If you are a keen cyclist and are yet to visit Mallorca, you are missing out on some of the finest routes in Europe. Here we look at five of the most exciting cycling routes in Mallorca, with a focus on the more mountainous and hilly areas, the kind that we visit on our Mountains of Mallorca Cycling Holiday. However, for those of you that prefer flatter routes, rest assured that Mallorca has plenty of those to offer as well.
Cap de FormentorThe Formentor Peninsula contains the most famous road in Mallorca and is regularly voted as one of the most beautiful areas of Spain. Starting from Port Pollensa, the road is 19km long road winds over the undulating terrain, with stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea along the majority of the route.
The road finishes at a lighthouse on the Cap de Formentor, from where there are fantastic views across Pollensa Bay to the Alcudia Peninsula, and it is also possible to see across to Menorca on a clear day.
Due to the real beauty of the region, the route can get busy with traffic in the warmer months. However, if you set off early, or visit in the off season (October - April), you will probably come across far more cyclists than cars.
A local rumour has it that Bradley Wiggins, Tour de France winner in 2012 and off season Mallorca resident, holds the unofficial record for cycling the Formentor Peninsula, completing the 40km return route from Port Pollensa in slighlty less than an hour.
Tramuntana Coastal RoadThe MA-10 road runs the length of the Tramuntana range from Pollensa to Andratx. The eastern part of the road includes the well-known climbs of Coll de Femenia and Puig Major; however, arguably the western side is even more spectacular.
Between Soller and Valldemossa the road loops along the undulating road, passing through the picturesque village of Deia. After Valldemossa, though, the road really comes into its own for cyclists. The coastal views are fantastic as you pass through historic villages such as Banyalbufar and Estellencs, with the road repeatedly cimbing before descending close to sea level.
The natural beauty of part of this section has diminished slightly following a severe forest fire in August 2013. However, the peaceful and isolated scenery provides a nice contrast with some of the more popular areas of the island.
Coll de SollerDespite being less than 6km long, the Coll de Soller had more hairpin bends than Alpe d'Huez. Whether you climb it from the north or the south, the Coll de Soller is an interesting challenge due to the frequent sharp bends - although this is obviously even more technical when descending.
The climb itself offers beautiful views over Soller and the northern coastline, as well as the traditional Mallorcan landscape of olive trees and dry stone walls on the southern side.
The average gradient is less than 6%, so it is not a particularly challenging climb, however, it is strategically important if you wish to plan a circular ride throught the Tramuntana Mountains. The Coll de Soller also carries little traffic, with the vast majority of cars using the tunnel under the mountain (which, incidentally, is closed to bicycles).
Santuari de CuraThe Santuari de Cura, sitauted just outside the village of Randa, is off the beaten track and is not as popular with cyclists as the northern part of the island.
However, if you are staying in Palma or in the south of Mallorca, it is one of the best routes available to you. The Santuari is situated on the top of an isolated hill at an altitude of 534m and, due to its location in the centre of Mallorca, it offers a 360 degree view across the island - including a panorama of the entire length of the Tramuntana range.
The climb itself is quite challenging, with several sections above 10% gradient, and it can easily be worked into a circular route which takes in parts of the southern and eastern coasts.
Sa CalobraIf the Formentor Peninsula is the most famous road in Mallorca, then Sa Calobra is not far behind. Situated in the heart of the Tramuntana Mountains, the road that snakes down to the tiny port of Sa Calobra is awe-inspiring.
Once you have descended the 11km from the Coll del Reis, the only way back up is along the same road (that's not entirely true, as there is also a boat you can catch between Sa Calobra and Port Soller). The average gradient of 7% is littered with hairpins, steep drops and truly fantastic views. If you like mountains and you like cycling, Sa Calobra is up there with the likes of Tourmalet and Alpe d'Huez in terms of enjoyment.
Read more in our detailed look at Sa Calobra.
Best of the Rest Cycling Routes in MallorcaThe routes listed above are just a small selection of what Mallorca has to offer. Other highlights include the quite, scenic Coll d'Honor, the popular Coll de sa Batalla and Puig Major - the highest road in Mallorca. Check out our action video of cycling in Mallorca for a look at some of the other amazing routes to discover.
If you would like any more information regarding cycling in Mallorca, or are interested in any of our cycling holidays to Spain, please don't hesitate to contact us.