Spotlight: Costa Brava

Spotlight: Costa Brava

Home to some of Spain's most iconic cities and famous characters, Catalonia is a one of a kind destination. With a history as diverse as the territory and a cultural identity and language of its own, this Spanish community will delight and fascinate. We’ll spend our first three nights in the Bay of Roses, (rated in the top 10 of most beautiful bays in the world). Using a wonderful spa hotel as home base you’ll cycle to stunning nearby towns including Roses, Escala and Cadaques. The mornings will be spent cycling while the afternoons are yours to... sit by the hotel pool, schedule a massage, explore Roman ruins, or try a few water sports in the bay. Once our exploration of the area is complete we’ll cycle to Figueres, birthplace of the famous painter Salvador Dali from there we'll head to our hotel, a 17th century mill that's been converted into a stunning estate. We'll spend our final days of cycling exploring hidden fishing villages, quiet towns, and the foothills of the Pyrenees where we'll taste the region's famous wine.

Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Spotlight tour at the Spotlight Tour Style page.

Tour Dates & Prices

Date
Price
Private Room Fee
Note
Aug 31-Sep 5, 2020
USD$3595
USD$550
 

* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the private room charge. This charge will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available it will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.

Tour Style: Spotlight Book This Trip Now Hold-A-Space/Questions Request Custom Date Download Itinerary Tour Map
  • Trip At-A-Glance
  • Tour Summary
  • Daily Itinerary
  • Travel Information
  • Map
  • Reviews
  • Similar Tours
Trip At-A-Glance

Trip At-A-Glance

  • Length / 6 Days
  • Total Distance / 209 km (130 miles)
  • Avg. Distance / 52 km (32 miles) per riding day
  • Tour Level & Tour Style / 2.0 Spotlight
  • Countries / Spain
  • Begin/End / Meet in Girona group transfer to tour start / transfer to Figueres
  • Price / From USD$3595
Tour Summary

Tour Summary

  • Highlights
    Less packing and more relaxing with a 3 and 2-night hotel stay, Bay of Roses, Catalonia's medieval villages, Cadaques, Dalí museum, foothills of the Pyrenees, wine country

    Keep in Mind: We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.

    Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Spotlight tour at the Spotlight Tour Style page.
  • Includes
    6 days, 5 nights accommodation, all breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners, guided tour of the Dalí museum, wine tasting

    Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Spotlight tour at the Spotlight Tour Style page.
  • Arrive / Depart
    Barcelona (BCN)
  • Overall Tour Level
  • Daily Ride Summary

    Day

    Distance/Gain
    mi/ftkm/m

    Terrain

    Day Level

    Notes

    1
    Test ride
    2
    55km / 570m
    Rolling hills
    difficulty level 2.5
    Longer optional ride available
    3
    68km / 305m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.5
    Longer optional ride available
    4
    48km / 297m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.5
    5
    25km / 394m
    Hilly
    difficulty level 2.0
    Longer optional ride available
    6
    Last day

    Tour Level Note: If you'd like to partake in the extra rides on this trip you will need to navigate using the Ride with GPS tracks that we will make available to you.

Terrain Legend

Gently rolling Gently rolling hills

Rolling hills Rolling hills

Hilly Hilly

Very hilly Very hilly

Mountainous Mountainous

Daily Itinerary
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DAY 1: Meet in Girona and transfer to the Bay of Roses

Highlights: Bay of Roses

We meet in Girona today for a mid-morning transfer to our beautiful spa hotel and home for the next three nights. You are in for a treat because we are on the southern coast of the Bay of Roses (considered to be one of the 10 most beautiful bays in the world).  We’ll have time for a bike fitting and short ride after lunch together. Later in the afternoon we'll take a walk through Escala and learn about its history from Greek to Roman influences. We have a special welcome dinner planned at our hotel this evening.

DAY 2: Explore Medieval Towns of Emporda

Highlights: Cycling through beautiful medieval villages

Today's loop ride takes you to some of the most beautiful medieval villages in Catalonia.  Take your time on the ride to soak in the incredible ambiance and history of the area. If the spirit catches you it's possible to add 15 kms of cycling to the day. This afternoon you decide what you prefer to do... sit by the pool, schedule a massage, take a paddle board or kayak out in the bay. If you are a scuba diver you can plan ahead and book an afternoon excursion with a local dive center to explore archaeological remains of the ancient port of Empúries, visit beautiful caves, or sunken ships. 

  • Distance: 55km (34mi)
  • Gain: 570m (1870ft)
  • Terrain: Rolling hills
  • Day Level: difficulty level 2.5
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Lodging:

DAY 3: Loop ride to Roses and Cadaques

Highlights: Dalí's summer home and garden, Cadaques by boat or bike

The ride today takes us north along the Bay of Roses to the town of Roses.  From here you can decide to take a boat into Cadaques or ride up and over the headland to Cadaques. No matter which transportation option you prefer everyone will have the opportunity to explore one of the most beautiful towns on the Costa Brava. Art and history lovers can take time to visit Dalí's summer home and garden.  Return to Roses by boat or if you are in the mood for more cycling ride up and over the headland and back to our hotel on the beach.  

