Sustainable transport is all the rage, taking to the open roads, tracks or trails by bicycle is one of the optimum ways to take in any area’s offerings. We look at some of the most popular routes, from easy-Sunday pedalling to intense mountain trails in and around Marbella.
Article by Victoria Wood
One of the best ways to see any country is to be out in the open air. Walking is all well and good but it takes a long time to get from A to B, thus limiting the amount of ground you can cover in a day. Cycling provides the best of both worlds by providing you with a vehicle but not limiting your perception to the confines, and speed, of a car. You get to soak up the nature, take in the sights and really connect with your surroundings as well as your self – cycling can be an amazing sport for your fitness too.
We checked out some of the best routes to take to get to know the region and see some of the most spectacular sights it has to offer, from beginner to the more intrepid – there are plenty of options for all levels. Here is our top selection:
Marbella and back via Istán, Monda and Ojén – 82 km
This rather mountainous, but not overly taxing, route takes you through the outskirts of Marbella and up towards the idyllic villages and surrounding farmlands of Istán, Monda and Ojén. The ascent and descent is 1,400 m over an 82 km ride. Manageable in a day for a discerning cyclist, yet why not take the opportunity to spend the night up in one of these picturesque mountain towns and really soak up the atmosphere?
Marbella to Málaga – 60 km
If you prefer to stick to the flat, hug the Mediterranean, and experience the beauty of the coastline then try the Marbella to Malaga route. This is a comfortable 60 km ride with minimal ascent and descent at only 200m. You’ll have the luxury of stopping off at the many chiringuitos peppered along the path for refreshments, perhaps splitting the journey by tapas-hopping your way there. You will pass the famous beachside towns of Elviria, Calahonda, La Cala, Fuengirola, and more.
Marbella, Puerto Banús, Benahavís, Presa de Guadalmina, and back – 49 km
For a little bit of everything this region has to offer and at a comfortable level for most, try the Marbella to the Guadalmína Dam and back route. You’ll pass through the glamorous Puerto Banús and the picturesque village of Benahavís before arriving at the stunning dam of Guadalmína where you’d be happy to stop for a picnic lunch. This is a 49 km ride with not too much in the way of hills, at only a 363 m total ascent.
Marbella and back via the Fuente Santa, Puente del Tejar, Puerto de Ojén, Camino de Istán, and Cueva Santa – 50 km
This is not a technically troublesome route as the roads are all tarmac, however there are some steep inclines with the ascents reaching a total of 1,861 m. The stop-off points along the way are well worth the effort. The total ride is just under 50 km so it’s achievable in a few hours and labelled “moderate” in difficulty. You will pass many natural water fountains where you can stop and take a drink and refill your water bottles, as well as some historical sights such as the Fuente Santa known for its healing properties, the Puente del Tejar (bridge of Tejar) and the Cueva Santa – holy cave.
Marbella to San Pedro Paseo (promenade) and back – 29 km
Looking for a very gentle beachside route that can also accommodate children? Then this is your route. This is the perfect ride for families, friends or couples seeking a gentle potter along in the sunshine next to the glistening waters of the Mediterranean where all that needs to be considered is whether or not to have a swim, and where to have lunch along the way! A 29 km ride in total passing through many of the beauty spots of the Costa Del Sol including the jet-set glitz and glamour of Puerto Banús. Once in San Pedro you may want to cycle along, stop for a coffee and people watch on the central boardwalk alongside the N340.
Nueva Andalucía to Ronda and back – 106 km
For the more expert rider or someone up for a steep challenge, the Nueva Andalucía to Ronda route will tick many of your cycling boxes. This is a tricky and consistent ascent up through the mountains behind Marbella towards the stunning, historic city of Ronda. Once you arrive you can feel secure in the knowledge that the majority of the return home is downhill and will take a lot less time, so if you feel like taking a wander around to see the sights, try some famous Payoyo cheese, and take a well deserved break, you can do so at your leisure.
The routes listed here can be organised in guided tours if you are not familiar with the area; day trips or longer with many options to choose from. Bikes and equipment are also available to rent at various outlets throughout Marbella and the surrounding area.
For more detailed information on any of our routes listed above, or to find the perfect route for you, check out es.wikiloc.com and type in what you are looking for from your cycle.