Recyclo Bike Shop Guide to Road Biking in Malaga
The team at Recyclo Bike Shop has been riding the local hills here in Málaga for many years and we thought we would share some of our favorite rides. Unless stated, all rides start from our shop in Pedregalejo.
Route 2. Arxarquía
Distance: 106kms Climbing: 1400m Time: 4.5 – 5 hours
This was one of my first expeditions into the valley of the “Arxarquía” and remains one of my favorite rides. We start with a 30km flat coastal section before heading into the low hills to the East of Velez-Malaga. We have then added an extra hill to break up the monotony of the ride home.
Leaving Recyclo Bike Shop we take the coast road (Calle Bolivia) East. When we reach “El Tintero”, the last of the Chiringuitos or beachside fish restaurants, we keep right at the roundabout and then ride alongside the highway for a short stretch, past a Repsol Garage and eventually joining the motorway as the road hugs the coastline by the cement factory. If I am not painting the prettiest of pictures, no need for concern, things get a lot quieter after a while. Cyclists are allowed on this stretch but the traffic does come along at 120km/h so single file is advisable. After maybe 1.5kms we take an exit signposted to La Cala del Moral and we leave the motorway behind. Riding straight through La Cala we head up the slight climb and down into Rincón de la Victoria. Another word of caution at this point; riding through Rincón can be hazardous as double parking, car doors opening and the non-use of indicators are a constant threat. I have coined the phrase “corridor of uncertainty” to describe this part of the ride. Don´t say you haven’t been warned!
We carry on along the coast road riding through the costal villages of Chilches, Benajarafe and Torre de Benagalbón. The road surface is in great order except for the iron bridge before we reach Torre del Mar, where the hard shoulder disappears and the pot holes need some extra attention. Passing through Torre del Mar and still heading East on the coast road we ride straight over a couple of small roundabouts before taking the last exit at the roundabout signposted to Algarrobo Pueblo. We follow the signs to Algarrobo, riding under the motorway after a couple more kms. Once in the village we take a right turn over a bridge towards Sayalonga. This is the start of this ride’s major climb. There is nothing too testing about the way up, although traffic can be relatively heavy along this tight mountain road. At Sayalonga we stay to the left and keep riding up towards Competa. We take the left fork signed to Archez which is the furthest point of the ride at the head of the valley. In Archez the road turns sharply to the left and over a bridge. From here the traffic lessens noticeably and the road offers impressive views of the lush avocado plantations and in late January and early February we are treated to the spectacle which is the almond trees in blossom. The road heads through a couple of white villages, Corumbela and Daimalos before we reach the third village Arenas, which has a handy water fountain and also provides a bar for refreshment. With bidons replenished we carry on back down the hill and eventually into Vélez-Malaga, the main market town of the Arxarquía. At the first T-junction we turn right and then straight over the following roundabout. The road leads us down the main drag and towards the market square. We keep the market square to our left and head North towards Trapiche and Viñuela.
Our route runs alongside the main road North to Viñuela and we follow this for a couple of kms before turning right (signed Benamocarra) and up and over the main road. This is the second of the day’s climbs and it starts comfortably and gradually gets harder as we reach the next village Benamocarra.There is a statue in the main square of local poet and musician Eduardo Ocón. We follow the road through the village and carry on up the hill through vinyards where the famous Moscatel grapes ripen in under the unforgiving Sun. The village of Iznate is near the top of the climb but we ride on regardless, up and over the top and then back down the other side towards Cajíz. The road eventually spits us out on the coast and we turn right at the T-junction and back Westwards towards Málaga.
Enjoy the ride!