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Portugal Bike:  portugalbike.com

We went on the Charming Pousadas of the Alentejo in December 2012 with PortugalBike, run by Jose and Cristina. We thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful country-side, the mystical pousadas and Jose/Cristina's hospitality. Cristina and Jose are energetic, thoughtful, and interesting tour leaders whose enthusiasm about Portuguese culture was contagious. The itinerary was also very well planned and reasonably priced. Overall a very worthwhile trip! - Jennifer H.., New York, NY

The tour I took with PortugalBike is a cut above other tours I've done. Well planned, each hotel better than the next, great bikes, lovely couple who run the organization and great picnic lunches. Jose and Cristina were knowledgeable, adventurous and helpful. I learned so much about Portugal, and grew a notch as far as my cycling skills. I plan to take an annual trip with them so I can do all their tours. - Diane B., New York, NY

We had a wonderful time on your Charming Pousadas of the North tour. The landscape was lush, verdant and varied. Jose planned a wonderful route, as far away from traffic as possible--country roads, farm and forest lanes, cobblestone paths through villages, even a segment of a Roman Road. In addition to planning a unique and satisfying route, Jose was a pleasure to ride with, full of cheer and a font of cultural and historical information. Cristina provide solid van support, perfect picnic lunches. The accommodations were wonderful, luxe and filled with history. Cristina and Jose also were perfect dinner hosts, choosing restaurants wisely, and creating a warm flow of conversation. The overall experience was a wonderful introduction to Portugal that only thoughtful and gracious Portuguese hosts could provide. We are veterans of about 20 inn-to-inn bike touring trips with a variety of touring groups, and found PortugalBike to be at the top in terms of the overall quality of our experience. - Dave & Karen, Manchester, CT

This was one of the most enjoyable bicycling trips we've taken -- and we've taken a few. The tour guides were informative and well organized, the courses were challenging but within our capabilities, and the hotels and tour ending locations were spectacular. Portugal is a marvelous country with very friendly people and wonderful foods and beverages (we had dinner with the tour guides each night and let them pick from the local menus). The tour is well worth the investment -- in fact, we hope to talk some of our friends into going back with us for another tour with PortugalBike. - Robert Perry, Bellevue, WA

The “Pousadas” trip was great. The trip was well organized from the bike route to the selection of the accommodations. Cycling through the hills surrounded with the olive and cork trees was awesome. The well-planned route, attention to detail, and quality bikes combined for a stress free holiday. Route-finding was never a worry with the GPS! We always looked forward to each “Pousada” at the end of each day to recoup and relax after the daily cycle. We were very happy with the “BH Bikes” road bikes. These carbon fiber bikes are light weight, responsive, comfortable - when I was in the “drops”, I could still raise my head. Most of all was the triple front chain rings. This is an uncommon feature in personally owned or certainly rental bikes that is a must for me in hilly country. I didn’t pull any muscles the way I did on my last road bike tour in a double chain ring road bike. - Sue and David White, Luanda, Angola

The tour “Along the Silver Coast” lived up to its name as we rode along beautiful scenic stretches of ocean (from a height of course). The quaint villages and fields of flowers and crops were additional views of Portugal that I was so glad to be seeing close up by bike. I kept running out of batteries due to the number of photos that just had to be taken in Obidos and Isle of Berlenga. We felt spoiled by Jose & Christina who took care of all our needs from picnics and snacks to great dinners and wonderful accommodation. They were knowledgeable and personable and have set the bar high for biking holidays. Even before the tour was over we were discussing the details of our next trip with Portugal Bike! We had a wonderful holiday in Portugal.
- K. Matthisen, London, ON

My bicycle tour was fantastic and a highlight of my European holiday. After travelling on a busy tour of Italy and a memorable time with my cousins in Bavaria, riding through the Alentejo and Algrave regions gave me a great sense of satisfication, fun and memories of Australia, especially the amazing beaches and of course the gum trees!!. Portugal Bike is a professional company/business. Jose was so much fun on the road; giving us a sense of the rich history of Portugual, a wonderful passion for his country; a caring attitude for his clients and an appreciation for our respective countries and culture. Cristina is a delightful lady and person. She always had a smiling face, greeting us with warm and enthusiasm. - Henry Jay, Adelaide, SA

My wife and I had the wonderful opportunity to cycle the Charming Pousadas ride. The whole trip was a fantastic experience which will leave us with lasting memories. The cycling, scenery,meals and accommodation were memorable. When booking a trip over the internet one is always a little nervous about the reliability of the company and whether the trip will match expectations. Any such fears were quickly dispelled after the first email dealings with Portugal Bike. They were totally professional in every aspect and provided all the information we needed quickly. During the bike trip Jose and Christina were totally dedicated to making sure we had an enjoyable time and experienced the real Portugal. Without any hesitation I would highly recommend Portugal Bike to anyone considering a bike trip in Portugal. My wife and I hope to return again to do one of their other cycling trips. - David Bugeja, Melbourne, Australia

We had an outstanding week on Ancient Medieal Villages tour. The route and scenery were excellent. Accommodation in hilltop fortified villages fantastic. Food and wines first class as were the superb picnic lunches. The expert guidance and information on the Alentejo way of life and customs was intriguing and added to the great value and qaulity of the holiday. - John Reed, Durham City, England

