After examining the map and doing our sums last night, we discovered that we would have to turn inland slightly from the twisty, hilly coastal road to try and make a bit of time. Our whole extra week that we thought we had to make our way from the Ardeche to Valencia for Christmas seems to have disappeared, no doubt taken up by our leisurely path through France.If we’ve calculated correctly, we need to go pretty steadily down the shortest route possible to make our hostel and meet our friends, Conny and Mel, who will be joining us there for a few days.
This unfortunately means no stop in L’Escala, a seaside town recommended to us, and no alternative to the direct but busy road between Barcelona and Valencia, which is apparently filled with endless miles of holiday apartments. We hope to come back through this area in March and do it properly, taking some of the more minor roads we wanted to see this time.
The day overall was fairly uneventful, no great sights en route although the town of Castello was quaint, with its cobblestone streets, narrow alleys and a church with huge statues adorning its doors. From there we mostly made our way down roads with a steady stream of traffic and not much in the way of attractions, aside from the miles of fruit orchards lining the route. We will rejoin the sea tomorrow and to that end we did our last few kilometers on a low mountain pass, only about 200 meters up. Coming down the other side we followed a little path and found a field to camp in. We must be well hidden, with bamboo all around the field, as a couple local hunters who came down the same path shortly before sunset didn’t see us at all.
16th December 2006 at 9:28 pm #
N260 Llanca to Marza Two or three hills coming out of Llanca but nothing serious. Wide shoulder all the way. Steady traffic with some large lorries on the route.
Agricultural road Marza to Castello This road didn’t have a number on our map and the signs on the road said it was mostly for agricultural use. Passed through couple small villages, almost no traffic and forms part of a local cycle loop at one point. Probably only for mountain bikes or tourers as the road is not in great shape, although it is paved all the way.
Minor road Castello to Viladamat Another road without any markings that we noticed. If you ask at the tourist bureau in Castello, they have local maps to get you to Viladamat on this road. Very straight and flat, started out with a shoulder but that did not continue the whole way. Medium level of traffic, no big trucks on this road.
C31 Viladamat to Parlava Very busy road but with quite a wide shoulder on it in parts. Road was not in great condition, with a cracked surface and dips where we had to ride.
Cycle path Parlava to La Bisbal On the south side of Parlava we saw a sign for a cycle path to La Bisbal and decided to follow it, sick of the traffic on the C31. It was paved for the first 3km or so, winding through a village, but then became a bumpy dirt road which crosses the El Daro river (more like a stream at the time we were there). There is no bridge though so we had to get creative to get across without getting our feet wet!
GI660 La Bisbal to Calonge Very quiet road, flat for the first few kilometers then a steady but manageable climb up to about 220 meters. Some potential for wild camping along this route.
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