Cycling the circumference of Mallorca in 2 brilliant days
Daniel Piper, July 2017
I have ridden completely around the circumference of the cycling paradise island of Mallorca twice, all 311.1km of it.
The first time I did it was with the Mallorca 312 in the good old days when it was a glorious circular route of the island. The second (and best) time was when my group of 14 riders and I decided to do it over 2 days.
Even though everyone in our group had the fitness and ability to ride completely around the island’s circumference in one go, we chose instead to ride it over two days for one simple reason - we did not want to have the one huge day of 311 km negatively impact upon the rest of our stay. We were only out in Mallorca for 5 days, and wanted to make the most of spending as much time as possible in the saddle each day.
We rode from our hotel in Port Pollenca to Andratx cycling 115 km through the Tramuntana mountains and then took the well organised Mallorca Cycle Shuttle that departs Andratx in the early evening back to Port Pollenca to our hotel. Time in the saddle, just over 6 hours. Day 1 route on Strava.
The highlights of this first day were the amount of climbing we achieved; the stunning descent on new tarmac down the long side of Puig Major into Soller and the coastal section between Banyalbufar and Andratx.
We needed to get back to where we stopped cycling yesterday, so we took the early morning Mallorca Cycle Shuttle back down to Andratx to complete the second “half” of our challenge, 196 km of it. Time in the saddle, just over 8 hours.
Highlights of the day: going through Palma; the flatness of today’s stage compared to yesterday’s; the quietness of the roads all along the east coast (when I say quiet, I mean no traffic at all for 30 or 40 minutes at a time); blasting along the section between Arta and Can Picafort and the brilliant cocktails on the beachfront in Port Pollenca. Day 2 route on Strava.
Two amazing days, very different from each other and put together they give a true indication of just how much of a paradise Mallorca is for cycling.
We also could have waited for the “real” Mallorca 312, but my personal opinion is that even though it continues to be an excellent sportive on closed roads, it no longer does a full circuit of the island, choosing instead to wander somewhat aimlessly after exiting the mountains just to get the exact mileage (312 km) of doing the correct full circumference. The closed roads are great, but in our experience there are just not enough cars on the island during the cycling months for it to make a huge difference.
We also thought of doing a multi centre stay and getting our bags forwarded on each evening rather than doing the bus trips from and to Andratx. But, Port Pollenca is hands down the best place to base oneself for a cycling holiday. The two bus trips took just over an hour each, the staff friendly, the service is efficient and our bikes were well looked after in the custom trailer.
Come to Mallorca and ride right around the island. Tough but brilliant. We loved it.