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Unbeknownst to many, Barcelona is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in Europe; renting a bike whilst on holiday here is inexpensive and is a great way to see the city. The city council believes that 30,000 people use bicycles as regular transport and there are over 100km of cycle paths across the town to ensure that bicycling is a quick and safe way to travel, and just as importantly, lots of fun!

Bicycling as a means of transport has everything in its favour; it’s fast, healthy and ecologically sound! Plus if you are only in Barcelona for a few days it is a fantastic way to get around quickly and see the all the sights whilst getting much more of a feeling for the city than you do on a tour bus. There are many companies offering bike hire located all over town, and many of them also offer guided tours in all the major European languages. City tours are tailored to your interests, for example, they can be based around art, Modernism, football, or particular areas such as the Gothic Quarter. It’s possible to bicycle along all 5 of the city´s beaches which makes a lovely ride and the less touristy areas far more accessible; if you overheat on the way the sea is right there for a quick dip! Bicycles can also be taken on the metro and the FGC so the whole city is opened up to explore.

For those who are planning a longer stay in Barcelona, a cycling trip in the countryside is a great way to see some more of Catalunya. There are 10 national parks and 580km of coastline just waiting to be discovered, plus 100km of circuits dedicated to mountain biking, organised by the BTT centres. These are points around the region that provide information, accommodation and showers, and also bike hire and repairs. The circuits are labelled for various levels of difficulty and there are always options the whole family can enjoy. However, if you prefer a more structured break from the city there are lots of companies that can organise a tour for you with options; exploring Girona, the Costa Brava, the vineyards of Penedés or La Garrotxa national park being just some of the possibilities.

www.bikerentalbarcelona.com

Available tours include art, modernism, different areas of city, CampNou. Advance reservation necessary.

Un Cotxe Menys – www.bicicletabarcelona.com tours with guide and mechanic always using pedestrian areas or cycle lanes. Tours for individuals and groups around city. Group tours around areas of Catalunya.

For full list of bicycle rental companies, visit the city´s tourist information websitewww.barcelonaturisme.com under 'how to get there'.