Route and GPX Files
We started our Andalucia bike tour from Malaga and ended in Tarifa (where we took a ferry over to Morocco for one day). We then took a bus back to Malaga.
Caution: the bus driver freaked out when he saw our 4 bikes and, initially, said that only 2 bikes could be put under the bus. After some pleading and then showing him how two bikes stacked together with the front wheels removed took very little room, he relented and let us put all four bikes on the bus. Phew!
Total distance ended up ~530 miles and ~65,000 ft of climbing.
When putting together the 12-day route, I avoided the main highways as much as possible and tried to hit a lot of the scenic towns and attractions. It ended up being a great route – very little traffic, amazing scenery, good roads (except when we purposely went off-road), and low enough mileage to relax and take breaks throughout the day. Warning – Andalucia is not flat! We actually prefer climbing and mountains when we tour, so it was great for us, but our average day consisted of ~5,000 ft of climbing (see daily stats in the table below).
Lastly, since it was winter, we stayed in hostals/pensions, or Air BnB accommodations every night. We didn’t want the extra weight of camping gear on the bikes and the temperatures dropped into the 20’s some nights.
Download the daily GPX files here: Southern Spain Bike Tour GPX files
|Day||Miles||Climbing Elevation (ft)|
If you are trying to figure out how to start or end your bike tour in Malaga, hopefully this info should save you some research and time. Given how popular bike touring is in Southern Spain, I was surprised at how long it took to figure out all the necessary arrangements for our bikes, boxes, airport transportation, and accommodation.
- Flying from the US to Malaga (round trip) for a two-week bike tour
- 4 people (2 couples)
- 4 bikes (boxed in cardboard boxes for the flight)
- Needed transport from/to the airport to our hotel in Malaga
- Needed a place to leave our 4 bike boxes while we toured
- We flew Air France and each of us checked in a bike box and carried two panniers on
- After booking our ticket, the airline required that we call them to reserve/confirm that they had room for our bike boxes.
- I also had the customer service rep write in the notes the amount they said that our bikes would cost to fly each way ($55). This was absolutely key. When we got to the airport, they quoted a much higher price. They ended up honoring the lower price once they saw the note saying that I was “advised” that the price was $55. This also came in the airport in Spain on our way back. They honored the lower price after I showed them the receipt showing how much Air France charged me on the outbound flight. Save your receipt!
- We booked our first and last night in Malaga at Hotel Castilla Guerrero, who confirmed that they would be able to store our bike boxes. We intended to stay at some cheaper hostels, but they said that they wouldn’t have room to store our bike boxes.
- We booked a minibus through EasyAirportTaxis.com to transfer us and our bikes from the airport to our hotel (round-trip) for 72 Euros. A normal taxi would have cost between 40-50 Euros (one-way). When we missed our connection, we called them and they rescheduled out driver to pick us up after the later flight.
- Some alternatives:
- There is also a bus that you can take from the airport to the bus station (A1 for 2 Euros), which is centrally located, which can accommodate bikes in the undercarriage (recommended to leave your bike boxed up). However, our hotel was still a 15 minute walk from the station.
- We met a Canadian couple who ditched their boxes and rode straight from the airport. They said that they didn’t want to pay 40 Euros that a cab was going to charge them to drive them and their bikes (one-way).
- And, lastly, Vlad at bike2malaga, a bike shop, offered to pick us up from the airport (one-way for 75 Euros) and store our bike boxes.