La Rioja Cycling Holiday

  • 5.0
    (4 reviews)
  • Category

    Cycle Touring
    Self Guided
  • Grade

    Leisurely to Moderate
  • Duration/s

    7 nights
  • Start / Finish

    Campoo / LaGuardia
  • Distance

    204 miles/328 kms
  • Themes

    EbikeRivers and LakesWine Lovers
  • Accommodation

    Comfort
  • Tour code

    023-102CES
Price From £996

Overview

Follow the River Ebro from its humble beginnings in foothills of the Cantabrian Mountains through rolling countryside, imposing canyons and unspoilt, seldom-visited villages to the famous Rioja vineyards. This is a cycling holiday where the dramatic, ever-changing landscape is as much a treat as the fine wines waiting for you at the end of each day in the saddle.

Follow the winding path of the River Ebro and admire the magnificent Sierra de Cantabria mountains on this leisurely-paced cycling tour. Rioja itself is a region of endless vineyards, dotted with ancient walled villages and steeped in wine culture. This route unveils a charming, relaxed part of Spain that most tourists rarely see.

La Rioja vineyard - San Vicente de la Sonsierra in background - Spain*

La Rioja vineyard – San Vicente de la Sonsierra in background

A wonderful route along quiet roads and lanes. On most days the rides can be extended and these options are described in the route notes provided.

Itinerary & Map

A wonderful route along quiet roads and lanes. On most days the rides can be extended and these options are described in the route notes provided.

View larger map

Day 1: Campoo

Ebro Lake near Campoo

Ebro Lake near Campoo

You will be met at Santander or Bilbao airport and transferred to your hotel in Campoo, a pretty old town surrounded by majestic Pyrenean peaks close to the beautiful Ebro Lake. Time permitting, you can try out your bikes in preparation for the first day in the saddle.

Day 2: Campoo – Polientes, 38 to 61 miles/59 to 97 kms

 - Cantabria - Spain*

Ebro Lake

You have a choice of routes today, but whether you choose the long or short options you’ll be cycling through some fabulous scenery. Take in the green mountain pastures of the Cantabrian Mountains and the shores of the Ebro Lake, before passing through thick forests and the lush Valley of Valderredible on your way to your overnight stop. The shorter route takes you along the course of the River Ebro directly to Polientes, while the leg-stretching 97 km route features a full circuit of the lake.

Day 3: Polientes – Pasquera de Ebro, 27 miles/43 kms

Orbaneja del Castillo

Near Orbaneja del Castillo

After breakfast, set off through the wide Valderridible Valley, making sure you don’t miss some of the region’s unique churches, carved straight into the hillside, along the way. Following the River Ebro, the valley narrows until you find yourself cycling through a steep-sided canyon. As you progress the canyon becomes ever more dramatic and narrow, with eagles and vultures often circling overhead. More treats are in store at Orbaneja del Castillo, where magical cascades descend through the village centre. Then it’s on to the pretty village of Pesquera, where you stop for the night.

Day 4: Pesquera de Ebro – Medina de Pomar, 23 to 39 miles/36 to 63 kms

Puentedey - Burgos - Castile and Leon - Spain*

Puentedey

Today’s riding takes you along a huge bend in the River Ebro and through some of your journey’s most beautiful landscape and villages. This is real undiscovered Spain, and if you’ve the legs for it, the longer route is highly recommended. This takes a detour to Puentedey, perched eccentrically on a natural rock bridge above the River Nela. Whichever path you choose, you’ll finish in the Castilian town of Medina de Pomar, with its imposing castle and fascinating old quarter.

Day 5: Medina de Pomar – Frías, 36 miles/58 kms

Frias - Burgos - Castilla y Leon - Spain*

Frías

Rejoin the Ebro and follow a quiet country lane alongside the river. The scenery is varied today, as the route leads you through wide, fertile valley before entering another steep-walled canyon. Towards the end of the ride you’ll enter open countryside again before arriving in Frías, a charming, hillside hamlet clustered around an ancient castle. You will overnight in this idyllic little spot.

Day 6: Frías – Haro, 39 miles/62 kms

La Rioja region

La Rioja Valley

More varied scenery today, featuring canyons, mountain peaks and open countryside. Follow the shores of a nature-fringed reservoir, pass through rock-hewn tunnels and visit the little town of Miranda del Ebro before finally entering the expansive La Rioja valley. This is some of the world’s finest wine country, and you’ll end today’s ride in Haro, birthplace of Rioja, where you’ll surely want to sink a glass or two of a fine local vintage before a well-earned rest.

Day 7: Haro – Laguardia, 15 to 31 miles/25 to 50 kms

San Vicente de la Sonsierra in background - Spain*

San Vicente de la Sonsierra – Rioja Valley

Today you’ll get to know the Rioja winelands better, cycling past endless vineyards and traditional villages, where the pace of life has barely changed in centuries. The Sierra de Cantabria form an ever-present mountain backdrop and you’re also never far from the winding River Ebro. Take it easy on the 31-mile route or even easier on the short version – you’ll have plenty of time to take everything in on your last day of cycling with either choice. At journey’s end you’ll reach Laguardia, a charming walled village steeped in wine culture.

