Find your ideal cycling holiday
A Southern Spain Adventure
9th May 2020 - 17th May 2020 (9 days)
Explore the best of south-east Spain with its array of Natural Parks. Murcia and Andalusia are incredibly varied regions with each day’s cycling following a different theme. Starting in Murcia in the stunning Sierra Espuña Natural Park, we continue through rural Spain into Andalusia. We then step back in time and head to Guadix, famous for its cave dwellings, then on to the city of Granada which offers history and culture. Continuing, we embrace nature and relaxation in the spa town of Alhama de Granada. The final descent though the Montes de Malaga Natural Park makes for an exhilarating end to the tour as the coast comes into view.
Classified as challenging with up to 108km per day and on average 1,300m of ascent, a road or touring bike is most suitable. Moving on each day there are a number of climbs to conquer but vehicle support is provided. Staying in hotels, with the added treat of a cave house hotel at Guadix. All breakfasts and dinners are included.
- Holiday Type Guided
- Tour Manager David Goodworth
- Grade Challenging
- Booking Status Places Available
- Accommodation Hotel
- Board Basis Half Board
- Travel Arrangements Land Only
- Road / Off Road Road
- Holiday Style Moving-on
- Vehicle Support Full Vehicle Support
- Holiday Ref 03529
Saturday 9th May
Meet at Murcia International Airport (RMU) for the transfer to our hotel at Gebas, on the slopes of the Sierra Espuña Natural Park. Assemble bikes. Stay 1 night. Meals: D
Sunday 10th May
Today's ride includes some of Murcia's most interesting highlights. Continuing through the Sierra Espuña Natural Park we have a steady climb up to the Mirador de Collado de Bermejo. After descending we head north-west over easy terrain towards the holy city of Caravaca de La Cruz, one of the five holiest catholic cities in the world. Our hotel is a restored and spectacular 16th century monastery 'Nuestra Senora del Carmen' which is set around peaceful cloisters and gardens. This is ten minutes walk from the medieval Santuario de la Vera Cruz (Sanctuary of the True Cross). 89km +682/-1,468m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Monday 11th May
Today we cycle west through hidden Spain crossing from Murcia into Andalusia. We’ll pass through quaint villages on smooth and quiet roads. The Sierra de Cabra and Sierra de Castril Natural Parks provide a picturesque backdrop to the day’s ride. Overnight in Fatima. 108km +1,324/-828m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Tuesday 12th May
A challenging route. We cycle into the Jaen Province, skirting four Natural Parks and ending with a rewarding climb through the picturesque Sierra Magina Natural Park to Torres-Jaen, where you can enjoy the hotel pool which looks out over the valley. 105km +2,000/-2,018m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Wednesday 13th May
Today we start with a gentle loop around the Park Sierra de Magina, then on to the historic town of Guadahortuna. Our destination, Guadix, is one of the oldest human settlements in Spain and our hotel is in a fully renovated series of cave dwellings. 104km +1,545/-1,727m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Thursday 14th May
A relatively short morning ride heading east towards Granada passing the village of La Peza, an old Roman campsite and important Muslim fortress. We skirt the impressive Sierra Nevada National Park on the approach to Granada. The afternoon is free to absorb the old city, renowned for its medieval architecture dating back to the Moorish occupation. It was the capital of El Andulus, the Moorish Kingdom and the El Alhambra palace is located just outside the city. Alternatively there is the option of a ride into the Sierra Nevada National Park with a climb up the Pico Veleta Pass. 56km +794/-1,025m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Friday 15th May
Leaving Granada we head towards the Embalse de la Vinuela (reservoir) which attracts a variety of bird species. A lunchtime stop at Arenas del Rey, located near the reservoir, is followed by an afternoon ride to our destination, Alhama de Granada. Located on top of a huge rocky spur and surrounded by a deep pass where the river Alhama flows, it's named after its thermal baths, which are called al-hamma in Arabic. 63km +960/-757m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Saturday 16th May
Today we head towards Montes de Malaga Natural Park which occupies the eastern slopes of the Guadalmedina river basin, which flows towards Malaga. The ride ends with a wonderful sweeping descent into the outskirts of Malaga. There is more to Malaga than meets the eye. The city has remnants of Moorish rule which includes the city's soaring Renaissance cathedral. 90km +1,424/-2,302m. Stay 1 night. Meals: B D
Sunday 17th May
Transfer to Malaga airport where the tour ends. Meals: B
Meals: B = Breakfast D = Dinner
The km figure is the distance cycled, with +/- being the total of ascent/descent.
Accommodation & Meals
Staying in hotels, two 4-star, four 3-star and two 1-star, chosen for their character, sharing double or twin rooms (although in Guadix three or four to a room may be necessary). No single occupancy is available. All breakfasts and dinners are included and will be taken at the hotel or in a nearby restaurant. Please indicate any particular dietary requirements under Special Requests on the Booking Form. If avoiding meat please indicate if you will eat fish. It will be assumed that 'vegetarian' includes dairy and eggs, whilst 'vegan' does not.
