By Bicycle

Geres – Peneda

Geres – Peneda is a full week of bike touring route in one of the best Portuguese national parks. Started from Pitoes das Junias through Cabril, Gerês, Soajo, Peneda, and until Melgaço, that has 195 kilometers long in total. In addition to its nature, this tour offers thermals, waterfalls, historical sites, and steep hills that need to conquer.

This tour was made in August 2021

Statistics

Distance

195 KM

Duration

7 Days

Difficulty (1-10)

7

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Geres – Peneda tour is a 195 kilometers bike tour for intermediate to advance cyclist through Peneda-Gerês National Park, Portugal. It is a bike tour for whom dare to ride their bikes into steep hills with goes up to 24% inclination. However, this tour is still within the urban perimeter, which may ease the effort in logistics-wise.

Bike touring route through a rich region that offers all year round wander. Each season provides a new experience, almost as if it were a completely different route. Combine with the Minho Ecotrail tour, it undoubtedly becomes a full week of immense bike touring experience.

The Tour

Setting off from Pitoes das Junias, one of the most magical rural environments of the Peneda-Gerês National Park and is a village full of identity that is proud of its ancestry, traditions, and history.

Pitoes das Junias is not a village to go to when you’re in a hurry. It is not your “round-the-corner-waterfall”. Yet, it is worth every step to get there. Do not miss exploring – at least – the most isolated of all the Cistercian churches in Portugal, Mosteiro de Santa Maria das Júnias, or Caldeiras do Pereira, a hidden gem of its region, fed by the pure and crystalline waters of the Pitões stream. Enjoy this beautiful place before you embark on your venture into Geres – Peneda tour!

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Once you relished, begin the journey with the easy pace of rolling down to Paradela where you will start to slowly ride up. On kilometer 6, you will slide right up into a dirt road where you have to climb 200 meters up for 3 kilometers long.

Here is the northern local way to Sete Lagoas, seven exciting lakes wonder lighted by many small waterfalls that delight all nature lovers who go there. There is the tourist route where you will pass it on the way out of Sete Lagoas. Therefore, be considerate of people walking. This stretch is the only dirt road you will pedal through.

From Cabril to Llamas de Mouro, you will ride the steepest hills in this tour that you need to conquer. Some hills will have up to 24% of inclination with a narrow tarred road which will be challenging to ride on. Although it sounds hard, the stunning background around will help you to sense the worth of doing it.

geres - peneda

A trick we did when we arrived in Soajo was asking the local restaurant owner if we could put our bags there while we went to Lindoso for a couple of hours.

The tour ended at where the Rio Minho begin in Portugal. Here, we stayed in Thermas do Peso, a hidden gem in Melgaço municipality. As it is named, you can celebrate your victory with soaked in the thermal pool or a relaxing massage just next to the camping site.

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Around Geres – Peneda Tour

This tour has 195 kilometers in total. It will be easily done in less than 7 days. However, we decided to make it as it is due to the fascinating sites around the route that are inevitable to skip. The highlights we pointed out on the map are the spots we visited. There are so many more places that we haven’t seen in this region. Even a month will not be enough to explore all of those sites.

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Not a cyclist?

There is also a long route for hiking through this region called Grande Rota Peneda – Geres (GR50). It is one of the longest walking routes in Portugal, with a total length of about 190 km. Divided into stages that cross over the hills of Castro Laboreiro, the mountains of Peneda, Soajo, Serras Amarela and Gerês, and the Mourela Plateau. Check the link for more detailed information.

How to use this map: Click the tab in the top left corner of the map to see the points of interest. You can click on the selection folders to hide or show the folders. If you click the icons on the map, you can get more information about each point of interest.

If you click the star next to the map title, the map will be added to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “My Places”, click Maps, and you will see this map in your list.

Beside its natural environment that become the highlights, there are historical sites that enrich this tour.

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