Portugal Family Adventure

8 days
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5 / 5 from 6 reviews >
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Family Mixed-Activity Holidays
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Discover Portugal's idyllic Alentejo Coast

This active family trip is based in the charming town of Vila Nova de Milfontes, in the heart of the Southwest Alentejo and Vicentine Coast Natural Park, Portugal’s largest protected area, famous for its rugged coastline and outstanding natural beauty. The diverse Portuguese landscape is a playground for adventurers. Over the course of the week you will enjoy some unforgettable experiences including a jeep tour, orienteering by kayak, cycling, abseiling and of course trying out the region’s best-loved sport; surfing!


  • Try surfing in the Atlantic Ocean
  • Kayak on the Mira River and abseil from a bridge
  • Mountain bike excursion to a natural lagoon

Key information

  • 7 nights comfortable guesthouse with pool, all rooms en suite
  • 8 days land only/flight inclusive
  • 5 days kayaking, cycling, swimming and surfing
  • Group normally 4 to 16, plus leader. Min age 8 yrs
  • Travel by private vehicle, jeep, kayak and bicycle

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 2 lunches
  • All accommodation 
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Transfers for group flights
  • Equipment hire for included activities

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call us on
0208 772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 


Vila Nova de Milfontes
Vila Nova de Milfontes
  • Day 1

    Fly to Lisbon and transfer to Vila Nova de Milfontes.

    Fly to Lisbon and transfer to our base in Vila Nova de Milfontes (approx. 2 hrs from Lisbon). Our quaint accommodation is located close to the centre of the small town, and approx. 15 mins walk from the main beach. Depending on flight times there may be an opportunity to take a stroll to get to know the local area before having dinner at one of the many good restaurants.

  • Day 2

    Surfing experience in the Atlantic Ocean.

    Today we will have an active and enjoyable day at the beach, with plenty of exercise and good fun! The Portuguese coastline is widely known for the quality of its waves breaking onto clean beaches, and the wide expanse of coastline surrounding Milfontes is no exception to this. A short drive will take us over the sand dunes to pick up our surfboards, and a half day of tuition will enable beginners to have a go and perhaps even stand on the board for the first time. The beautiful, wild (and often empty) coastline around this area is a perfect location to properly pick up the surfing bug, and there will be another opportunity to surf on the free day if the demand calls for it! We usually spend the entire day at the beach as the lessons depend on tide schedules, and the leader will bring along a cool box and encourage you to pick up some picnic things from the shops before you leave.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Try orienteering from a kayak before an afternoon cycle tour.

    Today will give us the opportunity to start exploring the river Mira, the estuary that sits next to Milfontes. We will use our two-person kayaks to reach several points using an orienteering map, and there will be an opportunity to see some rural houses and learn about the local way of life. Lunch will be served on the banks of the river Mira with a perfect view over the sparkling water. Afterwards we enjoy a cycle ride along a beautiful stretch of coastline, starting close to the Sardão Cape lighthouse and taking in the rugged nature and amazing views of the region. The cycling is along sandy paths at a nice easy pace, and there will be plenty of opportunities to stop for photos or a drink. This area of the coastline is filled with beautiful wildflowers in the earlier months, and is a great place to spot storks nesting on the cliffs.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 4

    Free day to try a wealth of optional activities, relax by the pool or head down to the beach.

    Today you are free to decide how to spend your day. There are a huge range of activities available including bike or kayak rental for independent exploration of the Mira river. You may also improve your skills with another surf experience. Please be aware that all activities are subject to availability and weather conditions, and to avoid disappointment we recommend booking these as early as possible in the week. Alternatively, you can relax and enjoy the beach or the pool at the hotel. We recommend a visit to the local ice-cream shop for a refreshing treat!

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Enjoy kayaking on the Mira River and abseil from a bridge.

    Starting close to Milfontes or a little further inland (depending on the local conditions), today’s kayaking trip of approximately 9km will see us surrounded by nature and truly unspoiled landscapes; a unique opportunity to interact with the local flora and fauna. After lunch we will take a short drive to the main bridge of Milfontes. This is a bridge we will have driven across many times during the week, and the chance to abseil (30 metres) from it provides a thrilling experience and absolutely fantastic views of the Mira estuary.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Today we will enjoy a jeep tour

    Today we move away from the water and take a morning jeep tour, which allows some exploration of the sandy off-road tracks near unexplored beaches and woods. The whole Alentejo region is famous for its ‘Fisherman’s Trails’; walks that run along the coastline that are used by locals to get to the quieter beaches and best fishing spots, and this jeep and walking tour gives us a great opportunity to see some of the more remote places in the region. Lunch is spent out of the heat; as we shade ourselves in nearby cork and eucalyptus plantations. The remainder of the day is free for relaxation or other optional activities.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Morning mountain biking to a lagoon; afternoon at leisure.

