Girona Gravel Adventure Self-Guided Cycling Holiday
Catalan Flag Spanish FlagSpain

GIRONA GRAVEL ADVENTURE

Guided Cycling Holiday

Catalan Flag Spanish FlagSpain

Girona Gravel Adventure
Guided Cycling Tour
Length: 7 Days
Level: Difficulty Challenging
Price: €1,460 EUR
This guided and fully supported cycling holiday explores the pectacular gravel trails and beautiful country lanes around the Girona region of Spain. Girona has long been a popular destination for road cyclists, and it is also one of the best destinations in Europe for gravel riding.

The holiday takes you on routes with great variety. You will ride alongside dramatic coastal scenery, through volcanic natural parks and over iconic cycling climbs in the foothills of the Pyrenees mountains. You ride on a variety of surfaces, with plenty of gravel roads and trails each day.

You will also explore the beautiful Catalonia region, visiting historic towns and villages such as Cadaqués, Besalú, Pals and L'Escala. You pass Roman ruins, Medieval bridges, picturesque vineyards and much more on this unique adventure. The tour also stays in high quality hotels, located in picturesque historic centers, or next to the charming beaches of the Costa Brava.

Below you can find a detailed itinerary, and click on the tabs to see more highlights, as well as all the practical information about the holiday.

You may also be interested in our self-guided version of this tour.
Girona Gravel Adventure Cycling Tour Map


Tour Availability


J F M A M J J A S O N D

Current Dates


24th - 30th September 2023



Day 1 - Girona

We will pick you up from Girona airport or train station and transfer you to your hotel in the historic center. Girona began to take its modern form 2000 years ago, when the Romans built a citadel there.

Since then it has been strategically important as the first major settlement across the Pyrenees. Both Charlemagne and Napoleon made capturing the city a key part of their plans to invade Spain. The city walls, imposing cathedral and the winding streets of the old town are all vivid reminders of this impressive past.

Girona is also one of the major centres of cycling in Europe. It has long been the choice of residence amongst professional riders thanks to the mild climate and varied terrain close to the city. The Girona region offers something for cyclists of all levels and disciplines, making it a very flexible region to tour.

Cycling around Girona
Girona has a well preserved historic center


Day 2 - Els Angels - L'Escala

The cycling begins by leaving Girona to the east and immediately tackling the beautiful gravel climb to Coll de la Ferriola. This scenic route heads through pine forest towards the 'Els Angels' monument, before descending down towards the plains of Bisbal d'Emporda.

The remainder of the route is largely rolling, following gravel trails between Medieval villages, orchards and rice fields. Highlights include historic Pals and Peratallada, as well as the trail alongside the River Ter.

The day ends in the coastal town of L'Escala, which is known for its excellent beaches and Roman ruins. It also has a charming old town where you can taste the local delicacy - freshly prepared anchovies.

Cycle Routes


Shorter Route:
78km / 1,000m Elevation
(48 miles / 3,300 ft Elevation)

Longer Route:
96km / 1,150m Elevation (60 miles / 3,800 ft Elevation)
Girona Countryside
Pleasant rolling trails lead to the Costa Brava

Day 3 - Cap de Creus Peninsula

Much of the riding today is along the coast as you head towards the spectacular Cap de Creus peninsula. The first part of the ride is quite flat, passing through picturesque towns such as Sant Pere Pescador and Castello d'Empuries.

In Roses you can visit the ancient citadel, before following a spectacular coastal trail around the Cap de Creus as far as the town of Cadaqués. A former home of Salvador Dalí, Pablo Picasso and Marcel Duchamp, it isn't hard to see why the beautiful buildings and dramatic coastline captured the imagination of some of Spain's greatest artists.

After taking on refreshments in Cadaqués, there is just one more climb and descent to our destination - the town of Port de la Selva on the north of the Cap de Creus. Here you stay next to the town's fine beach and can relax in the hotel's spa facilities.

