Cycle from Caminha to Ponte de Lima
Macs Adventure Verified partner Explorers Choice
Minho to PortoPhoto: Laura Paterson, Macs Adventure
The longest day's ride on the trip, but with an almost flat profile it makes for an easy-going day in the saddle.
From Caminha at the mouth of the River Minho pedal south along the dramatic Atlantic coastline to the city of Viana. Portugal's Costa Verde (Green Coast) is known for its pristine beaches, backed by dunes, forest and the occasional fishing village. Enjoy this coastline for the first part of today's journey and then spend time exploring the historical centre of Viana do Castelo, famous for heart-shaped filigree jewellery and colourful embroidery. The city was the setting off point for ships in the "discoveries" of the 16th century, and later cod fish shipping vessels bound for Newfoundland. The opulent town houses and the impressive 19th century Byzantine Santa Luzia Church overlooking the city from its hilltop are testament of past prosperity. Enjoy a long lunch here before heading inland. Follow the south bank of the Lima River, through forests and farmland, to reach Ponte de Lima, a delightful town with plenty to offer, and Portugal's oldest town. Ponte de Lima, named after its 1st century 24-arched Roman bridge, is an important stop for pilgrims making their way from Porto to Santiago de Compostela.
Track typesShow elevation profile
Check for any damage to the frame, components or wheels. Ensure there are no loose cables and that the tyres are inflated and the brakes are working. Always wear a helmet when cycling.
If you are doubtful of the condition of your hire bike please call the office or the local bike hire on the number provided in your information pack.
Always be prepared to cycle through a change of weather conditions and do check for any local weather warnings before cycling.
Do remember to ride on the right-hand side of the road and whilst drivers in Portugal are respectful of the 'velo', please do be mindful of other road users at all times, obeying local road signs. The road does narrow in parts so please take on bends and when descending, do so with caution.
Always make sure to stay hydrated and carry plenty of water. It is also advised to wear skin-protecting clothing and use sun cream/screen. We recommend you inquire about the day’s forecasted weather before setting out on your walks. A useful website for climate information specific to towns and countries is www.weather2travel.com or www.yr.no
Tips and hints
Points of interest in Viana do Castelo:
- The Costume Museum in Viana do Castelo - the city's most impressive museum. It's housed within a 1950s building and located in the city center in Praça da República. The museum showcases the folk costumes and traditions of the Alto Minho region.
Pastelaria Confeitaria Manuel Natário - located near the Costume Museum. The go-to place if you'd like to try the city's renowned sweet pastries. Trying Bolas de Berlim is a must, which are Portuguese donuts sliced in half, then filled with sweet and creamy egg-based custard, then rolled in sugar. Torta de Viana is another traditional dessert to try from this city, which originated from inside the convent. It's prepared with a sponge base coated in a creamy egg yolk-based custard before it's rolled, and then traditionally served dusted with powdered sugar or ground cinnamon.
Besides cycling in the kit you are used too, we'd also suggest taking the essentials of water bottle(s), nutrition, an extra layer, cash/credit cards and mobile together with emergency telephone numbers.
Always wear a helmet and pack a spare tube, puncture repair kit, tyre levers and handpump. You may also like to take a multi-tool.
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