I've never done any touring cycling before but I'm really keen to get into it. So I'm planning to get a ferry to Roscoff in the first week of September, then will cycle down to Bergerac, through Spain and into Portugal by October at some point. I will be stopping to surf on the way, so will mostly be by the coast.
I plan to do it on the cheap, wild camping and cheap campsites, occasionally hostels.
I will spend most of winter in Portugal.
Does anyone have great advice for a novice tourer? I will be alone, although hopefully meet people along the way to travel with.
Is this a bad time to go? Any tips and tricks on things that will help me along the way.
I know this is quite a vague post, I just want people's general advice about this journey, and the time of year.
I don't know much about weather in winter in Spain and Portugal, but here is a little bit of my experience.
see also www.inekefietst.wordpress.com
from Bergerac you can take Atlantic Coast Route - Bordeaux-Bayonne. Campsite anywhere. And then follow the coast in the North of Spain. There you can follow the way to Santiago de Compostella and you can sleep in the special and cheap albergues, when you have a pelgrimcard.
When you are in the mood, please go to Victoria-Gasteiz. There is a very pleasant atmospheer in the Center. Basque People are strong and proud, i did love it very much. In Victoria-Gasteiz is a very good Youth-Hostel, in the quarter behind the trainstation.
In Porto there is a space whith many surfers.
In Porto you also have a very good hostel named Gallery hostel.
Coimbra is a beautiful city with studentlife.
So, short my thoughts and recommendation for you.
Have a good time on your bike!
With kind regards,
Thanks a lot for the response.
Unfortunately I can't understand that website :(
Some very good information. I will definitely be going to Porto, and want to spend a lot of time in Basque country. I have met a few Basque people and they were lovely.
It's good to get recommendations for places to visit, I have no definite route planned yet so will make sure to visit Vitoria-Gasteiz
Just hope that I am not going too late in the year, hopefully it won't be too cold.
My husband and I have biked the Atlantic coast from Amsterdam to Gibraltar, over 4 6-8 week trips. Just returned home from Lisbon to Gibraltar, having left Lisbon May 18th. The other 3 trips were done in Aug-Sept previous years. The weather does start to cool down the end of Sept, and certainly in mid May it was a bit wet, and cooler. I must say I can't picture surfing thru the winter, or camping, unless you are prepped for cold weather camping.
The coast is beautiful, and I certainly agree that it is a great stretch of the Atlantic to explore!
I see what you mean about winter, although I will be starting beginning of September, be in Portugal by mid October, and head down to Peniche or somewhere similar. If it gets too cold I will rent an apartment, or maybe head down to Morocco.
How easy is travelling by train through Spain/Portugal with a bike? Also, what about train prices?
We did not use trains in either Spain or Portugal, so cannot help you there, sorry. Trains in France are easy to use with the bike, although it is better to book ahead so you are sure to get space for your bike.