24 May, 23

Cycling the N2

Exploring Portugal's Breathtaking N2 by Bicycle: A Journey Through Nature and Culture


Portugal, known for its stunning landscapes, rich history, and warm hospitality, is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure seekers. If you’re an avid cyclist looking for a remarkable journey, there’s no better way to experience the country’s beauty than by cycling the N2. Stretching from Chaves to Faro, the N2 is Portugal’s longest national road, spanning approximately 738 kilometers. In this blog post, we invite you to join us on an unforgettable cycling adventure along the N2, where you’ll discover picturesque landscapes, charming towns, and immerse yourself in the country’s fascinating culture.


1. Chaves: The Gateway to the N2

Our journey begins in Chaves, a historic city in northern Portugal. Known for its Roman ruins and hot springs, Chaves sets the stage for the remarkable adventure that awaits. After exploring the city’s historical sites, it’s time to hop on your bicycle and embark on the N2. Be prepared to pedal through rolling hills, vineyards, and small villages, each offering glimpses of the country’s rural charm.


2. Douro Valley: A Wine Lover’s Paradise

As you cycle southward, you’ll soon reach the renowned Douro Valley. This UNESCO World Heritage site is famous for its terraced vineyards, where Portugal’s esteemed Port wine is produced. Take a break from your ride to savor the breathtaking scenery and perhaps indulge in a wine tasting experience at one of the many quintas (wine estates) dotted along the route. The Douro Valley is a true feast for the senses.


3. Serra da Estrela: Majestic Mountain Passes

Prepare for a change of scenery as you approach the Serra da Estrela, the highest mountain range in Portugal. Although we do not ride over it you catch glimpses from afar as we circumnavigate the edges. Pedaling through winding roads and challenging mountain passes may test your endurance, but the rewarding vistas and the sense of accomplishment make it all worthwhile. Don’t forget to pause and admire the valleys, crystal-clear lakes, and picturesque villages nestled amidst the rugged peaks.


4. Historical Treasures: Viseu and Serta

Continuing along the N2, you’ll encounter two historically significant cities: Serta and Viseu. The Sierra de Alvelos occupies much of the Serta landscape, and the forestry activity is the main source of income of most of the active population in the municipality. Its origins date back to the 3rd millennium BC, as evidenced by, for example, the dolmens and rock engravings. Viseu, on the other hand, boasts a rich history dating back to Roman times. Discover its Gothic cathedral, elegant palaces, and wander through its well-preserved historic center.


5. The Final Stretch: Crossing the Alentejo and Algarve

Leaving behind the captivating landscapes of central Portugal, you’ll enter the vast and serene plains of Alentejo. Rolling through golden fields, cork oak forests, and vineyards, you’ll witness the region’s tranquility and simple beauty. As you pedal southward, the road will lead you to the final stretch of the N2, culminating in the sunny shores of the Algarve. Celebrate your incredible journey with a dip in the Atlantic Ocean and bask in the coastal splendor of Faro.



Cycling the N2 in Portugal is an extraordinary adventure that combines physical challenges with cultural immersion. From the charming towns in the north to the sun-soaked beaches of the Algarve, this journey takes you through diverse landscapes and offers a glimpse into the heart and soul of Portugal. So, if you’re seeking a memorable cycling experience, pack your bags, saddle up, and embark on the N2.

22 Nov, 22


The Difference

What is it that makes a successful athlete?

What do they have that the average doesn’t?

What is The Difference?

The answer to this question, like most in life, is much simpler than we want it to be.

The difference is that your successful athlete is willing to dig deeper than the competition.

You don’t have to be a world champion or top amateur to have “The Difference.”

Here are some facts of life for the triathlete:

You will be tired.  




There will be workouts that leave you gasping for air and your muscles screaming for mercy.  

You will be knackered.

There will be days when you fall into bed and are asleep before you hit the pillow.  

There will be mornings that you would rather be beaten that get up and head to the pool.

There will be workouts that you loathe.


