Five of Spain’s Most Bike Friendly Cities

While many visitors to Spain like to see the sites on their own two feet, moverse on two wheels is becoming ever more popular and tourism grows.

From city-wide cycling lanes to innovative and unlimited rental systems like, Spain is following the example of other European cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam when it comes to making cities bike friendly, and cycle tours are cropping up as quickly as tapas bars, it seems.

Bike Tour El Arenal Sevilla

Issues such as sustainability, pollution and health have become heavy-hitters that swing in the favor of biking – and that doesn’t even cover the weather or leisure factors. In fact, the sector grew 8,2% in 2o15 and an estimated 10% of Spaniards use a bike daily (source: Asociación de Marcas y Bicicletas de España).

Cities around the country are listening, but you don’t have to be local to take advantage of the ‘pedelea‘:


Even if Ada Colau is all for a touristic ban, you can’t deny that Barcelona is a city rife for cyclistic touring. The local Ajuntament is launching a larger network of bike paths that will take cyclists from one reach of the city to another, scheduled to debut over the course of 2017.

Barcelona bike lane map


And in a city as large and (almost) flat as la Ciudad Condal, bicycle hire in Barcelona is the way to go; imagine cruising past the waterfront or down Las Ramblas on a bike!


When my friends Brian and Matt came to visit me in Seville, the city had just launched its bike-share system, one of the first in Spain. My college buddies spent their days riding from dock to dock, drinking beers in between in the January sunshine.
Bike Tour Sevilla Patio de las Banderas

During the nine years I lived in Seville, my main mode of transportation became bike(s) as I made use of the miles of paved bike lanes that crisscross the city, connecting nearly every neighborhood better than public transportation does. And it made me feel extra European!

What sets Seville apart is that its bike lanes are off the street, meaning that it’s safer for cyclists. And because of the weather, you can bike year-round.

If only Madrid would invest a bit more in their infrastructure so this abuelita can stop yelling, “ESTO NO ES UN CARRIL BICI” on my frigid walk to work.


When I went to Valencia for Las Fallas last March, it wasn’t the fireworks and burning effigies – it was how many people were still circulating around the city by bike, despite throngs of tourists and raging street party (look for a post soon – it was a ton of fun and worth the burst ear drums!).

Testing out new wings. How do you like them?

A photo posted by Donkey Republic (@donkey_republic) on

Thanks to a push from the local government to make the Mediterranean city safer for bikes, as well as a coastline and the dried bed of the Turia – now turned into a huge park – Valencia (and its 120 kilometers of bike path) is quickly becoming one of Spain’s best urban areas for cycling.


An up-and-coming tourist destination in a country full of red-letter cities, Málaga, its coastal counterparts and the surrounding mountain communities have invested in cyclists. And given the higher number of holiday makers and the city’s strong push for infrastructure, culture and gastronomy, bike-friendly laws will likely grow.

Bike Tour Barrio Santa Cruz Sevilla

If you rent a bike, you can use the city’s nearly 100 kilometers of bike lanes to take you from just about Pedragalejo past famed Playa de la Malagueta, to the city center and as far west as the Diputación de Málaga.


One of Spain’s largest cities, the capital of Aragón has been giving ciclistas priority throughout most of its urban center for years – and it’s relatively flat, despite the region’s fame for mountains and outdoor activities.

What’s more, the town hall website has numerous resources for cycling fans, including the best routes for both urban treks (including how long it will take you and any bike shops en route) and for those looking for more of a challenge further afield.

Seville Bike City

As tourism in Spain surges, many other cities – particularly in the Basque Country and in touristic destinations like the Costas – are expanding their infrastructure to promote safe cycling for locals and visitors alike. A word to the wise: remember that, as a vehicle under penal law, you are subject to the same laws as a driver. This means no cycling after knocking back six botellínes or riding through a stoplight when no one is coming. Helmets aren’t required but strongly recommended.

Spain's Most

These days, the only sightseeing I’m doing is to the doctor’s office or pharmacy, but my legs are aching to be back on my cruiser, Feliciano. That is, once I’ve bought a bike seat for Microcín!

Have you ever rented a bike in Spain or done a cycling tour? I’d love to hear about it!

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About Cat Gaa

As a beef-loving Chicago girl living amongst pigs, bullfighters, and a whole lotta canis, Cat Gaa writes about expat life in Seville, Spain. When not cavorting with adorable Spanish grandpas or struggling with Spanish prepositions, she works in higher education at an American university in Madrid and freelances with other publications, like Rough Guides and The Spain Scoop.


  1. Hi, Cat! When was the baby born? Please tell us about him. How was the birth? God bless him and you too.

    • Hola Conchy, Enrique was born nearly four weeks ago in Seville. I won’t be getting into birthing details on the blog, but he was born healthy and I’ve recovered well. Eats like a horse (so does mom to keep up!) and is a absolute joy. And I’m sleeping during the week thanks for my lovely mother-in-law, who is giving me a hand! Thank you so much for checking in and asking.

  2. Brilliant, my abiding memory of Seville is cruising down the Guadalajara riverside bike path on my rusty town bike with the wind in my hair and passion in my heart for what is a wonderful wonderful city. Thanks for the nostalgia (though it is heavy!)

  3. Thanks for writing about the bike friendly cities in Spain!! Certainly look forward to exploring them some day.

  4. Hey Cat why did not you mention Madrid on this list? Is not it bike friendly?
    Jesica recently posted..Stamina Elite Total Body Recumbent Exercise Bike ReviewMy Profile

    • Madrid recently put in bike lanes, though they are not as extensive as other cities nor as safe. Additionally, it’s quite hilly! I haven’t biked it personally but don’t think it would be the best city to bike in compared with Valencia or Sevilla.

  5. Great blog post! In general , Spain is not the best bike-friendly country in Europe but it is safe enough.Spain is one of the most beautiful countries though. I hope that in the future they will make many more bike lanes and park which will allow bikers. Anyways , keep the good work. Cheers, ALEK

  6. Hi Cat !, a Spanish city that we love to make bike routes is Girona, has some spectacular landscapes.

  7. Harrison Wills says:

    Seville is very bicycle friendly. I live here and bike to work and around the city everyday and it’s wonderful. The city is nimble, flat, and is full of protected/safe bicycle paths. I also previously lived in Barcelona and it was definitely bicycle friendly too. Although I think biking is a bit better in Seville because there is a bit less street traffic and anytime I need to travel north or south I take the river path that’s just gorgeous and 100% car-free. Also the Sevici bike share system here is great and it’s only about 32 Euros for a year if you are a local resident. My only complaint here is that sometimes people stand/walk in the middle of the clearly marked bike path when they have a wide open sidewalk right beside them.

    I am planning to move to Malaga and I am hoping I will be able to bike around with ease/safety like I have here in Seville.

  8. Brian Myers says:

    Hi Cat,
    I’m planning a self-contained bicycle tour in Spain, flying to Barcelona and riding out of the airport. Are there any maps of bike routes for the country? Thanks.

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