"Road Cycling Tour - THREE"
7 Days Self Guided Cycling Tour in Spain
Andalucian White Villages Cycling Tour
START: Ronda FINISH: Ronda
|Duration*||7 days||6 nights||5 riding days|
|Distance||351 km total||70 km daily avg - max 76km - min 63km|
|Grading||Challenging - A lot of climbing and long descents throughout this tour. Total tour ascent is 8130m, daily average ascent 1626m, with plenty of "ups-and-downs" along the way.|
|Availability**||All year round. Avoid Easter due to inflated accomodation costs|
|Price***||€890 per person based on 2 people sharing a double or twin room (en-suite)|
* Tour duration can be extended by adding rest days along the tour or adding further days of riding to more villages; let us know your preferences when you enquire.
** Check out the local annual weather conditions here. Start on any day of the week.
*** Solo traveller and single occupancy prices available upon request.
This self guided sportive road cycling tour is a tougher version of our Sportive Road CyclingTour One, with a similar total distance and ascent but ridden over only 5 days instead of 6 days. It is self guided and makes a 350km circuit from the town of Ronda out into the mountains and valleys of Malaga and Cadiz provinces; each day includes significant climbing and good mileage. Each night is spent in a different traditional white village, giving you a chance to explore the local culture, along with the fabulous mountain scenery of the region.
Southern Andalucia is the pefect place for road cycling, particularly if you are training for a sportive cycling event or simply want to challenge your legs and lungs with a series of long distance road rides and hill climbs. The region enjoys stunning mountain scenery, Cat 1 and Cat 2 climbs, great road surfaces with relatively little traffic and the best weather in Europe – what’s not to like!
On this road cycling tour week you can expect to get fitter and stonger and burn some serious calories – all the more to enjoy the fantastic local food and wine.
Day 1 - Arrival in Ronda
Welcome to Ronda
Check in to your hotel and enjoy the sights and sounds of the beautiful clifftop town of Ronda. Briefing and bike set up will take place on your first evening
Day 2 - Ronda to Jimena de la Frontera
72km - 1595m ascent
Warm up your legs for the week with a route which skirts the edge of the Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park, drops down to a river crossing and then back up to a mountain ridge which runs above the river valley. You follow the ridge with views of another valley to the south, the Genal valley, full of chestnut trees. You will follow the undulating ridge line, passing through a series of white villages - Atajate, Benadalid, Algatocin and Gaucin. Then head down off the ridge on a fantastic twisting descent past fields and farms to sea level. A final quick cllimb takes you up to the village of Jimena de la Frontera, where you will spend the night.
Day 3 - Jimena to Arcos de la Frontera
63km - 1356m ascent
Today’s ride begins with a steady climb out of Jimena up into the heart of the Alcornocales Natural Park. The first half of your route is truly “away-from-it-all” with no villages and only occasional traffic as you take a twisting road through acres of forests – pine, fir and holm oak. Take a break at an isolated venta (roadside restaurant) then continue north, down towards the still waters of Guadalcacin reservoir. Ride on past the village of Algar and just a few small communities before you reach a sheer cliff with the town of Arcos de la Frontera perched on top. Ride up into the town for the night.
Day 4 - Arcos to Grazalema
69km - 1664m ascent
A day with a series of hill climbs, finishing with a challenging Cat 2 ascent. In the morning the route is relatively flat, with dramatic limestone mountains directly ahead of you. You will touch the edge of this mountain range, then skirt aound on more steadily rising ground via the small village of Prado del Rey. Continue on to the village of Zahara de la Sierra, then follow an undulating road along the edge of the blue waters of Zahara lake. At the end of the lake you take a small road which twists and turns up the hillside to the village of Grazalema, nestled in between the mountains.
Day 5 - Grazalema to Setenil de las Bodegas
69km - 1740m ascent
Leaving Grazalema you head straight above the village, up into the mountains to Las Palomas Pass – 1232m - from where you get fantastic views across the mountains to the north and south. Then enjoy the thrilling, twisting 12km descent back down to Zahara village. Done in reverse, this is a Cat 1 climb, so for stronger riders, you can switch around the end of Day 4 above and the start of Day 5, to include this Cat 1 climb. The route continues in a loop through more white villages (La Muela, Olvera and Torre Alhaquime) before descending though olive tree-filled countryside into Setenil de las Bodegas.
Day 6 - Setenil to Ronda
76km - 1775m ascent
A final day of riding takes you away from the forests into a completely different landscape, filled with acres of olive trees stretching out as far as the eye can see. There are still plenty of mountains, as olives can still grow on seemingly precarious slopes and the mountain villages stand proud on the tops of the hills, with views for miles around. The last climb up to the Puerto del Viento (Windy Pass!) is 10km on a beautiful but challenging road from the village of El Burgo to a max altitude of just over 1km high. You ride through craggy mountains along the edge of the Sierra de las Nieves National Park and finish the day with a smile-inducing descent into Ronda.
Day 7 - Depart Ronda
Safe Trip Home
Check out from your hotel and have a safe trip home or to your next destination.
Included in our prices:
Will I be fit enough?
Our self-guided sportive tours are designed for keen cyclists rather than leisure cycling. There are mountains throughout the region which will need to be tackled but often reward with long descents.
Just remember that in summer, higher temperatures can make riding seem harder so we suggest starting soon after 9am and aiming to finish before 3pm.
Where will you be staying?
Double or twin room with en suite faciities in all locations.
Ronda hotel is nomally 4****. In most of the villages you will stay in traditional, family-run Andalucian-style hotels close to the village centre, tapas bars and cafes.
In summer we prioritise hotels with pools.
What to Bring
The essential kit to enjoy your cycling holiday
- Helmet (bring you own or use ours - free of charge)
- Padded cycling shorts (essential kit for staying comfortable over a few days' riding)
- Your own saddle if you prefer - let us know if you are bringing one
- Cycling gloves
- Cycling tops or T shirts
- Sports bra (ladies only!)
- Cycling shoes (let us know if you want clip-in pedals) or trainers - firm soles are best.
- Sun cream and after-sun lotion
- Casual clothes, swimwear and footwear
- Health insurance policy document (for UK travellers, a European Health Insurance Card, EHIC, will give you access to reduced cost medical services in Spain but it is not an alternative to travel insurance. It will not cover any private medical healthcare or costs such as mountain rescue, repatriation costs or lost or stolen property. Therefore it is important to have both an EHIC and a valid private travel insurance policy. Some insurers now insist you hold an EHIC and many will waive the excess if you have one. https://www.ehic.org.uk/Internet/startapplication.do
For winter riding
- extra body layers with long sleeves (thin thermal tops are great)
- leggings or cycling tights
- light waterproof/windproof jacket
- neck scarf / snood (great as sweat bands in the summer and for warmth in the winter)
- warm fleece and jacket for the evenings