Day 8: Laguardia

After breakfast you will be picked up at 9am for a transfer to Santander or Bilbao.

Dates & Prices

Arri Arrival Dates
Arrivals every Sunday between 01 April and 21 October

Scroll/swipe to see more

Arri Prices
023-102CES
Per person
01 Apr
to
21 Oct
Comfort category
Double/twin £996                    
Single £1246                    
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      

Scroll/swipe to see more

Deposit per person £125

Price Includes

7 nights accommodation. See practical information
7 x Breakfast, 5 x Dinner with wine
Luggage transfer
Maps & route information
Arrival transfer from Bilbao or Santander
Departure transfer from Laguardia at 9am to Bilbao or Santander
Local assistance

Price Excludes

Flights and transfers
Bike hire (see supplements)

Supplements

Bike with pannier & lock. See practical information (£107)
Electric bike with pannier & lock (£170)
Non Sunday arrival (£100)

Practical Information

Bikes

Hybrid bike

Example of Hybrid bike available on this tour

On this tour you can choose between a hybrid bike or a road bike. Both have aluminium frames and are well suited to the route. Unless you are used to riding a road bike we suggest you opt for the slightly more comfortable hybrid bike.

The hybrid bike is equipped with rear panniers, map holder and handlebar bag. The road bike is equipped with a seat post bag. Both bikes have a lock, repair kit, odometer and water bottle.

E-bikes are also available to rent.

Road bike

Example of road bike available on this tour

We suggest you bring your own helmet for safety and hygiene reasons. Alternatively, helmets can be supplied on arrival.

 

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 and guesthouses.

Campoo: Posada Ormas
Polientes: Cuartellillo Viejo
Pesquera de Ebro: Molino del Canto
Medina de Pomar: Hotel Romanca
Frías: Poza de la Torca
Haro: Hotel Arrope
Laguardia: Hospederia los Parajes

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. This fee varies and is ever changing but as a guide, you may be asked to pay between €1-€4 per person per night.

Getting There

Fly to Bilbao or Santander and fly home from Bilbao.

The closest airport for arrival is Santander Airport and the most convenient for departure is Bilbao Airport.
An arrival transfer from either Santander or Bilbao airport is included with the holiday as is a departure transfer to Bilbao at the end of your holiday.
Important: At the end of the tour, the transfer from Laguardia to Bilbao leaves at 9am. The journey time is 90 minutes, so, allowing for a 2-hour check in time it is best to book a mid afternoon flight from Bilbao. Another option is to spend an extra night in Bilbao and visit the city and the Guggenheim Museum (Remember the museum is closed on Monday except during the months of July and August when it is open every day).

Gallery

Current rating for this cycling holiday based on 4 reviews 5.0
  • Date - 20/06/2019
  • Name - Veronica Connolly
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Very impressed with prompt and helpful communication. All the information was relevant and detailed and our queries were addressed quickly and appropriately
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - This trip covers an excellent variety of landscapes in the north of Spain where fewer tourists travel and the scenery remains unspoiled. We were blessed with great weather and really enjoyed the different places which the route took us through. The support we needed when a chain broke was promptly provided and other assistance from detailed route notes, pick-up from our Airbnb, etc was also first rate. No hesitation in recommending this trip and we’re not even very fit!
  • Date - 17/05/2019
  • Name - Roger Penney
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Well organised and very accomodating
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Superb route and accommodation. Local support excellent
  • Flexitreks response - Service rating : Glad to be of assistance Roger.
    Product : Thank you, we're glad you enjoyed it so much Roger.
  • Date - 07/09/2016
  • Name - Paul
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Fantastic service, regular contact and updates - couldn't be better
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Simply the best cycle trip we have been on. The route and directions are fantastic and the scenery is amazing.
  • Flexitreks response - Thanks for the glowing review Paul. We're so glad you and your friends had such a wonderful time. Where to next year?
  • Date - 28/07/2016
  • Name - Steve and Kay
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Used Andy and Ally for several cycling holidays and the trips are getting better and better. Discussed this trip and several others in the past, and they seem to understand what we are looking for.
    Cycling level, comfort level, always as promised.
    Will be using Flexitreks again.
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Loved this Rioja cycling trip. Very quiet roads, beautiful scenery, different image of Green Spain every day. Rural, Wild, Canyons, Wine country. Very nice!
    Seemed like real Spain.
    Transfers to and from the airport a massive bonus as we took our own bikes.
  • Flexitreks response - Glad you and Kay enjoyed this trip so much Steve. Also totally impressed you do all these trips on bikes you've built yourself! Where next?