Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 2144 – 2146: Almuñecar – Granada, Spain

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on Dec - 30 - 2016

Distance: 79.9 km
Ride time: 6:07:25
Average: 13.0 km/h
Max speed: 54.4 km/h
Total: 54382 km

There are two ways to get from the Mediterranean Sea to Granada. One is the main highway that will take you more or less directly up to the historical city of Granada at 700 m. The other way, the one we took, is a small mountain road that will take you over a 1300 m pass before descending into the city.

I climb from sea level to 1300 is a serious climb so we were on the bikes early hoping everything would work out.

The first part of the ascend was not too steep, the road making turns through wine fields and a number of charming white Andalusian villages.

During most of the climb we could still see our trusty travel companion the Mediterranean down there below. We will be back at the coast in a week or so over at Alicante. For now the landscape turned dry and barren as we slowly made our way up towards the pass.

The last part of the climb turned out to be a real challenge. Manon’s knee was starting to give some trouble, and we were almost out of water. No pain no gain as they say. Our payment for the hard word was some rather spectacular views over the wild Andalusian mountains.

At the top of the climb we luckily found a rustic restaurant for a cold drink and some tapas – just what we needed to find the positives vibes again for the descend into Granada.

I was living in Granada for 6 months back in 2006 and I have been back several times since. Not for the last 6 years though, so I was very excited as I finally saw the city down there at the food of the Sierra Nevada mountains.

For the last 6 years I have been out discovering the world. Cycling into Granada felt like coming home as I somehow feel it’s my city as well. I tried to explain those feelings to Manon who had also been to Granada before but didn’t really have the same relation to the place as I did.

After an ice cream stop at one of the many squares and a stop in front of the house where I used to live 10 years ago we met up with Rafa and his family. Rafa’s aunt had generously offered that we could stay in her apartment which was empty for the summer. After many nights in our tent lately it felt like pure luxury to have our own apartment complete with kitchen, bathroom, washing machine and everything. This vagabond lifestyle teaches you to appreciate the small things.

Together with Rafa and his family we went out to the country side on the plains outside Granada for a delicious dinner. A heartfelt thank you to my “familia granadina” for such a welcome to Granada – it did indeed feel like coming home!

It was then time for a walk around this magic city, rediscovering all the places that I know so well. I will let the photos do the talking here 🙂

On the final night we went out for a few cervecitas and tapas at one of the hundreds of bars. Granada is a university city and is known to have one of the highest bar densities in Spain. Yes, a good place to be a student 10 years ago. The only thing was that my favourite bar from back then turned out to not exist anymore. Oh well, nothing in this world is static and life goes on…

All I can say is that Granada has a special place in my heart and I can’t wait to be back – maybe even to live one day, who knows 🙂

Categories: Spain
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5 Responses so far.

  1. You do better up those hills and mountains, than I do. However, I guess, sooner or later, I’ll be just as efficient. 🙂

  2. Hehe, no worries, you will ride yourself into shape on your big ride around the world. I will be looking forward to follow along. Happy New Year from Colombia 🙂

  3. Morten Maegaard says:


  4. Dave Arruzza says:

    More great photographs of your incredible journey…You made the right choice to follow your dreams, you have experienced so much that others can only dream about.

  5. Thanks for the nice words Dave – I certainly do not regret anything 🙂 Best New Year wishes from Colombia! Thomas