Adventure holidays in Portugal

Portugal is often seen as a run-of-the-mill summer holiday destination – a place for beach lovers and package tourists. But if you fancy combining some beach loafing with a little fun in the sun, don’t write the southern European country off just yet. In addition to fabulous stretches of sand, a myriad of cultural attractions and several beautiful cities, it is becoming increasingly popular among adventure tourists. Adrenalin junkies may also find that they can enjoy a break in Portugal more cheaply than in other destinations by booking late holidays with a company like On The Beach. If this sounds appealing, here’s a brief sample of the activities Portugal has to offer.

Casual cyclists will find great trails almost anywhere in Portugal, but for more serious mountain bikers it’s best to head to an area like the Peneda-Geres National Park or the Montesinho National Park. Both of these areas have some great cycling views, which combine challenging terraine with spectacular views.

Whether you’re an amateur or a professional, Portugal will have a golf course to suit your ability and preferences. Some of Europe’s finest courses can be found along the Algarve and Estoril Coast, with many golf resorts providing other facilities such as spas and pools as well.

The Algarve abounds with high-class yachting centres, with two of the best situated at Lagos and Vilamoura respectively. Watersports enthusiasts will also find plenty of surfing opportunities – don’t miss the world-famous Guincho Beach just outside Cascais where international championships are often held. If you prefer something a little more laid-back, it’s possible to take a canoe or a kayak out on many of the country’s rivers.  

Some of the country’s best walks can be found on the island of Madeira, where the levada irrigation channels provide perfect vantage points from which to admire the surrounding scenery. For fantastic views and rarely-trodden paths, it’s also worth getting a ferry across to the islands of Soa Miguel and Soa Jorge in the Azores.  

Other activities
There are plenty of other sports to take part in during a visit to Portugal, from riding the country’s beautiful Lusitano horses to skiing in the Serra da Estrela mountains. For something a little different, why not try deep-sea fishing off the shores of the Algarve, or taking a tennis coaching holiday on the Estoril coast? Wherever you go in the country, you can be sure that you’ll never be short of things to do.