Old Castile: Salamanca - Segovia
- Guided 6 Nights
- Arrival - Salamanca
- Departure - Segovia
- Difficulty - Easy - Medium
- Price - €1495
- Dates - April to October
This guided cycling holiday visits the great cities of the ancient Castile and Leon regions of Spain. Starting in the beautiful, historic city of Salamanca, we ride alongside rivers, through rolling countryside, stunning vineyards and delightful villages.
In addition to fantastic scenery, the tour visits the fine cities of Zamora, Tordesillas, Valladolid, Peñafiel and Segovia, as well as the Ribera del Duero wine region, where we do a tasting at a marquee vineyard.
The region is known for its castles, rich history and traditional culture. It also boasts a superb gastronomic tradition, of which we take full advantage; and we stay in some of the finest and most charismatic hotels in the area.
Highlights of the tour include visiting the UNESCO World Heritage old town of Salamanca (including the stunning University) and Zamora; the stunning Roman viaduct of Segovia; the fantastic bodegas of the Duero River Valley; and the imposing castles of Simancas, Fuensaldaña and Peñafiel.
Day 1 - SalamancaThe tour begins in Salamanca; one of Spain's finest cities. We pick you up from Salamanca train station and take you to the hotel in the heart of the city, just a stone throw from the marvellous Plaza Mayor.
Salamanca's old town is one of the best preserved in Spain, and is mainly centered around its university, which is the second oldest in Europe. We take you on a guided tour, highlighting the influences on the region, from the Roman Bridge all the way up to the key governemnt buildings during the Spanish Civil War. In the evening we introduce you to Salamancan style tapas dining!
Day 2 - ZamoraThe first day in the saddle leaves Salamanca on a cycle lane along the Tormes River, before continuing on quiet country lanes through the rolling countryside. The ride is gently rolling, with no significant climbing, but with pleasant scenery and open views throughout the route.
Our destination is Zamora - a small city with a delightful historic center. Here you can visit the impressive castle as well as the 16th century watermills, and explore the narrow lanes of the old town.
Distance: 40-85km (25-53 miles)
Day 3 - Toro & TordesillasFrom Zamora we head east, loosely following the course of the Duero River, a feature which dominates the region. The ride is mostly flat, with a few gently rolling sections and follows quiet roads which are framed by flowers and wheat fields.
We stop at the town of Toro and visit its 10th century Alcazar which was built as a border fortification between the Muslim caliphate to the south, and the Christian kingdoms to the north.
The day finishes in the charming town of Tordesillas. It was here in 1494 that the treaty was signed splitting the 'new world' between Spain and Portugal, and was also where Queen Juana was controversially imprisoned in the 16th century, leading to a period of Habsburg rule in Spain.
Distance: 38-72km (24-46 miles)
Day 4 - ValladolidWe continue heading east from Tordesillas as the route becomes more rolling, but still without any challenging climbs. The scenery is mostly arable farmland, mixed with the vineyards of the Rueda Wine Region.
The route passes through Simancas, home to a 15th century castle, which currently contains the Spanish National Archive. And we stop for lunch at the small town of Fuensaldaña; home to a very impressive castle where Queen Isabella of Castile and King Ferdinand of Aragon spent their honeymoon, after their wedding which united Spain for the first time.
The ride finishes in the city of Valladolid. A former capital of Spain, Valladolid is full of exquisite architecture, with many fine buildings dating from the 15th and 16th centuries. It's Plaza Mayor (Main Square) is the oldest of its type in Spain.
Distance: 37-71km (24-45 miles)
Day 5 - Ribera del Duero Wine RegionToday we gradually leave the arable farmland behind and enter the rolling terrain of the Ribera del Duero wine region. Probably second only to Rioja in international renown.
We end the day in the beautiful town of Peñafiel, home to another of the region's superbly preserved castles. Here we visit one of the finest vineyards of the region for a tour and tasting of some of the wine produces here.
