Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

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willp01908
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Joined: 29 Jul 2019, 3:52pm

Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby willp01908 » 17 Dec 2019, 4:09pm

Mrs wjp and I are planning to spend most of next year on a long term tour of Europe and Scandinavia.

We`ve toured a fair bit in the more northerly areas (Netherlands, Germany,Belgium etc) and for the first time last year in France (loved it) so we`ve some idea where we want to go en route to Sweden and Norway later in the year.

Naturally, we`re planning to start out where it`s going to be a bit warmer hence the question.

Anybody done any tours and have suggestions for routes we might want to look at. We prefer scenery over cities but don`t mind the smaller ones or ones that are fairly easy to get in and out of. Preferably avoiding the usual tourist traps though we`ll probably aim for the med and follow it round or head up the Rhone valley.

Probably a ferry to Santander in March as a starting point though if anybody has a better idea based on a train to anywhere else, I`ve not bought tickets yet. :D

jacksonz
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Joined: 29 Sep 2015, 7:24am

Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby jacksonz » 18 Dec 2019, 6:40am

These are all good https://www.cyclingeurope.nl/
Camino routes have extra resources built in. Unless you like crowds avoid the coast......

dondelion
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Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby dondelion » 18 Dec 2019, 1:20pm

I'm hoping to do this at some point in the future, a 2000km mostly off road circuit of Andalusia.

https://www.transandalus.org

Has anyone here done it?

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mjr
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Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby mjr » 18 Dec 2019, 3:55pm

willp01908 wrote:Anybody done any tours and have suggestions for routes we might want to look at.

Spain has the Via Verdes which seem OK but I'd go to Portugal instead, based on my limited experience: it had quieter roads, interesting towns closer together, friendlier to Englishers (proud of our 900+-year-old alliance) and no cycle clothing laws (see Helmets sub-forum - and even if you use what they require anyway, the safety in numbers effect would mean laws discouraging rural cycling hurts you).
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

willp01908
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Joined: 29 Jul 2019, 3:52pm

Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby willp01908 » 18 Dec 2019, 5:32pm

Thanks for the replies

I'm hoping to do this at some point in the future, a 2000km mostly off road circuit of Andalusia.


I`m liking the look of this - the "off road" put me off a bit at first but I found this journal on CGOAB from a couple who did it on folders:

https://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?o= ... 15264&v=fN

I`ll read it fully when I get time but surely not too rocky if they can do it on folding bikes... :D

Never considered Portugal but will research.

Not too bothered about helmet rules tbh - I never bother wearing one normally but would probably just get a cheap one to avoid any issues and maybe leave it at the border for anyone going the other way :wink:

Galloper
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Joined: 6 Dec 2012, 2:21pm

Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby Galloper » 18 Dec 2019, 7:56pm

European Greenways association is worth exploring:

https://www.aevv-egwa.org/trip-ideas/

HarryD
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Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby HarryD » 21 Dec 2019, 10:59am

You'll be spoiled for choice of routes in Spain plus there are an unbelievable number of historic villages, towns and small cities. As is usual most of the scenery you are looking for is to be found in the mountains and Spain has plenty of those

Intercity busses generally take bikes whereas the longer distance high speed trains don't. On-line booking is straightforward

Arriving in Santander in March the weather can be a bit hit or miss but mid-day temperatures average around 15C. Cross the Cordillera Cantabrica and they fall to 13C in Burgos and Leon. The northern coast is built up but not in ther same way as along Med. West of Aviles the cycling is good. The coast of Galicia is mostly excellent but you may not wish to go south of Noia

The off-road tour of Andalucia has a great deal to recommend it. Off-road in Spain has a different meaning to off-road in the UK. The tracks are usually very well made and maintained and most can be considered roads without the final asphalt surface. I've ridden many on my skinny tyred road bike without problems although 28mm would have been better than 23mm

