Spain, the country of passion… for cycling, of course. Drenched in sun, rich with meanders of road that are cutting through massive mountain ranges and breaking the silence of vast plains. Yes, this country is packed with hidden gems just waiting to be discovered. And there's truly no better way than on your bike – this way you'll be able to combine your wanderlust with passion for fitness and healthy lifestyle.
What is the best time to go, what kind of cycling gear will you need, and what are some of the best routs you have to take? We're here to answer all of those questions for you.BEST TIME TO VISIT
Although it's known for being the sunniest country in Europe
, sometimes, in some areas, it might just be a tad too much. If you're aiming to spend the summer in Spain, stir away from Andalusia and the rest of the south of the peninsula, and stick to the north of the country. In order to explore the south, you'll have to reserve your winter holiday for a cycling adventure.
To be more specific, let's put it this way:
WHAT KIND OF BIKE YOU'LL NEED
- From December through February, we recommend the south of Spain, since central areas and all areas northern from there can be quite cold for avid cyclers. Northwest is also to be skipped on during this period, since it is known for extreme levels of humidity that can cause difficulty breathing and affect the entire cycling experience the negative way.
- From March through May, you have the opportunity to take the map of Spain, close your eyes and just land your finger… wherever. Most of the country is "not too hot, nor to cold, but just right" so you don't have to worry about suffering the Goldilocks's syndrome. However, bear in mind that although it won't be unbearably hot in the South, you could experience cold spells.
- From June through August,you can really only enjoy your time high up in the mountains. Central Spain will be deserted, as everyone will head to the coast to dip their toes in the cold ocean.
- From September through November, you can still expect extremely warm weather, but it's also a great time to visit the coastal areas – most of the tourist will head to their homes, and the sunny, yet windy weather will allow you to enjoy biking alongside the ocean waves.
The bike you'll have to take on the road with you will depend on the route you plan on taking. Spanish roads can be quite unpredictable, going from the well-paved ones to challenging dirt and gravel roads and paths, especially in the mountains.
If you're using a tour company, then it's best to check in advance with the tour guide. On the other hand, if you're about to embark on a cycling adventure all on your own, we advise the following:
- If you plan on touring the countryside and sightseeing, then hybrid or touring bike equipped with tires that are between 28 and 36 mm wide will be able to handle most roads. Reef electric bikes are a great choice as well, since they enable you to go at greater speeds whileallowing you to relax at times.
- To stroll up and down the steep mountains, you'll need a mountain bike with tires between 36 and 40 mm wide. Spanish ranges can be quite sharp and are as such not really suitable for, let's say, a double crankset, but not to worry – most cycling trails are quite reasonable and just waiting for an adventurous spirit to conquer them.
BEST TOURS TO TAKE
So, what's it going to be? Taking all of the above into consideration, have you got a specific tour in mind? If not, let us introduce you to 3 of the most praised ones that every avid cycler has to experience in their lifetime. Form intriguing historical sites, to endless vineyards and mountains, Spain offers cycling routs to satisfy all adventurous souls.
To learn about Spain's rich history and emerge yourself into outstanding mixture of Spanish and Moorish culture, make Andalusia your next stop. Riding through plains and mountains, surrounded by crumbling castles and accompanied by amazing weather, you'll find yourself enchanted by the sheer beauty of the area. While you're here, don't skip on the opportunity to do a 2000-kilometre long Trans Andalus bike route
that circumnavigates the entire country.
2.Rural Olive Trails
Located at the very south of the country, Olive Trails are going to take you through the most beautiful rural area Spain has to offer. You'll ride by great farmlands and enjoy the disused railway lines that travel side by side most of the way. And if you want to meet the locals and get "an inside look" into the Spanish culture, here you'll get a chance.
3.A different view of Barcelona
Maybe you've already visited the city, experienced the rush on the streets of Barcelona, and now you want to take a step back and look at it from a different angle. In that case, Collsera Natural Park will provide you with just that. It's one of the most famous Spanish cycling routes and is perfect for newbie cycling enthusiasts since it is only 9 kilometers long. Still, due to its immense popularity, it's advisable to take a stroll during the weekdays, since it can be quite crowded on weekends.
So, what's it going to be? Familiarizing with the locals or riding the silent plains? And do you have the right gear? It's high time you ticked everything on your checklist and went on a ride of a lifetime.
Thanks to Chloe Smith for this article