Mountain biking in Ericeira by David Farrell.
Ericeira is best known internationally for its world-class surfing along the 4 kilometers and seven beaches of the World Surfing Reserve (WSR). It is also beloved by the Portuguese as a vacation spot with deep history, beautiful beaches, and terrific seafood restaurants.
Ericeira Mountain Biking For All
Don’t tell anyone, but Ericeira is also home to world-class mountain biking with trails of wonderful diversity of terrain and difficulty, and they all include inspiring views.
Whether you are looking for an easy family ride through stone walled farms in green valleys, are seeking to ride through vines laden with grapes ready to become wine, or are craving challenging climbs and steep descents on single track trails; you will find them all in the Ericeira-Mafra area. In Portugal, Mountain Biking is called BTT (an abbreviation of Bicicleta Todo Terreno). Check local trails here and here.
My Mountain Biking Background
I had ridden mountain bikes for many years in Colorado prior to retiring and moving to Portugal; though I had been away from it for some time.
Not long after arriving in Portugal three years ago, I became friends with bike riders in Cascais who inspired me to buy a mountain bike and get back to the sport I love so much.
We rode often in the Sintra Mountains. Then, two years ago my wife and I decided to move to Ericeira. When we arrived, I had the good fortune to meet my friend, neighbor and most frequent riding partner Andre Notteau.
Andre, a Frenchman, introduced me too many of the BTT trails in this area. He also introduced me to a wonderful group of riders in the Clube Ericeira BTT.
Ericeira Mountain Biking Club – BTT
Clube Ericeira BTT was formed three years ago by an avid group of BTT riders ranging from high school through retirement age. The majority of members are Portuguese and they are strong, dedicated riders. They have been very gracious in welcoming expat riders. We are all united in our common love of BTT.
The Mountain e-Biking
E-bikes are generating a lot of interest in the world of BTT. These are high quality mountain bikes with sophisticated motors that sense a riders input and respond with additional power. They are of interest to riders of all ages, but have proven particularly valuable to older riders.
As Andre notes as he taps his chest near his heart, “You spend less time in the red zone.” Our e-bikes allow us to ride further and longer while still getting a great workout. Remember though, an e-BTT bike will help you get up the hill more quickly, but it won’t get you down the hill more safely. It is rider ability that ensures that.
The Local Mountain Biking Assistance
There are several enthusiast stores in the area for purchase, parts and repairs of mountain (or street) bikes.
On top of that, Google can send you to several sources for rentals or guided tours in the Ericeira region. A guided tour can be a good way to learn about cycling in the region and about specific trails.
Here are a few rental and guided tour options: