In 2018, Jan F went on a trip to the Sierra Nevada with Clubmot, a Belgian organizer of motorcycle trips and trainings, and he really liked it. When he suggested the idea of starting our motorcycle season early and with a lot of miles on a new Clubmot trip to southern Spain, I was sold immediately. Our biker bud Shih as well. Vamos a Andalucia!
The formula for this trip was the same as the trip to the Sierra Nevada: Fly & ride. Clubmot books the flights and the hotel, and provides you with routes. Your bike travels there and back via truck transport. Nicely arranged.
We left early on Saturday March 19th (so that we could already start riding on Saturday afternoon) and were back in Brussels on Saturday March 26th at 9 pm.
Clubmot provided two routes for each day: a short and a long one. Although the focus is on riding, there were usually some sights to see along the way. A nice city center or a hot spring for example. We always opted for the longest route and skipped most of the stops. We did visit El Torcal and despite the fog it was a personal highlight.
The southern Spanish landscape can be described as hilly. Here and there it gets a bit more mountainous, but those passages are rather short. Few awe-inspiring views or high peaks like in the Alps for example, but on the other hand we still enjoyed some impressive rock formations, endless olive groves and beautiful vistas.
The routes weren’t pre-ridden, but I can’t fault tham. Just a few times we passed by the same bit twice, but if it’s a nice winding road, you won’t hear me complain. Usually it was a nice mix of tight corners and fast twists.
For many riders, Spanish asphalt equals super smooth lanes, but that wasn’t really the case here. Perfect roads alternated with fairly rough grounds or miles of patchwork.
While those staying at home in Belgium enjoyed a week of sun, Spain gave us some autumn weather. Every now and then a bit of sun, but mainly cloudy and rather cool temperatures. For a day and a half you had no choice but to ride in the rain, and as if that wasn’t enough, there were also some dusty clouds of Sahara sand on which we ended up grinding our teeth, both figuratively and literally. It was very special how the sky turned orange, almost apocalyptic. Cleaning the sand from the bike afterwards was memorable in a different way (read: a hellish job).
We stayed with more than 60 Clubmot riders in hotel Riu Costa Del Sol in Torremolinos, a big all-inclusive resort with 500 rooms, 3 swimming pools, as many restaurants and a bar around every corner. A bit too mass-touristy for my liking, but of course we came mainly to ride our bikes.
The season was clearly yet to start: it was extremely calm around the hotel and you had to go to the center of Torremolinos (a fifteen minute walk) to encounter some life on the streets.
You want to go ride in southern Spain for a week? If you have to come all the way from Belgium by yourself, you easily lose four days during the 4000 km round trip. Clubmot solves this by transporting your motorcycle by truck. This means you can really ride for a full week in southern Spain.
The Clubmot approach is “Do as you please” which works perfectly for me. You get all routes and choose which route you ride when and with whom. Do you want to leave early or sleep till noon? No issue at all. Do you have questions or a problem? The two Clubmot tour guides are always available.
I’m surely going to keep an eye on their calendar for next year.