Some of my bike rides in Mallorca, Ibiza and Formentera: past, present and future

The intrepid 6Points crew

Here is a representative sample of the bike rides I have enjoyed in the Balearics during the last seven years. I’m looking forward to my first post-pandemic visit in October 2022 for the 6Points Ibiza and Formentera, which I last rode in the autumn of 2019, with some additional Mallorca riding before and after. Some of the following rides are on the agenda!

I have been cycling in Mallorca since 2015 when, at last, I bought a bike there; I had been going there since the mid-1980s, and had ridden and raced bikes since the early 1960s, but had never ridden in Mallorca before 2015.

Click on any map to see my corresponding Strava post for the ride, complete with all relevant photos.

2015

A ride from Costa de la Calma, our “home” in Mallorca

There are plenty of really good rides in the western parts of Mallorca, skirting Palma, further east, but mainly using the roads near us between north-west and north-east of my base in Costa de la Calma, near Santa Ponsa. The weather is mainly very temperate in Spring and Autumn times of the year, you’ll see, but I have ridden there in the summer months too.

12th October 2015. Note the reasonable climbing east and west of Puigponent – Galilea on one side and Es Grau on the other.

https://www.strava.com/activities/411608149

Andratx, Galielea, Puigponent, Esporles, Establiments loop returning via the old Palma ring road
Andratx, Galilea, Puigponent, Esporles, Establiments loop returning via the old Palma ring road

I must remember to take a carrot or three with me next time!

A friend that I often see in Andratx when I pass on the way to Es Capdella!
A friend that I often see in Andratx, when I pass on the way to Es Capdella!

2016

9th May 2016, the full Sa Calobra tour with GGCC (Glasgow Green Cycle Club), including the Mallorca signature climb – 10kms, between 5% and 10%

We (the GGCC Club tour) were staying in Port Pollensa, which is very popular with both amateur and professional teams as a training base. Sky (precursor of Ineos) trained there every winter for years.

https://www.strava.com/activities/894431623

Sa Calobra loop from Port Pollensa, returning via Caimari, Moscari and Campanet
Sa Calobra loop from Port Pollensa, returning via Caimari, Moscari and Campanet
The iconic aqueduct on the Ma10 main road above Sa Calobra
The iconic aqueduct, on the Ma10 main road, above Sa Calobra

13th May 2016, the full Ma10 ride from Andratx to Port Pollensa – out by Mallorca Cycle Shuttle, bike back

This ride is sometimes called “The Big Daddy“, particularly by the Mallorca Cycle Shuttle service, whose coach I have used several times to travel between Port Pollensa and Andratx, where we started this bike ride, shown here, mainly along the Ma10 main road. The route passes through a tunnel at Puig Major, the highest road section in Mallorca at 900m or so.

https://www.strava.com/activities/894424193

Ma10 route from Andratx to Port Pollensa
Ma10 route from Andratx to Port Pollensa
Looking over Gorg Blau, near Puig Major
Looking over Gorg Blau, from the road very near to Puig Major

23rd July 2016, another ride in my area of Mallorca, a warm one in July!

It’s https://www.strava.com/activities/650865258, an 80 kms loop in my end of Mallorca.

An 80 kms loop in my end of Mallorca
Steps to the pepperpot Martello Tower at Banyalbufar, on the Ma10 main road
Steps to the pepperpot Martello Tower at Banyalbufar, on the Ma10 main road

2017

17th April 2017 with West Coast Velo, Formentor with a side hustle to Talaia d’Albercutx, 

The mandatory “signature” ride to Cap Formentor, with an additional short climb up to the “pepperpot” Martello Tower, a side turning about half-way up to Cap Formentor. This was during the Mallorca trip with West Coast Velo, another cycling group based in Glasgow.

https://www.strava.com/activities/946134897

Cap Formentor with a side hustle to Talaia d’Albercutx
Panorama from the Talaia d'Abercutx pepperpot above Col de sa Creueta
Panorama from the Talaia d’Abercutx pepperpot above Col de sa Creueta

2018

28th April 2018 – the Mallorca 312 (225kms) event with Leslie and 8,000 other riders!

My good friend and near neighbour (same street) Leslie Tennant and I did the 225kms version of the Mallorca 312 that year, with 8,000 other riders. Quite an experience riding with so many riders, like the RideLondon 100, but with better weather and smoother roads. The full 312 kms includes an additional loop down to Arta, seen on the right of the map; but for us, it was quite late by then, so we headed back to Playa de Muro, where the event started, for an 8pm finish or so.

