Claire and I moved to Montecorto in October 2004 and launched the Andalucian Cycling Experience in August 2005. Our aim was to provide top quality cycling holidays in Andalucia, southern Spain. We started the business with 4 bikes and 2 bike racks for our car, we now have over 40 bikes, 2 nine seater vans, 3 guides and enough accommodation to sleep 35 riders. It’s been an amazing journey and we have met loads of fabulous people along the way. What we all have in common is a love for cycling and a passion for pedalling!
Whilst on your cycling holiday in Spain you’ll discover that the road surfaces are generally in excellent condition and the volume of traffic is minimal. You’ll be hard pushed to find smoother, quieter roads anywhere else. I frequently ride for 15-20 minutes without seeing a vehicle. It’s like a private play ground but don’t get complacent….remember which side of the road you should be on and don’t cut corners!!
We all love to ride, some more seriously than others, for me I like to mix it up with some more serious training, riding with the family and doing, what we would call ‘The C ride’. This is the Coffee & Cake ride! During your cycling holiday in Spain you will need to keep your energy levels up, which means eating! Every 15-20km here in Andalucia there is a village where we can stop for tapas/cakes/refreshments. Our guides swear by ‘ Tostada, ajo y tomate’ for second breakfast. This is toast, rubbed with garlic, covered in olive oil, topped with sliced bull tomatoes and a sprinkling of sea salt. It’s making me hungary just typing about it!! We also have put a lot of work into finding the best cakes in this area for you to enjoy!
Contrary to popular belief drivers in Spain are very courteous to cyclists. Now here’s the thing, be sensible when cycling, on your holidays in Spain. Stay away from dual carriage ways and busier roads where possible. Most main roads have 3 white lines, the one in the middle and then one on the outside defining the lanes. Ride in between the white lines and not on the hard shoulder. By riding in ‘your lane’ the traffic will usually straddle the middle white line giving you 1.5m of space. The highway code says there must be a white line between you and the vehicle passing you so if you ride the hard shoulder the cars do not have to move out to get around you. I have been in pain, cramped up on the side of the road before and drivers have stopped and offered me food, drink, a lift home or use of a phone to call a friend. Occassionally you do get ‘cut up’ but these cars generally have a hire car sticker on from an airport and have a northern European driving!
The Spanish are very friendly and interested in what we are doing, where we are riding and in our bikes. 12 years ago when we moved to Montecorto I don’t think the locals had heard of, let alone seen lycra! It was all a bit of an experience for them to see so many lycra clad cyclists strolling around the village! They are used to it now! I love their mentality of friends and family first, a social cerveza in the evening and a ‘work to live’ not ‘live to work’ attitude.
Spain is the second most mountainous country in Europe and also has over 320 days of sunshine each year. Need I say anymore. A perfect combination for any cyclists. Making Spain the number one destination for a cycling holiday.
We hope to see you soon!!
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