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Barcelona hotel etc

cycladeliccycladelic Posts: 641
edited September 2008 in Tour & expedition
Can anyone recommend a place to stay that's bike-friendly? Preferably walking distance from the center and not too expensive!

Also, what's it like riding out of the city - north? Is it possible to put bikes on trains?

And what map(s) is best for the northern part of Spain?

It's an uphill climb to the bottom


  • cpeacheycpeachey Posts: 1,057
    We flew to Barcelona with the folding Bike Friday tandem earlier this year.
    The train to Ripol DID take bikes.
    We did not stay in Barcelona or ride out. The train took nearly an hour to clear the suburbs and about 2 hours total to reach Ripol (terminus)
    Maps...I used Girona-Costa Brava 1:100,000 ... va-143065/
    If you go to Olot stay at the Hotel Perla on the edge of town €92 1/2 board for 2 persons. (We did not find any resturants in town)
    Road from Olot to Ripol over the Coll de Coubet (1010mtrs) is a superb ride.
    mail me if you want any more details.
    Chris :wink:
  • Thanks, Chris

    I may well splash out 15 quid on that map. Did you have a limited amount of time? Ripol seems quite a way. I'm planning a 3-month tour to start next May and will go to France from Spain. I was wondering about that Spanish section of coastline - any reason you didn't explore it?

    As you can probably gather -- I am in the early stages of planning, so please bear with me.
    It's an uphill climb to the bottom
  • cpeacheycpeachey Posts: 1,057
    11 day tour.1st week of April. Airport-Barcelona, change trains, then Ripol €5.90single. Used Greenway via Olot & Girona to St.Felieu de Guixols, up coast against a strong head wind to L'Escala then inland via Banyoles and Olot back to Ripol and the train to Barcelona.
    Map covers Granollers in the SW corner to just beyond the border to els Banys d'Arles and Ceret and Banyuls de la Marenda on the coast.(probably a lot cheaper in Barcelona)
    We had planned to go further north from L'Escala but the wind put us off. Also we needed a circular tour to collect the bike cases that we left at the hotel in Ripol.
    Spannish phrase book was useless! Catalonian seems quite different.
  • Use the local short distance trains called cercanias (look for the upside down C at the train stations)to get outside the city . They are cheap and you cant take your bike on them outside of rush hours . Sorry I dont know Barcelona to tellyou were to go , but I have used them in Madrid and they are very easy
    Suburban studs yodel better than anyone else
  • priorypriory Posts: 743
    if you contact a tourist information desk such as the one in L'Escala they will send you leaflets and possibly maps (you pay for). They had several appropriate scale ones last time I was there, but then so do stanfords.There is a signposted route around the costa brava which might solve your route problem at a stroke, at least if you are not in a big hurry and don't mind a bit of gravel track in the backwoods. The leaflets for it I have seen were a bit primitive but the latest will be at the tourist info centres.
    don't miss the Dali museum at Figueres where there is also a great fort.
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • If you are going to be in Barcelona then visit the Institut Cartografic de Catalunya. It produces a fantastic range of maps and has a sales outlet where you can see the products. Situated in the area of the Parc de Montjuïc, close to the Olympic stadium, at the end of Carrer de Lleida. Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 14.00 and from 15.00 to 18.00. You will also find that you can buy the maps a lot cheaper - 10 euros. See catalogue:

    A map of cycleways and cycling information for Barcelona.

    I have cycled from Port Bou on the French border into Barcelona using the coastal route with no problems, staying off the main roads as you enter Barcelona, by using the seafront promenades from Blanes downwards. Most pensiones, hostels and hotels will let you keep the bikes in your room if they have no garage storage. But remember you will have to hump the bike up one or two floors to get to your room.

    Barcelona is the most expensive city in Spain for accomodation rates. When I visit, I stay in Sitges, easier to get to from the airport along the coastal road, and catch the train into Barcelona (20 minutes), much cheaper. Also have used the campsite at El Masnou with rooms to let opposite the local station - 23 mins into Barcelona using Line 1 - fare 1.40 euros one way.
    The more you spend - the faster you go - the less you see.
  • Many thanks for the tips and comments. Please keep them coming.