You have two choices as an athlete: 

1.  You can be easy on yourself and never go to the pain cave. Skip workouts when you are tired. Skip workouts when you have a minor ache. Sleep in when and just miss a workout because “you aren’t feeling it”. Don’t do the workouts that you don’t like.

2.  Suck it up buttercup and do what is necessary to achieve your goals.

The athlete that makes choice 2 above can then go about working on the mental aspects of racing.

The  mental abilities required to be a successful athlete:

1.  You have to be able to put your ego away and stick to your plan.

2.  You have to be able to push through pain.

3.  You have to be able to turn off your brain and will your body to continue on.

4.  You have to be able to stay focused on your goal.

5.  You do have to be willing to put in the work and see it through to the end, day in and day out,     week after week,month after month and season after season.

An athlete must accept that training and racing isn’t all sunshine and roses. It is more or less a briar patch that one must climb through and emerge from at the finish line on race day.

Acceptance of what is required will put you well on your way to having what it takes to be successful, having “The Difference”.

It’s all mind over matter

If you don’t mind it doesn’t matter!

21 Nov, 22

Make Flying with your Bike Less Stressful

Make flying with your bike less stressful

Flying with your bike shouldn’t be an anxiety ridden drama. Follow these simple tips to make your voyage less stressful and more enjoyable.

Make sure that your bike fits in your bike case. Many of the newer bikes have one piece handlebars or complicated cockpits.

My personal favorite case for all of my bikes is the Bike Box Alan Triathlon Easy Fit Aero. This hard shell case is a breeze to pack and allows you to leave rotors on if you have a disc brake bike.
Velcro straps allow you to secure all of your spare bits inside the box. I have seen many frames damaged by loose bits that weren’t secured during transit.

Don’t over pack your case if you are flying into or out of the US. TSA will not be bothered to put everything back the way it was. A cleaner interior means that it’s much easier to inspect and close properly

Check out this video regarding Do’s & Don’t

Know your airlines fee structure for bikes. Many of the US based airlines have eased excess baggage fees for bike cases. Many of the European airline have generous bike case pricing. Book your bike in advance to avoid the arbitrary fees that are common at European airports when checking in.

Ensure that you have transportation that will hold your bike case and luggage. There is nothing worse than arriving at rental agency and realizing that the vehicle that you booked won’t fit your bike case and luggage. In the United States I prefer to rent 4 door pickup trucks as it easy to get 4 bikes and suitcases in the back. In Europe I prefer to rent a mini van if possible.

Don’t wait until the last minute to pack. Nothing is more stressful than trying to pack a bike 3 minutes before you are due to depart for the airport. Pack the night before and take your time.

Remove rear derailleur. Remove your rear derailleur. It’s posted twice because it is very important. A bent derailleur hanger is not the best way to start your journey when you arrive. Use the velcro straps to secure the hanger and chain inside your bike box.

21 Nov, 22

Liver Preparation for the N2

Vinho Verde, what is it?

Vinho Verde (which is translated as “green wine”) is a crisp and slightly spritzy wine from the North of Portugal. Despite the translation, Vinho Verde is never green: it’s usually a white wine, although it’s possible to get red Vinho Verde and rosé vinho verde as well.  Vinho Verde wines are typically very low in alcohol (11% ABV on average) which makes it popular for lunchtime and summer drinking.

There are many brands and options available in Portugal, but once you return back home you will be surprised to find that Vinho Verde can be widely found at Costco, HEBs and other stores etc around the USA and Canada.

If available the top choices are:

1). Wines of the “Alvarinho” grape variety from Moncao and Melgaco are fantastic.  These are harder to find.  Cost is about $15 to $20 a bottle.

2). In my opinion, the best green wine 💯 that is widely available is Muralhas (Muralhas de Moncao).  Cost is about $8-$10 a bottle.

3). Next level are the green wines from Casual Garcia and Aveleda.   Very good solid wines and by far the most popular brands and most widely available.  These cost around $8 a bottle

4) After these 3 categories you have many many brands available including Gazela,  Fuzelo, etc.  These will be the cheaper variety and about $5-$7 a bottle

Article credit to Pedro Da Cruz.