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Day 16 ....... Altafulla to Barcelona ...... 98 km ....(total 1,309 km)

Left the delightful seaside town that had been my accomodation overnight and can strongly recommend both the town of Altafulla and the Yola Hotel. The town even had a cafe that was open pre 8 am today which in this part of Spain is akin to a Southwest Train service running on time. Rare.

10 km out of Altafulla I came across this gem of Roman architecture. The Arch of Bera. Built between 15 and 5 BC from a bequest ofthe will of Lucius Licinius Sura (try saying that in a hurry) . Them Romans. They knew how to build em to last. 

Even on the busy N-340 roadside there was room for natural beauty to take hold in the Spring sunshine. 

I rolled through numerous large seaside towns with wide expansive boulevards and numerous cafes that for now were devoid of the maddening crowds that are about to engulf them ....Creixell, Calafell,  Cubells, and a few others beginning with C before I hit Sitges.

Promenade at Vendrell

Getting artistic at Segur de Calafell 

With a Surly you can do almost anything including asking it to keep goal. 

I wanted to go in and see what happens in a “fun market”

After about 30 km on the notorious N-340 (cars not trucks this time) I was thrown onto the C-32 which would take me all the way along the coastline to Barcelona. The most scenic part of the road was about to unfold once I got past the last of the many very similar beachside resorts this one being Sitges. 

For the next 10 or so km I rode one of the most spectacular pieces of road I can recall cycling. A narrow one lane each way road not too dissimilar to that you’d find on the Almafi Coastline south of Naples in Italy. As I was heading north I was in the outside lane. A waist high retaining wall the only measure to prevent me from falling 300 ft into the Mediterranean. It was a STUNNING piece of road and the experience was highlighted by not just the views but the incredible patience of the Spanish drivers. 

The next several photos are all from that section of the ride that will remain long in my memory . Especially the downhill parts where every sense was awakened as I sped as quickly as the cars momentarily feathering the brakes to ensure I didn’t lose control. 

The start just out of Sitges. 

Looking back to Sitges.

That scar ahead cliffside is where I am headed. 

The drop that was ever present over my right shoulder . At least the water looked inviting. 

Eventually I got thrown out at the southern end of Castelldefels Beaches which led me into Barcelona . Still high on life after the exhilaration of the previous 10 km .

As I approached the perimeter of Barcelona I came across the Estrelle Beer factory. Damm.... about what I say every time I see another hill.

Barcelona will be my home for the next two nights fortunate as I am to be hosted by Andrew.S (brother of “The Broken One”) and his delightful wife Helen and their two children. Tomorrow is a rest day in Barcelona. 

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