On this immersive tour, we´ll take you out of the city to experience the beauty of Madrid´s surroundings by bike – the Monastery of El Paular, the Aqueduct of Segovia, the narrow and winding alleys of Toledo – all while staying in some of the most breathtaking and luxurious paradores transformed from lavish palaces and historical monasteries.
Start in Madrid and cycle your way to Segovia, Ávila, Toledo and Chinchon on a biking trip that takes in the best of the surroundings of the Spanish capital as you soak up the splendor of some of Spain’s most opulent Paradores. What better way to discover the best of Madrid´s surroundings than on a cycling tour that offers top of the line accommodation in redesigned palaces, manor houses and convents, outstanding cuisine and six hundred years of Spanish history?
To top it all off, on this tour we connect the most famous sites with narrow country roads and forest paths to create a route that combines the best of both worlds within an hour’s drive of the Spanish capital.
Day 1: Segovia
Accommodation: Parador de Segovia
On the first day of our tour, we will pick you up from Madrid in our support van and drive to the top of the Morcuera Pass to ride down and through the beautiful Lozoya Valley and visit the El Paular monastery and ride along the edges of the Pinilla Reservoir. Then we’ll take the van over the Navafría Pass and ride along the northern flank of the Guadarrama Mountains, travelling through oak and pine forests on back country roads to the town of Pedraza, a perfectly preserved medieval town, complete with castle. We’ll have lunch in Pedraza and travel by van to Segovia, where we’ll be staying in the beautiful Parador de Segovia, after we have a chance to visit Segovia’s cathedral and Alcázar.
Day 2: Segovia
Accommodation: Parador de Segovia
Segovia’s ancient streets and medieval neighborhoods provide a great place to start today’s riding. We’ll pass along the ancient city walls, under the world-famous Roman aqueduct and go by some marvelously old monasteries as we travel around the city and head towards the town of San Ildefonso de la Granja, built by the first Bourbon monarchs of Spain, who were determined to re-create a little piece of Versailles in the dry plains of Spain.
Free afternoon to walk in the city.
Day 3: Avila
Accommodation: Parador de Ávila
This morning we jump on the bikes and begin our scenic route south west over the lengthy plateaus of Castile León, through quaint villages where we will have lunch, to the charming town of Ávila. Also known as the ¨Town of Stones and Saints;” this picturesque capital of the province of Ávila has the highest number of Romanesque and Gothic churches per capita in Spain, well preserved medieval town walls and a seemingly endless number of cozy bars and restaurants. Tonight we will stay in the Parador de Ávila, which is the old Piedras Albas Palace.
Optionally, we’ll drive to the town of El Escorial and visit the Monastery of San Lorenzo. Built between 1563 and 1584, the Monastery was the biggest building of the Renaissance period. From here you can ride to Avila.
Day 4: Toledo
Accommodation: Parador de Toledo
In the morning we will travel south east past the Sierra de Gredo mountain range, through small picturesque villages where we will enjoy a much needed lunch break, and then on to the medieval city of Toledo. Toledo was the capital of the country in the 15th century and was once the most famous seat of learning in the peninsula. Every square inch of the hill rising from the banks of the Tagus River has been built upon, and the city is home to innumerable convents, churches, museums, synagogues and palaces. Take the afternoon to discover the narrow alleys and hillside staircases that have inspired everyone from artist El Greco to novelist Noah Gordon. At the end of the day, we will be staying the night in the spectacular Parador of Toledo, which will offer us a stunning view of the city.
Day 5: Chinchon
Accommodation: Parador de Chinchón
This morning, we transfer by van from Toledo to Aranjuez, going by wineries, olive groves and melon farms. We’ll reach Aranjuez just in time to visit the 18th-century Aranjuez Palace, recently restored and containing all of its original furnishings. From there, we will continue our route to the town of Chinchón, which has one of the prettiest town squares in the region. We will stay the night here in the Parador de Chinchón, a former Augustinian monastery.
Day 6: Madrid and Departure
On the last day of our tour we will transfer you back to the capital city of Madrid by van, and then it’s time to say goodbye to the capital. We hope that this tour has given you the opportunity to discover the natural beauty and historic depth of the surrounding region of Madrid!
Optionally, take extra nights in Madrid and visit the famous museums and restaurants.
Day 7: Departure
After breakfast, we say goodbye to the capital. If you choose to book extra nights in Madrid, we include a city tour by bike.
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And .. a Spectacular Bike Experience filled with fun and friendship!
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