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Bicycling Catalonia's Costa Brava Plus! Barcelona
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Bicycle Tours in Spain: Bicycling Catalonia's Costa Brava Plus! Barcelona

Home to some of Spain's most iconic cities and famous (and infamous) 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. Join us on a 12-day bicycle tour that begins in Girona, one of the most fought after towns in all of Spanish history, having been sieged over 25 times. We'll pedal east towards the rugged Costa Brava and through the rolling hills of the Emporda' region - dotted with Roman ruins and medieval towns. Our journey continues through hidden fishing villages and quiet towns along small roads through wine country on our way to Figueras, Salvador Dali's birthplace. We'll continue to the west and the foothills of the Pyrenees through nature reserves and to ancient Roman spa towns before looping south. Our journey ends with a fabulous 10-mile bicycle path that leads into the heart of Barcelona.

***If this sounds great but you don't have time for the full 12 days, check out our 8-day Bicycling Catalonia's Costa Brava itinerary which shortens this itinerary by 4 days.***

Day 1: Girona

Highlights: Girona, Jewish Museum and Historic Center

We meet in the medieval town of Girona today. We highly recommend coming a day or two early to explore this city and begin your exploration of the Catalan culture. We'll fit bicycles this afternoon and recommend a test ride along the river bike path before meeting for introductions and dinner together. Mileage - optional

Lodging: Hotel Historic

Day 2: Bicycling Girona to Costa Brava

Highlights: Cycling the Via Verde, quiet roads, beach town,

We join one of the most extensive networks of bike paths and rail to trail systems in Spain today on part of our ride as we pedal south and east towards the coast. We'll weave through small farm roads and on the bike path through towns to avoid traffic on our way to our beach front hotel. Enjoy a dip in the Mediterranean, or some people watching this afternoon before dinner together. Distance: 43 kms (24 miles).

Lodging: Hotel Sant Pol

Day 3: Bicycling Costa Brava to Peratallada

Highlights: Beaches, rural bicycling, castles and medieval towns

Today we'll ride along the coast to Palamos, a great coffee stop and perfect opportunity for one last dip in the sea before we head inland over rolling hills. Many of the towns we'll pass through on today's ride were once fortified Roman and medieval cities, so be sure to take time to meander the tiny streets. Peratallada, our destination this evening, is perhaps the best preserved as the center is entirely pedestrian and the walls still stand. You'll notice ruts in the stone streets which were created from centuries of horse carts moving through the narrow streets. We'll stay just outside of town and enjoy this little corner of Catalonia for the next few days. Mileage 50 kms (30 miles)

Lodging: Hotel Aatu

Day 4: Loop ride or Rest Day

Highlights: Loop ride, optional climb

We'll take a loop ride through the gentle hills of the Baix Emporda region today. We have a special stop planned just a few kilometers into the ride to visit a local ceramicist, la Bisbal d'Emporda. This is also a great town to enjoy a beverage and explore the boutiques and artist stores - some of which carry traditional pieces while others have expanded into more modern ceramic art. After our visit we'll continue our loop ride which includes the option of an 8 km (5 miles) climb for anyone wanting a little challenge. This evening dinner is on your own. Mileage 45 - 60 kms (24 - 36 miles).

Lodging: Hotel Aatu

Day 5: Bicycle to Cadaques

Highlights: Remote fishing village, stunning views of the sea

We'll head north and inland today through gentle hills and reclaimed marshes that are now the center for the agricultural economy in the area. We'll suggest a lunch stop in one of these small but historic towns. There is a significant climb to the hotel so anyone who prefers to rest their legs can meet at a café to regroup and shuttle. Everyone else can join local cyclists to conquer the hill that creates a natural barrier and makes this Eastern most peninsula in Spain such a unique natural and geological formation. Dinner is together tonight. Mileage 60 - 70 kms (36 - 41 miles).

Lodging: Hotel Rocamar

Day 6: Cycle the Cap de Creus or enjoy the beach

Highlights: Dali's summer home, beach front rambla, and optional rest day

Today you have the option to take a day off the bike, or bicycle to the stunning Cap de Creus - the most easterly point of the Iberian Peninsula. It's a short but hilly ride out and back. For those who prefer a day off the bike, Cadaques has been inspirational to many great artists, including Dali, Miro, Duchamp and Picasso. Find a spot and explore your inner artist, or simply enjoy a day relaxing by the pool. Dinner is on your own today. Mileage 14 kms (8.5 miles) out and back or more if you want!

