Girona, on Spain’s Costa Brava coast, is famous for cycling and being home to tons of pro cyclists.

The headline-grabbing cycling routes around Girona and the Costa Brava are often the tough ones (you can find plenty of examples in our guide to Girona here).

But no cyclist is always looking for a challenging route. Sometimes what we want is a shorter, flatter, more chilled out experience – perhaps even (gasp!) something off-road, suitable for a gravel bike or cruiser.

In this article we share some of the best easy cycling routes Girona and the Costa Brava have to offer. We’ve teamed up with local cycling tour operators to share ten rides for those of us looking for a short yet stunning route to explore the region.

Thanks to the Patronat de Turisme Costa Brava Girona for sponsoring this article.

They are keen to ensure cyclists know that their region is fantastic for everyone from families to super fit cyclists. The routes we highlight here demonstrate the range of cycling Girona and the Costa Brava offer – so enjoy!

Why go cycling in Girona?

First things first, where is Girona and why is it worth visiting?!

Girona is a beautiful Catalonian city, located just over 100km northeast of Barcelona, in Spain’s Costa Brava region. It sits between the dramatic coastline, dotted with small fishing villages, and the high peaks of the Pyrenees mountains.

Girona also has the advantage of being a small city full of charm and a wealth of cycling-focused bike shops, tour companies, cafés and hotels that will welcome cyclists with open arms! For more on why Girona cycling holidays are so awesome, read this!

From a cycling perspective, this means there’s terrain to suit everyone; everything from flat bike trails to savage climbs.

Most articles you’ll read focus on the harder rides, but here we want to share some of the easier gems that make Girona a great place for cyclists to stay, whether you’re riding a leisure/hybrid bike, a gravel bike or a road bike.

Taste of Girona’s cycling routes

Before we share our pick of the best easy routes, this video gives you a taste of what you’ll see while riding.

It was created by local cyclist and MTB XCO World Champion, José Antonio Hermida, who takes us on a gravel bike cycling trip from the Pyrenees to the Costa Brava through tracks, quiet roads and the Via Verde (green ways) of Girona.

Ten easy cycling routes in Girona

We spoke to five of Girona’s cycling tour operators, to get their recommendations on the best Girona cycle routes for cyclists that want to keep hills to a minimum and avoid a sufferfest!

They’ve come up with a great combination of rides.

They are all designed to avoid the busy roads wherever possible and incorporate great scenery and interesting towns, coffee and food stops that capture the unique culture of Girona and the Costa Brava.

These beautiful rides showcase the diversity of Girona’s riding; the region caters superbly well to everyone from beginner cyclists to more seasoned riders.

1. Flaça loop (25km)

Distance: 25 kilometres
Total climbing: 267 metres
Highlight: Medieval villages + Roman churches
Suitable bikes: Gravel and leisure bikes

 

Saskia from BikeBreaks Girona Cycle Centre says: “This medieval villages route is the absolute perfect combo of riding a bike and getting the best of culture and history that this area can offer.”

“Passing through an area filled with medieval villages, Roman churches and beautiful mediterranean countryside, you squeeze in great experiences in a day’s easy riding!”

Autumn and Spring cycling holidays in GironaCompacted trails and beautiful scenery (credit: Bike Breaks)
Cyclist on a cycling holiday near GironaTraditional villages are a highlight of cycling around Girona (credit: Bike Breaks)

2. Canet d’Adri loop (33km)

Distance: 33 kilometres
Total climbing: 520 metres
Highlight: A short ride that packs a punch
Suitable bikes: All bikes including road bikes

Louise from Eat Sleep Cycle says “This route is a short and sweet loop exploring idyllic country lanes to the west of Girona.”

“The route may be short but it also features steep climbs and narrow, technical descents – so it’s perfect for more experienced riders looking for a quick spin which packs a punch.”

“For those looking to take their time there are a couple of points along the route to stop for refreshments – look out for La Barraca de Can Xinet at 12km or Cal Sabater at 17km in the village of Canet d’Adri. Also look out for stunning views of Girona city and of Rocacorba.”

Cyclists cycling around GironaShort steep climbs with Rocacorba in the background characterise the lanes around Canet d’Adri (credit: Eat Sleep Cycle)
Cyclists on an easy spin around GironaThis route keeps you close to home – perfect for a day with unpreedictable weather or if you need to fit a quick ride in (credit: Eat Sleep Cycle)

3. Sant GregorI – Bonmatí loop (38km)

Distance: 38 kilometres
Total climbing: 300 metres
Highlight: A delightful, easy, (mostly) off-road trail from central Girona
Suitable bikes: Gravel and leisure bikes

Jana from Girona Pro Sport says: “The start point for this loop is in Devesa park in the centre of Girona.”

