494
Nov 29$1494
December 2016 departuresTour only 
Dec 1$1494
Dec 3$1494
Dec 5$1494
Dec 7$1494
Dec 9$1494
Dec 11$1494
Dec 13$1494
Dec 15$1494
Dec 17$1494
Dec 19$1494
Dec 21$1494
Dec 23$1494
Dec 25$1494
Dec 27$1494
Dec 29$1494
Dec 31$1494
January 2017 departuresTour only 
Jan 2$1453
Jan 4$1453
Jan 6$1453
Jan 8$1453
Jan 10$1453
Jan 12$1453
Jan 14$1453
Jan 16$1453
Jan 18$1453
Jan 20$1453
Jan 22$1453
Jan 24$1453
Jan 26$1453
Jan 28$1453
Jan 30$1453
February 2017 departuresTour only 
Feb 1$1453
Feb 3$1453
Feb 5$1453
Feb 7$1453
Feb 9$1453
Feb 11$1453
Feb 13$1453
Feb 15$1453
Feb 17$1453
Feb 19$1453
Feb 21$1453
Feb 23$1453
Feb 25$1453
Feb 27$1453
March 2017 departuresTour only 
Mar 1$1516
Mar 3$1516
Mar 5$1516
Mar 7$1516
Mar 9$1516
Mar 11$1516
Mar 13$1516
Mar 15$1516
Mar 17$1516
Mar 19$1516
Mar 21$1516
Mar 23$1516
Mar 25$1516
Mar 27$1516
Mar 29$1516
Mar 31$1516
April 2017 departuresTour only 
Apr 2$1580
Apr 4$1580
Apr 6$1580
Apr 8$1580
Apr 10$1580
Apr 12$1580
Apr 14$1580
Apr 16$1580
Apr 18$1580
Apr 20$1580
Apr 22$1580
Apr 24$1580
Apr 26$1580
Apr 28$1580
May 2017 departuresTour only 
May 1$1594
May 3$1594
May 5$1594
May 7$1594
May 9$1594
May 11$1594
May 13$1594
May 15$1594
May 17$1594
May 19$1594
May 21$1594
May 23$1594
May 25$1594
May 27$1594
May 29$1594
October 2017 departuresTour only 
Oct 10$1564
Oct 12$1564
Oct 14$1564
Oct 16$1564
Oct 18$1564
Oct 20$1564
Oct 22$1564
Oct 24$1564
Oct 26$1564
Oct 28$1564
Oct 30$1564
November 2017 departuresTour only 
Nov 1$1532
Nov 3$1532
Nov 5$1532
Nov 7$1532
Nov 9$1532
Nov 11$1532
Nov 13$1532
Nov 15$1532
Nov 17$1532
Nov 19$1532
Nov 21$1532
Nov 23$1532
Nov 25$1532
Nov 27$1532
Nov 29$1532
December 2017 departuresTour only 
Dec 1$1532
Dec 3$1532
Dec 5$1532
Dec 7$1532
Dec 9$1532
Dec 11$1532
Dec 13$1532
Dec 15$1532
Dec 17$1532
Dec 19$1532
Dec 21$1532
Dec 23$1532
Dec 25$1532
Dec 27$1532
Dec 29$1532
Dec 31$1532
January 2018 departuresTour only 
Jan 2$1468
Jan 4$1468
Jan 6$1468
Jan 8$1468
Jan 10$1468
Jan 12$1468
Jan 14$1468
Jan 16$1468
Jan 18$1468
Jan 20$1468
Jan 22$1468
Jan 24$1468
Jan 26$1468
Jan 28$1468
Jan 30$1468
February 2018 departuresTour only 
Feb 1$1468
Feb 3$1468
Feb 5$1468
Feb 7$1468
Feb 9$1468
Feb 11$1468
Feb 13$1468
Feb 15$1468
Feb 17$1468
Feb 19$1468
Feb 21$1468
Feb 23$1468
Feb 25$1468
Feb 27$1468
March 2018 departuresTour only 
Mar 1$1533
Mar 3$1533
Mar 5$1533
Mar 7$1533
Mar 9$1533
Mar 11$1533
Mar 13$1533
Mar 15$1533
Mar 17$1533
Mar 19$1533
Mar 21$1533
Mar 23$1533
Mar 25$1533
Mar 27$1533
Mar 29$1533
Mar 31$1533
April 2018 departuresTour only 
Apr 2$1577
Apr 4$1577
Apr 6$1577
Apr 8$1577
Apr 10$1577
Apr 12$1577
Apr 14$1577
Apr 16$1577
Apr 18$1577
Apr 20$1577
Apr 22$1577
Apr 24$1577
Apr 26$1577
Apr 28$1577
May 2018 departuresTour only 
May 1$1609
May 3$1609
May 5$1609
May 7$1609
May 9$1609
May 11$1609
May 13$1609
May 15$1609
May 17$1609
May 19$1609
May 21$1609
May 23$1609

Holiday details

Holiday type

Self-guided cycling, hotel-to-hotel. Managed locally by Headwater employed rep.


Every two days from 20 Oct '16 to 23 May '18, for 7 days (6 nights).


All continental breakfasts, and 5 evening meals included.

Other details

Please see our Planning your holiday and What's included in the price? pages for additional information. Please call us for single room supplements, room upgrade options and child prices.

Starting your tour

Transfers included from Faro airport at 11:50 Oct & Apr-May, 16:05 Nov-Mar, and back to Faro airport at 09:30 Oct & Apr-May, 13:30 Nov-Mar.

Enquire about this holiday

Simply complete the form below and a member of our sales team will contact you (when it's most convenient for you) to provide availability information, travel options and additional information.

We'd like to keep you informed of our latest news and special offers. Please tick here if you'd rather not receive our free e-newsletter.
We can call you when it's most convenient for you, or contact you by email if you'd prefer. Morning calls will be between 9:00-13:00, afternoon calls between 13:00-17:00, and evening calls after 17:00.
Let us know any queries you might have about departure dates, similar holidays or tailor-made options.


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  • Relaxed activity holidays since 1985

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