The Onewheel Algarve Tour is a one-of-a-kind event organized by IOWA Vice President and author of this article, Fábio Costa. What’s so unique about the Algarve Tour? There’s no competition, just adventure: It’s the only event where you get to cross an entire country by Onewheel!
In the south of Portugal, the region of the Algarve, 28 riders from more than 10 nationalities got together in October 2022 and rode their onewheels for 4 days straight. This group traveled from the border of Portugal and Spain on the east side of the country to the place where Europe ends—quite literally: there’s even a German hot dog truck there called “The Last Sausage Before America.”
Onewheel Algarve Tour: A Rider’s Journey
During this event, we explore the whole south coast of the Algarve and it’s just beautiful!
The first half of the journey is very straightforward. We cross lots of small fishing villages as well as huge salt flats where, if we’re lucky, we can spot some wild pink flamingos roaming around. We also cross some of the major cities in the region, so it’s not all wildlife and trails; there’s a lot of road as well, and here safety is the most important thing overall.
The terrain is easy and very flat in the beginning, which is a good thing—it helps you get used to riding a lot of kilometers in a day before, around halfway through the journey, the cliffs emerge on the coast and they just keep getting higher and higher until the end. This is where the real fun happens! The cliffside trails that exist along the path are just breathtaking and some of them are incredibly challenging to complete. If you’re into highly technical trails, you’re going to love the ones we have in the Algarve!
A New Tradition: OWAT Continues in 2023
The Algarve Tour closed out a great year for Onewheel in Europe. In 2022, big events started to happen and the top riders in the community started to meet more regularly both in those events and outside of them, and big plans were set in motion.
Now in 2023 there’s a new thing coming up in Portugal: Right before the Tour across the Algarve, there will take place the OWAT Race, where the best in Europe will compete for the title of number 1 rider this side of the pond… and for a shot at the European seed for Race for the Rail 2024!
Read our article to learn more about the new European Onewheel League and its partnership with US-based Onewheel Racing League (ORL). IOWA feels this is a great step in the right direction for ORL, making sure that RFTR is accessible to people outside of the US who would otherwise have no opportunity to qualify.
What to Expect if you Attend
Overall in the OWAT you’ll be able to compete with other riders for awesome prizes, travel across Portugal on your Onewheel, get to know the culture, the locals, the views, some monuments and most importantly, you’ll share a week with a lot of new riders from a lot of different countries!
Not-so-fun Fact: In most of the countries in Europe, it is illegal to ride a Onewheel, but over in Portugal it’s still a gray area. The OWAT team worked with law enforcement and 11 different city halls to make sure the riders could go through the necessary roads without any trouble. Do keep in mind that if you decide to join this event in the future, the rules of the road in Portugal might be slightly different from your country so make sure you follow the lead of the staff!
Riders will be able to participate in the Race, the Tour, or both (if you have the legs for it!). Registration is extremely limited, with only 50 tickets available. Get yours today!