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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
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  #1  
Old 2 May 2007
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My first motorbike tour - Spain In December?

Hi everyone, i'm new here and i'm new to motorcycling though i'm not particularly new to travelling!

I'm starting to think about my first motorbike tour and am considering Spain in december. Why? because thats the soonest i'm likely to be able to afford it, and i'm not sure i'll be able to afford to leave europe.

So anyway, does anyone have any experience of Spain in december? What are the temperatures like? what are some interesting places to see? How much should I budget for fuel (uk to spain and back) over a 2 or 3 week period?

My style is definately not touristy - I like adventure, camping, roughing it etc.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Oh and i'm on a 2006 Honda Transalp.

If you're interested check out my new site - Neil Wiltshire.net - I'm a web developer by trade and just finished building my own travel blogging site. So far it only has my recent Scotland trip with two friends but there will be more journals going up soon - like when I drove from Qatar in the middle east back to the UK.

Thanks a lot!

Neil.
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  #2  
Old 3 May 2007
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Welcome Neil,sorry no experience in Spain yet,but don't worry there are plenty of travelers out there to help you.Have a great time,Who knows you may take a week more and end up in Morocco.
take care.
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  #3  
Old 3 May 2007
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Go to 'search' and type in the words 'Spain' and 'Travel' you'll get a fair bit of info.

I live in Spain and have posted about the area where I live - Andalucia. With 320 days sunshine a year we bike all year round. Weather in December in southern Spain averages 14C during the day, but if it rains, it can be like a monsoon.

If you need any more info, let me know.
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  #4  
Old 3 May 2007
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Fuel

Forgot to say that fuel is about 1.10 euros per litre for 95 Unleaded and 97/98 Super and 1 euro per litre for Diesel.
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  #5  
Old 3 May 2007
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Not sure i'll be able to afford to leave europe?

The ferries from Algeciras to Ceuta are cheap (from 80 Euro return) at that time of year and it only takes about 30 minutes; plus the 'cost of living' in Morocco is cheaper. So maybe it is an option for you after all - you might want to do some research on this.

Southern Spain a December is great riding weather - most of the time - and there is plenty to see and do around here, from historical buildings to absolutely stunning scenery and off road (tracks) riding is just around every corner. Camping is excellent.

If you do come down this way, drop me a PM and we can meet up.
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  #6  
Old 3 May 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neil_wiltshire View Post
So anyway, does anyone have any experience of Spain in december? What are the temperatures like?

If you're interested check out my new site - Neil Wiltshire.net
I once did a 6-week teaching stint in Majorca in November & December. The days were beautifully sunny but the sea temperature took your breath away especially if you put your head underwater. My advice: enjoy the winter sun but avoid the beaches.

I enjoyed your Scotland blog, Neil. What's the connection with Basingstoke? I spent my childhood there.
Stephan
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  #7  
Old 3 May 2007
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Smokin Lizard, thanks for the offer - if i find my self in that area i'll definately pm you! would be great to have a way point during the trip. As for Morocco, it is a definate possibility - i didn't realise it would be that cheap to get there, and it is one of those places I've wanted to go to for a long long time!

I have a £1700 bonus due in late november which i think should be enough to cover the whole trip - any thoughts on that anyone?

All i need now is some panniers and some knowledge about bike maintenance!

Stephano, thanks for the kind words about my blog, i've just finished the scotland blog actually - i added in an amusing yellow snow anecdote to day 4 that i had forgotten about until my mate reminded me!
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  #8  
Old 4 May 2007
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The Spain bit i get. I would say stick close to the mediteranean coast as much as possible in winter. The bit that worries me is from UK to Spain in December..
you might want to either book somewhere warm and avoid camping, or take a ferry to Santandar from either portsmouth or plymouth,
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  #9  
Old 6 May 2007
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I will probably avoid camping until i get to warmer climates, i wont be taking a ferry from england to spain though.

I forgot to mention before Stephano, the connection with Basingstoke is simply that I live and work there!
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  #10  
Old 14 Jun 2007
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Hi Neil,

I live in Barcelona and I can give you some advice on your trip. BTW, I have a Transalp too.

Weather is unpredictable in december. If you stay in the coast, temperatures very seldom go under zero degrees (and normally are on the 5º-12º side and even higher with the global warming). Inland it can be colder, and freezing during the night is common, but except you get a storm or a cold wave, you should not expect to go many degrees under zero.

How many time do you expect to be on your bike during these 2/3 weeks? I mean, there's plenty of places to see, lots of km in between and little time. Do you prefer to take a general view, travelling a lot of km or do you prefer to spend more time in local roads and nice places?

Ramon
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  #11  
Old 15 Jun 2007
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I've riden through the middle of Spain four times in the winter and it can be very very cold, despite having handlebar muffs, electrically heated jacket and gauchos.

You can get very decent (clean, warm, dry) hostels in Spain with ensuite facilities for €30 (£20) per night. Camping in winter can be a real bummer with the length of the night. Unless you ride on into the evening and pitch your tent in the dark you will be committing yourself to overnight stops of many hours.

Morocco is the place for winter sun. Head for Ouarzazate area and pop in to www.bikershome.net

Tim
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  #12  
Old 15 Jun 2007
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Hi Neil

Tims advice with regard to the length of the winter night is very perceptive. I dont mind camping in winter - but the length of the night is too much.

Spain is fabulous, Morocco is exotic. and cheap. If you search this site there is a wealth of info on Morocco. A Moroccan colleage advises the tangier crossing.
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  #13  
Old 18 Jun 2007
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Thumbs down Hi Neil, Hi Ramon, Hi Everybody,

I think December it is not a correct time for a beginner. If you have perfect underwear, will stay at the hotels all the time, ride only few hours a day, have enough time to change your plans about the route and so on, OK GO ON.
Othervise, it can be very cold, if you go up it can be snowy, etc. You can decide not to motorbiking anymore in this trip because of the season.

It is easy to decide when you are at your warm home. Will you say: "I wish I had heated vest and heated grips!".

OK you like adventure, but I want you to like/enjoy motorbiking afterwards too.
Think once again...

Sami
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  #14  
Old 18 Jun 2007
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I`ve driven from scotland to southern spain a few times in december, it`s cold all they way to madrid then it gets warmer from there on. Takes me about two and a half days to reach the south coast near Gibraltar, mind you thats in a nice warm and very comfy motorhome driving many hours per day, ten hours in the saddle in the cold aint gonna be easy, but if you can handle that i`d go for it. Well worth the effort I love the place
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