    We start the day at a stunning spot in a steep-sided river valley, where we begin cycling on dirt roads. The paths are undulating, which means a bit of climbing and some exciting downhill sections, which gives us the opportunity to learn some mountain bike skills! The path ends at a beautiful natural lagoon, where a swim is possible, and jumping in is highly recommended! The afternoon is then left free to unwind from the week’s activities.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 8

    Transfer to Lisbon; fly to London

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info



No visa required for British passport holders.



There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 2 lunches are included.

Food is an important part of local culture and nowhere more so than in the fertile Alentejo region, known as the bread basket of Portugal. Typical ingredients include various breads, sheep's cheese, black pork, salt cod, wild mushrooms and asparagus. Food here is simple yet plentiful with something to suit all tastebuds. The Portuguese eat a lot of meat and fish as part of their main meals but vegetarians will normally find they get a balanced diet if they are prepared to be flexible.


If travelling in July and August you must be prepared for high temperatures and it is not always possible to avoid the heat of the midday sun. Rain is unlikely in the summer months although the occasional storm can't be ruled out. Protracted spells of bad weather are unlikely at any time of the year.

Is this trip for you?

This trip is graded is graded Leisurely/Moderate as it allows the most active a chance to try a host of different activities and includes plenty of free time for those that prefer a more relaxed pace. Many of the activities have specific requirements; it is therefore important to thoroughly read the section of the Trip Notes entitled 'Land Only Itinerary'. It is particularly important to note the high temperatures in July and August. If any of your family find high temperatures difficult to cope with, then you may wish to travel at another time.

Call us on
0208 772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.


Quinta Do Moinho de Vento

Our base for the week is a comfortable hotel located in a quiet area of Vila Nova de Milfontes, 900 meters from the beach and a short walk into the local town. Our hotel features a beautiful garden, outdoor salt-water pool, tennis court and hot tub. Wi-fi is available and rooms are equipped with en suite facilities, satellite TV and air conditioning. We use a mixture of rooms ranging from standard twin, triples, family rooms to apartments. Rooms will be allocated depending on the makeup of the group and time of booking but please be aware that room sizes may vary.

Call us on
0208 772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.


Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call us on
0208 772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed August 2016
    Ian Weetman

    Loved it!

    What a fantastic trip! The balance of top draw activities against relaxation was perfect. Cycling, abseiling, canoeing, surfing all new challenges to us, all well organised, great well informed guides, and all difficult but not too much and it works. Then we had most afternoons to relax either in the most idealic small 15 room hotel with pool or by the beach. We me three other great similar in outlook families which certainly helps all the kids got on which makes it all the more easier. Would throughly recommend.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing kids challenged on cycle trip, very hot day ending at small inland lagoon with fresh hot food bought to us. Abseiling was very special experience.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had two and they playing their part in making holiday so special

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just get stuck in and get booked for next year

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Not sure I'd change anything
  • Reviewed June 2016
    Hannah Asquith

    Fantastic family holiday in Portugal

    A week of activities perfectly tailored to our family (dad, mum, 2 daughters aged 8 and 9)

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Surfing the Atlantic waves!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Two leaders, Ricardo and Rafael, looked after us really well. Very knowledgeable about - and obviously very proud of - the region.
  • Reviewed June 2016
    Lynne Connell

    Portugal family adventure

    We spent a fabulous week on this holiday with our 8 year old daughter. The accommodation was lovely-rustic, clean, nice staff and great breakfasts-fresh breads, fruit, cheese , meats , freshly squeezed orange juice and pastries. The pool was lovely and although a bit cold it was very refreshing . I had a pre breakfast swim every morning. We and the other family had it practically to ourselves every day. The activities were great-a nice mix which we all enjoyed. You do need to be reasonably fit. There was also plenty time to relax and explore the lovely town and nearby beaches. Local restaurants really good and very reasonable. They don't mind you sharing two portions between 3 people. The cafe Mabi was great for after dinner ice cream and coffee.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Trying new things like kayaking and watching my little daughter abseil from a very high bridge!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ricardo and Rafael were both fantastic. Patient , cheerful, kind and great with children . Great local knowledge. Nothing was too much trouble. Couldn't praise them enough! New boy Phillipe also very nice.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just book it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    We had a lovely time with the other family. Our girls got on really well and so did the adults and we ate together at night a few times.
  • Reviewed August 2015
    Caroline Bonney