  • Distance: 68km (42mi)
  • Gain: 305m (1000ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.5
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Lodging:

DAY 4: Ride to Figueres

Highlights: Guided tour of the Dalí museum

It's a short ride to the town of Figueres today so we have time for a guided tour of the Dalí museum. After the museum visit take time to explore Figueres and have a relaxing lunch before pedaling on to our country estate, a restored 17th Century mill, and home for two nights. We'll have a taste of the local wines and olive oil specialties tonight before dinner together.

  • Distance: 48km (30mi)
  • Gain: 297m (974ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.5
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 5: Wine country or the Pyrenees

Highlights: Foothills of the Pyrenees, Extra cycling to cross the boarder into France

Today's loop ride takes us up into the foothills of the Pyrenees and then drops through some of the region's most famous wine country.  Choose to do the shorter loop of 25 kms (18 miles) or pedal into the Pyrenees for as far as you want. France is just another 40 kms (25 miles) and a 1,000 meters of climbing away! Tonight we'll celebrate our exploration of Catalonia with dinner together.

  • Distance: 25km (16mi)
  • Gain: 394m (1292ft)
  • Terrain: Hilly
  • Day Level: difficulty level 2.0
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 6: Tour ends - transfer to Figueres

Highlights: Enjoy the rest of your travels!

We’ll shuttle you to the Figueres train station where you can jump on a train to Barcelona or to France – whichever works best for your travel plans.

  • Meals: Breakfast
Travel Information

Travel Information

Day 1: Arrival Information

Meet in Girona and transfer to the Bay of Roses

Lodging: Hostal Empúries

Your tour starts with a shuttle pick-up on Day 1 (your spot is already reserved on this shuttle):

  • Meeting Time: 10 a.m.
  • Meeting Hotel: Hotel Historic in Girona

Note:

As you are planning, remember that the hotels listed in our itineraries are our primary hotels and are - in rare cases - subject to change. Before you make arrangements, check with us if your departure is guaranteed. If your tour departure is out further than 6 months, please also check with us as there might be slight changes to the itinerary.

The below information will help you plan your arrival. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio. The fare and timing information listed below is approximate. 

We recommend flying into Girona (GRO) or Barcelona El Prat (BCN)

We will be glad to arrange your pre- and post-tour stay at the Meeting Hotel for you upon request. Note that we will not stay thre as a group and the stay there is not included int he tour price. 

If you arrive at Barcelona Airport and continue to the Meeting Hotel: 

  1. Bus: Sagales Bus from Barcelona Airport Terminal 1 or 2 to Girona Estacio d'Autobuses (2.5 hr/EUR 19)
  2.  Taxi: From the Bus station to the meeting hotel (10 min/EUR 10)

Or

  1. Train: R2 Nord from the Barcelona airport to the Barcelona Sants station (25 min / EUR 4.20)
  2. *Train: From Barcelona Sants to Girona/Gerona (40 min/ Fares vary).
  3. Taxi: From the Girona/Gerona train station to the Meeting Hotel. (10 min/EUR 10)

*Note: The train connection from Barcelona to Girona/Gerona is a busy but frequent line. If you are staying in Barcelona, you may purchase tickets for this train leg in advance. If you arrive by plane the same day, you should purchase them at the Sants train station though you might opt to skip a train departure if it is already full.

Look up Spanish train schedules at Renfe.com or Trainline.eu. Questions? See our information on taking trains in Europe here or ask us.

Day 6: Departure Information

Tour ends - transfer to Figueres

Your tour ends with a complimentary ExperiencePlus! shuttle from the ending hotel to the Figueres Vilafant train station Arrival around 10:30 a.m.

Reservations required. Please make your shuttle reservation by emailing us no later than 30 days prior to your tour start date

The below information will help you plan your departure. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio.

Flying out of Barcelona (BCN).

  1. Train: From Figueres Vilafant to Barcelona Sants (1-2 hours/fares vary)
  2. Train: From Barcelona Sants to Aeroport del Prat (35 min/EUR 4.20)

If you are planning to fly out of Girona (GRO) 

  • Taxi: From the Ending Hotel to the Girona Airport (40 min/EUR 85)

What's Included

For a full list of what's included before, during and after your bike tour, visit our What's Included page.

Keep in Mind

We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.

Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Spotlight tour at the Spotlight Tour Style page.

Pre-Trip Planning Checklist

To do right after you booked!

