Grand Tour Spain: ”Ride Every Kilometre" - Week 1 Costa Blanca to Andorra

  • Location

    Costa Blanca to Andorra

  • Duration

    11 Days | 10 Nights

  • Length

    150-200km daily

  • Climb

    500-2,500m daily

23 Aug 2019 - 2 Sep 2019

Join us for the third and final Grand Tour of the year in Spain as we ride every kilometre of the first 9 stages. Starting near Alicante, historically named "City of Light", we will ride north in a high speed pursuit of a lifetime along the Mediterranean coast into Catalonia and Andorra.

Starting near the pink saltwater lakes of Valencia's impressive Salinas de Torrevieja natural park we'll watch the pros battle for La Roja - the famous leader's red jersey - in the high-speed inaugural team time-trial. We then complete the longest back to back leg of the tour, riding almost 1,400 km over 8 concurrent stages.

You will need to be a strong cyclist to achieve this challenge, but you don't need to be an elite athlete. Ours is a journey, not a race, and we'll leave enough time on each day to enjoy lunch breaks and photo stops with the support van and supplies always close by. Once we cross the finish line each day, we'll sit back and watch the race as the "fight for red" takes place right on our heels.

If riding every kilometre of 9 stages, sounds a bit much, then you can choose to join the breathtaking 7 stage second leg tour through the Pyrenees, Cantabria and Asturias or the exhilarating 5 stage final leg tour that finishes in Madrid. Alternatively, set yourself the challenge of a lifetime and ride through all 21 stages and join the very exclusive amateur hall of fame!

If all of this sounds exciting but it's still a little too demanding, our "Experience" tours offer a less more relaxing itinerary that enjoys the best 60-100 km of each day, whilst riding at our own pace.

This tour is being hosted in conjunction with the "Ride with Mike" project. After dealing with a number of life changing events such as kidney cancer and sustaining injuries that caused bleeding on the brain and serious neck injuries, Mike's goal is to raise awareness and money for a charity close to his heart - the National Institute of Integrative Medicine (NIIM). Mike has currently raised AUD$479,000 for NIIM, and he is aiming for $1 million. We are delighted to support Mike by donating all profits from our Grand Tours Project "Ride Every Kilometre" trips to NIIM.

Please note - Grand Tours Project is not an "Official Tour Operator" of La Vuelta. You can find these Official Tour Operators on the Vuelta website.

Total price: From €4,950

  • "Ride Every Kilometre" of stages 1 to 9 of the third and final Grand Tour in Spain
  • Watch the pros fight for the red jersey, from the best possible vantage points
  • Enjoy the passionate and vocal Spanish supporters wherever we cycle
  • Relish the local Spanish food and wine, and relax in the lovely hotels
  • Expert planning and support from our team (guides, mechanics, drivers)
  • Bianchi bike rental available (Infinito CV disc + Ultegra di2 electronic)
  • Day 1 - Friday, 23 August

    Bienvenido a Alicante

    It's the first day of our incredible Ride Every Kilometre Tour today and what a journey this year is set to be. We kick off in style as we begin our tour on the Mediterranean sea. After picking you up at the airport and settling in to our hotel in Alicante, our mechanic will help unpack and build your bike. We'll then hand out the team kit and make final preparations before tomorrow's first ride. After discussing the week's programme, we'll enjoy a hearty dinner in the city centre while enjoying the buzzing atmosphere before the Big Start. Our hotel for the first three nights is located just 100 metres from the city's historic centre. Positioned between the lovely Postiguet beach at the foot of Santa Bárbara castle and the port marina. From here you'll be able to enjoy the best of Alicante and enjoy some well earned rest during the incredible first few days of this tour.

  • Day 2 - Saturday, 24 August

    Stage 1 : Salinas de Torrevieja - Torrevieja

    18km Team Time Trial

    An action packed day as we watch the pros race all out for La Roja - the leader's prestigious red jersey - in the inaugural team time trial. This 18km urban circuit will be fast and flat as both we and the pros fly around the streets of Torrevieja at top speed. We'll ride the inaugural course in the morning and head out to Salinas de Torrevieja just after breakfast. We'll stay for the afternoon, immersed in the crowds and atmosphere, to watch the pros before returning to relax for the evening and discuss our favourite and strongest competitors.

  • Day 3 - Sunday, 25 August

    Stage 2 : Benidorm - Calpe

    193 km - Hilly

    After breakfast we head to the pro riders' favourite winter training ground in Benidorm to ride the first mountains of La Vuelta 2019. It's a long and hilly course for the climbers where the first part of the stage passes through Alicante's hinterland. An area characterised by its winding roads that feature the climbs of Puerto Confridas (2nd category - 965m) and Alto de Benilloba (3rd category - 755m). In the second part we pass Calpe to climb Alto de Puig Llorença (2nd category - 340m) to Cumbre del Sol, known as Summit of the Sun, before descending again to Calpe and the finish. One final night in our hotel in Alicante before moving on to tackle the next stage.