Transfers will be provided for the group, plus bicycles and bike boxes from Murcia International airport (RMU) to the first hotel and from the last hotel to Malaga airport. A support vehicle will also travel with the group and transport luggage and riders if needed.
Passports, Visa & Health
EU citizens must hold a passport that is still valid on the date of their return to their home country. Holders of non-EU passports are advised to check whether they require a visa. There are no compulsory health related requirements for UK residents, but you are strongly advised to check that your tetanus protection has not expired. You must also carry your European Health Insurance Card.
Our Booking Conditions stipulate that, for holidays outside the UK, travel Insurance is mandatory. Details of the level of cover needed and other conditions you should check are stated in the Booking Conditions. CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours Ltd cannot accept responsibility for any costs that may be incurred due to insufficient insurance cover.
The price of £995 is based on a minimum number of 8 people taking part in the holiday; please note Booking Conditions, clause 3. If there are insufficient bookings by 29th February 2020, we will contact you and return all monies paid, although in certain circumstances the holiday may still run at below minimum numbers but at the same price.
- Transfers from Murcia International (RMU) airport and to Malaga airport
- 8 nights hotel, sharing room
- 8 breakfasts, 8 dinners
- Full vehicle support
- Services of a local guide
- CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours costs
Price Does Not Include
- Travel to Murcia International (RMU) airport and from Malaga airport
- Drinks with dinner
- Lunches or refreshments during the day
- Entry fees at any attractions visited
- Any other personal expenses
- Travel Insurance
A deposit of £100 per person is payable upon booking, with the final balance of £895 per person to be paid ten weeks prior to departure, by 29th February 2020.
Should you be forced to cancel your booking for any reason you must notify us in writing. Cancellation charges are as follows:
Written notice received:
Before 29th February 2020
From 29th February 2020 through to departure
The Area Covered By The Holiday
The route has been chosen to enable enjoyment of the varied and majestic Natural Parks which bless this corner of Spain. Experience real Spain as we pass through historic, scenic and cultural points of interest along the way.
Rides & Rest Days
We will cycle on well-maintained tarmac roads, avoiding the busiest roads. The Tour Manager will lead a group at a moderate pace (circa 20kmph on the flat) with frequent stops for photos and regrouping. Anyone who prefers to make their own way, aided by GPS tracks and detailed instructions is welcome to do so. The average daily distance is around 90km.
There is no travel included in this tour, thus it is very important that you note that neither your Tour Manager nor CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours Ltd are responsible for you in any way until the appointed time at the designated meeting point. Should you fail to arrive at the appointed time for whatever reason, we will not be responsible for any additional expenses you may incur in order to meet up with the tour group. Before finalising travel arrangements to meet the tour, you should ensure that you have read and understood our booking conditions. Should this tour not attract sufficient bookings to reach the minimum operating size, we may cancel the tour at any time up to 10 weeks before departure. It is therefore recommended that you book fully flexible and refundable transport and accommodation, or wait until you have been informed that the tour is going ahead, as in the event of the tour being cancelled, we will not be responsible for any losses incurred.
There are regular flights from various UK airports to Murcia International (RMU) and from Malaga airports. The times of the transfers from and to the airports have still to be agreed but your flights will need to be arranged accordingly.
The maximum number of participants will be 13 excluding the Tour Manager.
Weather & Clothing
Spring is an excellent time to visit southern Spain. It should be somewhat like an English summer, neither excessively hot nor cold. Where warmer temperatures are forecast daily timings will be adjusted to avoid the worst of the temperatures. The mountains, however, can be much colder so bring one set of warm cycling clothes. Where temperature variations are likely the support vehicle will be on hand to carry/deposit spare clothing. Rain is possible and a light waterproof, at least, is essential.
Cycles & Equipment
A touring cycle, hybrid or lightweight road bike is suitable for this tour. You should ensure your cycle is well maintained, paying particular attention to wheels, tyres and brakes. A low bottom gear (e.g. small chainring the same size or smaller than the largest cog on your rear wheel) is recommended. If you are unsure about gears, please discuss with the Tour Manager. Mudguards are optional but show courtesy to those who are following you in wet weather. Lights are recommended but might not prove essential. New tyres are recommended of at least 28mm diameter. Participants will be expected to carry each day sufficient spares and tools to deal with punctures and minor repairs.
You will not need to carry luggage, but a rack top pack or bar bag will be useful for carrying wet weather gear, spare clothing needed for the day, camera, snacks and route details.
Helmets are a legal requirement in Spain though there are some situations where a helmet is not compulsory. Full details about the Spanish law and the powers of the traffic police can be obtained from Cycling UK.
Maps & Guides
GPS tracks and detailed route instructions will be provided so it is not essential to carry a map, but the route is covered by Michelin maps 577 (Murcia) and 578 (Andalusia).
Travel Insurance & Advice
In addition to travel insurance, EU nationals should carry a European Health Insurance Card, obtainable from www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/Healthcareabroad/EHIC/. This enables you to take advantage of emergency medical services free or at a discount under a reciprocal provision that exists between EU member states. Your travel insurer may refuse to meet the extra costs of medical treatment if you do not carry this card.
Before booking you should check the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, at www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice or on 0845 850 2829.