The Costa Blanca is over 200Km of Mediterranean coastline in the province of Alicante, on the south-eastern coast of Spain. It extends from the town of Dénia in the north to Pilar de la Horadada in the south. Some of the popular coastal tourist attractions include: Alicante, Benidorm, Denia, Altea, Torrevieja, Calpe amongs others, all accessible to ur cycling packages.
The Costa Blanca is a very popular tourist beach destination that sees families flock there during school holidays. Its very easy to get there as there via most UK airports that fly into the main Alicante airport which serves the province.
Just venture a few km outside the busy beach resorts and you will discover mountains and small traditional villages scattered across the region. This makes way for some fantastic road cycling and MTB, providing a good mixture of terrain, including coastal and mountain passes.
Thanks to the climate, the quality of the beaches and the variety of mountains, many cyclists, athletes and Pro Cycling Teams choose this area for their cycling training.
The province is one the most mountainous in Spain and that is why some of the biggest road cycling races, including La Vuelta Espania showcases some of the epic passes. Not only is it a great destination for road cycling but the area offers some amazing MTB trails.
There is an abundance of MTB trails on offer ranging from easy to very hard and from 1 hour rides to up to 4 hours rides and from 300m to 1,400m slopes.
The Aitana mountain range, measuring 1,558 metres in altitude, is known as "the roof of Alicante" and is a must for lovers of cycling. In fact, the Tour of Spain bicycle race has included it in its itinerary. For those who are less professional, there are a large number of cycling routes to choose from.
Below is a sample of some of the best Mountain Passes in the area for road cycling
Alto de Aitana
Category: Special Max Gradient: 9.5% Avg Gradient: 5.7% Ascent: 17.6Km
Xorret de Cati
Category: One Max Gradient: 22%% Avg Gradient: 11,5% Ascent: 4Km
Coll de Rates
Category: Two Max Gradient: 7.0% Avg Gradient: 5.4% Ascent: 7.1Km
Category: Two Max Gradient: 5.7% Avg Gradient: 4.6% Ascent: 12.8Km
Port de Tudons
Category: One Max Gradient:11.0% Avg Gradient:4.1% Ascent: 5.6Km
- Average flight time from the UK to Alicante airport is 2hr 30min
- Over 200Km of coastline
- All main resorts can be serviced via cycling routes and cycling packages
- The area delivers mountain passes from 4% to 22% Max
- There are several great MTB routes on offer starting from the MTB centre in L'Orxa
The large variety of products and dishes, both new and traditional, along with high quality wines make it a tasty province and also a paradise for a healthy cycling lifestyle, one wich will fuel your bodies for long days in the saddles and epic climbs!
There is much more to Alicante than rice dishes, of which there is a wide variety, and seafood. Alicante follows a Mediterranean diet, with plenty of vegetables, fruit, exquisiteness, good cooking, tradition, research and professionalism, as demonstrated by the eight Michelin stars that have been awarded to six restaurants in the province. Quique Dacosta has three in his restaurant in Dénia; while Pepa Romans of Casa Pepa in Ondara, Kiko Moya of L'Escaleta in Cocentaina, Susi Díaz of La Finca in Elche, María José San Román of Monastrell in Alicante and Alberto Ferruz of Bon Amb in Jávea have all been awarded one star each.
These highly-skilled chefs focus on gastronomic research, which complements the diversity of more traditional dishes found in the mountains and valleys of the province. These include extraordinary rice dishes, such as caldero (rice cooked in a cauldron), olleta (stew with vegetables, legumes, bones and different meats), pericana (typical cooking sauce), gazpacho (cold soup made from tomatoes and peppers) and cocido con pelotas (stew with meatballs), all of which are made with the province's very own ingredients.
A number of products have been awarded a guarantee of origin and quality mark, such as the loquat grown in Callosa d'En Sarrià, the turron made in Jijona and Alicante, the cherries picked from Alicante's mountains, the table grape grown Vinalopó and the spirits and wine made in Alicante.
Alicante's wines, from muscatel to rosé wines and liqueurs, have won several prizes. The province also offers wines of an exclusive origin, such as the Fondillón. And to bring them closer to consumers, the so-called Wine Route, which extends from Pinoso to the Marina Alta and El Comtat, has opened up its wineries in order to encourage a different type of tourism. The Wine Route has already received over 23,000 visitors this year.