Cycle Into The Authentic Heart of SPAIN And PORTUGAL

wandermelon partners with Pure Adventures to bring you self-guided tours pairing great cycling with world-class gastronomy and natural wonders

Our team of writers at wandermelon is always looking for ways to inspire and inform your travels. Traveling the globe, we search for the experiences we think will surprise and delight you and, hopefully, motivate you to make your own discoveries. One of the best parts of our journeys is meeting like-minded travel pros, including guides and tour operators who lead the types of experiences we want to share. We compare notes, travel with them, and in a few cases, we decide it would be simply amazing to work with them.

In this spirit of bringing you the best of our discoveries so you can enjoy them for yourself, we’re excited to launch a travel partnership with Arizona-based operators Pure Adventures. Their name says it all – they are about getting you out into the world in ways that are absolutely authentic and just challenging enough to make for great cocktail chatter when you get home.

On the road with Pure Adventures in Spain. Image: Pure Adventures On the road with Pure Adventures in Spain. Image: Pure Adventures

The Pure Adventures way of getting you deeply into some of the most appealing and inspiring destinations in the world is through self-guided bicycle tours, primarily in Europe and the Western US. We’re talking culinary bike tours through the foodie wonderland of Spain’s Catalonia region. Cruising past the vines of Italy’s Piedmont region in search of ancient villages and the perfect glass of Barolo. Or hiking and biking amidst the stunning landscapes of Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park.

Working together on our debut trips, we’ve selected a couple of two-wheeled adventures in Spain and Portugal we think you’ll love. We chose these destinations for a couple reasons. First, we love the Iberian Peninsula: food, wine, culture, history, adventure, welcoming locals… what’s not to love. Then there’s the fact the Euro is at “better go now” lows meaning if you’ve been putting off that trip to Europe, now is the time to put some mettle to the pedal.

Catalonia (Catalunya to the locals) Where the vines meet the sea. Catalonia (Catalunya to the locals) Where the vines meet the sea. Image: Eric Hiss

Another great reason to go is to take advantage of Pure Adventures’ self-guided format that gives you the best of both worlds: the flexibility to travel when and with whom you want – but following expertly designed, customized itineraries featuring local support. As in a van that transports your luggage during your journey so you just roll-up to that cool boutique hotel on your bike. Woot! Here’s a little cheat sheet of why a Pure Adventures Self-Guided Adventure is the way to go:

– You travel on the dates that work best for you and your group
– You travel with your own small group, typically 2 to 10 travelers 
- Your route is meticulously planned by an experienced staff of experts
– All your lodging is taken care of, and you have a choice of hotel options to fit your budget
– All your luggage transfers are included
– You have access to local support and emergency services twenty four hours a day

“The great advantage for our clients is that local expertise is behind every experience,” says Loren Siekman, the company’s founder and owner. “There’s also the flexibility of selecting dates that best fit your travel plans so you have freedom but you are never alone because we support you throughout your trip with English-speaking assistance that’s just a call away.”

The home and studio of famed Surrealist Salvador Dali in Cadaques, Catalunya. Image: Eric Hiss The home and studio of famed Surrealist Salvador Dali in Cadaques, Catalunya. Image: Eric Hiss

The trips themselves are over-the-top incredible. For example, the Spain – Catalonia Gastronomic Tour is a 7-day cycling adventure into foodie nirvana. Catalonia is where Michelin stars are sprinkled around like chantrelles after a spring rain and home to some of the world’s top restaurants. It’s also where you’ll encounter postcard-perfect calas, or small bays that shelter #OMG views of boats bobbing in dazzling azure waters. Roman ruins, rolling hills dotted with vineyards and gorgeous Dali-esque landscapes that inspired the surrealist, who spent much of his life here, round out the amazing picture.

Castelo do Mouros, Portugal Brooding Castelo dos Mouros, Portugual. Image: Pure Adventures

The natural wonders of Southwest Portugal are the focus of the Alentejo and Algarve Wild Coast cycling expedition. This is where you will coast past wild Atlantic beaches and explore nature parks that retain their untamed beauty. Your stops and stays include small, whitewashed fishing villages where you can enjoy a glass of vinho verde while inhaling sea breezes and admiring vast stretches of empty, wave-tossed beach. You’ll cross rivers by boat and make new discoveries such as small villages poised on seacliffs. It’s all paired with spectacular scenery at Europe’s most southwesterly point where mariners of old once set off for the New World and where you’ll undoubtedly discover your most adventurous self. Click here to view full details. And when you book your trip, don’t forget to mention you’re a wandermelon reader – we’ve arranged for some cool swag you’ll want to take with you on your adventure [booking code: WANDER]. See you on the road!

 

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