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Evora Portugal rally May 2020.

I am thinking of going, via the Portsmouth /Santander ferry. Would like to hear from others !   Jan Nelder.


Have you checked availability? I found the dates I wanted were all fully booked from Portsmouth to Santander/ Bilbao and a ripoff £400 or so return.

Booked extra holiday and got the Newhaven Dieppe return for £66.50, alot of extra miles but mostly non motorway on some great riding roads down through France, Portugal, Spain and across the Pyrenees.


19-30 May apparently has availability, at £494 total,including basic cabin each way. Nice though France is, I have done it twice in 3 years down that side to near Bordeaux, hence may be prepared for expensive Spain route. Jan.


I have suggested that, if enough of us commit to going, then the club should approach Brittany for a discount like moto piston does for their rallies. If you can get 3bikes and riders in a van that seems to be the cheapest way. 

Alternatively, it's possible to ship your bike to Lisbon, and fly from LHR, LGW AND LST to Lisbon. 


I am on the case, as there are a couple of options. As soon as I get a firm offer I'll publish it. 


Hi Jan and others

Everyone's situation is different. Retired active couple with bike in a Berlingo. I'm setting off from North Yorkshire on the Sunday morning 17th May. Late evening sailing Portsmouth to Bilbao suits me fine.

Arrives Bilbao early Tuesday morning. Remember, early start, two drivers, Berlingo. Ferries don't sail every day to the Spanish ports.

Around 500 miles Bilbao to Evora. Only 35 miles less from Santander.

Take up booked accommodation in Evora Tuesday night. Easy walk from campsite and just in walled town.

Shakedown, enjoy rally.

Leave Evora Wednesday, overnight somewhere, and catch afternoon ferry Bilbao Thursday 28th afternoon.

Back at Portsmouth Friday afternoon, overnight somewhere and arrive home Saturday.

We are regular users of Brittany ferries and have a CLUB VOYAGE membership. See the Brittany ferry website for these discount details. For members, big discount for the booker, who might be booking for a large party, all with bikes, and travelling together. Other 'friends' travelling later or earlier can get a smaller significant discount on their fares if they quote their 'Friend' and his club voyage number at the time they book.

Our costs for a couple, inclusive of outside cabin, in a Berlingo, £695 on the ferry. It would have been £645 if we had elected fixed non-refundable rather than the flexible option.

Aire B&B at Evora 33 euros a night for a whole town house with balcony overlooking the city and two en-suite double bedrooms.

To me it doesn't make sense to wait for the NOC to negotiate a discount at the campsite. In terms of overall costs and the savings that may be negotiated with campsite, it's small change.

Prices at Brittany Ferries are dynamic. The first bookers will get lower rates than later bookers.

I'm looking forward to my holiday and some lovely rides out round Evora.

Peter Holland



Will not be that much cheaper during that period, two in car is more attractive for the price than a sole m/c. 


I will be trailing my bike, from Valencia to Evora, arriving a few days before the rally.  The rally camp site is not taking bookings, for the duration of the rally (presumably as the site is reserved for the N.O.C.).  Several other places nearby are already fully booked, I got the last room, in a small nearby hotel.       


Already problems with ferries and accommodation six months before the rally ?

Think I’ll go to the Alps !


Regret to say that it's looking increasingly unlikely for us. Two people, one bike, mixture of ports and they still want £544, with a 50%non refundable deposit.!! Factor in accommodation and rally costs and you're heading towards a ££££ grand!!

I will however, shortly have a result for possible bike haulage to Lisbon... 


I belive the regs on trailers change next year under EU law. Might be worth checking. 

The INOA rally looks like a cheaper option, just need to borrow a bike though. 

No luck with the mass transport option, so I've just booked ferry for myself.

It would still be nice if the NOC could negotiate a discount with Brittany Ferries, which would take the sting out of it,!! 


Quite a number of us are going from Plymouth to Santander on the Sunday before as they still have room for bikes. once across the water we are splitting up into smaller groups to meander our way to the Rally.  Any others going on this ferry?

Ian Loram 

We did try at an early stage to negotiate a discount with Brittany Ferries. they said it was not possible. This may be due to the dates, they would be unlikely to discount if they were confident about selling all avaiilable places at full price. The last time we went to Portugal there were two ferry companies operating the route to Spain. Car ferries are becoming a thing of the past. There are now no ferries to Norway, Sweden or Denmark meaning that we will have to ride from Holland for the rally in Sweden next year. 


Hi Neil,

We are currently planning it to be in May week 21 (27th - 30th May). Possibly in the Degerberga  area but this is early days so please do not start booking anything!


I have just booked 19 May overnight Portsmouth / Santander and riding down Thursday and Friday to Evora. Looking forward to good road surfaces, scenery and weather!   Jan.


