The group in Portugal – we always say we get the best people on our tours and this one certainly proved the point – a great group with brilliant roads to ride, lovely scenery, top hotels, fabulous food and good weather – what a tour!!

Leaving Plymouth

John’s already in Santander

The ferry arriving

Jen’s driving the van

Here’s Bill – Yamaha FJR1300

And Ron – BMW R1250GSA

John S – Honda ST1300

All meet up off the ferry

A briefing before we set off

Drinks in a local bar

“Hi John and Jen, many, many thanks for a splendid trip – this hardly sounds sufficient.  We can all look at a map and come up with a route and we’re all familiar with good old so what’s the big deal?  Those of us who are used to club riding can lead a group and run the marker system so again – what’s the big deal?  The big deal is in putting everything together so that the result far exceeds the sum of its parts and this only comes from imagination, consideration and experience all of which you two have in abundance and which you have honed and moulded to what you know we want over the years, right from those early days at Bike Normandy.  Repeat custom only comes from customer satisfaction and this too you both have in abundance, you know what we want because you listen, you become part of the group rather than sitting aloof like so many tour operators.  So my thanks to you are for all of this and I congratulate you both on the continuing success of BN. It was indeed a splendid trip and achieved all I wanted of it…you have found some truly delightful roads that only a motorcyclist can enjoy in the way that only a motorcyclist can, and you have found the right mix of action and inaction, concentration and relaxation, individualism and social mix – and we were all very fortunate in the social side of the trip.  It was in all a most memorable experience…and so my very sincere thanks to you both and it was so good to see you both again – probably won’t be too long before the next time????? With kindest regards and warmest wishes”

John Spinks, 4th trip, Honda ST1300, Dorset

Wow, thank you John, we are really pleased you enjoyed the tour so much, look forward to seeing you again soon – J&J

Mike, Rob & Jon

Now everyone’s here…

We have dinner in a local restaurant

With cider poured the traditional way

Jackie and I had a great time, all the hotels were lovely, Santiago de Compostela a favourite, roads amazing, great mix of sociable people, food was lovely – “don’t eat, eat” will always make us smile. Quinta was a special memory, Porto was great. Weather was kind…the fact it all ran so smoothly is down to the time and effort you guys put in beforehand, credit to you both. Thanks to Simon for backmarking. I hope I’m still touring when I’m in my 70’s or even 80’s so you two can’t retire yet!”

And from Jackie…

“Thanks all for a great tour and lots of amazing memories. I loved the roads especially following the Douro river…amazing views as a pillion! The visit to the Sandeman Quinta was very special…wish we had taken shorts to change into! Lovely picnic lunch and a great setting. Really enjoyed the visit to Porto too. Big thanks to Ron for loaning me his waterproofs… who knew it could be cold/wet in Portugal!! Looking forward to our next tour… not sure where or when yet….”

Jon & Jackie Watson, 6th tour, Yamaha Tracer 900GT, Berkshire

Boulevard du Cidre

Old city walls

Start of the Camino de Santiago

The Cathedral

“Hi John and Jen, another trip with BN European Tours, another great holiday with like minded people on roads that simply don’t exist here in the UK and with so little traffic to boot (filtering on the M5 for miles and miles was a rude reminder of what we left behind!) You both make it look easy but of course we know it isn’t and your attention to detail is remarkable. In truth, I find it difficult to make any constructive comments though we both loved the Quinta and could easily have stayed there for 2 nights. We are looking forward to going with you next year, God willing.

From a Pillion’s perspective – great variety of roads, wonderful views and off-bike things to do and see. Loved the variety of hotels, food and locations you organised. Thank you for a lovely holiday.”

