The Puig de Randa climb in Mallorca is also known as the Santuari de Cura climb, Puig de Cura or just Cura. Cura is what the signposts on the climb say, and this reference is due to the fact that at the top of the hill you find Mallorca’s first monastery, built in the 13th Century.
It’s an iconic cycling climb because, like the significantly more famous Mont Ventoux, it stands alone on a plain. It’s got a weather station on top too! However, that’s where the similarities with Ventoux end: Puig Randa is a relatively easy climb at around 4.5km long with an average gradient just under 5% (according to ridewithgps – the signpost said 5.6%).
Unlike many of Mallorca’s best cycling climbs, the Randa climb is not in the Serra Tramuntana but is instead in the middle of the island. If you prefer easy riding, with the odd challenge, why not try a loop that includes Randa monastery as well as San Salvador and even Betlem: three monasteries in one ride?! Check out our route suggestions that incorporate Randa below.
Also, it’s worth noting that while this review concentrates on the better-known northern ascent, we’ve also checked out the southern approach up the Randa climb. More details below.
All metrics in this article are approximate.
Puig de Randa climb, Mallorca: highlights
The panoramic view from the Monasterio/Santuari de Cura is the undisputed highlight of this ride. The top of the climb is the highest point for miles around and, on a clear day, offers views far across the island.
1. Randa to 1 km before the summit: 0-4 km
The climb begins from the small village of Randa, which is just off the Ma-5010 between Llucmajor and Algaida.
The Ma-5018 from Randa takes you all the way to the top of the climb. While it’s not a wide motorway of a road, it’s also not as narrow as some you may have ridden (we’re thinking of the roads to San Salvador or Betlem for example). There’s a centreline in the road and it’s actually not that unrealistic! There’s also less in the way of the perilous drop-offs you find on other climbs.
There are a few steep ramps at the start (10%) through the village and out onto the main climb, but then it settles down to a more cyclist friendly 5-6%.
The road is cut into a hillside that’s covered with trees, bushes and light scrub; the scenery is nice, but not out of this world.
The irregular switchbacks wind up the hill. Some of them are deeply cut into unusual horizontal rock formations (sorry, we’re not geologists so can’t say much more than that!).
The map shows that you pass turnings to Santuario de Gràcia and Ermita Sant Honorat, but we didn’t see them from the road.
2. 1 km from the summit to the summit: 4-5 Km
You come around a wide left-hand turn and suddenly get a stunning view across the island; it sweeps away before your eyes with the odd mountain in the far distance. It’s a dramatic sight.
In the last few hundred metres, you come to the weather stations and the large golf ball (which we assume is a radar station) that you’ll probably have spotted on your way up. It feels odd to find these in such a tranquil location, but they’re strangely impressive.
You glide the last couple of hundred metres to the Santuario de Cura at the summit.
Make sure you head into the Santuario courtyard. It’s a vast, interesting building – plus there are more great views to be had from the other side.
The monastery restaurant serves coffee, cake and more substantial meals too. There’s also a hotel, so you can even stay should you wish.
There are a couple of restaurants in Randa too.
As Puig Randa is in the centre of Mallorca, it’s quite a ride from Port Pollença or Alcùdia. We did a loop from Alaró that worked well. You can check it out and get the GPX file here (details of a loop from Port Pollença are below).
Take a look at more of our accommodation suggestions in our ultimate guide to Mallorca.
Alternatively, our guide on where to stay guide for cyclists on Mallorca should help you narrow down the best town for you.
Read our tips for cycling in Mallorca before you set out.
The large car park is indicative of the number of visitors this monastery gets (it’s not just day-trippers to the monastery, the area is very popular with walkers too). On our ride up one late afternoon in November, we were overtaken by a fleet of racing Fiats!
We found the road in fairly good condition; perhaps slightly less perfect than some of the climbs in Mallorca, but good by UK standards.
Alternative route up Puig de Randa (the southern climb)
Should you want a harder and quieter alternative route, you can try the southern approach to Puig de Randa via Cami Vell de Gràcia or Cami d’Es Putxets.
The first part of this route is through woodland on wonderful classic switchback roads that are narrow and therefore not really suitable for cars. This makes this route much quieter than the more popular northern approach.
As you can see from this ridewithgps.com route map, the route soon joins the Ma-5018 and the remainder of the climb is the same.
The gradients before you hit the Ma-5018 average around 8-12%.
Our suggestion: take this southern road up and the wider, straighter northern route down.
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