Why Girona makes the perfect base for cyclist Dan Craven

September 3, 2015

Some of the biggest names in cycle racing have flocked to this Catalan town for its Pyrenean training routes, food and beauty

When people hear that you live in Girona they say: “Oh, that’s where Lance Armstrong lived.” Yeah! So what? He wasn’t the first pro-cyclist to move here. You can come here and avoid the herd, if you want, but the herd is here for good reasons: the climate, the routes, the training. And having them here means that when you arrive you can ask: “What do I need to do to settle in?” And they can help.

It’s hard to pick the best ride around Girona – there are so many. But my favourite one heads west out of town towards Sant Gregori and then further out to the Vall de Llémena in the Pyrenees. If you’re up for a long ride, do a loop through Olot and Banyoles and then back to Girona. In the colder months, before tourists flock in, the coast roads are a must. It’s an amazing coastline, with a lovely undulating road. I’d advise checking out my Girona rides on Strava (strava.com), which is a website and app that allows athletes to track their rides and runs. This will help you to find the smaller hidden roads I use; the big roads are beautiful but it’s the small roads that take it to another level.

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