    The map arrived yesterday - I bought sheet 2 showing the central Pyrenees - and I have since been looking at lots of tight contours. I wonder how busy the main route north of Barcelona is - the N152 from Torello to Ripoll? There doesn't appear to be much choice when heading across into France. Anyone ever been west of Ripoll on rural road GI 401 - B402?

    Also, are there many B&Bs in this neck of the woods?
    It's an uphill climb to the bottom
  • priorypriory Posts: 743
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • priorypriory Posts: 743 ... atG_38.jpg
    ripoll cycle map
    Other such info on this site
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • Thanks for those links, Priory.
    Here's the Michelin site that gives a map/route - after you type in a couple of place names. It takes a few seconds to load... ... &x=37&y=12

    This site also lists accommodation of various kinds. Very handy.
    It's an uphill climb to the bottom
  • priorypriory Posts: 743 ... &x=37&y=12

    Are you aware that if you go to 'options' and choose 'bike' the system will pick a cycleable route?The one your link showed involved a lot of mtrorway.
    the trouble with all these automatic systems is that while you might get a legal route it is not necessarily one that is nice to cycle.I have done the road from l'escala to Banyoles , for example. That is shown as a yellow g..... road. As I remember it it was a fairly fast country A road by our standards.Some of the red major roads in spain can be a bit daunting and unpleasant.The hard shoulder is not always there to hide in.
    I can see that getting over the pyrennees by minor roads(B402, B4031, B4082)could be very tough, so you may have to use the main routes, I suppose, if you must get a particular distance done.

    Michelin is a brilliant mapping system ,though.

    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • Terry - I didn't know about that cycle route option - thanks!... Where is it exactly? I can't find it.

    The route I marked was just to bring up the right area of Spain. Having said that, there doesn't seem to be much alternative to it heading north from Vic. I certainly know what you mean about misjudging small roads; finding them to be pretty busy A roads with fast traffic and little room. Been there, done that.

    Do you download these Michelin maps to a GPS unit? I'm thinking of getting one and would like to hear some recommendations. Having access to the route options - when zooming in - would be great on the trip and save me getting lots of paper sheet maps.

    One more question: Does anyone know what it's like getting from the airport into Barcelona - is it rideable?
    It's an uphill climb to the bottom
  • priorypriory Posts: 743
    If you go to 'change route, the look at the 'driving directions' box in its bottom left corner 'options' gets you to a box that has the bike ooption.

    I have thought hard about getting gps, but there are some reasons why I have not :
    1 I am a skinflint. That's not just my assessment.
    For 50gbp I could buy , chop up , and laminate road maps for the rest of my life.
    2. the battery life and charging problem on tour is complained of by some users.water and trauma is a worry.
    3 you cannot easily see the screen in bright sunlight.
    4the map view is tiny, so you may want to take a map anyway.
    5can you program the whole of a 1000mile route before set off? Not on some I have seen.I don't fancy spending the evenings fiddling with it.

    I would rather like something that tells me exactly where I am when I get lost on field roads in the middle of spain. I am waiting for them to get even cheaper, more reliable, and easy to use.

    I do not know barcelona airport. Girona is cyclable, but the roads out of it are a bit motorway-like for a mile or two. You would be unlikely to get stopped if you stay on the hard shoulder.

    I suppose you have looked for recommended routes on have you?
    To find some , not all the routes for an area you go to google maps, zoom in to your area, then search for ' bikely'.If your roads are on someones route then probably they are usable at least.

    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • priorypriory Posts: 743 ... rth-France

    This route came up when I went to bikely .com and searched 'barcelona'.
    I must say that although bikely seems wonderful it has not ,so far as I can tell, got a way of showing lots of routes of the sort one wants in an area. So you have to spend a lot of time browsing , looking for something that might not be there.
    The place a route is associated with in bikely seems to be a city or large town close to the mid point of the route, or where it starts.
    It's worht a look , though.

    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • priorypriory Posts: 743
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • Thanks, Terry

    I have the same thoughts about getting a GPS unit. I'm meeting some hi-tech engineers here in Taiwan on Friday, so I'll ask them about the latest gadgets and see what they have to say.

    That Bikely map seems slow to scroll. Or is it just me?
    It's an uphill climb to the bottom
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