Bicycle, Bicycle, Bicycle …. I want to ride my bicycle

Vuelta de Andalucia cycle race, Spain

With hardly a fat-bottomed girl in sight, the bicycle races came east of Málaga yesterday, for the Vuelta Ciclista a Andalucía – one of Spain’s biggest cycling events of the year.  

The 60th Ruta del Sol takes place between February 19th and 23rd, with the peloton travelling through eight Andalucían provinces, covering 733.7 kilometres across five stages. 

Think of it as a mini-version of the better-known Tour de France or the Vuelta a España.

After the Prologue in Almeria further east along the coast on the 19th, the first stage started yesterday in Vélez-Málaga at 11am.  The day’s racing (the second longest at 187km) culminated in Jaén at the Castillo de Santa Catalina, passing through Zafarraya and Alhama de Granada along the way.

You’ll remember I wrote about the old railway line at Zafarraya recently, and this area seemed like a good place to view the race as there is a steep climb for the riders within the first hour of the race.

We positioned ourselves at about 700m elevation with a splendid view of the spectacular U-shaped Zafarraya Pass, as well as a great view of the series of bends below, along which the peleton would travel.

The weather was glorious, with hardly a cloud to interrupt the blue sky.  The sun shone and you can see the almond trees in blossom nearby and the surrounding mountains to complete a perfect picture.

There was plenty of activity with the passing of Guardia Civil vans and motor-cyclists, as well as lots of pleasure cyclists (if you can call it a pleasure, cycling so far uphill!) vying for the best position to see their heroes.

We didn’t have long to wait before the leading group of riders came into view.

Click on any of the images to get a better view.

There were nineteen teams, each with seven riders taking part, including Team Sky led by Sir Bradley Wiggins, former Tour de France winner, who sadly I never spotted.


All was not lost though, with all that testosterone wafting by in the form of young men wearing tight lycra!

So, within a couple of minutes of first spotting them in the distance, the peleton of La Vuelta Cyclista a Andalucía had passed by.

 They were barely out of breath.  No huffing and puffing for these guys.  OH NO!

Bringing up the rear came the various support vehicles carrying spare parts and bicycles with the customary ambulance in case of medical support.

If you’d like more information about the race and route, please visit:

On your marks, get set, GO!!!!!!!



Spanish football: Estadio La Roselada, home of Málaga CF

Málaga Club de Fútbol is based at Estadio La Roselada in Málaga. The team currently plays in Spain’s top football league, known as La Liga.

If you are staying in Málaga Province and you love football, why not look out for match during your stay?

[Image credit: (cc) Miwipedia]

The 29,000-capacity La Rosaleda Stadium (The Rose Garden) is a two-tiered bowl with a great atmosphere on match day.   Located to the north of the city, the stadium is well-served by public transport.

If you’re travelling by car, you should be able to find a free parking space in La Rosaleda Shopping Centre Car Park – a couple of hundred metres away.   Failing that, there is usually plenty of space to park on local streets.

For most games, getting seats on match day is generally fairly easy – the obvious exceptions being the FC Barcelona and Real Madrid games.

When considering the list of home fixtures and ticket availability and pricing, it’s worth bearing in mind that the Spanish Football Association only release information regarding which games are to be televised one week before the fixture.  So when you are planning your visit, you need to ensure that you are in  Málaga between the Saturday afternoon and the Monday morning for your chosen weekend.  Confirmed kick-off times first appear at the Spanish FA Website.

If you can’t get to the match, you can always watch live coverage of most English and Spanish football matches in many bars around the Axarquía.

Have you ever been to a football match in Spain?  Who did you support?


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Spanish football: It doesn´t get any bigger than this!

Spain is buzzing with excitement as the countdown to La Liga´s El Clásico begins, when all eyes will be firmly fixed on the two Spanish footballing giants.

Sunday evening (7th October) sees old rivals Barcelona and Real Madrid battling it out at the Camp Nou stadium, in an eagerly awaited clash that could prove pivotal in Real Madrid’s title defence, as their Catalan rivals are already eight points clear after only six games.

Let battle commence.

This is futbol.  Not soccer.

futbolImage credit Flickr CC:


UPDATE 7TH OCTOBER: After an exciting 90 minutes, the match ended up a 2-2 draw which, under the circumstances,  seemed a fair result!

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Top 10 Best Football Players in Spain today

La Noche de San Juan: Families, fires and football!