Gordon (7th trip) & Alison (6th trip) Barr, Honda Crossrunner, Essex

In our first 4* hotel

Breakfast area

Always a morning briefing

Lovely scenery

Great roads

Morning coffee stop

We had passed some huge vehicles

Monument to Immigrants

“Hello John and Jen, a great tour, well organised with excellent hotels, meals and roads, we were lucky with the weather and being able to put luggage in the van was a big plus. It was a a pleasure to ride with such skilled riders who made the twisties look easy. Thanks to Simon for his back marker efforts which was reassuring. My particular favourites were the musicians at Santiago de Compostela, the Quinta with it’s large pool, Guimaraes/Porto, the picnic lunch in the Douro Valley, the exhilarating fast roads in Spain later in the tour and cable car ride to mention a few. Best regards”

Kevin Pennell, 1st tour, Triumph Tiger 800XRX, Bristol

Hi John and Jen, thanks once again for a fantastic holiday. The trip was terrific, with great routes, scenery and roads, excellent hotels and super food. The jokes were up to the usual standard!!

Simon Brown, 8th tour, BMW R1250 GS, Surrey 

We stop on the Camino de Santiago

For a group photo

Tanya & Alan

Jackie & Jon


See the wild horses

And a gorgeous little foal

Fabulous roads

John’s leading on his Tiger 900

“Hi John and Jen, thank you for another excellent tour. Great roads, great hotels and excellent food. Lunch in the Vineyards was a highlight for me! Looking forward to the next one”

Rob Palmer, 8th trip, Triumph Tiger 1050 & son Mike Palmer, 6th trip, Suzuki GSXR750, Lincolnshire

Rob – Tiger 1050

Mike – Suzuki GSXR750

Peter R – BMW S1000XR

Bruce – BMW R1200GS

Gordon & Alison – Honda Crossrunner

Jon & Jackie – Yamaha Tracer 900

Alan & Tanya – Ducati Multistrada

Kevin – Tiger 800 XRX

Superlative tour arranged and run by John & Jen. The system used works for everyone – fast or slower with no pressure put on anyone to ride beyond their comfort zone. We had a great mix of guys & gals and all so friendly. Excellent choice of hotels and with good food too. The routes and scenery perfect. Cheers to you all

Ron Rugman, 2nd trip, BMW R1250GSA, Kent

Backmarker Simon – BMW R1250GS

Caps from the cancelled 2020 tour!

Ride through Lugo

UNESCO town walls

At our next hotel

Inner courtyard

Our fab 4* hotel is right in the centre

The Cathedral at Santiago de Compostela

The plaza

Cute !!

A band set up

What a great evening

“Hi John & Jen, the tour was excellent as were the hotels and routes. The roads were awesome and well planned, the company was great – everyone got on and all were very good riders. I think it was all great value for money – the picnic at Sandeman’s with those views was incredible! Special thanks to my two carers Neil and Russ – its no fun back in the End of Days care home with a very strict Matron!! Looking forward to the next one. Love Pete xx”

Peter Maynard, 3rd tour, Aprilia Tuono, Kent

Amazing breakfast room

Morning briefing

Deviation leaving Santiago de C

Morning coffee stop

Pretty towns

All in the same cafe !!

Ready to leave

Stop to admire the view

John & Simon

Lunch stop

Fuel before heading to Portugal

John’s leading the whole tour

Russell – BMW R1200GS

Neil – KTM Superduke GT

Peter M – Aprilia Tuono

Border guards!!

Ride through a National Park


Then cobble stone hairpins!!

Approaching our next hotel

A lovely Quinta

Some enjoy a beer – or two…

While others go for a swim

John’s in there

Others had already been for a swim

We’ve ordered Mateus Rose aperitifs


Lactose free? Yes; Are you sure? Yes

Do you want to check? Yes – DON’T EAT!

Ok – EAT!! The lovely Phillipa 🙂

Dinner is included tonight

Admit it – men watch the sewing bee!!!

Morning briefing

We stop on a huge dam

The water is really low

We ride the N304

Supposed to be one of the best roads in Europe…

But we found much better than this!!

At lunch – roads closed

Bar in our next 4* hotel

A procession has closed the roads

Yes really !!

