Cycling in Murcia
Located in south east Spain Murcia offers a fantastic climate and quiet and traffic free roads, yet it is not a well known cycling destination. We had the pleasure of visiting Murcia pre lockdown, staying at the world famous La Manga resort and we are here to tell you why you need to cycle in Murcia, what the best routes and climbs in the region are, and why cycling in Murcia shouldn’t be missed.
Why Cycle in Murcia?
The question really should be why not Murcia? Averaging over 320 days of glorious Mediterranean sunshine every year, you can cycle in Murcia deep into autumn. As an example, you will still be looking at highs of 20 degrees in November and late teens in February. Compare that to cycling in Mallorca or biking in Girona where temperatures are on average about 5 degrees lower than riding in Murcia in these months, and it’s easy to see why Murcia is such a hub for sports people.
Whilst the weather is undoubtedly a huge selling tool in Murcia’s armour, the real excitement for us cyclists are the quiet, traffic free roads. Sport in the Murcia sunshine is not new. La Manga has played host to countless Premier League football teams, top 10 tennis players and of course, elite level golfers. For some reason though, cycling in Murcia goes under the radar. Having ridden the roads, there’s no reason it should. Quiet switchbacks lead to incredible views, short punchy climbs provide great training and the rides along the coast overlooking the sea are food for the soul.
Don’t just take our word for it, the Vuelta will be passing through Murcia for Stages 8 & 9 this year so the best of the best will be riding the fantastic roads of Murcia.
The Best Climbs in Murcia
Our favourite climb is the Cabezo de la Plata, to the east of Murcia. If you climb it from La Manga, you will enjoy fairly flat riding until Roldan before you start to climb gradually. The climbing continues on for about 20km before reaching Alto Garruchal where you can grab a coffee at the cafe before a great 10 km descent to Torreaguerra. You then have a 12km ascent, averaging 3% to Cabezo de la Plata. From here, it’s all downhill back to La Manga.
We also love Cruz Chiquita in the Portman Hills. It’s a great climb to access quickly from La Manga and whilst it’s only a short 6km climb, it packs a punch and is great to use for a time trial. Couple it with a round trip of Cartagena and make sure you stop for a coffee at the Coffee Lab. You can also loop back round and add on the La Manga peninsular or ride back through the Parque Regional de Calblanque.
Where to Stay in Murcia
La Manga is undoubtedly the most well known resort in the area. Home to world class golf, tennis, football and more, it’s superb for elite sport as well as relaxation with saunas, steam rooms and swimming pools. It also offers a 5* hotel or self catering and apartment options from Los Lomas.
If you prefer to stay in a town rather than a resort, we recommend staying in Los Alcazares right by the beach.
When to travel
The best time of year to cycle in Murcia is away from the hot summer. Ride in the Spring between February to late May, or between September and November and you will enjoy warm sunshine and temperatures perfect for cycling.