Distance: 38-60km (24-40 miles)
Day 6 - SegoviaThe final day in the saddle heads south, crossing the rolling terrain that played an important role in Spain's two Civil Wars: the Comuneros Revolt of the 1520s and the better known Civil War of the 20th century. We stop for lunch in the shadow of the imposing castle at Turegano.
We then ride the short distance into Segovia; one of Spain's hidden gems. Segovia is only a small city, but it has a stunningly preserved old town and Jewish Quarter, which is delightful to stroll around, surrounded by many centuries of history.
Segovia is also home to the UNESCO World Heritage Roman aqueduct. Often described as the best preserved Roman Aqueduct in the world; it dominates the entrance to the city and is a truly awe-inspiring sight to behold.
Distance: 39-82km (25-52 miles)
Day 7 - Departure - MadridThe cycling holiday ends after breakfast. However, if you would like to stay for extra nights in Segovia itself, the nearby Guadarrama Mountains, or the city of Madrid, please let us know and we can happily arrange it for you.
We will transfer you to Segovia train station in time for your onward journey.
Prices & Dates
|Price (per person)*||Single Supplement||Bike Hire (Optional)|
|27th September - 3rd October 2020
|Other Dates||contact us|
*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.
Guided TourGroups of six people or more contact us to arrange a private guided tour starting on any date.
The following is included in the tour:
- Six nights accommodation in double, twin or single room with en-suite.
- Transfer to and from the arrival/departure point
- Continental breakfast every day
- Lunch and refreshments* every day
- 6 x Dinners with wine or soft drinks
- Luggage transferred between hotels
- Experienced guide and historian cycling the route with the group (fluent English)
- Support vehicle along the route
- Cycle Fiesta water bottle
- 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 further
- Bike Hire (Carbon Road Bike or Hybrid Bike; including helmet and handlebar bag if required)
- Entry to the following attractions:
- Vineyard Tour & Wine Tasting
The following are not included in the tour
- Any transfers not stated above
- Travel Insurance
- Entry to any attractions (e.g. museums, churches) except were explicitly stated
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.
How far do I cycle each day on this tour?
The shorter route each day is around 35-40km (22-25 miles). It is flat or gently rolling with no major climbs and is suitable for cyclists of all levels. The longer ride averages around 70km (44 miles) and has slightly more rolling terrain at times, but also contains
no major hills and so is suitable for riders of many different levels.
These distances are never obligatory however, as there will be a support van with the group, so you can get transferred whenever you would prefer not to cycle.
There are also optional extensions each day in case you would like to cycle further than the 'long' route.
Can I do this as a self guided tour?
Yes, it is possible to do this as a self-guided tour; however, we have limited availability. Please contact us if you would like to do this as a self guided option.
How busy are the roads?
The roads in this region are very quiet. The two larger cities - Salamanca and Valladolid - are accessed by off-road cycle routes, and the rest of the riding is done on country lanes which
see very little traffic.
The road surfaces are consistently excellent and make it a really fun tour to ride. You can fully focus on enjoying the scenery and historic sites along the way.
Can non-cyclists come on the trip?
Absolutely! Non-cyclists are more than welcome and will be fully involved in all aspects of the tour, except the cycling!
Non-cyclists have the option of following the group in the support vehicle, or spending longer exploring the towns and cities where we are based, before being transfered separately in the afternoon.
How difficult is this tour?
This tour is rated as easy to medium. The shorter routes are easy difficulty, while the longer routes are at medium in our Tour Level Guide.
This is largely because of the lack of significant climbing throughout the trip. The routes are not completely flat (they are rolling enough to be interesting!), but the gradients are very gentle and there are no significant climbs.
The tour is suitable for a first time cycling holiday, and is designed for people who enjoy doing activites off the bike as well as on it! Also, don't forget that there will be a support vehicle which you can use any time that you don't feel like cycling.
What are the arrival and departure points?
