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Old 05-01-2012, 10:42 PM   #1
jonesboy OP
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A quick loop around Spain

I am a long-time ADVrider lurker. My wife and I live in Vancouver, BC, where we ride our M696s whenever we have the opportunity - but tomorrow, we leave for Spain. We're renting a pair of BMWs (hers: F800ST; his: R1200GS) after a week in Barcelona and spending 10 days on the road - stops will include Barcelona, Girona, Perpignan, Andorra, Saragossa, Madrid, Cordova, Seville, Cadiz, Gibraltar (hopefully a day trip to Tangier will be in the cards), then back up the coast to Barcelona. I'll try to post pics as we go, but worst-case will update upon our return.

Anybody chiming in with weather, hazard, construction / road works or other news of the route will be welcomed; bevvies of your choice will be arranged if we're going to be in your neighbourhood. :)

Bonus points for the best advice for getting a Spanish pay-as-you-go SIM card for my iPhone!

-Matt
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Old 05-02-2012, 04:33 AM   #2
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Old 05-02-2012, 11:46 AM   #3
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Whoops, thanks.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:00 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by jonesboy View Post

Bonus points for the best advice for getting a Spanish pay-as-you-go SIM card for my iPhone!

-Matt
You can buy an Orange sim card at the airport. Buy the DELFIN card by ORANGE, it is a prepaid sim card, but it also includes 100MB internet, rate is 4 euros per week, after you use the 100MB, you still have internet but at a lower speed. coverage is good, 3G everywhere I went in Andalucia at least.
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Old 05-05-2012, 02:42 AM   #5
CarlesOsonaGS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonesboy View Post
I am a long-time ADVrider lurker. My wife and I live in Vancouver, BC, where we ride our M696s whenever we have the opportunity - but tomorrow, we leave for Spain. We're renting a pair of BMWs (hers: F800ST; his: R1200GS) after a week in Barcelona and spending 10 days on the road - stops will include Barcelona, Girona, Perpignan, Andorra, Saragossa, Madrid, Cordova, Seville, Cadiz, Gibraltar (hopefully a day trip to Tangier will be in the cards), then back up the coast to Barcelona. I'll try to post pics as we go, but worst-case will update upon our return.

Anybody chiming in with weather, hazard, construction / road works or other news of the route will be welcomed; bevvies of your choice will be arranged if we're going to be in your neighbourhood. :)

Bonus points for the best advice for getting a Spanish pay-as-you-go SIM card for my iPhone!

-Matt
Hi JonesBoy, I read later this post but I live near Barcelona and ride with my GS1200 for all of the places (in Catalonia) that you say...if you want some help, tell me.

Enjoy riding for Catalonia and Spain. I'm sure that you eat better than other places.
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Old 05-05-2012, 03:10 AM   #6
jonesboy OP
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You can buy an Orange sim card at the airport. Buy the DELFIN card by ORANGE, it is a prepaid sim card, but it also includes 100MB internet, rate is 4 euros per week, after you use the 100MB, you still have internet but at a lower speed. coverage is good, 3G everywhere I went in Andalucia at least.
Thanks, C5 - that's what I ended up doing. I should have mentioned that we have four devices that I needed to share the data connection - Orange doesn't allow any kind of data tethering (including personal hotspot from iPhone)! Ah well. :)

-Matt
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Old 05-05-2012, 03:12 AM   #7
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Hi JonesBoy, I read later this post but I live near Barcelona and ride with my GS1200 for all of the places (in Catalonia) that you say...if you want some help, tell me.

Enjoy riding for Catalonia and Spain. I'm sure that you eat better than other places.
Appreciate it, Carles! Any must-ride roads between Barcelona and Perpignan / Andorra? Seems like we should expect cold / wet in that area this time of year, yes?

-Matt
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Old 05-05-2012, 08:48 AM   #8
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Appreciate it, Carles! Any must-ride roads between Barcelona and Perpignan / Andorra? Seems like we should expect cold / wet in that area this time of year, yes?

-Matt
Last June I did the Pyrenees, coming from Pau, France into Spain via the Col du Portalet and connected to the N260. You can take that all the way to the Med and it's a great ride. Not overly challenging but lots of twisties and mostly the road is in very good condition. I took a detour into Andorra, which I could have done without due to the traffic congestion. There is another fun ride from Ripoli, north of Barcelona, toward Perpignan, the C38 on the Spanish side and the D115 on the French side. Then there is the D117 from the north side of Perpignan west to Foix. Mostly cruising but beautiful scenery and some Cathar Castles along the way.

