“A section of the old Royal Road following the valley of the Rio das Velhas.”
— Francisco Abreu
A great ride that follows an old colonial unpaved road for most of the way.
Family Friendly: It is safe and not very technically demanding.
This ride is a common destination for cyclists during the weekends but it is never crowded. The first 10 km track, from Honorio Bicalho Village to Rio Acima Town, is a good warmup in a hilly terrain.
The second section starts by following, for 1 km, the old railroad where an old steam engine still runs during the weekends crossing the small town of Rio Acima. The next 3 km is a long climb bordering the river.
The following 6 km follow a sinuous section that crosscuts a sequence of hills and valleys until the old bridge over the Rio das Velhas River (my favorite section). The hardest part of this track is the 5 km, uphill section between the old bridge and the Antena Hill. This point is the beginning of a 3.5 km amazing downhill that finishes at the old narrow bridge.
The last 2km starts with a short climb just after the bridge and after that follows a smooth, hilly track until Miguel's Bar, where it is possible to use the toilet, refill the camelback, and find something to eat before taking the 30 km back to Honorio Bicalho.