Are you ready for 2018?
Portugal's biggest SUP festival continues!
Registration closed

The 2018 Guadiana Challenge

An adventure of a lifetime in the wonderfully remote Alentejo region of Portugal.

Guadiana Challenge

Quick facts

Like last year, we are putting events on all weekend, so come on Friday and stay until Sunday!

Date Friday 20th - Sunday 22nd April 2018
Race/Paddle time 10h00 Saturday 21st April 2018
Registration Price €50 per person
Discounted transfers Code "GUADIANA" with Yellowfish Transfers
Free Camping Riverside area (no facilities) or Indoor camping in the sport center (showers and toilets)

Guadiana Challenge Video

Check out the 2017 event in this video we posted on YouTube.

The Route

23km RACE & 23km SUP

The 23km route starts in Mértola. Paddle north (left as you look out to the river from the start) for 1.5km until reaching the first buoy and check point 1, turn around and head back south past the start to Penha d'Aguia and checkpoint 2, turn around and head back north to Mértola and the finish/start line.

10km SUP

The 10km paddle route starts in Mértola. Paddle north (left as you look out to the river from the start) for 1.5km until reaching the first buoy and check point 1, turn around and head back south past the start towards checkpoint 3, turn around and head back north to Mértola and the finish/start line.

The Festival

We start on Friday evening with pre-registration drinks down on the quay at 18h00-19h00. The coolest food stalls in southern Portugal will provide a scrumptious dinner, while drinks and cool tunes will be on offer.

On Saturday we paddle all morning, have the prize giving ceremony and relax in the afternoon, chatting to fellow SUP enthusiasts, listen to talks, demos and workshops, chat to SUP industry people and lots of activities, food, drink and music.

Guadiana Challenge Riverfest

Full Timetable

Friday 20th April 17h00 - 19h00 Pre-registration, drinks down on the quay.
Board drop Board Drop ready for the race (Security over night).
Riverside dinner 19h00 onwards with a great array of food trucks and drinks available on the dock.
Saturday 21st April 08h00-09h30 Pre-race registration (if you didn't register on Friday evening)
08h00 Breakfast on the dock and race smoothies
09h30 All paddlers on the water
10h00 Race start and the Guadiana Challenge paddlers start 5 minutes later.
10h00 KIDS ZONE €10 all day unlimited access: Water slide, kids games, Kids tent and entertainment.
Lunch Grab an amazing lunch from the festival village food trucks. Open from 12 midday until 1am.
14h30 Prizegiving, race results and awards ceremony.
15h00 Free paddle instruction starts.
15h30 Landpaddle demo courtesy of Supxperience Store.
16h00 Water safety demo and lecture courtesy of the Water Skills Academy.
17h00 Afternoon SUP ADVENTURE chat with Algarve SUP.
17h30 Caipirinha workshop - how to REALLY make a Caipirinha with Caipijocas.
Drinks Riverside drinks with chillout music at our festival bar.
Dinner Enjoy the variety of food on offer from the food stalls.
PARTY Get your groove on with the legendary DJ Toby ONE from Lagos.
Sunday 22nd April Enjoy a riverside breakfast and chillout tunes on the quay.
11h30 Warmup with Lloydy from BRAWD Health
12h00 Fancy dress paddle photo op and 1km fun race.
Lunch Kick back and relax, grab a drink, eat some great food and enjoy Mértola!

The 2017 Guadiana Challenge Photos

Click to view the photos on Flickr.

Guadiana Challenge Photographs

Guadiana Challenge Registration

Register here for either the 23km Race, the 23km SUP or the 10km SUP.

Guadiana Challenge Registration

The original intention of the Guadiana Challenge was a simple SUP adventure through the beautiful wilderness of south eastern Portugal. We have since added a race, however, if you'd like to just relax and paddle all day along the route, stopping for snacks and to appreciate the beauty, you're welcome!

23km RACE

Cancellation Policy: All tickets are non transferable and non refundable. Whats included: T-shirt / Insurance / Water safety / Completion Medal / Water / Fruit What to bring: Board / Leash / PFD / Sense of ADVENTURE!

CLOSED

23km SUP

Cancellation Policy: All tickets are non transferable and non refundable. Whats included: T-shirt / Insurance / Water safety / Completion Medal / Water / Fruit What to bring: Board / Leash / PFD / Sense of ADVENTURE!

CLOSED

10km SUP

Cancellation Policy: All tickets are non transferable and non refundable. Whats included: T-shirt / Insurance / Water safety / Water / Fruit What to bring: Board / Leash / PFD / Sense of ADVENTURE!

CLOSED

Sponsors

Huge thanks to the following companies who got stuck in and supported the Guadiana Challenge 2018.

Your 2018 team

We're looking forward to meeting you and having a ton of fun down on the Guadiana this year.

Nick Robinson

Nick Robinson

Event Founder

Mauro Engler

Tom Longhurst

Event Organizer

Mauro Engler

Mauro Engler

Event Organizer

The Guadiana Challenge was born in September 2014 when Nick and a friend stand up paddled 32km from Mértola to Alcoutim. It was such an incredible trip that he couldn't wait to share it with tons of other like minded paddlers. He posted details of the journey on his Algarve SUP website and a few people asked to be notified of when he was going down again. He hadn't planned anything but thought how incredible it would be to do the trip with a group of people.

So, 6 months later 18 paddlers dipped their blades into the cool waters of the Guadiana and headed for Alcoutim. It was a super fun, challenging and great day where relationships were forged that would stand the test of time.

A year later, the 2nd Guadiana Challenge set off for Alcoutim, this time with 64 participants. In 2016, 140 paddlers pitched up and performed their best over the 32km and 10km course.

The intention has always been to provide a fun and relaxed way to meet fellow paddlers. There is nothing like paddling hard all day and kicking back with a drink, a good meal and a roaring log fire outside next to the river afterwards. Sharing experiences like this automatically leads to long lasting and solid friendships. Come and join us, you'll love it!


We have a Facebook group

We have built a great group on Facebook where many of our paddlers chat about the event and things to do before and after. You can also ask about renting boards or any other doubts and queries you have. Join here.