The arrival point is Salamanca, which is easily accessible by train from Madrid. It also has a small airport, but you may struggle to find flights to there, as the service is quite limited.
Trains from Madrid leave every hour on average throughout the day and take between 90 minutes (for the fast trains) and slightly less than three hours (for the more scenic slow train). Tickets cost around €25 per person. You can find full details on the Renfe Spanish Trains website.
The tour finishes in Segovia. From here it is very easy to get to Madrid, with thirty trains running daily. The faster trains take less than 30 minuts to get into Madrid, with tickets starting from around €14.
Again, You can find full details on the Renfe Spanish Trains website.
Please contact us if you would like any advice or more information regarding getting to and from Salamanca or Segovia.
What type of bikes do you hire?
For this tour we recommend hybrid bikes, although we can also provide road bikes. The fairly low distances and lack of steep hills make hybrid bikes a good choice, allowing you to go at a leisurely pace and fully appreciate the surroundings.
Please see our bicycles page for further details.
When can I do this tour?
We run this tour in spring and autumn each year. In the winter it can be quite cold in this region, and the summers can get very hot; so we believe that May and late September/early October are the ideal times of the year for cycling. Groups of more than six people please contact us to arrange the dates for a private tour.
What do the meals consist of on this tour?
All meals are inlcuded on this tour (breakfast, lunch and dinner), as well as snacks while cycling along the route.
Breakfast is taken in the hotel and is a continental buffet style, with plenty of options to suit all tastes.
Lunch is taken in a local restaurant and is typically a three course meal consisting of local and national dishes. There are several options on the menu, including choices for vegetarians.
The evening meal on this tour varies depending on the location. Generally we go for tapas and pintxos, which showcase the best food in the region. We also have one 'tasting menu' in a highly rated restaurant.
We believe that the hotels that you stay in are just as important as the towns that you visit and the scenery that you ride through. On this tour we have chosen accommodation that is of a high quality and is typical to the area. In the larger towns, these are luxurious hotels set in a prime location for exploring the city. In the smaller villages we use high quality independent hotels with charm and local character.
SalamancaHere we stay in a fantastic **** hotels in the heart of the city. It is situated just a stone throw from Plaza Mayor and less than five minute walk to the cathedral and historic university buildings.
ZamoraIn Zamora we stay in a beautiful **** hotel, housed in a 14th century convent in the old town. It is a short walk from the castle and cathedral complex, and is situated overlooking the Duero River.
TordesillasIn Tordesillas we stay in the exquisite **** Parador Hotel situated alongside the Duero River next to the historic bridge into Tordesillas. Just across the bridge is the famous Treaty Houses and the Santa Clara Monastery.
The hotel, situated in a converted mansion, is also a great place for relaxing, with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, beautiful gardens and spa facilities.
ValladolidIn Valladolid we stay in a charming **** boutique hotel, situated right next to the cathedral and a short walk from Plaza Mayor. It is a great location for exploring the city and has very nice rooms and an excellent breakfast (giving you all the energy needed for another day on the bike!)
Ribera del DueroIn the Ribera del Duero region we stay in a delightful hotel, situated inside a reformed 7th century castle. Perched overlooking the vineyards and the Duero River, the views are stunning and the large, comfortable rooms offer a really unique experience. The castle also has a swimming pool on its terrace.
SegoviaIn Segovia we stay in another **** boutique hotel; this time housed in a 16th century palace. The hotel is perfectly situated, just a short walk from both the Roman Aqueduct and the cathedral. It has a beautiful patio garden in the Muslim-mudejar architectural style that is classical for the region.
To find out more about how we select our hotels, please see our accommodation page.
To reserve a place on the tour, please follow the link below to continue to our reservation form.
Once we have received the form, we will be in contact to confirm the booking and to arrange for the payment of the deposit.
If you would like to do this tour in a group of more than six people as a guided tour, please contact us and we can arrange a private guided tour.