Granada to Arcos Cycling Holiday

  • 5.0
    (1 review)
  • Category

    Cycle Touring
    Self Guided
  • Grade

    Moderate
  • Duration/s

    9 or 10 nights
  • Start / Finish

    Granada / Arcos
  • Distance

    237 miles/381 kms
  • Themes

    Gastronomic
  • Accommodation

    Comfort
  • Tour code

    030-105CES
Price From £1263

Overview

This Andalusian cycling holiday leads you through some of the region’s most beautiful and unspoilt countryside. Enjoy exploring the wonderful Moorish city of Granada before cycling west through rugged, romantic countryside, punctuated with charming whitewashed villages to the historic cliff-top town of Arcos de la Frontera.

From Granada you’ll head south west, riding through the Alhama mountains and into the Axarquia, a picturesque region of limestone rocks, traditional villages and sweeping views. Highlights include the impossibly romantic Ronda, perched above a dramatic gorge, and the thermal springs and Moorish baths in the town of Alhama. Then there’s the challenge of the 1,190-metre ‘Puerto de los Vientos’ pass and the cave homes in Setenil de las Bodegas before you reach hilltop Arcos de la Frontera, where the views stretch for miles.

Olvera - Spain

Olvera

This is a tour with really varied terrain. There will be quite a few relatively flat sections – including some fantastic cycle paths along abandoned railway lines – but you’ll also be tackling some sections of rolling landscape which include a couple of challenging climbs. If you have a good level of fitness then you’ll love this exciting and scenic route.

Itinerary & Map

This is a tour with really varied terrain. There will be quite a few relatively flat sections – including some fantastic cycle paths along abandoned railway lines – but you’ll also be tackling some sections of rolling landscape which include a couple of challenging climbs. If you have a good level of fitness then you’ll love this exciting and scenic route.

View larger map

Day 1: Arrive Granada

Alhambra Palace

Alhambra Palace – Granada

On arrival make your way to your first hotel in the historic centre of Granada. After check-in you are free to relax or explore. The Alhambra Palace really is a must-see during your time in Granada but it is very important to pre-book tickets in advance as it’s extremely popular. You could also sample some delicious tapas and take a wander through the atmospheric old silk market. At some point our local representative will meet you at your hotel to pass over your bikes and route information (exact time to be advised with your travel documents).

Day 2: Granada – Alhama, 33 to 37 miles/53 to 60 kms

Alhama

Alhama

Set out for your first day on the bikes, leaving Granada behind to traverse a gently rolling landscape to Alhama. This was an important city in Moorish Andalusia and is justly famous for its thermal baths, which were built on Roman foundations and finished with beautiful Moorish arches. You can still take a rejuvenating dip in “El baño de la Reina” the ‘Queen’s Bath’ if you wish. You’ll spend the night in this pleasant little town in a charming guesthouse.

Day 3: Alhama – Periana area, 26 to 30 miles/42 to 47 kms

Zafarraya - Granada - Andalusia - Spain*

Zafarraya Gap

Today you’ll ride up to and through the Zafarraya Gap, a chasm in the Alhama Mountains. The climb will get the blood pumping but the spectacular views provide more than adequate reward. You are now in the Axarquia Region in a lovely fertile valley with olive groves and orchards lining your route. Enjoy sweeping views of the Mediterranean Sea as you freewheel downhill, following a disused railway line to the town of Periana, then the further climb up to your charming rural lodge set in the hills is definitely worth the effort.

Day 4: Periana area– Antequera, 25 to 28 miles/40 to 45 kms

Antequera - Andalusia - Spain*

Antequera

It’ll be an undulating route today as you continue through the Axarquia region. After an off-road climb you reach the limestone peaks of the El Torcal Nature Reserve. Stop and get your breath back whilst admiring the panoramic views south towards Malaga and the Mediterranean before enjoy the long freewheel down to the historic town of Antequera. On your way down to the pretty town of whitewashed houses and terracotta roofs, you can’t miss Peña de los Enamorados (Lovers Rock) which has a sad love story attached to it. You’ll spend the night in a small, charming hotel in the historical centre of the town.

Note. The route will be slightly different up in Axarquia in case of rain, on tarmac and 12 km longer.

 

Day 5: Antequera – El Chorro, 21 miles/34 kms

Valle de Abdalajis

Abdalajis Valley

Spend the morning exploring the historic buildings of Antequera before saddling up and heading west. You pedal through a pleasant, rolling landscape of olive groves and oak trees as you make your way along the Abdalajis Valley. It’s a fairly short cycle today and you’ll soon arrive at your overnight location – a wonderful lakeside spot surrounded by mountains. You’ll stay in a converted old flour factory complete with swimming pool and restaurant. If you wish to walk the 8km impressive ‘Caminito del Rey’ it costs approximately €10 per person and needs to be pre booked in advance. see www.caminodelrey.info for details. Important: you would need to arrive by 2.30pm to give yourself time to do this.

Day 6: El Chorro – Ronda, 38 miles/61 kms

Cyclists near Ronda

Cyclists near Ronda

Today’s ride presents a a good challenge as its quite long with some climbs along it, but at least it’s all on smooth tarmac roads. First cycle through a craggy, almost lunar landscape to the traditional villages of El Burgo and Aradles, before climbing the ‘Puerto de los Vientos’ (Door of the Winds) mountain pass. At 1,190 metres it’s not to be sniffed at, but you’ll be rewarded by amazing views and the most superb, long descent down to the town of Ronda. This pretty hillside town is a delightful place to explore and spend the night. Take a look at Spain’s oldest bullring, admire the bridges over the cavernous gorge as well as the Arab Baths and old town wall. Wander the ancient, narrow streets and find a cosy restaurant to enjoy an evening meal. You’ll spend the night in a charming 3 star hotel.