    Portugal Family Adventure

    We have just come back from our second holiday with Exodus (the last one being Camels and Casbahs in Morocco last year) and we have been just as pleased this time. The holiday was great fun with just the right balance of activity and downtime. The Alentejo region is absolutely stunning - rugged coastline with crashing surf, beautiful beaches and the national park was colourful and interesting. The town, Vila Nova de Milfontes, was attractive and relaxed. I didn't spot one other British person or other tourists while I was there. The restaurants were plentiful with good local food, often fish that had been caught that day. One particular restaurant was right down on the beach with fabulous views out over the sea. The Portuguese were friendly.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The stunning scenery - coastline, national park and along the River Mira.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ricardo, our group leader, was brilliant. He was informative, fun, sociable and reliable. His local knowledge was substantial and he had a genuine care for keeping the towns and surrounding areas as unspoilt as possible. He was very safety conscious and we were never in any doubt about his skill with any of the activities we took part in. We couldn't have wished for a better leader. His assistant, Raffel, was also outstanding, again having a real care for all things natural, years of experience involved with the activities and someone you could trust. Ricardo and Raffel were understanding and wouldn't have made any of us doing any of the activities if we hadn't wanted to (having said that we all did everything!!)

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared to get involved and trust your guides. Don't forget to bring waterproof shoes - they came in handy!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    There were two families of 3 involved in this trip who didn't know each other beforehand, one family had a girl of 11 years and the other a boy of 13 years. Both the children took part in every activity and led the way with both abseils. The abseils were new to everyone in the group and there was a sense of achievement and empowerment, having got to the bottom on both occasions. Look out for the numerous scarecrows around town - the story goes that long ago pirates arrived with the aim of robbing Vila Nova de Milfontes. The local people, of whom there were few, made scarecrows and dotted them about the town to give the impression the town was more populated than it actually was and to scare off the pirates!
  • Reviewed August 2015
    Natalie Holloway

    Perfect Family Adventure

    A wonderful week of kayaking, abseiling, cycling and surfing in the area surrounding Vila Nova De Milfontes. Our guide, Rafa, was personable, flexible and he and the team (Ricardo, Pedro and David) were great with children and adults alike, inspiring confidence and enabling us to relax and enjoy all activities. Our hotel was spotlessly clean and the staff were charming and helpful. The hotel pool was small but perfect for relaxing in, or next to, after a day of exercise, while the town offered an abundance of restaurants and cafes to suit all tastes.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Abseling down the rock face - a real 'leap of faith' for me and testament to the trust we had in Rafa and Pedro that day.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was great - responsive to our requests, where possible. Steady, reliable and patient in the face of our group's frequent lateness in the mornings!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Visit Mabi - the ice cream parlour. Or group hired motor boats on our free day (which our guide booked for us) - tremendous fun. Bring cycling shorts or a gel saddle for the mountain biking.
  • Reviewed June 2015
    Edward Steel (age 11)

    Portugal family adventure

    We spent a week in Vila Nova De Milfontes, doing new activities every day and exploring the local culture in the evenings. The town is full of exciting restaurants especially a pizza and pasta place only a few minutes walk from the relaxing and amazing hotel that you will stay in. Throughout the course of the week there will be times after activities to visit some shops around the local area, my favourite was a ice-cream shop called Mabi, it has many exotic and sweet flavours and it cools you down in the average 28 degree sun. In the hotel you are given free breakfast which includes croissants, toasts, different types of Portuguese jams and many other foods. There is a private pool for the hotel residents only, it is very cold but in the heat it's really quite refreshing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The most inspiring moment for me on the trip was when I was doing the 30m abseil from the bridge, when I was suspended about half way and was looking out at the amazing view. I also loved it when I stood up for the first time on the surfboard (as it was my first time surfing), it felt incredible and I'm sure if you do it you'll feel the same. Plus when we finished the 15km bike ride it was so rewarding and refreshing jumping into the river and having a little swim.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ricardo was very friendly and chatty and seemed to know interesting facts about almost everything we saw. Rafael was equally friendly, he wasn't as vocal but was still a very nice person to be with for the trip. David joined us later on in the trip and was younger than the other two but was just as good, he was described as their kid when he was jumping in the river. The surfing teachers were very helpful and prepared us very well for what to expect when we were surfing.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    For activities like kayaking a hat is very useful. A book is a good idea for reading by the pool. For the abseil it would be normal to be a bit nervous when you're lowering yourself off the bridge but once you're suspended it is amazing. On our free day we decided to do some extra surfing when we did it we had the beach to ourselves and we had a private lesson and at the end of the lesson I could stand up every time I tried, this was mainly because of the huge encouragement and determination of the instructors. I highly recommend doing surfing again on the free day.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Prepare yourself for the best most thrilling week of your life!

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.


What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.


2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.


3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.


 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 


Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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Call us on 0208 772 3936