Has anyone done the 6-hour Bike Ride in the Vinho Verde Region excursion while on the Duoro River cruise? We’re not avid bikers, but are certainly fit and exercise regularly. The description says it’s 13 miles and is for people who bike regularly, which we do not. Is it difficult or is Tauck just trying to weed out people? We’ve been on 12 Tauck tours and understand their “activity levels and pace” gradings and know that a “4” might really be a 2 or 3. We’d like to do something active and the only other excursion option was a vineyard walk w/cocktail making. Thanks!


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    I did not partake in the bicycle ride, but do recall fellow travelers reporting it being easy with many rest stops for refreshments. It also depends on the season. We went in late fall with cool temperatures when the vineyards were ablaze in color. Stunningly beautiful. The summer months would be unbearable, especially if you dislike hot weather like I do.

    Have a wonderful time. The tour is one of our favorites.

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    If you're in decent physical condition, 13 miles on a bike is not difficult. For recreational bikers, group rides are often at 13 miles/hr. Here, they give you 6 hours to complete the 13 miles. The danger I see is from falls. Laying a bike down when you're 30 is nothing. When you're 70 it can be painful.

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    We did this tour in July of 2023. We did not do the bike ride but the couple we were traveling with did and said it was much easier than Tauck described. They said the hike through the vineyard was more difficult. Our friend actually fell on the hike.

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    Our bike ride got rained out. The hike I found easy until the last 10% then it got steep and you needed the walking poles they loaned us. The views were worth it.

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    The bike rides are typically only as hard as you make it. You must keep in mind the Tauck customer demographic.

    I did the 26 mile ride during Blue Danube. I was a tad under 70 at the time, not a biker, but I sort of trained for it for two months or so, until I could do 26 mi. without stopping. During the ride, our group self-divided into sub-groups. There was a younger group of jackrabbits who took off at a blistering pace and finished far ahead of everyone else. Their peloton appeared to be more interested in biking and racing than seeing the river and surroundings- not my idea of fun. I doubt they saw much of it. The tortoises who anchored the group included one of our TDs- they were in it for the fun and scenery, so arrived a half hour or so later. Then there was me between the two groups; I was probably closer to the tortoises. I saw the scenery as I biked and stopped whenever I wanted to rest or take photos. There was a chase vehicle who could collect the bike of anyone who wanted to ride in the van for the last half of the trip. The boat is certainly not going to leave without everyone!!

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    edited March 2

    Just a trivia note, the chase vehicle that follows a group of bikers is known as a "SAG Wagon". It actually stands for "Support And Gear" but is mostly there to pick up those who cannot keep with with the group. Also sometimes called a "Broom Wagon". Even strong riders might have to use the SAG Wagon if they had something break on their bike, such as a chain or a spoke, that could not be easily repaired on the road. Professionals have a support vehicle and they change bikes if something like that happens.

    I did a lot of biking and it was always called a SAG wagon when I was riding.

    And, if you're riding in a group going fast (20+mph), all you can concentrate on is the rear wheel of the bike in front of you - you're going to be as close as you possibly can. If they go down, you'll probalby go down, also.

    The quick release on the rear wheel should point down so that if the rider in back of you bumps the left side of your rear wheel, the quick release will not catch the spokes of that person's wheel. In an agressive group, there's a lot of bumping, not all of it by accident.

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    I enjoyed the Douro cycling excursion. It was on a paved surface with rest breaks. I found the hike through the vineyards to be much more of a challenge on steep inclines up and down and on rocky paths. I would choose both excursions again.

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    My husband and I did this bike tour. It was fairly easy and we do not bike that often. The scenery was beautiful and it was a nice break to do something different on the tour. I highly recommend it! Even if you were to have some difficulty or get tired, they offered a ride in the van that followed us along the route. I hope you enjoy your trip as much as we did.

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    We did the bike tour last August. I'm fit and do spin classes, but being a Florida girl, I did huff and puff a little on the hills. Our group was pretty quick too. We were told we were one of the fastest groups to complete the ride. Gave us more time for lunch in the pretty town we stopped in. So, it depends on your group. If you are slower, you hold everyone back. But don't let that stop you as it's a beautiful ride.

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