Four of the best winter cycling destinations in Spain 🌴🇪🇸
With cheap flights from other parts of Europe and a low cost of living once you arrive, it’s no wonder professionals and amateurs alike flock to the Spanish shores to live or train. An ideal place to beat the winter blues and guarantee a friendly cycling culture with respectful and courteous drivers. We explore the best places to base yourself for some winter riding. We start right away with our favourite winter cycling destination the island of Mallorca 😍…
- Best winter cycling destination ► Mallorca
- Gran Canaria ► cycling in winter
- Alicante in winter
- Girona ► cycling destination in spain
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Best winter cycling destination ► Mallorca
One of the most popular winter cycling destinations is Mallorca, due to its mixed terrain and decent temperatures. We recommend visiting in the winter to avoid the car and bus-blocked roads during the peak summer months.
The temperatures can vary and it has been known to snow up on the peaks. However, it usually still gets up to around 15ºC. That should be warm enough for the sun chasers during winter, particularly if going for a two-hour winter ride where you live requires putting on a hundred layers of clothing before you leave the house.
The beautiful island biggest training asset is the Serra de Tramuntana mountain range which is home to the iconic Sa Calobra. It sits without the same notoriety as a grand tour col, largely due to its dead end at the bottom. But offers a challenge for any rider lasting 9.4km with a 7% average incline. Make sure you pack your compact chainset for a trip to the cycling island Mallorca.
The biggest advantage of Mallorca is the short flight time, which allows a even shorter training camp without losing a lot of time on the trip. Book one of our outstanding rental bikes and come to the sunny island.
Bike rentals in Mallorca 👇
Check out our bike hires in Mallorca and start your training camp with the best rental bikes.
GPX Track bike tour Alcudia – Sa Calobra – Alcudia 113 kilometer
Length: 113 km
Meters of altitude: ~ 1.900 m
The most famous highlight of this road bike tour is the so-called tie knot on the road to Sa Calobra. However, the route offers much more! The approach to the Serra de Tramuntana leads via Sa Pobla and Campanet, after about 30 kilometers the 8 kilometer climb to the Coll de sa Batalla starts. Once there, there is a restaurant that is very popular among cyclists. At Coll de sa Batalla you have to take the left turn to Sa Calobra. 13 kilometers of uphill and downhill passages will bring you to the 10 kilometer descent to Sa Calobra.
Sa Calobra is located directly on the sea, in the Bar Playa La Calobra you can enjoy your “Cafe con leche” with a view. The way back begins, of course, with the climb back up to the Coll de sa Batalla near Lluc. After passing by the Coll de Femenia and the lovely city of Pollenca you reach the starting point at the Platja de Muro nearby Alcudia.
Gran Canaria ► cycling in winter
With a circumference of 235km, the largest of the Canary Islands is best suited to those who may tire of the smaller destinations. Partnered with its near-consistent climate thanks to its position near the equator, and diverse choice of terrain and roads, Gran Canaria is a wise choice for any cycling holiday.
Even throughout the winter, the temperatures remain pleasant with lows of around 10ºC. With climbs topping out at the highest altitude of all locations on this list, the environment varies from barren volcanic moonscapes to dense pine forests and – of course – the beach.
It’s as scenic as the climbs are challenging, offering as many opportunities to create content for your Instagram feed as to test your legs. Unfortunately, it’s not quite as easy to get to as other areas of Spain. Making long haul flights the most convenient if not the most appealing way to get there. Since there were several rockfalls, some of the most famous roads are closed. Unfortunately, the government of Gran Canaria has decided that these roads will be closed permanently.
Therefore there are less rideable routes for cyclists than in 2019 or earlier. The famous bike tour “Valley of Tears” can no longer be ridden, as well as all other routes that come along Porto de Mogan. Moreover the roads on the south side of the island are in poor condition, which makes cycling quite dangerous. The former cyclist paradise is unfortunately no longer the “place to be”. Also crime rate and prices of hotels are rising due to the corona crisis.
Alicante in winter for cyclists
Another well-known cycling destination on the list is Alicante. Home to the cycling mecca that is Calpe, the training camp destination for pro teams every winter offers decent climbs such as the Coll de Rates and Alto de Aitana, as well as beach views and warm weather year-round.
As with most of the climbs in this area, they offer steady gradients and are approachable from multiple sides of the mountains. So you won’t need to climb the same road twice in one ride. If you are looking for a less busy place to base yourself then you could consider Castalla, which unlike it’s busier neighbours offers shorter steeper climbs such as the Xorret de Cati, which has been used five times in La Vuelta.
Four kilometres long but averaging 11%, this is not a climb for the 25 cog. Similar smaller bases without the ugly high rises often featured in Calpe and Denia include the upscale seaside town of Javéa and the inland village of Jalón.
Alicante is a relatively large region and can provide suitable training terrain and business for your ideal training holiday while being accessible from two major airports, Alicante itself and Valencia. The weather can stay upwards of 16ºc throughout winter and rainy days are uncommon. So you can maintain those razor-sharp tan lines.
Girona ► cycling destination in spain
An area home to an uncharacteristically large number of pros given its relatively small population. They are enticed by varied terrain, fancy brunch spots and sublime coffee. Girona provides the holy grail of pro cyclist requirements with easy access to airports and surrounding transport links.
Fantastic training roads which you can choose according to your training needs are located all around the city. Unlike other areas where the only way is up, Girona offers the chance to put yourself in the hurt locker with challenging climbs and country roads as well as providing suitable terrain for the recovery or cafe ride.
Situated in the northern region of Catalunya, the temperatures in Girona is slightly cooler than Mallorca, Gran Canaria or Alicante. So pack accordingly for weather between 0-14ºc, however, rainfall is relatively rare even over the winter months. If you base yourself within the city, you’ll be party to the local nightlife and coffee culture, which is important if you’re not purely going abroad to train.