Cycle Routes


Shorter Route:
76km / 1,050m Elevation
(47 miles / 3,400 ft Elevation)

Longer Route:
93km / 1,500m Elevation (60 miles / 5,000 ft Elevation)
Cap de Creus
Cap de Creus Peninsula

Day 4 - Emporda Vineyards & Besalú

Today you leave the coast and head inland across the foothills of the Pyrenees mountains. The day begins by taking the long distance GR-11 route over a couple of modest climbs, before descending through the vineyards of the Emporda region.

On the route there is the option to take a detour to visit the Roman monument to Pompey the Great, situated on the border between France and Spain, before continuing west on gravel roads and quiet lanes.

The longer route tackles an additional beautiful gravel climb to the Coll de Riu, while the shorter route takes the more direct path to the town of Besalú, where you will stay for two nights.

Besalú is a beautiful historic town, most famous for its vast 12th century bridge across the River Fluvia. The old town is a lot of fun to explore, with narrow winding streets and impressive squares making for a nice ambience.

Cycle Routes


Shorter Route:
77km / 1,400m Elevation
(47 miles / 4,600 ft Elevation)

Longer Route:
104km / 2,150m Elevation (64 miles / 7,300 ft Elevation)
Emporda Vineyards
Vineyards of the Emporda region

Day 5 - Garrotxa Volcanoes

The circular ride today heads through the Garrotxa Natural Park, passing through the town of Olot. The Garrotxa is a lush green, volcanic region and it's a lot of fun to explore the trails in between the dramatic peaks and valleys.

The town of Olot has a pretty historic center and is a nice place to stop for lunch or a coffee stop, before continuing along rolling trails and country lanes back to Besalú. This is one of our favourite rides, with beautiful and incredibly peaceful scenery.

There is also the option to include the famous road climb to Mare de Deu del Mont, which offers fantastic views of the surrounding region from the summit.

Cycle Routes


Shorter Route:
56km / 1,200m Elevation
(35 miles / 4,000 ft Elevation)

Medium Route:
72km / 1,200m Elevation
(45 miles / 4,100 ft Elevation)

Longer Route:
76km / 1,550m Elevation (47 miles / 5,200 ft Elevation)
Gravel Roads
Gravel roads cross the Volcanic Garrotxa Natural Park


Day 6 - Rocacorba & Girona

The final day in the saddle heads south from Besalú, taking gravel trails and back roads through the town of Banyoles. The medium and longer routes include the famous road climb to Rocacorba, one of the most popular cycling routes in the Girona region.

From here you head towards the Ter River valley and follow a very enjoyable route alongside the river, taking you back into Girona. The longer route has one sting in the tail, with one final climb and descent into the city, passing the castle of Sant Miquel.

In Girona you can head along to one of the main squares that are dotted around the old town and enjoy a well deserved caña or copa to mark the end of the trip!

Cycle Routes


Shorter Route:
56km / 600m Elevation
(35 miles / 2,000 ft Elevation)

Medium Route:
79km / 1,300m Elevation
(49 miles / 4,400 ft Elevation)

Longer Route:
100km / 2,100m Elevation (64 miles / 7,000 ft Elevation)
Picturesque trails
Picturesque trails on the way to Rocacorba


Day 7 - Departure / Extensions

After breakfast, the cycling holiday comes to an end. We can help to arrange extra nights for you to stay in Catalonia to discover even more about this great region.

Popular extensions include Barcelona, the Costa Brava and the Pyrenees mountains.

If you prefer not to extend your stay, we will transfer you to Girona airport or train station in time for your onward journey.

To find out more information about this holiday; including practical information, prices, dates and more tour highlights; return to the top of the page and click on the various tabs.

Cycle Route in Catalonia
There are several great options to extend your holiday

Whether you choose the hybrid or road route, this tour explores the best of Girona and the Costa Brava. You ride through natural parks, visit dozens of stunning villages and historic sites, while stay in high quality hotels.

You can swim in the cove beaches of the Costa Brava and enjoy the finest Catalan and Spanish cuisine. This holiday really allows you to immerse yourself in the history and culture of this fascinating region.



