We offer this Bike trip from Porto all the way through the mainland until reaching the Atlantic Sea. This route took relevance, especially since the 12th Century, after the independence of Portugal. Through its route, you will go through Antique roads and paths, such as Via XIX, built in 1st century AD, which linked the cities of Braga and Astorga through Ponte de Lima, Tui, Pontevedra, Santiago and Lugo. Having been this one of the most relevants roman roads.
In our tour, we will go from Portugal to Spain, starting from Porto and stopping by interesting points on the way, such as Viana do Castelo, Caldas de Rey and Santiago de Compostela.
Day 1: Porto
Accomodation: Hotel Eurostars das Artes
Our trip starts with our arrival to Porto, the second biggest and most populated city in Portugal, just after Lisbon. Its population its about 250,000 inhabitants within its urban perimeter and 1,5 million in its metropolitan area.
Once settled in Porto, we will visit Porto Cathedral, the Tower “de los Clérigos”, Church do Carmo, Plaza de la Libertad and, of course, the popular Duero river with its several bridges. Don Luis I is the most famous bridge between all of them.We will be staying in Eurostars das Artes hotel, a four-star hotel which is surrounded by museums and settled in the most iconic art galleries area of the city. Within a walking distance, you can find arts and culture: Lello Bookshop, Municipal Library and the beautiful gardens of Crystal Palace; Soares dos Reis museum, cultural centers and concert halls such as “Casa de la Música”, Rivoli Theather or Calos Alberto Theather.
Day 2: Porto – Braga
Route: 59.7 km
Accomodation: Hotel Torre Gomariz
After breakfast, we will have a brief transfer by van to our departure point, where we will pedal through a mainland route to Braga. Currently, Braga is the third biggest city of Portugal (just behind Lisbon and Porto), it has a vibrant cultural life, partly because it hosts many university students.
Besides its roman past, Braga was quite a popular spot during middle Ages as an archbishop centre and was one of the stops in the Camino de Santiago. Its cathedral is the oldest one in Portugal.
Tonight, we will be staying in the spectacular Wine and Spa Torre de Gomariz hotel, located in Cervães, in the core of Minho river. The hotel blends in a Green landscape with wineries and a lust forest of 5 hectares. The hotel incorporates some of the most iconic historic buildings in Vila Verde, the Tower where there are 2different suite rooms and the Gomariz House.
Day 3: Braga – Viana do Castelo
Accomodation: Casa Melo Alvim
The third day of our trip will start very close to the hotel we stayed in the previous night, nearby Braga.
Our first stop will be Viana do Castelo, passing through a town that we can´t miss in Portugal that is Ponte da Lima, one of the cities with more charm and character in northern Portugal.
This population is located in the south streams of Lima river, and it is the main cross point of this river ever since the romans built a bridge in the AD 1.
Ponte de Lima is one of the oldest populations in Portugal, with a wonderful variety of historic buildings, beautiful plazas, and great religious buildings spread out over the town. Today, we will be resting in Viana do Castelo, at Casa Melo Alvim hotel. It is an old stately House which dates back with more than 500 years of history.
Day 4: Viana do Castelo – Baiona
Accomodation: Parador de Baiona
We will start our route by the coastline, to the border town of Caminha, where we will take a boat to Spain. Once we reach Spain, we will continue our way to Parador de Baiona, where you can enjoy the views from a beautiful sunset in a magic spot.
Day 5: Baiona
Accomodation: Parador de Baiona
Daytrip to Cies Islands National Park
In the fifth day of our tour, we will have a city tour around Baiona, where we will visit some of the main touristic highlights.
After our walk, we will take a boat and enjoy a short trip to Cies Islands, well known for its crystal clear waters and spectacular landscapes.
One of its beaches, Rodas beach, was awarded as “probably the best beach in the world” by The Guardian newspaper in 2007.
These islands, a refugee for pirates back in the day, are currently an uninhabited Paradise, which you can only visit in summer period and with a very restricted number of visitors per day.
After having enjoyed the islands, we will have time to chill and rest back in our hotel Parador de Baiona.
Day 6: Santiago de Compostela
In the last day of our Portuguese Camino de Santiago, we will have a transfer out from Baiona to Portonovo (a small town in Pontevedra province). Portonovo is located in a natural environment inside Rías Baixas (Galician for Lower Ria coast) and opposite the Cies Islands National Park.In Portonovo, we start the route that goes by Cambados, a fishermen village inhabited from AD 6 and 5, according to some Celts settlements found in its territory. We will keep cycling through landscapes of wineries and we will visit Rubianes Palace, which dates back from year 1411. After lunch, we will be transferred to Parador de Santiago, where we will share our experiences and joy with fellow pilgrims in Plaza Obradoiro.
Whether your plan is to return home or continue your travels in Spain or elsewhere in Europe, Santiago is a great stepping off point. Its small but new international airport is very well connected to Spanish destinations and to nearby European ones like London and Paris. Flights out are generally very well priced for those who plan in advance. Meanwhile, for those of us who do not choose to part ways in Santiago, after breakfast, we’ll bid farewell to our Camino adventure and return to Madrid by van (7 hours).
Eurostars das Artes
The Eurostars Das Artes Hotel, set in the very centre of Oporto, comprises two buildings, one historical and the other modern, with a sky-blue tiled façade welcoming its guests.
This hotel, surrounded by museums, is located in the area containing the most prestigious art galleries. It is surrounded by art and culture: just a few minutes away from the Livraria Lello, the Municipal Library and the majestic gardens of the Crystal Palace, the Soares dos Reis Museum and establishments for culture and entertainment like the Casa de Musica, the Rivoli Theatre or the Carlos Alberto Theatre.
Located in Cervães, in the heart of Minho, this hotel integrates one of the most emblematic historic buildings of Vila Verde, the Tower and Casa de Gomariz, which together with the other modern buildings offer a unique connection between history, nature and design, giving it a touch of sophistication. The architecture is the responsibility of the architects Paulo Braga and Cristina Amaral. The award-winning Atelier Nini Andrade e Silva was responsible for the interior design of the hotel.
Casa Melo Alvim
It is the oldest urban manor house in the town, having been built in 1509 in the Manueline style. This manor house was restored with dignity and transformed into a comfortable and welcoming hotel. The Hotel has an active environmental and sustainable tourism policy, certified by the European Eco-label.
The recuperation of the manor and its past did not affect the personalized and careful service. The reception of the guests is done in the Atrium, which is a comforting start for the guest’s arrival at the manor. The access to the bedrooms and also the library is made up the Baroque balustrade stairwell.
Parador de Baiona
In the southern Rías Baixas region, stands Monterreal Peninsula, where the Parador de Baiona awaits. Elegance is a key feature of every room of the Parador.
The stately function rooms, spacious guest rooms with sea views and spectacular stone staircase that welcomes you at the entrance are just a few examples of the majesty of this medieval fortress. An intimate ambiance, exquisite décor, well-kept gardens and an idyllic landscape make this a truly unique spot.
Parador de Santiago – Hostal Reis Catolicos
The Parador de Santiago, known as the Hostal dos Reis Católicos, is a blend of history, art and tradition, the dream of pilgrims and emblem of Santiago.
It is located on Obradoiro Square near the cathedral, creating an area of spectacular beauty in one of the most visited provincial capitals in the world. A stay at this Parador means a visit to a truly unique and exclusive location.