Coasting Through Costa Brava – Biking on Vies Verdes

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It was only going to be 55 kilometers, right?

No biggie. It was 38km the first day and then the rest was broken up into 2 other days…

I mean, we did 40 or so for the World’s Most Dangerous Road. How hard could it possibly be?

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Oh yeah. I guess I didn’t take into consideration that we were going downhill all day in Bolivia.

*cough*

In true Erica fashion I like to talk big and somehow struggle my way through most of our adventures. I’m always glad I did though. The Vies Verdes bike paths with CicloTurisme was probably one of the best Costa Brava tours I could have thought to experience this area of Spain.

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You know those moments when you are in bliss and you can’t think of anywhere else you could possibly be? There were a few of those – in between being the last person to huff and puff up massive hills and one of the first to whizz down steep ones.

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This is when I learned I was a true adrenaline junkie.

We fared better than others. I know one person had the fate of flipping over her handlebars in a last ditch attempt to slow down a steep asphalt road.

Shaun even was a really nice guy and decided to give a tutorial to the rest of the group on why you shouldn’t lock up your front brakes and flipped over his bike to show what happens. Besides giving everyone a massive heart attack, he came out fine – albeit with a few extra knicks and scratches. (He is just glad I didn’t see it or he would have had a heart attack with my reaction.)

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We weaved through the countryside on old train railways that have been removed and kept for the sole purpose of using them for biking. I LOVE to see how people repurpose old infrastructures and this is one of the most creative things I had seen in quite some time.

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The bike paths took us on so many adventures:

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Our guide showed us hidden paths and waterfalls (Cogolls waterfall).

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I had a steampunk photogasm when we came across the old Bures textile mill in Angeles that has a working steam machine. What a cool museum idea! They even fired it up for us.

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One night we had the pleasure of falling asleep to the lapping waves of the Mediterranean at the Hotel Tamariu in Tamariu, Spain… of course after a nightcap of cremat (a rum drink that they light on FIRE!) that Shaun gladly participated in.

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We got to experience traditional Catalan cuisine in live cooking demonstration at Palamos, Spain’s fish space “Espai del Peix“. Shaun even made a mean garlic aioli. The man can make macaroni and cheese out of a box. This was a start!

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The live fish market there was going strong and wholesalers and restaurateurs came by to pick up their daily catches. It was FASCINATING to see what people actually pay and bid on.

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We got to see an old monastery!

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We got to see the Quart Pottery Museum in Quart, Spain and participate in making things on our own.

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I apparently not only like penguins but have quite the morbid imagination. I have no clue how this creepy guy came to be out of the tips of my fingers.

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Most of all I learned that I could push myself. Even though I got quite sick towards the end (and apparently was riding around with a massive fever), I was determined to finish. Foolish? Probably. But I feel accomplished.

And seriously, I would have been a little bit pissy had I missed out on so many of the adventures.

Have you been to Costa Brava? What things in Spain do you enjoy doing?

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Disclosure: We were guests of Costa Brava, however all opinions are our own.

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23 Responses to “Coasting Through Costa Brava – Biking on Vies Verdes”

  1. Scott - Quirky Travel Guy November 5, 2012 at 11:21 am #

    That’s the best kind of bike tour, when it takes you past some cool random spots like waterfalls and hidden buildings. I love that pic from inside the monastery!

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:15 pm #

      I don’t think I would have enjoyed it as much had we not had the pit stops – unless it was entirely downhill. 😛

  2. Andi of My Beautiful Adventures November 5, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Wow what an intense but awesome bike ride!!! That part of the world is so beautiful.

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:16 pm #

      Seriously. I’m in love with the bike trails. I WANT MORE (downhill).

  3. Carlos Olmo November 6, 2012 at 6:33 am #

    Great post guys, I just published mine in @minube in perfect spanish in http://www.minube.com/rincon/en-bici-por-las-vias-verdes-de-girona-a1022491

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:16 pm #

      Thanks for the heads up Carlos! Looks great!

  4. Susan From Travel Universally November 8, 2012 at 7:57 am #

    Wow, you guys had so good time. Having the bike ride, caring for each other and sometimes falling from the bikes and awww…kisses!! and at last a wonderful Delicious food to eat. That’s the best!

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:17 pm #

      The kisses make it all better. 😛

      It really was an amazing 3 days. I couldn’t ask for a more perfect experience riding through the Spanish countryside.

  5. Maria November 11, 2012 at 7:32 pm #

    Holy smokes – what a trip!

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:17 pm #

      Yeah… it was more ambitious than I thought it would be.

  6. Stephanie - The Travel Chica November 17, 2012 at 12:08 am #

    The bike ride is worth it when you get to see pretty landscapes and visit interesting places like this.

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

      TOTALLY. Because I wouldn’t have done it otherwise.

      I. AM. LAZY.

  7. Ali November 19, 2012 at 9:31 am #

    There is NO WAY I would’ve even tried that bike ride! I’m impressed you guys gave it a shot and survived. It does sound like a great trip.

    • Erica November 20, 2012 at 4:19 pm #

      Why not?! There were only a few difficult spots but overall it wasn’t too bad! They carried our stuff!

  8. Mary @ Green Global Travel November 29, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    I would deal with the danger for the view of those hidden paths and waterfalls! Great photos.

  9. The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen) December 24, 2012 at 6:00 am #

    What a beautiful ride! I like that — talk big and then struggle your way through the adventures. I think I have the tendency to do that, too — but hey, at least you do them! Most people would never try half the stuff you guys do.

    • Erica January 2, 2013 at 9:59 am #

      Thanks for commenting Ellen! I do like to try anything once so I’m super glad I got this opportunity. I just wish I was in better shape.

    • steive@green lotus trekking September 15, 2014 at 12:46 am #

      I’m into photography & i am studying to be a photographer. so greaaaaaat.

    • steive@green lotus trekking September 15, 2014 at 12:47 am #

      What a wonderful reflection collection. Great!. so greaaaaaat.

  10. Jenna February 20, 2013 at 9:28 am #

    Shaun was full of tutorials during that trip! So great for a novice like me (except when he vaulted over the handlebars and nearly scared me to death, of course). Had a blast getting to know you guys!

    • Erica February 21, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

      Shaun just wants to make sure people have fun safely! I can only imagine him as a dad. Good grief.

  11. Cicloturisme March 14, 2013 at 6:25 am #

    Hi Shaun and Erica! We are so glad you spent such a nice time here in Girona and its surroundings last September with TBEX meeting. As you show on the article above we can see that your cycling experience through the old railways path from Olot to Girona took you to discover hidden little places which can only be seen from Greenways. You didn’t miss either our gastronomy and were brave to prepare a cremat. Congrats 🙂
    Let us know if you come in Girona again and want to discover more charming and quiet places like these you visited by bike. Plus, thank you for your mention to Cicloturisme website. You are very welcomed anytime!

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  1. Start Bookin’: Bicycle tour of Costa Brava and Pyrenees, Spain | Follow Ben and Jenna - February 20, 2013

    […] Laurel at Mountainsandmonkeys.com on cycling in Costa Brava; the complete play-by-play of this tour of Costa Brava (with great photography) from Erica and Shaun of Overyonderlust.com; and the fantastic VIDEO of […]

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