Roads and routes to be improved with cyclists in mind
Mallorca's reputation as one of the best winter cyclism destinations in Europe knows no bounds. As we all know, the professionals of one of the world's best cycling teams, Sky, train here over winter and the one and only Sir Bradley Wiggins regards Mallorca as his second home.
However, teams like Sky and events like the Mallorca Cycling Challenge which kicks off the pro season are just the tip of the iceberg, because the sport draws tens of thousands of keen amateur riders to the island every winter. This year the projected figures predict about 140,000 riders will stay on the island between February and May and over the year cycling brings between €60 and €140 million into the island's coffers depending on which report you read.
It's obviously big business and one which the island authority, the Consell, wants to preserve and grow. They unveiled their plans for cycling at the big Berlin travel fair recently, as many, many cyclists arrive from Germany. Obviously the first things they stressed are the things we all love, the fantastic climate, the great scenery and the wide choice of hotels, bars, shops and restaurants as well as the varied routes to suit all cyclists.
To help promote the sport, which tends to bring people to Mallorca in the off season, they revealed plans to improve 40 roads on the island so that they are safer for the two wheelers. This mostly involves making the surfaces of the roads better by laying new tarmac to replace older rutted roads which can cause accidents and the work will take some while with a projected finish in a couple of years.
They've also edited 16 new special cycle routes, four from each of the four main tourist centre bases; Calvia, Playa de Palma, Cala Millor/Ratjada and the bay of Alcudia/Pollensa. Available in paper only at the moment, the Consell are currently producing an App which can be used on the road so hopefully a whole peloton of MAMILS (middle aged men in lycra) won't end up in someone's garden!