On Friday 11th June 2010, 10 intrepid explorers embarked on a trip that would change their lives forever, well maybe not forever but for a while. I haven´t laughed so much for a long time, or been quite so wet on the bike. Fair weather bikers pah, not us we carried on through rain and hail and along muddy, gravely downhill hairpin strewn roads. We also visited some of Spains prettier towns, ate lovely food and enjoyed a beer or two.
Day 1 Distance 170 Miles
Five bikes set off and five returned which is always a good sign, unfortunately one had a limp but more on that later, the first part of the journey as always, wherever you are in the world, is the boring bit, the first 50 miles or so could be part of a shopping trip or your daily ride to work, something you do regularly, it's only when the roads become less familiar and during the first stop that the holiday mood (ROAD TRIP) feeling starts to take over.
Our boring bit was from the meeting point in Ondara, Costa Blanca, to the first proper stop for fuel and refreshment just outside Sagunto, north of Valencia. We used the N332 for most of the journey passing through small villages, it´s not a bad road with a few nice corners to try out the handling fully loaded and some good straights so you can zip on a bit, if the mood takes you, watch for the new speed cameras though. After the N332 it´s on to the terminally boring A-7 to circumnavigate Valencia and then left (North) onto the A23.
Tostada con tomate for me and a few litres of fuel for the GSXR and we are away again passing the village of Sot de Ferrer on our right with it´s small chapel overlooking the town.
From this point in the journey we tried to stay off the new A23 using the older road instead, however it´s not to be as all signs that point to Teruel and our resting point for the evening also point back to the dual carriageway. Just after Segorbe we managed to find some of the older road with it´s sweeping bends and sleepy villages, much better. After Jerica for a couple of miles the road is badly worn with potholes, great to test the suspension and the patience of your pillion. We then turned left onto the even older CV209 which winds steadily up to 1007m and through a wind farm.
After a brief stop for photo´s it was off again towards Teruel via the N234 and A23, finally arriving at our hotel mid afternoon in time for sightseeing and a beer or two.
As with many towns in Spain, Teruel has a historic centre surrounded by modern uninspiring sprawl, it is important therefore to get into the centre, stay there if possible to get a real feel for the place. Our home for the night was the Sercotel Torico Plaza with rooms overlooking the Torico Plaza itself, one of Teruel´s prettier squares. We ate at the Ristorante La Tarantella, situated just out of the top of the Torico Plaza, superb Pizza´s, nice wine and great company.
Here is a selection of touristy pictures from Teruel. Click here for more information on Teruel and it´s history.