At the Bay of Alcudia, soon after the start of the 2018 Mallorca 312 with Leslie
At the Bay of Alcudia, soon after the start of the 2018 Mallorca 312 with Leslie in red on the left, followed by me in the GGCC kit in the middle

https://www.strava.com/activities/1537743278

The Mallorca 312 (225kms) event with Leslie and 8,000 other riders!

Note again the 900m high point on that route profile, Puig Major, not far from Pollensa, on the Ma10 main road. All “downhill” from there!

29th April 2018

A local recovery bimble with Leslie for lunch in Port d’Andratx

https://www.strava.com/activities/1539656625

A local recovery bimble with Leslie for lunch in Andratx
Leslie, at my usual viewpoint, at the 3km marker above Camp de Mar
Leslie, at my usual viewpoint, at the 3km marker above Camp de Mar

30th April 2018, Sa Ruta Verda, Col de Sa Bataia and Sa Calobra with Leslie

A Mallorca cycling summary wouldn’t be complete without a trip to Sa Ruta Verda Coffee shop in Caimari, Lennart Bjolgerud’s wonderful bike café.

https://www.strava.com/activities/1541058092

A trip to Sa Ruta VerdaCoffee shop in Caimari, Lennart Bjolgerud’s wonderful bike café

That was an out-and-back ride over Col de Soller, having driven to Selva to get the right area, as we did for the Mallorcaa 312 above, and for the Monasteries (next rides).

Here is the self-styled “coffee boy”, Lennart. He runs Sa Ruta Verda now, having retired as Managing Director of Barclays Capital in London

The self-styled “coffee boy”, Lennart, boss of Sa Ruta Verda

1st May 2018, the Monasteries, with Leslie:

Sant Salvador

Leslie at the Sant Salvador café, with the biggest bread, cheese and ham rolls! I had one too…

Leslie at Sant Salvador café, with the biggest bread, cheese and ham rolls!
Leslie at Sant Salvador café, with the biggest bread, cheese and ham rolls!

https://www.strava.com/activities/1542622864

Up to Sant Salvador

and a rare damp part of the day at Santuari Cura at Randa.

Panorama with Leslie at a damp Santuari Cura at Randa
Panorama with Leslie at a damp Santuari Cura at Randa

https://www.strava.com/activities/1542965143

A damp day at Santuari Cura at Randa with Leslie
A damp day at Santuari Cura at Randa with Leslie

October 2018

You should be getting used to the typical Mallorcan weather by looking at the images. Actually, in 2018 there was a severe storm just as I arrived in early October, and floods at the eastern end of Mallorca, but I lost only a day or so of cycling. Someone, however, did lose their life in an overturned car in eastern Mallorca. I posted my October 2018 cycling trip previously in my blog, which started with the unusually poor weather, and TV images.

11th October 2018, the end of cabin fever – Bimont bike store, Puigponent and Bar Es Pont, Galilea (451m) and Tapas Bar La Placa, Es Capdella, Andratx, Port d’Andratx, Camp de Mar, Peguera and home.

https://www.strava.com/activities/1898385833

Port d'Andratx, Andratx, Galielea, Puigponent, Establiments loop returning via the old Palma ring road
Port d’Andratx, Andratx, Galilea, Puigponent, Establiments loop returning via the old Palma ring road

The view south-west from the balcony at Cafe de la Plaça, Galilea

The view north from the balcony at Cafe de la Plaça, Galilea, towards Santa Ponsa and Costa de la Calma
The view south-west from the balcony at Cafe de la Plaça, Galilea, towards Santa Ponsa and Costa de la Calma

12th October 2018, a good 85kms  loop route from Costa de la Calma (my base) to Banyalbufar and the Bellavista café, with photos on Strava:

https://www.strava.com/activities/1899818079

A good 85kms loop route from Costa de la Calma (our place) to Banyalbufar and the Bellavista café
A good 85kms loop route from Costa de la Calma (our place) to Banyalbufar and the Bellavista café

Panorama from the Bellavista café, in Banyalbufar, on the north coast

Panorama from the Bellavista café
Panorama from the Bellavista café

13th October 2018, Gran Fondo, earning the jersey! 8000 feet of climbing isn’t bad for the day, I think I earned it, knocking off the last climb, Port Valdemossa, and adding Port Canonge for good measure, to complete the climbs on the jersey (shown below).

https://www.strava.com/activities/1902475561

Earning the jersey! 8000 feet of climbing isn’t bad for the day, I think I earned it, knocking off the last climb, Port Valdemossa, and adding Port Canonge for good measure
Earning the jersey! With 8000 feet of climbing for the day, I think I earned it, knocking off the last climb, up from Port Valdemossa, and adding Port Canonge for good measure
Down at Port Valdemossa for lunch, just the climb out to do!
Down at Port Valdemossa for lunch, just the climb out to do!

