Costa Tropical is a great location for cycling from sea to mountains. A visiting cyclist has some tips for you for riding, touring, or cycling Almuñécar and the Costa Tropical.
Costa Tropical Cycling Routes
Strava is the best way to find routes and connect with others. Using the Strava desktop find a local shop or club, Bike Store Nerja, Miranda Bike in Motril, and Association Ciclista La Herradura are good starts. Once you’ve added them to your Strava feed you can view the weekly leader board to see who is riding where.
Find a route you think you like and import the route into your Strava routes library. Once there you can view it on your Garmin or Wahoo bike computer, probably even your phone, and follow the route. Some bike computers do this better than others but even with basic breadcrumbs, I had few problems.
One more thing, Almuñécar is in a bowl with hills (cuestas) on each side so be prepared to climb out every day in every direction. Once you have passed Nerja going west it is pretty flat, as the N340 follows the coast. On the east side, once past Motril, heading toward Torrenueva is flat as well. Turn north and from any direction and be prepared to climb, climb, climb.
Connecting with other Cyclists
Once again, if you enjoy a rider’s route be sure give that rider a “Kudo” and maybe follow that rider. Soon you will be trading Kudos and comments all within the app. The next step is to trade Whatsapp numbers and join up for a ride, coffee or tapas.
Cycling Groups in Almuñécar & The Costa Tropical
This is a little tricky because weekend groups tend to be club rides and it may be a bit tricky to insert yourself. Some bike shops do have Sunday morning rides and I did see an informal group ride that left the Jefatura in Almuñécar centro every day at 8:30AM. The other tricky bit about group rides is that you may not know the route ahead of time, where the stops might be, and the pace. I found a group riding in the Costa Tropical was a bit spirited.
Find a few good routes on Strava and import them into your route library. If you’re fortunate you might make a few friends and be able to do some rides with the locals. It is a great way to pick up some of the Spanish language or practice what you already know. There are some foreigners in the area as well, so you may even make connections in your native language.
Renting a Bike vs Bringing Your Own
There are multiple places in or around Almuñécar to rent a bicycle be it road, mountain, or electric bike. Some will deliver and pick up your bike at your hotel or rental. Most all rent good bikes but some specialize in fit. If you search for bicycle rentals Almuñécar you can find them and see which one works best for you. Renting is all about convenience so choose the facility that offers you the most convenient option, but one that will get you the right bike for what you want.
A ride from Almuñécar to Motril or maybe Nerja won’t require the optimal fit but a ride into the Alpujarra you’ll need the right bike and the right fit. Expect to pay between 20-45 euros/day for a rental.
Bringing Your Bike
Bringing your own bike is optimal, but it may be costly and less convenient. If you fly with your bike you’ll need to either rent or purchase a sturdy bike bag, some airlines charge extra for your bike while some treat it as checked luggage. When you arrive you’ll either need to rent a larger vehicle to hold your bike bag or what I did was remove my bike from the bag and it then easily fit into a compact-sized car. You will also need to remove pedals, wheels, and bars to pack your bike so you’ll need to bring some tools along with your bike.
My general recommendation is that if you are coming for 10 days or less, and you don’t require a special fit, it would be more convenient and less hassle to rent a bike. Shorter women sometimes find it difficult to find their bike size in a rental. If you are in Almuñécar for more than 10 days, need a special fit, or maybe have a special event where you need your own bike, then bringing your own might be better.
On my last trip, I was in Almuñécar for 24 days and flew with my bike from San Francisco. I borrowed an Evoc bike bag and flew into Madrid. Lufthansa didn’t charge extra for a bike. Once in Madrid, I used Cabify to get to my hotel via a group-sized vehicle. Once at the hotel, I removed the bike from the bag and reassembled it. The hotel then stored the bag for me until my return 4 weeks later when I reversed the process. Once the bike is out of the bag it easily fits into a compact rental car with only the wheels removed.
Shipping Your Bike
One last option is shipping your own bike but I’ve heard some stories about bikes getting held up at customs so I’ve never been tempted to risk it.
About the Author
Bob Gorman lives in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. Bob is a recreational cyclist and a competitive category 3 master’s bicycle racer logging on average 20K km/year. Check out Bob’s Strava routes from Almuñécar.