“This is a loop for mountain bikes or gravel bikes. It is mostly flat road, without traffic, passing beside the River Ter. One-half of the lap is on famous greenways ”

“It’s a beautiful, peaceful route that’s suitable for beginners and families.”

Cyclist on Sant Gregory loop GironaA misty start on the Sant Gregory loop (credit: Girona Pro Sport)
Bridge on Sant Gregory loop GironaEasy trail riding (credit: Girona Pro Sport)

4. Calella de Palafrugell loop (39km)

Distance: 39 kilometres
Total climbing: 280 metres
Highlight: Costa Brava’s medieval towns
Suitable bikes: Gravel and leisure bikes

 

Anna from Trek and Ride says “This circular route from Calella de Palafrugell takes you towards the inland of Baix Empordà where you will swiftly succumb to the charm of the region’s ancient towns.”

“You will come across pretty medieval villages and towns that turn from mere dots on the map to quaint terracotta coloured settlements as you approach. Peratallada and Pals are worth prising yourself away from the beach for. Drift from town to town, stopping off for a glass of the region’s wine and delicious tapas in the tiny local bars.”

Cyclist on an easy cycling route from Girona, CataloniaAdmiring a beautiful local village (credit: Trek and Ride)
Cyclists on easy cycling routes off-road from Girona Easy riding out of Girona (credit: Trek and Ride)

5. Girona to Sant Feliu de Guixols (42km)

Distance: 42 kilometres
Total climbing: 275 metres
Highlight: Enjoying the off-road green way and paella on the beach
Suitable bikes: Gravel and leisure bikes

 

Eduard from CycleTours Catalonia, says “This is one of the most popular itineraries we offer.”

“The ride takes you from Girona, downhill to the Mediterranean Sea. It follows the green way called “El Carrilet”, along an old railway line, that was used in the past to carry cork from the oak tree forests from les Gavarres, to the harbour of Sant Feliu. Along the route the Gavarres Massif is our constant companion, a mountainous forest area, consisting mainly of oaks.”

The route passes through the towns of Quart, Cassà de la Selva, Llagostera and Santa Cristina d’Aro. At San Feliu de Guíxols, we always suggest cyclists take time to enjoy the seaside and find a restaurant serving a delicious fresh paella. We then pick up our guests and transfer them back to Girona.”

Cyclists on an easy cycling route around GironaAdmiring the view in Girona (credit: CycleTour Catalonia)
Cyclist admiring the view on a family friendly route around GironaOn the green ways around Girona (credit: CycleTour Catalonia)

6. Volcà de la Crosa loop (51km)

Distance: 51 kilometres
Total Climbing: 500 metres
Highlight: Easy intro to gravel riding + the Volcà de la Crosa, the widest volcano crater in Europe
Suitable bikes: Gravel bikes

Louise from Eat Sleep Cycle says: “This route is a perfect introduction for riders getting started with gravel.”

“Start the ride heading out of town south on the Via Verde before cutting across farmland west to Volcà de la Crosa – a protected area of natural interest & the widest volcano crater in Europe. From here ride north to climb up to the village of Mas Llunes on gravel, then head down to Bescano & take the Via Verde back into Girona.”

“There are some climbs but they are never too long or too steep & mountain biking skills are not required! For refreshments stop in Sant Dalmai or Salitja, or book yourself a table for lunch at the Masia de Mas Llunès at the weekend.”

Cyclist on a woodland trail Girona SpainThe majority of the route is on tracks like these – nice & wide & non-technical
Off road cycle route Girona SpainExplore the picturesque farming region to the south of Girona

7. Girona to Llagostera loop (53km)

Distance: 53 kilometres
Total climbing: 423 metres
Highlight: Getting to know the plain of the Empordà
Suitable bikes: Gravel and leisure bikes

Eduard from CycleTours Catalonia, says “This route is slightly more demanding than the Girona to Sant Feliu de Guixols route because it is a little more hilly, but overall it’s not too hard. It gives you a beautiful feel for the plain of Emporda, with its apple and peach trees, vineyards and olive groves.”

“You start on the green way, heading in the direction Llagostera. When you pass by Llagostera you leave the green way and head north to Sant Andreu Salou. After Sant Andreu you will go to Quart where you return to Girona by the green way.”

Gravel riding around GironaCycling through the agricultural Emporda region (credit: CycleTour Catalonia)
Gravel riding off-road around GironaFantastic gravel riding (credit: CycleTour Catalonia)

8. Girona to Lake Banyoles loop (58km)

Distance: 58 kilometres
Total climbing: 535 metres
Highlight: Beautiful Lake Banyoles
Suitable bikes: All bikes including road bikes

 

Saskia from Bike Breaks Girona Cycle Centre says “We have two road cycling routes that pass from Girona’s old town to the amazing fresh water lake of Banyoles. This is the shorter version that takes you to the lake and back in only 50km.”