A free evening to explore Guimaraes.

Enjoy aperitifs in the square

Boys will be boys!!

Fabulous fish…

then drinks on the house

Guimaraes by night

A lovely city

A day off – take the train to Porto

Porto train station

Head up to the Cathedral

Views of the old town

Colourful back streets

Stroll up there

For the best views

Lots of market stalls

Take the cable car down

Just for Jackie !!!

Amazing artwork

You can taste Port

All the Port houses are here

Port & sardines

Walk across the bridge

Buskers everywhere

More market stalls

Colourful buildings

Lively cafes

We stop for Sangria & calamares

A brilliant life artist

John thought it was a sculpture!!

Covered in pearl buttons

Back at Guimaraes

Next day morning coffee stop

With a surprising view

Leaving coffee stop

We stop for a photo shoot

Overlooking the Douro River

Rob & Mike

Tanya & Alan

We have a surprise in store

Pinhao in the distance

Gordon & Alison



John S


Peter M





Jen in the van

We stroll down through the vineyards

More stunning views

We’ve arranged a picnic lunch

Jon & Jackie

We then have a guided tour


Leaving Sandeman’s

Our next 4* hotel

In a medieval village

We lay on a Port tasting


Dinner is included tonight

So who put their room key on Alison’s chair???

Our hotel by night

Next day Neil’s KTM has a flat tyre

We say goodbye to John S who’s bike has a problem

Morning briefing

Morning coffee stop

Not on this tour !!

You MUST be happy riding twisties

This is really high concentration

Parking at lunch stop

Simon stops for photos

These are fabulous roads

Stop to view another dam

But the mist is rolling in

Gorillas in the mist??!!

Sweepers to our next stop

Torre – Portugal’s highest spot

Our next 4* hotel for 2 nights

Has an indoor pool

Simon went for another ride

What a difference in 5 minutes

Most go to the bar opposite

Another lovely morning

Simon relinquishes the orange vest!!

Bill rides as back-marker

Jon & Jackie


Alan & Tanya

Peter R

Simon gets a day off!!

Gordon & Alison

Russ, Neil & Pete sort out Neil’s tyre


What – a broken down BMW??!!

Bruce can’t get his ear plug out!!

Those who went on the ride-out

Copious dinner for two nights here

Another lovely morning

Fuel & coffee stop

Lunch stop

Afternoon coffee stop

After some of the BEST roads!!

View from our next hotel

Superb murals in the town

The Gaudi Palace

Simon ventured inside

Thanks Simon

The Cathedral

Briefing in the garage

Storks as we head into the Picos

Scruffy youngsters

Four in this nest!

Coffee stop

Stop for a photo opportunity

Beautiful scenery

Fuel stop with the best view!


All stop at the viewing area

Jackie & Jon

Peter R

Brilliant roads

Here’s Jen (thanks Rob)

Great bends

After lunch, the Fuente De

The brave ones!

Tanya & Alan

It’s a bit cloudy

He doesn’t mind though!

John S had been there too

Our final hotel

Drinks before dinner

Dinner is included tonight

Crab salad – starter!


Or Sardines

Pork – one of the main choices

John thanks everyone for a great tour

And Simon for a great job as back-marker

Then the jokes start…

John’s up first (no surprise!!)

Bill & Ron are amused…

Other guests are bemused !!

Bill takes a turn…

He has some hot tips!!

John again…

Not there for the hunting!!

Peter R takes a turn

Then another guest joins in!

Gordon’s up next

What a great night!

Our last day

A final briefing

Stuck at roadworks

Still more twisties

Final coffee/lunch stop

All in the same cafe again!!

Bye everyone!!

At the port our bike goes in the van

Thanks Simon

There’s Alan & Tanya!! We’re last on!

Moored in the port

Thanks to everyone for the fabulous feedback and for sending photos; This was a super tour with great riding & participation by all. We look forward to seeing many of you again on future tours. Ride safe, John & Jen

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