A Grand Tour: Mountain Biking the GR247 in Andalucia
The GR247 winds its way through the one of the most peaceful and unspoilt mountainous regions in all Spain, to journey along its length and breadth is a veritable delight for the senses. Its unblemished landscapes and abundant wildlife are among the most spectacular in the whole of Europe. The GR247 - El Bosques del Sur (The Forests of the South) is the largest contiguous circular way-marked route in Spain , connecting the main population centres of Cazorla in the south and Siles in the north and winding its way through the remote hamlets that are peppered throughout this Biosphere Reserve.
This mountain bike tour offers a unique opportunity to get close and personal not only with the flora and fauna , but also the towns and hamlets scattered amongst the high sierras: their gastronomic delights and the hardy people. The largest natural area of Spain, the Natural Park of Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas covers some 800sq. miles of forests and high mountains. This MTB tour takes in the labyrinthine headwaters that birth the Guadalquivir and Segura rivers (that between them drain most of southern Spain), crosses the mosaic landscapes of Olive groves, high mountain peaks, Knights Templar fortresses, forests, rivers and waterfalls; riding on forgotten single-tracks; along ancient droving routes in the high sierras and through isolated villages, abandoned save for the few brave shepherds that farm these remote pastures.
Mountain biking the GR247 is a great way to immerse yourself in the traditional culture and customs of this completely unspoiled Spain. These landscapes are full of memories: the history of Europe, indeed early humanity, is literally written on the walls of the cliffs and the castles that protect the passes through them. The route is long, some 350km, and due to the rugged and demanding nature of the landscape, it takes some 6 days to circumnavigate the park, averaging some 70km a day, with significant elevation gains each day. One of the nights is spent in a remote refugio high in the Sierras de Segura, (so sleeping bags are needed, but carried in the support vehicle) and some sections on some stages will require a bike carry. They're never long, but some short sections are just a bit too hairy, too steep, or too rocky.
There is a minimum number of 4 required for this tour to go ahead and a maximum of 6. Accommodation is limited along the route and that which is available can get booked up quickly, especially in summer. We therefore require at least 10 weeks notice to ensure accommodation along the route.
Saturday: Collect at Airport and Transfer to Base Hotel
Sunday: Stage One - 65km overnight in Albergue
Monday: Stage Two - 70km overnight in Pension
Tuesday: Stage Three: 50km overnight in rural cabins
Wednesday: Stage Four: 80km; overnight in Hotel
Thursday: Stage Five: 75km; overnight in Refugio
Friday: Stage Six: 45km overnight @ Base Hotel
Saturday: Transfer to Airport
This itinerary assumes a good level of pre-existing fitness and mountain bike experience. Several stages include long steep climbs, which, while not technically challenging are nonetheless very physically demanding. Stage Four has an IBP index of 250, so its not "easy" for anyone and if you´re not of a certain level of fitness you may find that either you wont enjoy the experience, or worse, you are unable to complete the route.... (For a guide on who will best enjoy a break with Cool Sierras, read this) For an alternative itinerary with shorter stages and more overnight stops please contact us for a custom tour package to best suit your needs.
* "Planned": Stuff happens. Forest fires in 2017 meant a change in route, heavy rains can turn rideable single-track into rock-strewn river beds, logging and park husbandry can cause temporary trail closures. See our Terms and Conditions for more info.
665 euros per person, min group of 4, max 6 (limited accommodation options: for larger groups please contact us for a custom package)
Contact Us for details and questions.
- Collection and Drop-off (Airport (ALC or MJV) or Train Station (contact for details))
- Bed and Breakfast Accommodation (7 Nights inc. Night in Refugio)
- Accompanying Riding Guide
- Support Vehicle and transport of bags and kit.
- Support "Runner".
- Photographer and any Photos.
Available at Extra Cost.
- Bike Hire
- Evening Meals and Beverages
- Daytime Snacks and Beverages
- Mechanical Assistance or Parts
Refund Policy Here
This event is highly dependent on time of year and notice given: this is a tour through a sparsely populated area with only very limited accommodation. Please book early!