These are just a few of the many highlights of the tour. Check out more in the photo album below:

Included
  • 6 Nights Accommodation (see the Hotels section for more details)
  • Continental breakfast each day
  • Transfers to and from the arrival and departure points (see below for details)
  • Lunch and refreshments every day. Lunch is sometimes taken in a restaurant, and sometimes a picnic.
  • Evening meal on the first night in Girona (taken in a local restaurant)
  • Luggage transferred between hotels
  • Experienced guide cycling the route with the group
  • Support vehicle along the route
  • Detailed maps and route information for each day, with clearly marked points of interest.
  • Route extensions every day for those of you who wish to cycle
Not Included:
  • Flights
  • Tour Extensions
  • Travel Insurance
  • Bicycle Hire is optional extra (We have Gravel bikes and 29" mountain bikes available for €150 EUR - see below)

Bicycles
Bicycle hire is an optional extra for this holiday, as we understand that some of you may prefer to bring your own. We can provide gravel bikes and 29" mountain bikes for this tour, and rental costs €150 EUR for the holiday.

Both gravel and mountain bikes are suitable for all of the routes, and so it is best to choose whichever you are most comfortable riding.

Gravel bikes for this tour are Kona Libre or similar models. These have a full carbon frame, hydraulic disc brakes and 45mm tyres, and are set up for comfort on long rides across varied terrain.

Mountain bikes are available if you would prefer a little more comfort and don't mind going slightly more slowly! We offer Kona Kahuna (or similar models). These have lightweight aluminium frames, 29" wheels, 2.3" wide tyres and a full Shimano Deore groupset. They are optimized for climbing, but also cover less technical sections quite rapidly.

For more information about the exact bike we can provide for this tour, please submit an Inquiry and let us know your size and the dates you would like to travel.
Kona Libre Kona Libre Gravel Bike

Difficulty Level & Surfaces
We rate this tour as challenging level of difficulty. There are two ride options each day, but even the shorter routes demand a considerable level of fitness and, ideally some experience with off-road riding. The routes each day are a mixture of flatter trails and hilly terrain, with some longer climbs gaining several hundred metres in altitude.

The road surfaces are mixed throughout the tour. Around 60% of the riding is on gravel or hard pack roads and trails. The rest is on quiet country lanes, cycle paths and even short sections of single track.

Most of the riding is generally not very technical, and you should be able to ride almost everything on a gravel bike. There are some short sections which are slightly more technical, but if you feel uncomfortable on these, they are short enough that you can easily walk them. Keep in mind this is an adventure tour and so there are short sections where you may have to walk across river crossings, or over a steep part of the trail, so it is important to bring cycling shoes that you can walk in for short distances.

If you would prefer to ride easier and completely non-technical gravel routes, then you may prefer our Girona & Costa Brava cycling holiday, which offers more gentle hybrid routes.

Find out more about our tour difficulty levels.

Arrival and Departure
The tour begins and ends in Girona. Transfers are included to and from Girona airport or train station at the start and end of the trip. If you are unable to get a flight there, then we recommend flying into Barcelona airport and taking the train to Girona. This takes less than an hour and runs roughly hourly throughout the day.

Please contact us if you would like any advice or more information regarding getting to and from the region.
Girona Arrivals and Departure Map

Frequently Asked Questions


Please browse through some of the frequently asked questions about this cycling tour. If you have any further questions, or would like any more information, please contact us and we will answer by email.


Can I make any changes to the itinerary?

If you are booking a private tour as part of a group, the itinerary is entirely flexible. Feel free, for example, to change the number of days, the difficulty of the routes, to add longer transfers or to include evening meals. Please contact us and we would be happy to discuss all the options with you.

On the 'public' tour, there is still some flexibility in the itinerary, with different route options each day and the possibility of being transferred at times. We can also add extra nights at the start or end of the trip if you wish to spend longer in Girona or the surrounding region.

What is the weather like?

The Girona region is mostly dry and sunny throughout the year, with little rain. This tour is most enjoyable in Spring (March - June) and Autumn or Fall (September to November), when the temperatures tend to be very pleasant for cycling.

