If you fancy smashing some of Mallorca’s biggest cycling climbs in one epic loop, this is for you.
You’ll cover 138 km with 2,639 m of climbing including Coll d’Orient, Coll d’Honor, Coll de Sóller and the most famous climb of the day, Puig Major. You’ll also descend the awesome Coll de Femenia.
The route also takes you past the turn off for the Sa Calobra. If you’re feeling foolhardy you could add it in – just make sure you’ve still got enough in the tank to get you home!
All metrics in this article are approximate.
Puig Major Loop: highlights
There were so many!
Conquering the Puig Major climb was a great feeling and having completed so many of Mallorca’s top climbs in one ride felt pretty good!
We also loved the switchbacks up the Coll de Sóller and the exhilarating descent of the Coll de Femenia.
1. Port de Pollença to Alaró
You pass lots of pretty countryside and chocolate-box towns in this section, but the stretch from Llosetta to Alaro is superb.
A single-track lane winds up the valley, past idyllic stone-walled fields full of vibrant, green grass, grazing sheep and (in Spring) blossom-laden trees. As you approach Alaró, the vertical peaks of the Coll d’Orient rise up behind this pastoral scene and, were it not for the miles ahead, it would be tempting to stop and bask in the beauty.
2. Alaró to Orient: Coll d’Orient
The start of this 5km climb is magisterial, passing between two towering mountains, Puig d’Alaro and Puig de s’Alcadena.
It’s then a pleasant, gradual climb at around 5% to the top. There are no hairpins to contend with, and the sun will be behind you in the morning, so it’s one where you relax and savour the views.
The descent to Orient is similarly enjoyable. Orient itself, surrounded by verdant fields and a craggy backdrop, is postcard-pretty.
3. Orient to Bunyola: Coll d’Honor
It’s roughly 4 km from Orient to the summit of Coll d’Honor.
You descend out of Orient and enjoy about 1 km along the valley floor, before the climb starts.
It’s not too tough since the maximum gradient doesn’t get beyond 8.5% and the average for the climb is about 5.5%. Climbing up through the pine forest feels calm and atmospheric, particularly as the road is relatively narrow and the hairpins are quite short and sharp.
From the summit, be ready to test your technical expertise, with rapid switchbacks down to Bunyola.
4. Bunyola to Sóller: Coll d’Sóller
It’s a quick blast down through Bunyola to the MA-11 for 2.5km on the main road to the bottom of the Col d’Sóller.
The Col d’Sóller is about the nicest switchback road you’ll ever ride. It’s never that steep, the corners are gentle, and you can power through it. Don’t miss the view from the top.
The descent down to Sóller is also full of switchback fun. For more detail, read our Coll de Sóller write up.
5. Sóller to Lluc: Puig Major cycling climb
Our route stays on the MA-11 and bypasses the centre of Sóller, but it’s a charming town with a memorably beautiful town square, if you do want a stop.
As soon as you fork off onto the MA-10, the climbing begins up the Col de Puig Major. At nearly 14 km with a 6% average gradient, this is Mallorca’s highest and longest climb (check out the Puig Major profile in the “Route map and profile” drop down at the top of the article). Views are excellent, and the lakes following the Monnaber tunnel (bring lights!) at the summit are gorgeous and unforgettable.
You’ll also pass the aqueduct and road down to Sa Calobra – add it to your route if you’re feeling super strong!
6. Lluc to Port de Pollença
The sweeping descent from Puig Major, past the Gorg Blau and Cúber reservoirs, past the aqueduct above Sa Calobra and then down the Coll de Femenia to Pollença, is one of our all-time favourites.
The scenery is spectacular, the road is wide and flowing, and the Coll de Femenia is one of those places that it’s easy to let go and build up some serious speed. Just watch out for the goats!
You’re spoiled for choice in this little town.
- Sa Tafona, on the outskirts of Caimari (on the left as you head up Coll de Sa Batalla, Carretera Lluc, Km. 6, 07314 Caimari). The almond cake is delicious, and their gift shop has some lovely items to buy.
- Sa Ruta Verda, in Caimari (62 Nuestra Senora de Lluc, 07314 Caimari), serve delicious juices, cake, and homemade energy bars. They also have a cycle stand and tools.
Our route doesn’t go through the town centre but, take a short diversion, and you’ll find Cycling Planet, a bike shop with an on-site mechanic and café, where you sit at tables made from the old pine planks of the Palma velodrome.
You can choose from a couple of cafés in this picturesque hamlet.
Bunyola is larger than Orient though still more of a village than a town. You can leave your bike in the racks in the market square and lounge in the sun while enjoying a drink and something to eat. As you leave Bunyola for the Coll d’Sóller, on the right you will see the Liveablock bike shop which might come in handy should you have any mechanical problems.
At the top of the Coll d’Sóller, you have two great options. Read our Coll de Sóller guide for full details, but in summary
- Ca’n Topa is a café, housed in a whitewashed old farmhouse, serving fresh cakes and simple food like sandwiches, pizza, and burgers. It’s in an idyllic position and has a small swimming pool that customers are welcome to use.
- D’alt des Coll is a restaurant with fantastic views from their shaded terrace.
Just after Sóller and about 4 km from the start of the Puig Major climb, Fornalutx is a small village where you can grab a coffee and fill water bottles. You’ll need to make a little detour off the main road to get to it.
If you do Sa Calobra, there is a café (the OJ shack) at the top of the Sa Calobra descent. There is also a bar part of the way down, but it was closed when we visited in March. Don’t expect the food in the restaurants at the bottom to be very exciting.
As you turn left towards Pollença and the Coll de Femenia, you’ll catch sight of a Repsol garage. Call in there for gels, flapjacks and inner tubes. Just past it, is the well-known Coll de sa Bataia café, at the top of the Sa Batalla climb.
If you need a stop before you get to Port de Pollença, the old town of Pollença is a great choice.
More cycling cafés!
If you need any more ideas, check out our post on Mallorca’s cafés!
We did this loop from Hotel Illa d’Or in Port de Pollença. It’s a great option for cyclists and non-cyclists. We’d recommend it to friends.
Want to see some alternatives?
Take a look at more of our accommodation suggestions in our ultimate guide to Mallorca for cyclists.
Alternatively, our best towns for cyclists article should help you narrow down the best town for you. Since this is a loop ride, you could easily stay somewhere other than Port de Pollença.
- Tempting as it may be, don’t add on Sa Calobra unless you’re feeling really strong. If you do, it would be wise to have some back-up, just in case you need a lift in the broom wagon at the end of the day.
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