The Most Scenic Cycling Routes in Mallorca, Spain
Cycling in Mallorca | © Sport Import/Flickr
A year-round warm climate, fantastic scenery, and a great mix of flat straight roads and twisting mountain climbs make the Balearic island of Mallorca a firm favourite with cyclists throughout the world. Whether you’re after a full-on biking holiday or just fancy a day out cycling, here’s our list of the most scenic routes.
North East – S’Albufera wetlands
A nice easy ride, the cycle around the protected nature reserve of Albufera wetlands is a great day out for families and nature lovers. There are four different routes (around 12 kilometres of cycle trails), which are all flat and well-signposted, and there are also maps and binoculars available from the visitor centre. Entrance to the park is free, and as well as a very pleasant cycle, you are also likely to see many different and sometime rare species of birds and some small animals. If you fancy a break from cycling there are various hides to stop in to watch the birds. The park is located on the road between Alcúdia and Can Picafort.
This is a great route for those who want to take their time and absorb the scenery on the purpose-built road lanes winding through the Alcúdia area towards the Port of Pollensa. If you’re looking for a more relaxed outing you can head towards Cala Sant Vicenc, an attractive seaside resort with a collection of small, tranquil beaches. You’ll still have to work a little here as the village is built on steep hillsides so there will be some uphill and downhill walking and cycling required, but the rewards are worth it with crystal-clear waters and beautiful views. The Formentor peninsula contains arguably the most famous and beautiful roads in Mallorca, with stunning sea views along the majority of the route, the more popular being from the Mirador Colomer.
Mirador Colomer | © Leon Beckenham
A beautiful bike ride alongside farms and woodland towards the lighthouse just past Ses Salines, this is a route with plenty of natural beauty. You can take a detour to the famous unspoilt beach of Es Trenc at Ses Covetes where there is also a small, rocky beach once you reach the lighthouse where you can take a dip to recharge. On your way back you have the option to visit the traditional village of Llombads or, if you have the leg power, continue on to the town of Santanyi where you can see traditional stonework and purchase crafts and local produce at the Wednesday and Saturday markets.
Lighthouse at Ses Salines | © Jörg Schubert
North West – Coll de Soller
This a more challenging but shorter route with a 6% uphill gradient and a fair few sharp bends. The road does have a little traffic and the descent requires some skill, but the journey provides you with beautiful views over Soller and the coastline to the north, as well as olive trees and traditional stone walls to the south. Much of the traffic takes the mountain tunnel but this is closed to bicycles. It is an interesting route and suitable for confident cyclists experienced with steeper descents.
North East – Tramuntana
This stunning journey winds down the east coast of the island all the way from Pollensa to Andratx taking in Soller, Valldemosa and the picturesque village of Deia along the way. Once you’ve passed through Valldemosa you’re greeted with fantastic coastal views and charming rides through the historic villages of Banyalbufar and Estellencs. Banyalbufar is also is wonderful diving spot with crystal clear waters. The road climbs at this point before descending down to sea level. This is one of the most popular routes on the island and one not to miss.
Beginning in Andratx and ending in Esporles, this is the road slightly less-travelled where cycling is concerned. Where the Tramuntana route above is a coastal cycle, this route is the inland version and is an exceptionally beautiful ride with a plenty of fabulous stops on offer along the way. Once you have completed the short, winding ride to Es Capdella, you’ll find yourself in the heart of the mountains. Continuing on you’ll reach the ruggedly beautiful village of Galilea which is nestled under the ‘magic mountain’ of Galatzo, the highest mountain in the area. Once past Galilea you’ll find yourself in the breathtakingly beautiful town of Puigpunyent where you can visit one of the local family vineyards or simply rest in a café enjoying the tranquility and views. The route finishes by ascending the hairpin turns of Es Grau before descending down to Esporles.