Hello The rally in Sweden 2021 will be in week 32 and the place is Degeberga holiday village a little south of Kristianstad here is a link Unfortunately, we couldn't have a rally in May we could not have access to the whole cottage village

we had been sharing with other guests here is how far it is to Degeberga from Calais about 745 miles (1200 km) and it is through Denmark and across the Öresund Bridge you can also drive the Travemünde tilt and take a Ferry to Sweden here are ferry lines to Sweden



Thanks Tony,Tim and Bo for all the good info.

Week 32 is August 9th to 15th 2021 and look forward to a final confirmation. Will be a great follow on rally from Evora.

Calais to Lubeck, Puttgarden, Rodby, Roskilde and Degeberga would be my route over 3 days or so and only 760 miles, around 540 miles less than my Evora route from Dieppe.

Meet up with a mate tomorrow who,s doing the Nordcap run next year on his 1200 Bonneville, returning via Helsinki so would be good to meet him there on my way back after the rally if dates can be matched. 


Hello Neill

Tell your mate who's planning on doing the north cape next year to look out and avoid the reindeer that roam free in that part of the world. I did the north cape way back in 1984 on my first Commando and  I very nearly got to teebone one of these creatures when it decided to run across the road in front of me, I missed it by just a few inches. That was in northern Finland when skirting lake Inari and heading to the Norwegian border.

I'm embarrassed to say that experience didn't put me off crashing a few days later after leaving the northcape island. One broken femur and numerous other injuries put me off motorbikes for some years. Oh, and one more thing, take plenty of industrial strength insect repellant, the mozzies are evil!   




I have an old-school view of satnavs (very useful en route, but useless for expedition planning) and like to have a good selection of large-scale maps in my tank-bag.

Thus, I've been investigating what is available for Portugal. Their equivalent of the Ordnance Survey is the Centro de Informação Geoespacial do Exército∫, ( There are two series that may be of interest to motor-cycle tourists, the 1:50 000 and the 1:25 000.

If you can conveniently reach central London, Stanfords map shop in Covent Garden usually has a few of the 1:50 000 series in stock for those who like to squeeze the fruit before buying. (See their website to see what is actually in stock). However, their price is £17.99 per sheet (!) for anti-rip versions.

As an experiment I have ordered a plain paper sheet from the 1:50 000 series direct from the CIGE (€6.49, but postage not yet known). I'll keep people informed. Their web-site is extremely well-organised from the point of view of identifying and ordering which sheets one needs.

Those who have iOS or Android devices will be interested in the CIGE's app, Cartas Militares.The 1.50 000 is free, but only useful if one is on-line (and has a well-charged battery … ). However, the off-line 1:50 000 version is $0.99 as an in-app purchase, while that plus the 1:25 000 is $8.99.



For pre planning you can cut and paste any position from Google earth into a Garmin Satnav, you can label them up and organise them into a pre planned route or just have them as favourites in your device ready for when you are away.

Maps / charts are always good to have, they give a wider perspective. 


For map you could try:

A4 spiral bound, scale  1/400 000, pages may not stand up well in the rain they're quite thin, you'll still need a one sheet map for general planning (or try ViaMichelin & Discovery Route - worked well for me on previous rallies/trips - their roadbooks are excellent).



I promised to keep people informed about purchasing maps direct from the Centro de Informação Geoespacial do Exército∫, (

The procedure is that you place your order on the web-site and, if an international customer, you then get, first, e-mailed confirmation of your order and, second, a further e-mail (in my case, about a week later) to tell you the total cost including postage and asking you to pay by IBAN or Swift.

Once one has paid one then has to e-mail (or fax — how quaint!) confirmation of the IBAN payment from one's bank. I sent this on March 14, and my map arrived today, March 19.

Cost was €7.47 for the map (apparently prices have gone up since my first post) plus €1.71 postage, so total €9.18. On the day I paid this was £8.21.

So in summary, a bit of a faff, but much cheaper than buying anti-rip versions from Stanfords.


(1) Just seen the e-mail about this — excellent imaginative initiative; well done!

(2) I expect those concerned will already have had an e-mail extending a refund by way of voucher for their bookings. As a repeat satisfied customer I really feel for the company, as the pandemic has trashed most, if not nearly all, of their business.


well, would have been on the Santander ferry today enroute for Evora, where it is hot (33 degrees) for the rally weekend!

    Luckily airbnb had a refund policy so have  recovered those monies, but not the hotel at Evora, which has offered a voucher till end of year, but that was a good deal anyway, so that’s OK.

I’ve entered the virtual bike competition instead, having fitted panniers and touring screen to the 961 in preparation. Great weather this spring, so time to think of some alternative days out!


I thought the virtual awards would be announced by now ?? Where are they to be posted please?



Hi Jan,

The winners have been notified. Pictures should be in the Roadholder eventually.

Just so everyone knows:-

   A panel (of 1) of experts (In Cooking and Gardening)  selected the best bike in each class.     The judging for the Best in Show was by a completely separate panel of experts consisting of  a hospital manager and a sales administrator. Neither of whom know anything about motorbikes but they know what they like.  



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