Cycling in Catalonia
Discover all cycling routes and bike maps in and around Catalonia
Catalonia by bike
An all-time cyclist's favorite
The Catalan speaking region in northeastern Spain is a cyclist’s favorite destination, and it’s easy to see why: between the Pyrenees mountain range and the Costa Brava, castles, mountains and unspoilt scenery await. And with spectacular cities like Barcelona and Girona nearby, as well as cycle paths to take you across the border to France and Andorra, you are guaranteed to find your perfect biking adventure.
The most awesome cycle routes in Catalonia
Roads over rolling hills, coastal routes and deserted hinterland: the Costa Brava really has it all. This is the country of contrasts, and to top it off, it has some great cycling infrastructure. The popular route from Girona to Barcelona follows the coast and takes you through the fishing village Tossa de Mar, with sunny beaches, rugged rock walks and a uniquely preserved medieval fort called "Vila Vella enceinte".
Another highlight is artists' favorite Cadaqués - Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró and Salvador Dalí were inspired by the beauty of the coastal town on the northern Cap de Creus peninsula. Cliffs and hidden coves are also found in nearby Cap de Creus national park. Take a trip here with your bike and find out firsthand why Lance Armstrong made the Costa Brava his training base!
Featured routes around Costa Brava
Las Vías Verdes
Take old disused railway tracks, recover and repurpose them and you have the perfect cycle path connecting points of interest, cutting steadily through empty or built-up land at a gentle gradient. There are four Vías Verdes (“green ways”) to choose from in Catalonia: The Iron and Coal route is 12 km (7 miles) long and follows the old industrial route from Ripoll to Sant Joan de les Abadesses-Ogassa. Two former narrow-gauge railway routes (El Carrilet from Olot to Girona and from Girona to Saint Feliu de Guixols) are much longer and offer scenic views of the valleys, towns and seascapes in their path. Finally, Terra Alta is a partly paved route along the old railway line which used to run between the towns of Tortosa and Pueblo de Hijar. Cutting through the Pàndols and Cavalls mountains, it’s an easy route with glimpses of medieval towns and exceptional nature.
Las Vías Verdes
The striking Montserrat mountain is Spain's first National Park. Situated near the city of Barcelona, the multiple peaks of Montserrat range in height and tower up to 1236 m above sea level. The mountain also houses the famous Benedictine Abbey Santa Maria de Montserrat, which can be reached by cable car, railway, road – or bike! Starting point is Monistrol de Montserrat, a village east of the mountain. A cycle trip around Montserrat sounds perhaps less challenging than venturing straight up but don’t be fooled – it includes some strenuous climbs. Stunning green valley views are the reward for mastering rocky peaks and forested ridges, while the round trip promises an ever-changing perspective on the Catalan people’s holy mountain.
Featured routes around Montserrat
With its vibrant cafés, its beautiful old town and its exceptional cycling infrastructure, Girona is the perfect base for your biking holiday in Catalonia. 99 km (62 mi) northeast of Barcelona, this city is less touristy and has lots of historical and cultural attractions going for it. Built on a hillside, there are colorful stacked houses, narrow cobblestone streets, ancient city walls and significant Jewish heritage to discover. Newly built country roads leave alternative, older roads void of traffic – making them even more useful to cyclists.
A charming nearby medieval town is Peratallada, known for its beautiful stone buildings. It lies halfway between Girona and the Mediterranean Sea.
Featured routes around Girona
There is no doubt Barcelona is great for cyclists. From next to no cycling infrastructure in place ten years ago to an impressive 11th rank among the world's most bicycle-friendly cities, the Copenhagenize Index praises its spectacular comeback with the words: "brilliant for showing the world what is possible"!
With one of the most popular (by numbers) bike share systems and lots of traffic-calming measures in place, the city famous for unfinished Gaudí buildings and shopping in La Rambla ensures that bicycles are back in fashion in Spain. Pedal past the bars and restaurants in the Gothic Quarter, cycle along the seaside trail and visit Parc de la Ciutadella to see for yourself what the fuss is all about.
Featured routes in and around Barcelona
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