It is also possible to go in July and August if you are used to cycling in warmer temperatures (it can be above 30°C (85°F). Please bear in mind though that this is the main season for other holidaymakers. The roads and towns are busier and the hotels are more expensive, so we recommend avoiding the height of summer if you have the choice.

It is also possible to go on this holiday in winter. Day time temperatures in January average around 14°C (56°F), so it isn't T-shirt weather, but it can be quite pleasant for cycling.

How large are the groups on your tour?

We usually limit the groups to a maximum of 10 people. We think that smaller groups also provide for a more personal experience, as well as enabling to book more easily in some of our favourite restaurants.

Who is leading the tour?

All of our guided tours are led personally by the founders of Cycle Fiesta - Ian & Lucia.

See our about us page for more information.

How is this different from your other tour in the Girona region?

The main difference between this and our other Girona & Costa Brava holiday, is that this one is more challenging.

The routes are longer, more mountainous and with more off-road sections. This is more of an adventure style tour, designed for riders who love gravel biking and want to head into the Natural Parks and throughout the foothills of the Catalan Pyrenees. If you prefer to ride only on roads and completely non-technical gravel trails, and you like to explore villages and towns more than natural scenery, then our Girona & Costa Brava tour may be a better choice.

Can I extend the tour?

Yes, we would be happy to arrange any tour extensions for you. The most popular option is to spend extra nights in Barcelona.

But we can also help you to extend the trip if you wish to spend more time on the Costa Brava, or to visit anywhere else in Spain or France.

Do you run this as a private guided tour?

Yes, for groups of six or more people, we can run this as a private guided tour.

You may also be interested in our Guided Girona & Costa Brava holiday, which is similar to this one, but is more of a leisurely tour.

What is your cancellation policy?

The full cancellation policy can be found in our terms and conditions.

Why book with us?

We are a small and independent company who are locally based, which offers several advantages:

- We have a lot personal experience of all of our tours, which have been refined over many years. We believe we are genuine experts in the regions where we run tours, and we are also close at hand to offer support and a personalized service.

- We are flexible and can tailor our itineraries to suit your requirements.

- We have low overheads. We don't spend money on advertising and don't use third party agents. We only sell our tours through this website.

By cutting out the middle man, you can be sure that more of what you pay is being spent on the important things: like hotels, equipment and other services.

- We are a registered and fully bonded tour operator in accordance with EU regulations.

Hotel Nord 1901
Hotel Nord - Girona
This charming 4-star hotel is situated in the heart of Girona, just a short distance from the cathedral and impressive city walls. It has large rooms and a nice swimming pool area for relaxing. You stay here at the start and end of the holiday.
RV Nieves Mar
RV Hotel Escala
You spend one night in this 3-star hotel in Escala, located close to the beach and historic center. It has comfortable rooms and a large swimming pool, and it is perfect for exploring the charms of the town or the Roman ruins of Empuries.
Hotel Spa Cap de Creus
Hotel Cap Creus
This 3-star hotel in Port de la Selva is situated directly next to the beach and small marina area. As well as nice rooms, it has Spa facilities, and is surrounded by many excellent local bars and restaurants.
Casa Marcial
Hotel Marcial
You spend two nights in this beautiful boutique 3-star hotel in Besalú. The hotel has large rooms and a beautiful garden with a swimming pool, which is nestled within the historic center of the town. It is situated just 100m from Besalú's iconic bridge.
To find out more about how we select our hotels, please see our accommodation page.


Starting Date Price (per person)¹ Single Supplement Bike Hire
24th - 30th September 2023 €1,460 EUR €300 EUR €150 EUR
Other Dates² - EUR - - EUR


¹Price is based on two people sharing a double or twin room. If you would prefer to stay in a single room, the single supplement is applicable.

To reserve a place on the tour, click the button above and complete the reservation form. We will then get back to you within 24 hours to confirm the reservation, and to arrange for payment of the deposit.

For more details on the booking process, please check out our Reservations page.


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