Hope your ride is going well so far.
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Old 05-05-2012, 10:25 AM   #9
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Appreciate it, Carles! Any must-ride roads between Barcelona and Perpignan / Andorra? Seems like we should expect cold / wet in that area this time of year, yes?
Go north out of Barcelona to Cadaques on the coast, and take the coast road to Collioure, France. Great road through vineyards and nice towns, and Collioure is a very nice town. From Collioure to Perpignan is nothing special, and Perpignan itself is nothing special. You can take the N116 from Perp. to Andorra, which is an interesting road for most of the way, but it's the main route to Andorra from the coast, so there's traffic. A longer and more interesting route is the busy D115 SW from the coast to Amelie-les-Bains and take the incredibly twisty D618 north over the mountains, ending up on the N116. That said, Andorra is a big nothing, except to say you've been there, or you want really cheap cigarettes.

Unless it's raining, the weather should be warm and wonderful.
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:43 PM   #10
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Appreciate it, Carles! Any must-ride roads between Barcelona and Perpignan / Andorra? Seems like we should expect cold / wet in that area this time of year, yes?

-Matt
Hi Jonesboy, this first May's week was wet, but the forecast for the rest of this month are sunny and I think that you enjoy this travel. If yoy start from Barcelona, take the highway AP7 to Girona, left near Figueres (out number 4) and take NII and then C-68 to Roses. Before arrive Roses, take the road to Cadaques-Port de la Selva. Visit (if you have time) both village. 100% pure Mediterranean style. Then in Llança take N-260 past Figueres to Besalú, then A26 to Olot, continue in N-260 to VallFogona de Ripolles, Ripoll and then to Ribes, Puigcerda across "Collada de Tosses" mmm twisty mountain road that always enjoy when I go. Puigcerda -> La Seo d'Urgell and then to Andorra. If you have time, visit Andorra.

Then you can go to France (Ax-Les-Thermes, Foix, St Girons, Col du Portet d' Aspet and come back Catalonia to Vielha), or Andorra-La Seu D'Urgell, N-260 to Sort, and then Col de la Bonaigua (more than 2.000 mts to Vielha...).

Then following N260 to Ainsa and...

More? I live near Vic (near Barcelona) and if I musn't work i ride with you a feew hours... but...

(sorry for my English)
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Old 05-07-2012, 08:53 AM   #11
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Wow, great route suggestions, thank you! We had planned to enter Andorra via France rather than from the South, but if the roads you suggest are that good maybe we'll change our plan. We are in Barcelona now and pick up our motorcycles on Thursday - we have a hotel in Girona Thursday and one in Andorra Friday - and off to Madrid for Saturday. If you're able to ride with us a few hours that would be great fun - let me know!

-Matt
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:04 PM   #12
CarlesOsonaGS
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Wow, great route suggestions, thank you! We had planned to enter Andorra via France rather than from the South, but if the roads you suggest are that good maybe we'll change our plan. We are in Barcelona now and pick up our motorcycles on Thursday - we have a hotel in Girona Thursday and one in Andorra Friday - and off to Madrid for Saturday. If you're able to ride with us a few hours that would be great fun - let me know!

-Matt
Tomorrow I will be in Barcelona arround 14:00 H, but i must work in the afternoon...ohhh but if you want, we can meet in Barcelona and explain you this roads. I try to contact you via your MSN.
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:49 PM   #13
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Hey mate, I am up in the mountains near Besalu (mentioned previously) on a horse tour ranch.. have been up here a couple of months. It's beautiful up here. Besalu is worth checking out, we always take clients there on the horses and they love it. You might also stop at Sadernes for a swim see picture below...

I second, or is it third Cadaques... right at the foot of the Pyrenees there.



That is about 10 minutes off the A-26 near Montagut... although the water might be a touch chilly at the moment. We went for a swim there the other day and it was still a tad cool.

I am literally putting new Tyres on my F650GS in Girona on Thursday morning 10:30am! Then about Lunchtime I will be riding back to Besalu.

We had a good week here last week, only 1 day with rain. They say En Abril, Agua Mil - in april, water 1000 literal translation, really means there was a shitload of rain last month, but last week was good. Up here in the mountains it is off and on, Thursday is forecast to be 26 degrees so that swim might be possible... There are still snow caps up on the very high mountains but they have almost melted away over the past week, they may be gone by Thursday. They say rain over the weekend, but it is too early to tell that yet, they are mostly always wrong this far out.
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Old 05-07-2012, 03:21 PM   #14
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Even if you're fed up and you think you can't handle any more churches and old buildings, don't miss the cathedral in Cordoba!
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:35 PM   #15
jonesboy OP
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Carles-

Sorry, no MSN here at the moment, I guess we've missed you. We're on 615 719 six seven seven while here, though. Pushing off from Barcelona tomorrow!

Thanks for the tips, everyone. We'll be hitting Cadaques for certain and the cathedral at Cordobá was already on our must-see list. :)

Can't wait! Finalizing the first day's map tonight.

-Matt
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