The Vias Verdes/ Greenways can be excellent ways of getting out of towns and cities and for providing access to areas otherwise free of roads and tracks so search them out if they fit in with your route. However, they rarely link up to each other so do provide much of a tour in themselves

As for a route from Santander. Head south from Santander into the Cordillera Cantabrica then make your way west taking in the Picos de Europa and go west at least as far as Pola de Somiedo. You'll see why when you do. There are treats further west also. Then head south into Leon. Keep to the Cordilleras foothills, where the scenery continues to excite, turn east and once past Burgos head south east for Soria (sparsely populated wooded hills with history aplenty). From Soria head for Albarracin and then Teruel. Head for Mosqueruela then start paralleling the Med taking in places such as Morella and Valderobbres/ Vall-de-roures, Montblanc and Olot. From there The Med coast and France is not far

Hope this helps

willp01908
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Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby willp01908 » 22 Dec 2019, 11:49am

Intercity buses generally take bikes whereas the longer distance high speed trains don't. On-line booking is straightforward


That`s very useful info

As for a route from Santander. Head south from Santander into the Cordillera Cantabrica then make your way west taking in the Picos de Europa and go west at least as far as Pola de Somiedo. You'll see why when you do. There are treats further west also. Then head south into Leon. Keep to the Cordilleras foothills, where the scenery continues to excite, turn east and once past Burgos head south east for Soria (sparsely populated wooded hills with history aplenty). From Soria head for Albarracin and then Teruel. Head for Mosqueruela then start paralleling the Med taking in places such as Morella and Valderobbres/ Vall-de-roures, Montblanc and Olot. From there The Med coast and France is not far


Many thanks - I`ve had a google on a few of those places - exactly the sort of thing we`re after.

hecate
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Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby hecate » 11 Jan 2020, 5:46pm

Do the Via de la Plata - it is a 'Camino' pilgrim route and is fantastic! (https://www.caminodesantiago.me/communi ... ing&o=date)
It starts at Seville and goes up north to Santago BUT even better to start in Cadiz (excellent seafood n wine) for a flat few days first... then such a range of gorgeous variable countryside - tiny villages, canals, then mountains, oak forests, wild horses and Roman arches... lakes, moors, small cities packed full of history and culture, delicious food, and the wine.....!
Wild camping in the vineyards that produced the local wine, the oak forests where the jamon iberico roams... campsites on the edge of towns/cities and a comprehensive network of pilgrim hostels - which are superb - hot showers, comfy beds, sometimes a full kitchen, sometimes a microwave - but always cheap with a warm welcome. Lots of interesting people to chat to at the albergues - hardly see anyone whilst cycling. Lots of off-road tracks - we were on cheap hybrids and they were fine! (art, hot springs, gardens, tapas....)
If you fancy it - use the above link to a pilgrim forum and get yourself a pilgrim's passport which gives you entry to all the albergues and pilgrim's menus!
If you have plenty of time you could always cycle down the coast of Spain/Portugal first (easy to hop bits by train if necessary) and round to Cadiz...
Whatever you do - enjoy!

robing
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Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby robing » 11 Jan 2020, 6:11pm

In 2015 I did a grand tour of Spain. Took the bike bus to Roses where I started my tour. Went all the way down the med coast but swung inland via Tavernas and the Alpujarras to avoid the Costa del sol and on to Gibraltar via Ronda. The headed up via Seville, Salamanca and took in a corner of Portugal. Zamora, Burgos, Vittoria and finished in Bayonne, France. Great tour.

nigzy
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Location: merseyside

Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby nigzy » 12 Jan 2020, 10:26pm

great question,

i was looking Flying into Malaga ,inland to Ronda, down toward Gibraltar,up to Estopona, finish in Malaga

its in the very early planning stages, as in added to bucket list

willp01908
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Joined: 29 Jul 2019, 3:52pm

Re: Long distance routes in Spain - suggestions?

Postby willp01908 » 16 Jan 2020, 8:15am

Thanks for all the responses - much food for thought. :D