the region

The provinces of Valencia, Alicante and Castellon make up the Valencia region, an area with millennia of rich culture and history. The best cycling is found inland, in the north of Alicante and the South of Valencia and includes routes from Denia and Calpe, the Serra Mariola and Font Roja National Parks near Alcoy and Ontinyent. The mountains are used frequently at the La Vuelta Espana and La Volta Valencia.

Ontinyent is perfectly located within the Vall dAlbaida on the borders of Alicante and Valencia. It's the best place to ride and hike and the perfect base to explore the wider region.. Locals "in the know" travel from Valencia and coastal resorts at weekends to enjoy the verdant green scenery, mountains and restaurants.

Our guide details some of the best climbs in the region, where they are and how far from Ontinyent and other places such as Denia and Calpe.

Cycling Weekly featured us in their guide to the region too

In a nutshell, from a cycling perspective, we wouldn't choose to stay in Albir, Benidorm and La Nucia. We much prefer Denia to Calpe and Javea, where getting out and back to the mountains every day is a traffic-filled chore. Unless you're in a large group of 20-50 fellow riders all requiring the same hotel, the best locations are inland. For proximity to more road climbs and route, restaurants, National Parks and without doubt the best gravel and mountain biking, Ontinyent is second to none.

  • Vall d'Albaida &  Serra Mariola

    Perhaps offers the widest, most scenic and diverse range of cycling in the region. Font Roja, Serra Mariola and Maigmo Natonal Parks make for stunning rides and scenery simply not found near the coast. The more remote mountains to the north near Enguera and Ayora are truly unexplored for most and there's also lush green valleys and wine country routes that provide rolling terrain for easier days.

    Here there are more climbs, more 1000m mountains, virtually no traffic and no mass tourism, simply a truly authentic Valencian experience. The best known climbs of the region are reached on out and back routes,  including the Port de Carresqueta, Port de Tudons and Xorret del Cati as well as regional classics such as the Vall de Galinera and Vall d'Ebo. From our base, you're also so far less likely to be retracing your routes from to day to day.

    Hot tip: There are fewer larger hotels and the best accommodation is to be found in Fincas and Casa Rurals.

  • Denia & Calpe

    ​Both very popular cycling resorts, however, most tourists come for beaches, bars and nightlife. Summer is very busy and Denia may swell from 50,000 to 200,000 residents. There is a good choice of accommodation. and good bike hire shops. Several cycling operators run winter camps out of the larger hotels. Calpe is a larger beach tourist town than Denia.

    There are some good routes around the Montgo but the best rides all head inland towards the mountains. Traffic can make riding unpleasant, so some local knowledge helps. Neither is the ideal location if you wish to ride more of the bigger mountains, famous climbs and National Parks.

    You will have to ride the same roads in and out each day, often through urbanisations. Calpe in particular is busy and can be tricky to navigate. Neither offers the very best variety of routes.

    In a nutshell: for a cycling getaway near the beach, both offer great riding, with an abundance of tourist-friendly hotels and restaurants. We don't recommend summer cycling here due to traffic, humidity, heat and tourists!

  • La Nucia, Albir & Benidorm

    Similar in style and substance to Calpe from a cycling holiday perspective,  the difference being the sheer scale. The same recommendations apply; head inland and avoid summer. Benidorm, Altea and the surrounding resorts are very busy, but as you head north-west you’ll reach some of the regions classic cycling terrain.

    If you want something more authentically Spanish and less tourist-focused, we recommend staying elsewhere. If you do stay here, there are thousands of bars, restaurants and hotels to choose from.

    Due to traffic, we don't recommend coastal rides in this area, especially southbound. You will probably need to repeat regular routes in and out too.

    Hot tip: Benidorm is a large city, most of which does not match the stereotype. You’ll find large-high-quality hotels, offering professional-level services.

    In a nutshell: Best suited for packaged winter training camps, albeit with limited or repetitive route options..Cyclists staying here tend up doing the same climbs and routes each time.

  • Inland of Denia

    You don’t need to travel far to get away from busy beach resorts. There’s significantly fewer tourists and traffic as you head west towards the mountains and the scenery also becomes increasingly spectacular. It is better to stay no further south than Xixona, as the terrain becomes arid towards Murcia and southern Alicante.

    Many towns are very small, authentically Spanish, but often with only one or two bars or restaurants, so it’s important to choose wisely. A good option is to rent a villa or to stay with one of the independent operators that provide a full service package including meals. We recommend Orba or Xalon, both of which are set in great locations with more amenities. For a week, we would also consider staying in a couple of locations or hiring car if you like to explore.

    By staying inland you’ll often avoid a dull or busy 10-20km at the start and end of every ride and be rewarded with a wider choice of riding, including La Vuelta classics such Port de Tudons and Benifallim, as well as the edges of the Serra Mariola and Maigmo National parks.​

    In a nutshell: Great cycling, for those wanting a quieter week away from the crowds, but check what services are open and available.

Escapar Ltd

71-75 Shelton Street

London  WC2H 9JQ, UK.

Registered Company Number 11363400

Escapar S.C.
Av Daniel Gil 23, 255
Ontinyent 46870
Valencia, Spain.

NIF: J40555831