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Showcased by the Vuelta every August, Andalusia (Andalucía in Spanish) has to be one of the best places in Europe to ride a road bike. The scenery is varied, the roads well surfaced and there are lots of beautiful climbs to be done. On this cycling holiday we explore the province of Málaga, home to several Natural Parks, the geological sculptures of El Torcal de Antequera, the gravity-defying walkway of El Chorro and the beautiful Moorish hill town of Ronda, where we spend 3 nights.
With an abundance of flights from Europe and beyond, a favourable climate, nice hotels and mouth-watering Andalusian cuisine, there are very few reasons not to come on this road cycling holiday!
This Classic Cols style holiday is lead by two exceptional guides in fully kitted-out support vehicles. Riders can cycle at their own pace, stop when they like and make each day their own. In a group of around 20 this usually means we have 3 – 4 mini-groups with similar aspirations and fitness levels who tend to ride together. We find this means that nobody feels held up, or as if they are holding others up.
It is important to us that you book the correct road cycling holiday for you, so do download and read the Trip Notes for all you need to know on how this holiday works: food, accommodation, travel and so on…
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, check www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
Departure Dates & Prices
We are pleased to offer some tempting discounts off the basic trip cost (not including extras such as single rooms or bike hire):
- Book & pay your deposit more than 6 months in advance of the start of your holiday for our 5% early bookers discount
- Get a group of 10+ people together for a 7.5% group discount and, as the group organiser, receive a £150 voucher for your next holiday
- Be rewarded for your loyalty by receiving a 10% discount from your 3rd Marmot trip onwards
Please note that there is a maximum 10% discount on any holiday.
Day 0: Arrival day
We offer included airport transfers (a journey of 30 min) at scheduled times during the day from Málaga AGP airport to our start hotel, which is within walking distance of the historic town centre.
Full travel advice (essential reading before booking your flights) can be found in our Trip Notes.
Check-in, assemble bikes and share a hearty meal in preparation for the adventure ahead! Those of you on early flights may want to head out on the bikes to explore the Costa del Sol.
Day 1: Málaga to Loja through the Montes de Málaga Natural Park
The mountains of the Montes de Málaga Natural Park rise sharply to the north of the city. This is our playground for today! We start by climbing the Puerto del León (940m) on a spectacular road, which even does a couple of ‘loop-the-loops’ to gain altitude. The views are breath-taking and the sparse forest a delight.
Our Classic route continues on quiet roads over the Puerto de los Alazores (1028m) through an interesting landscape to our hotel, which commands dramatic views over the town of Loja.
The ride can be made longer and more challenging by taking on the appropriately named Puerto del Sol (1080m).
Day 2: Loja to El Chorro via El Torcal de Antequera
The view from the swimming pool of our hotel in El Chorro should be enough to motivate you to get to our destination today!
We start by undulating through the olive groves to the historical town of Antequera. The horizon is dominated by the wind etched geological masterpiece of El Torcal de Antequera. Those on the Classic route will enjoy the spectacular ride around the base of this mighty mountain and if you want more, then the Harder and Challenge routes take you on a loop around the mountain or all the way up to El Torcal de Antequera (1215m).
The ride finishes in El Chorro on a great little road, linking a series of picturesque reservoirs. Here you have the option of relaxing or continue cycling up to the Mirador Tajo Encantada / Alto de la Mesa (603m).
Day 3: El Chorro to Ronda
The Caminito del Rey is a walkway pinned along the steep walls of a narrow gorge in El Chorro – it has in the past held the title of most dangerous path in Europe! It is certainly no place to take a road bike, but we start the day looking up at this masterpiece of engineering.
Our destination is the historic and beautiful town of Ronda (where we stay in a town centre hotel for the next 3 nights) and we take a slightly obscure route over the stunning Puerto del Viento (1078m) to get there.
As always, there are extra options for those wanting more of a challenge. Starting the day by nipping up to the Mirador Tajo Encantada / Alto de la Mesa (603m) is a good option, as is detouring over the Puerto de los Martínez (713m) and Puerto de las Abejas (823m).
Day 4: Day ride from Ronda - Puerto de Encinas Borrachas
You have the choice of taking today as a rest day to explore the many beautiful and historic sights of Ronda.
Options galore, we head over the Alto de Benaoján (707m) on smooth surfaces linking together picture-perfect whitewashed villages. Here you can choose to head back to Ronda over the Puerto de Encinas Borrachas (1029m) with spectacular views, or detour further over the Puerto del Espino (780m) and the Cañada del Real Tesoro (625m). For those wanting that bit more, the Sendero El Pimpollar (700m) is a tempting addition!
Tonight’s dinner is not included so you can explore the many fine restaurants in town.
Day 5: Day ride from Ronda - Puerto de las Palomas
The Parque Natural de la Sierra de Grazalema to the west of Ronda is a total delight for a road cyclist looking for a good day out on the bike. Heading over the Puerto de Montejaque (714m) we enjoy a wonderful descent to the base of the challenging but spectacular climb to the Puerto de las Palomas (1189m). Here you have the option of returning to Ronda or looping down to the cork tree plantations and back over the Puerto del Boyar (1111m) – certainly a challenging optional extra!
Whatever you decide to do – you are bound to be happy today!
Day 6: Ronda to Mijas
Bidding farewell to Ronda, we skirt the eastern edge of the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park. Our route takes in the Puerto El Saltillo (885m) and the rural plains to the Puerto del Aire (950m). This is all beautiful cycling country!
From El Burgo, we continue south over the Puerto de las Abejas (823m), heading to the Mediterranean. We finish our tour of Andalusia with a glorious traverse around the base of the Sierra de Mijas to our hotel for the evening.
Those choosing the challenge route, however, must first take on the savage gradients of the Antena Mirador Benalmadena (920m) – the views are worth it!
Day 7: Departure day
All good things must come to an end. We offer transfers back to Málaga AGP airport throughout the morning (30 min transfer).
For those of you on the later transfers, there is plenty to be done in Mijas and the hotel swimming pool has a particularly nice view!