Day 7: Ronda – Benaoján – Ronda, 10 to 22 miles/16 to 35 kms

This day is omitted if you opt for the 9 night option.

Ronda - Andalusia - Spain*

Ronda

Ronda is blessed with an impossibly romantic location, set high above a spectacular gorge. It’s a town of culture and beautiful architecture and you can’t fail to fall in love with it. Today is basically a rest day but if you like you can enjoy a short route exploring the beautiful countryside around Ronda. Head for the traditional village of Benaoján, perhaps having a picnic at the Cueva de Gato beauty spot en route. From Benaoján you can either hop on the local train back to Ronda for your second night there – make sure you visit the 13th century Arab baths and Spain’s oldest bullring before you leave, or cycle back to Ronda.

Day 8: Ronda – Olvera, 23 miles/37 kms

Olvera - Cadiz - Spain*

Olvera

It’s time to leave Ronda behind, as you strike out northwards, arriving first at Setenil de las Bodegas. This extraordinary village features homes built into the overhanging rocks. Spend an hour or two exploring the narrow streets, perhaps ducking into a cosy tapas bar for sustenance. Leaving this unique village you’ll follow the River Trejo to the whitewashed hillside town of Olvera. From some distance away you’ll see the beautiful church and 12th century castle standing guard over the old town. You’ll spend the night in a charming hotel with swimming pool.

Day 9: Olvera – Puerto Serrano area, 24 miles/38 kms

Bicycle in the Penon de Zaframagon Reserve - Spain

Penon de Zaframagon Reserve

From Olvera, you’ll follow an old railway line that is part of Spain’s wonderful greenway cycle path network. It’s an interesting part of the trip – keep your eyes peeled for vultures as you pass the Penon de Zaframagon Nature Reserve, and enjoy riding through 30-odd old railway tunnels that illuminate automatically as you pass through them. Later, join the River Guadalete to Puerto Serrano where you will sleep in a rural lodge near the town.

Day 10: Puerto Serrano area – Arcos de la Frontera, 27 miles/42 kms

Arcos de la Frontera - Cadiz - Spain*

Arcos de la Frontera

Leave today following the narrow, quiet country lanes surrounded by rolling hills, past seemingly endless fields of sunflowers to the village of Bornos, well known for its wine. There’s a bit of an uphill next, followed by a canal-side path that leads you to the whitewashed village of Arcos de la Frontera – you’ve made it! The historic town enjoys a dramatic setting high on sheer cliffs above a meander of the Guadalete River. Park your bikes and explore this historic town that still exhibits its Moorish origins. Make sure you take the cobbled street up to the castle – the views are quite breathtaking. You’ll spend the night in a charming hotel in the centre of the historic old town.

Day 11: Arcos

After breakfast it’s time to check out and head for home or your next adventure.

Dates & Prices

2019 Arrival Dates
Arrivals daily, 01 March - 15 Nov, excluding 12 April - 01 May

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2019 Prices
030-105CES
Per person
01 Mar
to
22 Oct
23 Oct
to
03 Nov
04 Nov
to
21 Nov
9 Nights
Comfort category
Double/twin £1263 £1323 £1263                
Single £1529 £1589 £1529                
10 Nights
Comfort category
Double/twin £1335 £1396 £1335                
Single £1601 £1662 £1601                
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Deposit per person £125

Price Includes

9 or 10 nights accommodation. See practical information
9 or 10 x Breakfast
Bike with pannier & lock. See practical information
Luggage transfer
Maps & route information
Local assistance

Price Excludes

Flights and transfers
Helmet
Entrance to El Chorro (Approx €10)

Supplements

Extra night Granada, twin/double, comfort (£41)
Extra night Granada, single, comfort (£56)
Extra night Ronda, twin/double, comfort (£50)
Extra night Ronda, single, comfort (£91)
Helmet (£9)
Water bottle (£11)

Practical Information

Bikes

Mountain bike

Example of bike used on this tour

The bikes used on this tour are comfortable 24-27 speed mountain bikes with disc-brakes and front suspension.

The bike is equipped with a rear pannier, map holder, lock, odometer, puncture repair kit, multi-tool, bungee and water bottle.

We suggest you bring your own helmet for safety and hygiene reasons. Alternatively, helmets are available to rent at the time of booking. Please note that it is compulsory to wear a helmet.

Accommodation

Below you will find examples of the accommodations typically used on this tour. Please note that the hotels we book for you may differ slightly from those described but they will certainly be of a similar standard.

Comfort: Comfortable hotels, inns and guesthouses.

Granada: Hotel Los Tilos
Alhama: La Seguiriya
Periana: Cortijo las Monjas
Antequera: Hotel Infante
El Chorro: La Garganta
Ronda: Alavera de los Baños
Olvera: Hotel Sierra y Cal
Pto Serrano: Estacion Vía Verde
Arcos de la frontera: Los Olivos

Local taxes: Some hotels have started to charge a local/tourist tax. These taxes are not included in the sale price of the tour and must be paid directly by you at check-in or checkout at the hotels. The fee varies and is frequently changing but as a guide, you may be asked to pay between €1-€4 per person per night.

Getting There

Fly to Granada then at the end of the trip take a bus to Ronda and then a train back to Granada.

Fly to Malaga and then take a bus to Granada. At the end of the trip take a train or bus to Ronda and then an onwards bus to Malaga.

 

Gallery

Reviews from Flexitreks

By: Sue Napier - January 2015

An awesome trip. The bikes were great, the biking superb, and the places we went to were all amazing. The organisation was superb. Thanks

5