• Distance 130 km
  • Elevation gain 2460m
  • Difficulty
  • Epic rating

In this article we speak to Quim Vizcaíno, a keen cyclist who is passionate about making it easier for visitors to discover the cycling in and around Barcelona region. Quim has proposed this route in Maresme as part of his guide to cycling in the Barcelona region. He says:

This is a challenging route that takes cyclists to the summit of Montseny Natural Park. The  variety of landscapes you’ll encounter and the stunning views make it worth the effort.

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Route notes

The route departs from Santa Susanna,  which is a great base due to its bike friendly hotels and lovely beaches.

The first section of this ride is easy-going, through  fields, forests and villages. You pass coastal towns and villages until reaching Malgrat de Mar. From there, the route leaves the county of el Maresme and goes inland following the Tordera river on the N-II road, where occasionally there might be heavy traffic.

If you want to avoid the NII, there are two alternatives.

  • The first alternative takes you to the villages of Palafolls and Blanes (roads B/GI-682, and GI-600 to Tordera).
  • The second consists in taking the section of the Tourdera route connecting Palafolls to Tordera. (Please be aware that this route include some unpaved but in great conditions paths by the river banks.)

From Tordera the route heads up to the medieval village of Hostalric, to continue to Sant Celoni, right at the bottom of el Montseny Natural Parc.

After Sant Celoni, the climbing challenge begins. The road narrows and the climb starts to reveal its technical difficulties and demands a good deal of endurance, strength and resistance; in less than 30 km, it rises to 1650 m of altitude, going through beautiful Mediterranean forests of holm oaks that turn into chestnuts and beeches, as elevation increases. Along the way, there are many amazing scenic viewpoints and sights from which to admire the Mediterranean Sea or fill up your water bottles.

At the very top of the climb, you get magnificent views over the Maresme coast and the whole region. On very clear days you may even get a glimpse of the island of Mallorca on the horizon.

From the summit, the route descends quickly on the same road, until it turns right towards the small village of Montseny and keeps going down into a valley that leads to the villages of Sant Esteve and Santa Maria de Palautordera, back at the mountain base.

From there, it heads back towards the coast, running through Montnegre i el Corredor Natural Park, as well as lovely villages, such as Vallgorguina or Arenys de Munt, Sant Iscle and Sant Cebrià de Vallalta. Finally, it reaches the coastline at Sant Pol de Mar, from where the return towards Santa Susanna is just a lovely journey along the coast.

Café stops and accommodation

At Santa Susanna, as well as along the route, there are services available, such as bike rentals and shops and restaurants.

Tips

For further information, please visit: https://www.costadebarcelonamaresme.cat/es/que-hacer/cicloturismo/itinerarios-por-carretera-en-el-maresme

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Quim Vizcaíno is a Barcelona local who loves outdoor activities, especially mountain ones. He has been a freelance tour guide in Barcelona city and its region since 2013, driven by his passion for sharing the region’s heritage, nature and outdoors possibilities. He also works for Barcelona’s tourism board, sharing and promoting the region’s endless possibilities for sports in general and cycling in particular.

Quim says “Everyone knows about Barcelona as a city, but beyond the city limits, there is a vast universe of counties, landscapes, nature parks and roads ready to be discovered and enjoyed. I’ve made sharing my region my personal goal and devoted myself to spread a simple message that Barcelona is much more!”

Last Reviewed: 30 November 2022

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