“You can have a lovely lunch break by the lake before pedalling back to Girona. It’s a favourite in our shop – and even the pros use it as their rest day ride!”

Cycling near lake Banyoles, GironaRiding alongside Lake Banyoles (credit: Bike Breaks)
Cyclists at Lake Banyoles near GironaRefuelling stop at Lake Banyoles (credit: Bike Breaks)

9. Calella de Palafrugell to Tossa del Mar loop (67km)

Distance: 67 kilometres
Total climbing: 656 metres
Highlight: Coastal villages of the Costa Brava
Suitable bikes: All bikes including road bikes

 

Anna from Trek and Ride says: “You start in the charming village of Calella de Palafrugell and bike until you arrive in Tossa del Mar, passing along coastal roads to fantastic seaside villages like Palamós and Platja d’Aro.”

“Once in Tossa del Mar, you ride back to Calella de Palafrugell on secondary roads.”

Village of Calalla on an easy cycling route along the coastFishing village of Calella de Palafrugell (credit: Trek and Ride)
Easy cycling route from GIronaCycling bliss in the Costa Brava region (credit: Trek and Ride)

10. Els Angèls/Hincapie loop from Girona (68km)

Distance: 68 kilometres
Total climbing: 950 metres
Highlight: The very famous and beautiful Els Angèls climb
Suitable bikes: All bikes including road bikes

Jana from Girona Pro Sport says: “This is a “must do” ride when you are in Girona as a more experienced cyclist. It’s named after George Hincapie, one of the first pro riders to discover Girona as a perfect place for cycling, training and living.”

“The route starts on Pont de Pedra in the old centre of Girona. Here many cyclists (also a lot of pros) start their ride. The route has two climbs. The first is Girona´s most famous climb, Els Angles. It’s not too long, not too steep, it’s a great place to start. Then you decent into Emporda with its beautiful medieval villages like Monells. The perfect place for a coffee stop!”

“Then you do the Santa Pellaia climb. It’s a bit longer but again not too steep. Then a descent to Cassa de la Selva and via quiet country roads you get back to Girona.”

Cycling Els Angels cycling route GironaThe Hincapie loop is a classic of Girona’s road cycling scene (credit: Girona Pro Sport)
Cyclist on easy road cycling route Girona Enjoying the famous Els Angèls climb, Girona (credit: Girona Pro Sport)

Cycling tour operators in Girona

In case you want some support with booking your trip, these local operators will be able to help you.

Catalonia Bike Tours, +24 608 57 68 21, cataloniabiketours.com

Cicloturisme Tours, +34 972 221 047, cicloturisme.com

Eat Sleep Cycle, +34 972 649 131, eatsleepcycle.com

Girona Pro Sport, +34 690 248 632, gironaprosport.com

Trek and Ride, +34 972 28 00 94, cicloturisme.com

Zona BTT Pirineu Girona, +34 605 227 978, zonabtt.com

Bike hire outlets in Girona

If you’re looking for bike hire, these local businesses will be able to help you.

Catalonia Bike Tours, +24 608 57 68 21, cataloniabiketours.com

Cicloturisme Tours, +34 972 221 047, cicloturisme.com

Eat Sleep Cycle, +34 972 649 131, eatsleepcycle.com

Girona Pro Sport, +34 690 248 632, gironaprosport.com

Happy Bikes Girona, +34 648 100 001, happybikesgirona.com

Trek and Ride, +34 972 28 00 94, cicloturisme.com

Zona BTT Pirineu Girona, +34 605 227 978, zonabtt.com

 

Big thanks to Patronat de Turisme Costa Brava Girona for making this article possible, and to the Girona tour operators featured in this article for sharing some fantastic routes.

Girona is a brilliant cycling destination with cycling routes for all levels and kinds of cyclist. Check our guides to Girona, and the articles below, for more info!

What are your top tips for easy cycle routes in/around Girona?

Share your tips in the comments below!

Want to know more about cycling in Girona?

If you’re thinking about planning your own route in Girona/Costa Brava, our tips for route planning will be useful.

You might also like this article with inspiration for easy cycling challenges and events, many of which take place in Girona/Costa Brava.

Also don’t miss our in-depth guide to Girona, which contains route guides and tips for ensuring you have a wonderful stay. In particular, if you’re looking for rides that are more challenging than the ones we’ve shared above, you’ll find lots of ideas!

Finally, if you want more info on gravel cycling tours and routes, check out the gravel section of our website.

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Clare Dewey

Clare Dewey is a cyclist with a passion for travel. She set up epicroadrides.com in 2018 to help make it easy for cyclists to explore the world by bike. Today her mission is still inspiring cyclists to discover new places on two wheels – and doing what she can to make sure they have the best possible time while they’re there. Clare has visited 50+ destinations around the world, many of them by bike.

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