  • Day 4 - Monday, 26 August

    Stage 3: Ibi. Ciudad del Juguete - Alicante

    186 km - Flat

    An early breakfast in Alicante will fuel us up before a short transfer to Ibi and KM 0 of Stage 3. This course has been categorised as flat. With a few 3rd category climbs on the menu, including Puerto de Biar and Puerto de Tibi, its not exactly one for the sprinters but expect some relatively steady sections and a welcome descent to finish the day in Alicante. From here we'll drive on to the city of Cullera for the start of stage 4 tomorrow.

  • Day 5 - Tuesday, 27 August

    Stage 4 : Cullera - El Puig

    177 km - Flat

    Starting in the city of Cullera, we'll be glad to feel our legs spinning freely and to pick up some speed on this long flat course. There's just one climb on today's route: Puerto de Oronet, a 3rd category climb. From here there's a long 45km downhill finish all the way to El Puig. From here we'll drive on to the city of Valencia to relax for the evening where you will be free to hit the beachfront and cool off in the Mediterranean sea or just wander the city centre to take in the old streets and futuristic buildings.

  • Day 6 - Wednesday, 28 August

    Stage 5 : L' Eliana - Observatorio Astrofísico de Javalambre

    165,6 km - Hilly

    There will be a short transfer after breakfast to the start in L'Eliana. From here we will start the first climb of the day, a long and steady ascent to Puerto de Alcublas (2nd category - 1,000m). The rest of the day is characterised by picturesque Spanish mountain villages as we progress through this rolling hilly stage towards Torrijas. We then descend down to Arcos de las Salinas where there will be just 9 km of climbing to the top of Observatorio Astrofísico de Javalambre (1st category - 1950m). It's the first time this climb has featured in tour and we will watch the finish line at the top of this exposed climb. When the race is over we will transfer back to our beautiful hotel in the small medieval town of Mora de Rubielos.

  • Day 7 - Thursday, 29 August

    Stage 6 : Mora de Rubielos - Ares del Maestrat

    196,6km - Hilly

    Riding out from the hotel, we will cross the start line almost straight away. Today's ride features four 3rd category climbs and plenty of fast-paced downhill sections. You'll enjoy taking in the scenery as we wind up and down through the regions green and rocky mountains. A beautiful descent will take us to the foot of the final climb and up the mountain pass of Ares de Maestrat. It's just a 5 km climb with an average gradient of 5-6% but at the top the crowds will be huge and vocal so we'll soak up the adulation to drive our legs to the finish. Enjoy the moment, as it will be an experience you will not want to forget. With the pros closing tight on our heels we'll take chance to watch the finishers before driving on to our hotel in Onda to relax and recover.

  • Day 8 - Friday, 30 August

    Stage 7 : Onda - Mas de la Costa

    182,4 km - Mountain

    Make no mistake, today will be a challenging mountainous day. The first 80 km of the course hugs the coastline over extremely flat terrain so enjoy every moment to loosen up your legs and set the pace with your team mates, ready to tackle the five significant climbs of the stage. After heading inland we first tick off Puerto de Marianet (3rd category - 430m), Puerto de Eslida (2nd category - 656m) and Puerto de Ain (3rd category - 580m). We then descend into the picturesque town of Onda. Entering the final 30 km of the stage we climb Puerto del Salto del Caballo (2nd category - 780m) before finishing at Alto mas la Costa (1st category - 970m). From here we'll celebrate completing the first really big mountain stage of the 2019 tour, before driving to our hotel in Valls, located near the Prades Mountains.

  • Day 9 - Saturday, 31 August

    Stage 8 : Valls - Igualada

    168 km - Hilly

    This is a mid-mountain stage where we'll be riding through rather than up many of the famous climbs in the beautiful Catalunya region. There'll be plenty of time to soak up the panoramic scenery as we meet the only significant climb on the stage only 35 km from the finish. Puerto de Monserrat (category 2 - 650m) is a simply spectacular overlooking the whole region of Catalunya and the Mediterranean sea. As many will know it is an iconic climb in the road racing world, having featured many times as the KOM stage in Vuelta Catalunya. After reaching the top we will roll down to Igulada. From here we'll drive to our hotel and get some rest for the next big mountain stage of Andorra.

  • Day 10 - Sunday, 1 September

    Stage 9 : Andorra la Vella - Cortals d'Encamp

    96,6 km - Mountain

    This is a very big mountain stage that demonstrates the true spirit of the race in the heart of the Pyrenees Mountains, Andorra. Expect to need some moments out of the saddle to beat the 5 back-to-back and extremely challenging climbs of this stage. But don't let that scare you, this is going to be a truly epic day worthy of the history books. The relatively short course will take us on a classic tour of Andorra with two 2nd category climbs, two 1st category climbs and the rather special Col de la Gallina; an 11.8 km climb with gradients up to 16%. The stage also features the first appearance of Engolasters mountain pass and a new 4 km flat gravel track to the final climb to Cortals d’Encamp. After finishing this epic day we'll either transfer on to Pau for a very well earned day of rest if you are continuing the Ride Every Kilometre Tour, or return to our hotel in Andorra for those leaving us here in the journey.

  • Day 11 - Monday, 2 September


    A very well earned day of rest in Pau for those moving on to smash out the following Atlantic coast stages and a very fond farewell to the cycling heroes leaving us here in Andorra. You have all come far. What an incredible accomplishment! Long live La Roja!