ZUMAIA - LEKEITO 42 km 544m climbingOctober 8, 2017 in Spain
Another cold morning but clear blue skies and the promise of another clear day with wall to wall sunshine but not too hot so perfect for cyclists. Tony did a mini service and clean up on the bike then we headed off and upwards on the N634. The scenery in the hills was beautiful, the drivers, on the whole were considerate and the climb was gradual but nearly always in the upwards direction. At the summit of the hill there were some road works with traffic control and a view point with stunning views in both directions along the coast. We stopped for a photo and some motor bikers from Israel offered us a coffee as they were brewing up, we declined but chatted to them for a while. We rejoined the traffic and cycled through the roadworks before making our decent into Deba. The reasonably steep decent down the snaking coastal route being over taken by the queue of traffic was as much of a trill ride as I've been in in any theme park. When we flashed into Deba I couldn't decide if I needed a coffee, gin and tonic or tranquilliser!!! Anyway we found a 'bikers' cafe next to the station and sat in the sunshine and I plucked up courage for the next leg of the journey. The route took us around the coast, again some amazing views, then through pine and eucalyptus woods before descending into Ondarroa where the whole population of the town seemed to be out promenading or drinking in cafes and bars, obviously Sunday's aren't a day for DIY and gardening over here but that could have something to do with most of the accommodation is apartments so not much gardening required!
The final 12 km were again around the coast and it is easy to see why this is called "Green Spain", the mountains are not dissimilar to alpine areas of Europe, the sea is azure blue, there are many sandy beaches and there are dramatic rock formations, all in all spectacular scenery.
We reached Lekeito and were slightly confused why the Garmin wanted to take us miles up the valley before entering town so, again, we used our sense of direction and were helped out by a local who saw us hunched over our map and said "follow me". We arrived at Zubieta Hotel which you enter via a cool, bamboo shaded road, the hotel is in the grounds of Zubieta Palace and was originally the stables but has now been very tastefully converted into a beautiful, historic, country house hotel set in tranquil grounds. We unpacked and set off to look around the old town with its impressive and large basilica, church, historic buildings and Port.
We returned to the hotel for a tasty meal in the peaceful hotel dinning room. Now we are no longer on the Velodysee we re not seeing any fellow tourers. However we did get chatting to some fellow travellers, John and Lisa from Connecticut, USA, who were visiting Spain and enjoying both the cities and walking in the mountains.Read more