Cristina and Jose took such a good care of us. We cycled the Alentejo wineries tour with Portugal Bike. It was exactly what we hoped for, with 4 different winery tours all producing their wines in a different manner this was combined with a historical tour of some of the oldest towns in Portugal. Jose and Cristina were the perfect guides and very knowledgeable about Portugese history. We stayed in various hotels, each with their own unique charm. All of this and Portugese cuisine at select restaurants and lunches prepared by Cristina. Of course a cycling tour wouldn't be a cycling tour without the cycling. This was not a difficult course to cycle but it was scenic with a few hills to get the heart pumping. We cycled areas where cars could not go so we saw the beauty of Portugal that you could not get with 4 wheels. I would highly recommend this tour. - Carroll & Jeff McRae, Ottawa

We spent a delightful week in Portugal with Jose and Cristina, who run PortugalBike. We took the Pousadas in Alentejo tour. From the minute we met Jose and Cristine in Lisbon to the time they dropped us off at the airport a week later they were always attentive to every issue that arose. We had brought our own folding tandem bicycle, and discovered when we put it together on day 1 of the trip that a derailleur had broken in shipment. We were hours away from the nearest bike shop and the situation looked bleak, but Jose managed to hook up a spare derailleur that he had in reserve, creatively improvising to make it fit our bike. Thanks to his ingenuity we did not miss a single mile of cycling. The Pousadas themselves could not be more comfortable -- historic, beautiful, luxurious, always complete with a swimming pool, but, alas, also always located on hilltops! Our hosts were eager to share their knowledge of all things Portuguese, from cork production to wine to local cuisine. -Damian and Marjorie, Washington, DC

Jose and Christina are great hosts and have spent a lot of effort in getting the bike tour to be as exciting as possible. Great hotel and eating places are a common feature of the ride. Would recommend it to anybody. - Lorne Gartner, Calgary, Alberta

IF you plan to cycle in Portugal you need to choose this operator. The equipment is top notch and the couple who operates is top of class. Very focused on making your trip most memorable with careful attention to detail. They love their country and show it proudly and in style. A very personally focused company with gear that is better than the big operators that we have used on other trips and in other countrys. We would highly endorse Jose and his lovely wife Cristina. They understand the service business and value their customers and show great care. This is our second trip with them and there will very likely be a third. - Larry and Jan Fichtner, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

My husband and I and a group of friends have toured with Jose and Christina of Portugal Bike twice, riding on 'The Ancient Megalithic Alentejo' and 'Towards the Algave' tours. We did a second tour with them because of the amazing job with special touches these people do to ensure a great experience for their clients. From VERY GOOD accomodation to great client care and interaction Jose and Christina offer a FIRST CLASS bike tour. We have travelled all over the world on various bike tours, and the only country we have returned to is Portugal, because we know that with this company, no matter what the tour, it will be a great experience. - Maureen Moore and David Scobie, Calgary, Alberta

My husband and I enjoyed every second of the Historic Pousadas in the Alentejo region. Cristina and Jose were accommodating, knowledgeable, well organized and professional. They were also just fun to spend time with! From the beautifully maintained bicycles, to the restful and upscale accommodations, to the delicious food we were 100% pleased! We look forward to returning to Portugal and plan to do another bicycle tour with PortugalBike. - Kendra Nunes, Scotts Valley, CA

We really enjoyed our first holiday cycling tour that was perfectly organised by PortugalBike. With the 'Megalithic Heritage in Alentejo', we saw beautiful landscapes and very charming villages while riding on small paths or secondary roads. Each point of interest was the occasion to stop and we had longer breaks for the delicious pic-nic made by Christina. The difficulty of the tour was not too hard even if we were not trained. And as we unfortunately had one rainy day, we appreciated to have the choice to leave our bikes and stay dry in the bus! José is a perfect guide and we learned a lot about the region, the cork trees, monuments and life in Portugal. Accomodations and meals were perfect especially in Terena. And one special mention to José and Christina for the effort to speak french with us! Merci beaucoup! - Natacha & Roger, Geneva, Switzerland

Dear Christina and Jose, Thank you so much for a lovely cycling week in the Algarve. This was my first self guided tour and I had been very keen to try this sort of cycling vacation for quite some time. The route along the southwestern Portuguese coastline and the Algarve seemed the perfect place to do this. The natural beauty we experienced was breathtaking and being self guided we found we could make the biking just the right challenge for us. Your maps and navigation system were perfect and we had no issues finding our routes. You picked lovely towns for our stops and charming accommodations at each stop. By the time we stopped at each of our destination, we found our luggage waiting for us in our room. We thank you for catering to our schedule and personalizing our trip so we could spend time in Lisbon before our cycling. We certainly would highly recommend this tour and your fantastic bike tour company. - Sherif El-Defrawy, Kingston, Canada

Waauw, a great experience of biking, local culture, economy, friendship, and top organization! The chosen accomodation is top. I'll be back. See you soon Christina & José. - Tom Lambert, Belgium, Limburg

It was simply good ! Good hotels. Good guide. Nice cook (picknick) - Xavier Gielen, Hasselt (BE)

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