6 to 3 Months Prior to Tour Start Date

  • Check the online itinerary of your trip and review the arrival and departure information under the "Travel Information" tab to see meeting place and time, if a reservation on a complimentary ExperiencePlus! Shuttle (if applicable) is required, and other important information to help you plan your arrival and departure.
  • Reserve your flights after you know you have a confirmed tour departure. Please check with our office if you do not know if your trip is confirmed.
  • Book your pre and post-tour hotel nights.
  • Begin your chosen training program.
  • Final payment is due 90 days (120 days for Bike &Barge/Boat tours) prior to the tour start. Please refer to your Invoice and the Final Payment Reminder e-mail you have received for detailed instructions.

6 to 2 Weeks Prior to Tour Start Date

Day of Your Flight

Get as much sleep on the plane as you can. Pack your one day of cycling gear in your carry-on. See you soon!

What to Expect on Tour

Bicycles

Your bike will be equipped with: a men's or women's saddle, a quick release style seat post adjustment, rear rack and expandable pack, pump, patch kit, spare tube, cable lock, cyclometer, rear lights, a water bottle cage (or two), one water bottle , and a bell. If you would like to bring your own pedals and shoes we recommend doing so—your tour leaders will install them during the bike fitting. We have flat pedals with or without cages available. For safety and hygiene reasons you are responsible for bringing a helmet.

Daysheets

Each day you'll receive a daysheet with information on the day's activities, meals and ride. These also include Tour Leader phone numbers, hotel information and interesting historical and cultural information about sites that you may want to stop and see along the route. Your Tour Leaders will also post daily announcements in the hotel lobby with information about sightseeing in town or restaurant recommendations for dinners on your own as well as important information about breakfast, luggage down and "arrows down" time.

Navigating on Tour

Each day we will provide you with a route map with the day's ride highlighted route. Of course, we also mark the route every day with our signature chalk dust arrows. Our arrows make navigating very easy—you may never need to look at the map! The arrows also allow you to ride at your own pace. There is no need to "keep up" with the group—this is your ride!

But what if it rains? What happens to the arrows? In a light rain, the arrows actually "set up" and become more permanent. In a heavy rain, they do wash away. If that happens, we'll re-group to cycle together for those who want to continue cycling while those who prefer to stay dry can shuttle.

For the tech-loving riders out there we offer the opportunity to download GPS tracks of most tour routes to your personal GPS device using RideWithGPS.com.

Van Support

The van carries luggage and supports cyclists. It also has water, fruit and snacks. Though the van has snacks, we encourage you to stop and enjoy markets and find your own favorite local specialty.

Hotels

We have carefully chosen all of our accommodations for their charm and location. They are typically small, family run hotels that offer you a glimpse into the local culture.

We prefer hotels near interesting sites in the center of town located along the best cycling route in the area. Because many of the hotels are small not all of the rooms will be exactly the same. We keep this in mind and do our best to distribute rooms fairly by the end of the tour. Our itinerary lists our primary hotels. On rare occasions, listed hotels are subject to change.

Meals and Restaurants

Breakfasts: we work hard to arrange complete breakfasts but some hotels still serve continental style breakfasts; cycling is energy intensive so we do recommend you plan for a morning or mid-morning snack on the road at a local café or market.

Water is OK in almost all hotels and in country fountains; if there is a problem, we will advise you.

We'll recommend lunch locations en route and most itineraries include a few group picnics. We limit the number of picnics so you don't feel pressured to be at a certain place in the middle of your ride.

Dinners together are often pre-planned and pre-ordered. We'll ask you prior to your trip if you have special dietary requirements. Preplanned meals allow us to provide a variety of regional specialties and facilitate efficient service. Water, wine and beer are included.

Tipping Your Tour Leader Team

If you feel your tour leader team has demonstrated great expertise and service, common practice within the travel industry is to tip. Tipping is voluntary and greatly appreciated, and gratuity amounts vary widely. Should you decide to leave a tip, as a guideline, we suggest 5% of the tour cost per traveler – this for the entire tour leader team, not each Tour Leader. If you’d like to show your gratitude for your Tour Leaders’ excellent service you can give the tip to any member of the tour leader team, as they share it evenly. In order to avoid social tensions, we encourage you to tip as individuals and not as a group. If you feel your Tour Leaders did not quite meet your expectations, then we would like to know about it. You will also have the opportunity to leave your comments in our evaluation survey which we email to you after your trip.

Photos

By reserving space on tour, you agree that ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours may use, re-use and reproduce any images, photos or videos that you send to us, or that are taken by our guides and/or other travelers of you individually or in a group, in any medium, including but not limited to print, electronic media, or Internet, free of charge and without your right to inspection, for promoting and publicizing our travel products and services worldwide. If you do not want us to use any images of you that are taken by us or other participants during the tour, you must inform us or your tour leader in writing at the start of the tour.

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