The Mallorca climbs jersey

Here’s the jersey I was earning…Port Canonge isn’t on there, but it should be. It’s available to buy at the Bike Garage in Selva. https://yellow.place/en/the-bike-garage-selva-spain. My friend Leslie earned it before I did – he only needed two visits to get it before I did (i.e. earn the jersey by doing all the climbs on it); I had been cycling there for years – what a slouch!

The Mallorca climbs jersey
The Mallorca climbs jersey, available from the Bike Garage in Selva

Anyway, they are all done now, including up both sides for the ones that can be climbed from more than one direction (like Puig Major and Coll de Sollér, for example), unlike those such as Port Canonge and Port Valdemossa, which are, of course, one-sided, being up from the coast.

As I said in my Strava post for Port Valdemossa, you tend to get cramps in the hands with the braking downhill – the descents are almost harder than doing the climbs! 

14th October 2018

Another regular loop of mine in Mallorca, this time including Sant Elm, at the extreme western end of the island, opposite the islet of Dragonera; 

Also Andratx, Port d’Andratx, Es Capdella and Calvia, with the bike shop/café Meson Ca’n Torrat, complete with their own kit to buy, is located, owned by an old racer and his son, with his old bike above the entrance. Only about 50kms and a worthwhile local ride.

Ca'n Torrat, complete with their own kit to buy, owned by an old racer and his son, with his old bike above the entrance). Only about 50kms and a worthwhile local ride.
Ca’n Torrat, complete with their own kit to buy, owned by an old racer and his son, with his old bike above the entrance). Only about 50kms and a worthwhile local ride.

Riding with Philip Crawford, and pretty good weather again.

https://www.strava.com/activities/1904604784

Active recovery loop to Sant Elm, Es Capdella and Calvia
Active recovery loop to Sant Elm, Es Capdella and Calvia

With Philip at the Mesón Ca´n Torrat bike shop and café/restaurant in Calvia.

With Philip at the Mesón Ca´n Torrat bike shop and café/restaurant in Calvia
With Philip at the Mesón Ca´n Torrat bike shop and café/restaurant in Calvia

2019

6Points MALLORCA (One of the six “Points” is free, the lowest, at any beach!)

Day 1, 17th May 2019, to Sant Elm, for the westerly Point, and then the Ma10 to the highest “Point”, Puig Major, with our overnight at Port Pollensa. About 100 miles.

The start of the 2018 6Points Mallorca, in Santa Ponsa
The start of the 2019 6Points Mallorca, in Santa Ponsa

https://www.strava.com/activities/2375194025

Day 1 of the 6Points Mallorca, 17th May 2019, to Sant Elm, for the westerly Point, and then the Ma10 to the highest “Point”, Puig Major, with our overnight at Port Pollensa. About 100 miles
Day 1 of the 6Points Mallorca, 17th May 2019, to Sant Elm, for the westerly Point, and then the Ma10 to the highest “Point”, Puig Major, with our overnight at Port Pollensa. About 100 miles

Day 2, 18th May 2019

Up to Cap Formentor, the northerly Point, and then south, via another lighthouse, at the Capdepera lighthouse, near Cala Rajada, the easterly Point, then down to Cala Millor for the overnight stop. Just over 100kms.

Panorama at Cap Formentor
Panorama at Cap Formentor, our Day 1 northerly point

https://www.strava.com/activities/2377729256

Day 2 of the 6Points, 18th May 2019, up to Cap Formentor, the northerly Point, and via another lighthouse, at Capdepera, near Cala Rajada, the easterly Point, then down to Cala Millor for the overnight stop. Just over 100kms
Day 2 of the 6Points, 18th May 2019, up to Cap Formentor, the northerly Point, and then, via another lighthouse, at Capdepera, near Cala Rajada, the easterly Point, then down to Cala Millor for the overnight stop. Just over 100kms
At Far de Capdepera with the 6Points group
At Far de Capdepera, our Day 2 easterly point, with the 6Points group

Day 3, 19th May 2019

Back to Santa Ponsa, via the southerly Point at another lighthouse, Far des Cap de ses Salines. Another 100 miles, to complete the 6Points Mallorca Challenge.