Lodging: Hotel Rocamar

Day 7: Bicycle to Figueras

Highlights: Scenic Coast Boat ride, Dali Museum

We start our day with a chartered boat ride as we leave Cadaques and navigate around the rocky coastline that isolates the Cap de Creus Natural Park from the rest of the Costa Brava. Once we land in Roses we'll pedal to Figueras, birthplace of Salvador Dali. We'll plan a guided tour of the museum this afternoon before a final dinner together to celebrate the completion of our journey. Mileage: 50 kms (30 miles)

Lodging: Hotel Duran

Day 8: Bicycle to Olot

Highlights: Banyoles, Garrtoxa Volcanic Natural Area

Our route takes us along the foothills of the Pyrenees and we'll enjoy some larger rolling hills on our way to Olot. You'll notice a change in the landscape as we enter this unique region which was carved out by ancient lava flows from the four volcanoes that border the valley. Our hotel this evening is a restored manor house just outside of town. We'll have dinner together in the nearby restaurant. Mileage 75 kms (43 miles)

Lodging: Can Blanc

Day 9: Bicycle Olot to Vic

Highlights: Vall d'en Bas, Vic

We head down the Vall d'en Bas before climbing up and over towards the headwaters of the River Ter - one of the larger rivers in Catalonia. Stop at the top for lunch before heading down towards Vic. A town of ancient Roman and Iberian origin Vic preserves one of the few Plaza Mayor's that is still dirt - just as it was for festivals in medieval times. Our hotel is just off the Rambla (pedestrian corridor). We'll meet to visit and learn about the local Fuet production (sausage) before dinner on our own this evening. Mileage 65 kms (36 miles).

Lodging: Hotel Ciutat de Vic

Day 10: Bicycle Vic to Caldes de Montbui

Highlights: Roman spa towns and rolling hills

Today our ride continues from one valley to the next as we make our way towards Barcelona. We leave the foothills of the Pyrenees as we pedal down to Caldes de Montbui, an ancient Roman hot springs town. Take some time to enjoy this small town and the ancient baths before taking a dip in the hot pools yourself. This evening we'll have dinner together. Mileage 48 kms (28 miles)

Lodging: Hotel Vila de Caldes

Day 11: Bicycle to Barcelona

Highlights: Bike path and entering Barcelona

We have a relatively short day today as we pedal south and join up with a river side redevelopment that is now a thriving active multi-use path. Our route takes us straight to the coastline from where we'll take bike paths and back streets to our hotel at the top of the Ramblas of Barcelona. A dynamic city, Barcelona combines history and modern art, culture and cuisine seamlessly. We'll have a fabulous final dinner together this evening in one of the classic restaurants of Barcelona. Mileage 41 km (24 miles).

Lodging: Hotel Jazz , the May 1st departure will be at the Hotel Nh Centro Ciudad

Day 12: Barcelona

Highlights: Barcelona

Your on your own to explore this magical city which is home to some of Gaudi's finest works. Plan to stick around a day or two as there is much to see and do.
  • Highlights
    Barcelona, Garrtoxa Volcanic Natural Area, Girona, Figueras and Dali Museum, Medieval Villages, Costa Brava Beaches, Vic
  • Includes
    "The Usual" plus... Use of a quality 27-30 speed bicycle; 12 days, 11 nights' lodging; 11 breakfasts, 8 dinners with wine; 1 guided visit of Dali Museum; a wine tasting; boat trip
  • Countries
    Spain
  • Begin/End
    Girona/Barcelona
  • Arrive/Depart
    Barcelona (BCN)
  • Total Distance
    421 - 486 km (260 - 300 miles)
  • Daily Distance
    15 - 70 kms (8 - 42 miles)
  • What to Expect
    Great beaches, quiet roads, rolling terrain, historic villages
  • Rating
    201-301
    Gentle terrain with two days of longer climbs of around 5 or 6 miles, but not too steep. Other days include rolling hills.
  • Notes
  • Terms
Dates Price Single
Supplement*
Notes Next
Step
May 01 - 12, 2014 $4750 $650 Three spaces left. Book It
May 22 - Jun 02, 2014 $4750 $650 Sold Out Book It
Sep 18 - 29, 2014 $4750 $650 Confirmed. Book It
*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 single supplement rate. This fee will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available this fee will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.
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Click on the "pins" for details about each day's highlights.

Map Key

Green pinStart
Yellow pinCity (on route)
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Other city dotCity (not part of route, provided for reference)
I only wish you had an "extremely satisfied" category! I had a fantastic time - it was a GREAT trip!!! Wonderful bike routes, spectacular scenery, amazing cuisine, interesting cultural visits.
Carol D., Williston, VT
A must, one of the best ever. Great cycling, great scenery and of course great food.
Peter K., Williston, VT
This was one of our favorite ExperiencePlus! trips. Even though the geographic area we covered was not that big, we weaved in, out and around, to see the mountains, the sea, the medieval villages, the Greek and Roman ruins, and the history and culture of Catalonia.
Sari R., Glastonbury, CT
Good riding, varied scenery, interesting culture, wonderful food and outstanding leaders. Learned so much about the Catalan people, their history and culture. So much to see in Barcelona.
Linda M., Livermore, CA
It is a great trip in a beautiful and interesting part of Spain. This was our 15 ExperiencePlus! trip. Enough said.
Dave M., Livermore, CA
How would you describe this tour to a friend? That they have to experience for themselves. Excellent and memorable. Wonderful. Leesa and I are looking forward to our next tour.
Ward S., Kanata Ontario
Beautiful scenery, especially along the coast and on the descents to the coast; interesting medieval villages. moderately challenging rides, great support, great hotels and food. Loved Cadaques and Cap de Creus. I had a great time, seeing and experiencing Spain like I would not have on a normal trip.
Paul L., Sebastopol