The Algarve offers outstanding conditions for all sorts of cycling. The geographical and orographic characteristics of the region, the climate, the quality and diversity of the roads, tracks and trails, the wealth of history and culture, and the wonderful people all combine to make this a fabulous destination for an activity that is becoming increasingly popular all over the world.
Boasting a vast array of natural attractions, the Algarve's authentic charm wins over residents and visitors alike. The enchanting coast is lined with long, golden sandy beaches and modern towns and cities; and inland, there are delightful and welcoming villages waiting to be discovered. From the sophisticated coastal resorts to the old country trails through the barrocal, along roads that wind their way through abundant nature and forests, or open up on to wide valleys and hills, there are endless opportunities in this sunny region for unforgettable outings at any time of year.
Promoting this leading destination and its appeal in terms of leisure activities is the aim of the first "Algarve, Algarve, Cycle Routes". This guide book brings together 41 different itineraries that let residents and visitors discover the region in an active and sustainable way, by cycling along selected road routes. The guide also contains a chapter written especially for competitive and more experienced cyclists, which indicates various areas that are suitable for hill training.
In order to ensure that all cyclists – from complete beginners to those who cycle regularly or train intensively – have the chance to enjoy cycling in the Algarve, the various routes have been divided into four difficulty levels depending on their length and altitude. The easiest routes are marked as green, while the moderately difficult ones are shown in blue. Red routes are even more difficult and the toughest ones of all are marked in black.
Contrasting perfectly with the size of the territory, the Algarve's huge diversity in terms of geography, orography and environment also allowed us to organise the routes into three distinct zones: the eastern Algarve, which takes in the Lower Guadiana area and the municipalities of Tavira, Olhão and part of São Brás de Alportel; the central Algarve, which includes the municipalities of Faro, Loulé, Albufeira and Silves; and the western Algarve, encompassing the municipalities of Portimão, Monchique, Lagos and the Vicentine Coast in the municipalities of Vila do Bispo and Aljezur.
This guide book invites tourists to take up the challenge of exploring an Algarve that is characterised by the dignity of its people, unrivalled in its traditions and natural beauty, and blessed with considerable biological diversity. The aim is to encourage people to get out and about on their bicycles in the pursuit of a healthier, happier lifestyle.