Where to start? I tagged along with my friends on a 6-day bike tour. We had e-bikes, although our guide, Ricardo, did not. I am not an experienced cyclist, (I am 65, but in good shape) but I absolutely loved every minute. Ricardo was patient and thorough in his preparations for each day. He led us through a variety of rides from easy to hard, but never too hard. We rode a few hours in the morning and then had beautiful accommodations to relax in the rest of the day. Ricardo also scouted out excellent 5-star accommodations as well as wonderful dining experiences each evening. These were hotels and restaurants we weren't likely to find on our own as tourists. There was no better way to see the countryside and really soak up the culture. Everywhere we went the people were kind and welcoming. Ricardo was personable, well-versed in his country's history, and did I mention he was patient? Even when one of us rode past the turn-off and he had to ride down the hill and back up again?! Live, Love, Ride is a "must-do" for anyone wanting an exciting experience and a unique way to see Spain!
This was my first bike tour trip and it was the best vacation I have taken. Despite having biked recreationally in many different places, I greatly underestimated the joy I would feel from cycling as a mode of transportation while on vacation. Traveling town to town, over varied terrain including beach boardwalks, medieval cobblestone roads, dirt paths, rocky trails, and cruising through small towns, thriving cities, beautiful agricultural lands and vineyards, and bisecting gorgeous pine forests, fed all my senses. Each day led to a different challenge with unique rewards along the way and at the finish line. My biggest concern going into this trip was not having enough time to explore each town once we arrived by bike. Fortunately, this was not an issue, we arrived each day with plenty of time and extra energy to really enjoy the scene.
The boutique hotels Live Love Ride chose for us were each special in their own way. Whether it was a lushly landscaped garden, a castle walled courtyard, or a cozy hotel bar, arriving to a beautiful stone walled manor at the end of the day’s ride was always a great surprise. The luggage transfer service was very reliable and well worth it. In addition to the exceptional customer service and outstanding hotel choices, we were pleasantly surprised by the quality of the restaurant recommendations; I strongly suggest going with their choices.
Portugal and Spain are each beautiful countries and the culture changed more than I expected as we moved along the route. Experiencing the region on two wheels gave us the opportunity to experience these countries using all five senses, at a perfect pace to take it all in. We Lived. We Loved. & We Rode our way through one of the best experiences of our lives.