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Catalonia Bike and Beach
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Catalonia Bike and Beach

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Key Information:
Tour Duration: 7 - 9 day(s)
Group Size: 1 - 20 people
Destination(s): Spain  
Specialty Categories: Bicycle Touring   Cultural Journey  
Season: March - October
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: No
Minimum Per Person Price: 905 Euro (EUR)
Maximum Per Person Price: 1065 Euro (EUR)

Costa Brava literally translates to Wild Coast which is exactly what you can expect of this extraordinary rugged coastline. From pristine sandy beaches to small rocky covers as well as mountains, plains, and forests, throughout the week you will pedal through the beautiful and diverse terrain that Catalonia has to offer. Never more than 40 km from the coast, you have the luxury of a dry and warm or hot climate that allows you to cycle the area year-round. The region is filled with Natural Parks, World Heritage sites, classic yet unique medieval villages, monasteries, castles, and scenery that have inspired some of the most talented artists and patrons throughout history. Among Catalonia’s most notable (relatively) recent admirers were Salvador Dali the famous surrealist painter whose house can be visited in Cadaques, Ferran Adria the acclaimed chef who opened the world-famous El Bulli, and several outstanding pro-cyclists, who used this area as their training playground. With history, art, natural wonders, and beaches this trip has something for everyone and once you see it for yourself, you’ll see why the area is so captivating. Even if you do decide to return home after our week-long trip, be assured you’ll want to take as much of it with you as possible!

Day 1: Arrive in Girona

Located in Spain’s northeast corner just an hour north of Barcelona and just about 30 km from the coast,Girona is easily accessible by train, plane or car. Besides its accessibility, Girona makes an ideal city to start your tour because it typifies the diversity of region like no other city in the region. Walking along the Roman ramparts, exploring the narrow cobblestone streets of the old Jewish Quarter, shopping the modern stores of the commercial strees, and marvelling at 12th century Moorish architecture you can get a feel for the true mixture of influences that Catalonia has inherited throughout the ages. Your hotel is conveniently located in the incredibly well-preserved downtown, near all major attractions including the Arab Baths, the Rambla de la Llibertat and the Cathedral. At night you’ll dine in a nearby downtown restaurant, one of the many that Girona has to offer.

Day 2: Girona to Calella de Palafrugell
(approx. 55 km/ 34 miles)
(approx. 749 m/ 2,457 feet of climbing)

Following breakfast, after your set up meeting, you will head southwest out of Girona to start your journey to the Mediterranean. The beginning of today’s route takes you over the Las Gavarres Mountains via the Els Angels pass with the mountain top monastery where Dali was married. As you see from the elevation profile below, it never gets very steep and it can be managed slowly and steadily at a low gear. Your effort will be rewarded ten-fold with a beautiful panorama at the top and a smattering of pretty villages as you coast toward the sea. After coasting down the mountains, you make your way through many typical medieval villages of Catalonia, like Ullastret and Palau Sator. You can take as little or as much time as you want to discover unique histories’ and sites’ in any of these villages. The route then winds through Emporda county finishing into the exclusive fishing village of Calella de Palafugell. Here, you can relax and enjoy a stroll between the Mediterranean Sea and the white washed fisherman’s houses.

Day 3: Calella de Palafrugell to Bordils
(approx. 56 km/ 35 miles)
(approx. 486 m/ 1,594 feet of climbing)

After enjoying breakfast at the hotel near the sea, you will begin today’s ride that takes you north then cuts inland through one of the most unique landscapes in Europe. You will ride through incredible landscapes littered with ancient stone houses and castles, one of which was bought by Dalí for his beloved wife Gala and is now maintained now as a museum, in the tiny village of Púbol. You will also ride through the small town of Torrent home to one of the most unique sweetest museums, Museu de la Confitura (Jam) where you can send some time here learning about its rich history or tasting some of the local recipes. After Torrent you will continue along secluded roads through local fields, groves, orchards, and many other charming Catalonian villages until you reach Bordils. Here you will stay in a cosy family run farmhouse just a few kilometres from the Dali-Gala castle museum and enjoy a properly home-cooked Catalan meal.