With Andrew, Andy and Phil at Far del Cap Salines
With Andrew, Andy and Phil at Far del Cap Salines, our southernmost Point

https://www.strava.com/activities/2381071067

Day 3 of the 6Points, 19th May 2019, back to Santa Ponsa, via the southerly Point at another lighthouse, Far des Cap de ses Salines. Another 100 miles
Day 3 of the 6Points, 19th May 2019, back to Santa Ponsa, via the southerly Point at another lighthouse, Far des Cap de ses Salines. Another 100 miles
Philip walks from the beach at Santa Ponsa, the end of our 6Points Mallorca 3-day event
Philip walks from the beach at Santa Ponsa, the end of our May 2019 6Points Mallorca 3-day event

Sobremunt and 6Points Ibiza & Formentera, October 2019

Climbing Sobremunt, the hardest climb in Mallorca, was somewhat stiff preparation for the 6Points Ibiza trip the day after! I had previously announced the intention in my blog, so I was committed!

Sobremunt, from my October 3rd 2019 ride, not the highest, but steep, and fairly long. Both GCN and Mallorca Cycle Shuttle rate this climb as “The Hardest Climb in Mallorca”. See https://brianrsutton.com/2019/10/19/sobremunt-the-hardest-climb-in-mallorca/ for more.

https://www.strava.com/activities/2760413755

I climb Sobremunt, the hardest climb in Mallorca!
Sobremunt loop; not the highest, but steep, and fairly long – the hardest climb in Mallorca

I met Niels and Volker up there, so we took pictures of each other in celebration.

Made it!! The top of the Strava segment. There is more though, which I did too…
Niels and Peter at Sobremunt
Niels Stephan and Volker Peter at Sobremunt

6Points Ibiza / Formentera, 4/5/6th October 2019

A very short ride from the Ibiza ferry terminal to the hotel we were using at that time, on 4th October 2019.

https://www.strava.com/activities/2761603217

A very short ride from the Ibiza ferry terminal to the hotel
A very short ride from the Ibiza ferry terminal to the hotel
On the ferry passing Ibiza
On the ferry passing Ibiza

6Points Formentera 5th October 2019 – my Strava with pics

https://www.strava.com/activities/2765263487

Ferry trip from Ibiza and riding on Formentera
Ferry trip from Ibiza and riding on Formentera
To the lighthouse! With the 6Points group
To the lighthouse! With the 6Points group

6Points Ibiza 6th October 2019 – my Strava with pics

https://www.strava.com/activities/2768270598

Ibiza 6th October 2019 - my Strava with pics
Ibiza 6th October 2019 – my Strava with pics
The intrepid 6Points crew
The intrepid 6Points crew – Alex, Alan, Philip, Brian, Lou and Nick, with Bryan taking the picture

Those three days made up the riding (apart from home to Palma for the ferry and back) for the 3-day weekend we had on those two smaller Balearic islands. The next day…

…back to Mallorca!

Galilea

How could I not include another ride up to Galilea, maybe my favourite local destination: the Tapas Bar La Placa! Also via the Ca’n Torrat, with quail and rice pudding!

My favourite local destination: the Tapas Bar La Placa! Also via the Ca’n Torrat, with quail and rice pudding!
My favourite local destination: the Tapas Bar La Plaça! Also via the Ca’n Torrat, with quail and rice pudding!

7th October 2019, the day after our Ibiza/Formentera trip that year, riding again with Philip Crawford, another of our 6Points committee members, a close friend of Bryan Visser, the https://6pointschallenges.com/2022-ibiza-and-formentera-registration/ organiser, we rode up to Galilea.

https://www.strava.com/activities/2770399687

A regular ride up to a great café with a little balcony, with a good view from high up in Galilea.
A regular ride up to a great café with a little balcony, with a good view from high up in Galilea.

Tapas Bar La Plaça is a great little café with a balcony, with a good view from high up in Galilea.

The great view from La Plaça café - the background, anyway!
The great view from La Plaça café – the background, anyway!

All the links for my Balearics 6Points ride videos

6Points Mallorca May 2019 Day 1

6Points Mallorca May 2019, Day 2

6Points Mallorca May 2019, Day 3

The Points of 6Points Challenges – or – why I love 6Points cycling

6Points Ibiza Oct 6th 2019 – full version

6Points Ibiza Oct 6th 2019 – short version

6Points Formentera, Oct 5th 2019 – full version

6Points Formentera, Oct 5th 2019 – short version

6Points Ibiza and Formentera October 2019

The next 6Points Challenges

I started by mentioning the upcoming 6Points Ibiza and Formentera on October 7/8/9th, an event I know well from doing it in October 2019, which I am really looking forward to as a first post-pandemic bike excursion.

I’ll close by mentioning next year’s 6Points Mallorca on May 19th/20th/21st 2023, which I did in May 2019. A little larger event (up to 75 riders, with support) but still with the Cycling Club look and feel.

I will be going again, and I hope this long list of Mallorca and other Balearics cycling opportunities will persuade you to come too!

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