Day 4: Bordils to Sant Marti d' Empuries
(approx. 37 km/ 22 miles)
(approx. 298 m/ 977 feet of climbing)

On today’s ride you will travel north again through Emporda and cross into the northern part of the county called Alt Emporda, a region famous for its wine production. Along the way you will pass through several quaint villages like Sant Jordi Desvalls, Colomers, and Camallera. You will cross El Fluviá River into the town of Sant Miquel de Fluviá that is dominated by an 11th century tower and is rich in history. After crossing the Emporda plain you will reach your destination: the hotel and Spa right next to the beach. From here you are in a perfect location to check out the archaeological site of Empúries, to explore the Aiguamolls de l'Empordà natural park, or just relax on the beach.

Optional additional night in Sant Martí d’Empuries – Rest day or loop to El Port de la Selva (approx. 100 km/ 62 miles with 1,135 m/ 3,723 feet of climbing)

With so many options available for your today, it is a prime example of the benefits of self-guided where you have the means to enjoy your vacation on YOUR terms! You have the freedom to enjoy the incredible archaeological site of Empúries at your leisure where in the early 20th century a major excavation project began which continues today uncovering immense information from this site that dates back to the ancient Grecian times of 575 BC. Or if you feel like hitting the road you can take the loop from Sant Marti d'Empuries (via Port de la Selva) that we can provide. As you leave the coast, you’ll cycle north and start your hilly yet incredibly scenic route of Spain’s northeast peninsula, nearly reaching the French border. You will pass the Pau and Llançà as you cycle around the Cap de Creus national park. On your journey you’ll be able to view the Pyrenees mountain landscape and rocky coves leading into the crystal blue waters of the Mediterranean, so be sure to bring your camera! As always you also have the option to take your time and if you want just spend the day relaxing at the spa, enjoying a walk on the beachfront promenade or parking yourself in the sun at one of the many restaurant terraces. Of course the beach is always a great way to spend a lazy afternoon as well.

Day 5: Sant Marti d 'Empuries to Figueres
(approx. 55 km/ 34 miles)
(approx. 274 m/ 890 feet of climbing)

On this day you’ll say goodbye to the Mediterranean and head inland to Figueres. The beginning of the route follows the same as the optional loop from Sant Marti so you will pass through Pau again, if you chose to do the loop. You will spend the ride in an idyllic surrounding traveling through many small towns like Garriguella, Vilamaniscle, Rabos and Espolla. Most of your ride today is in the Spanish Denominación de Origen of Empordà (this is a destination of origin used to identify specific regions where wine is grown), and we recommend that you stop at the Estate Terra Remota (www.terraremota.com) for a very interesting visit and wine tasting. Once you reach Espolla at the foot of the great Pyrenees the rest of your journey is downhill and you’ll have to work your breaks as you coast down to Figueres. This historic town is the birthplace of the king of surrealism, the one and only Salvador Dali. The Dali Theatre-Museum, designed by Dali himself is a must see for anyone with a taste for art. Although it is centuries older the quirky and unique personality of Figueres mirrors that of its most imaginative resident.

Day 6: Figueres to Girona
(approx. 70 km/ 44 miles)
(approx. 845 m/ 2,772 feet of climbing)

Today you will make the long journey south to return to the capital city of the region, Girona. This route will be just as stunning as the rest of your trip. It will lead you through the rolling hills, vineyards and numerous quintessential towns of Catalonia. Throughout the day you have the opportunity to stop learn about the rich history, enjoy a tasting of local flavours and wines, and marvel at the splendour of the mountains and plans of the region. Along the ride you will see the wide variety of different vistas that Catalonia has to offer. Today’s route provides the perfect recap for your vacation. You will conclude back in the medieval old town of Girona for your last night in Catalunya.

Day 7: Departure

Following breakfast you may depart at a time of your choosing.

Airfare is not included in the tour price.

Pricing: From 905 euros per person sharing a room.
- 905 euros March 1 thru April 30 and Oct. 1 thru Oct. 31. Single sup.: 280 euros.
- 1,035 euros May 1 thru June 30 and Sept. 1 thru Sept. 30. Single sup.: 290 euros.
- 1,065 euros July 1 thru August 31. Single sup.: 300 euros.

Prices include:
-6-night accommodations in 2- and 3-star properties and one farmhouse
-Daily breakfast
-1 dinner (at the farmhouse)
-Meeting with our local representative
-Marked maps and/or cue sheets
-Tourist information
-Luggage transfers
-Assistance if necessary
-All tax and service charges

These prices do not include:
-Travel insurance
-Expenses of personal nature
-Bicycle rentals.
-Extra night in Sant Marti d'Empuries. Price is 80 euros per person per night breakfast included. Single sup.: 70 euros. Additional fee of 15 euros per person per night from June to Sept.

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