In Girona you have a high chance of getting your coffee being made by a rider
The coffee revolution has well and truly come to Girona, with no less than 3 high-end bean bars owned by current and ex-professional cyclists. You could spend a day comparing notes between what is on offer at Rory Sutherland’s Federal Cafe, Robert Gesink’s Hors Categorie and Christian Meiers’ La Fabrica.
Less known to the fine-tuned cycling culture purveyor is that Girona is also home to the largest Nescafe factory in Spain. Situated on the edge of town with a purpose-built autoroute exit, long before Girona became a mecca for cyclists, it was churning out enough caffeine to keep the Tour de France peloton alert for years. Late in the evening, as the overnight roasting gears up, you can smell the coffee in the air, wafting in over the River Onyar.
Coffee is in the lifeblood of our little city.
It would be easy to come to Girona for a cycling holiday and simply forget to ride with all of the intricacies and intrigues the town alone has to offer. Many afternoons have been lost in perusing the local offerings at the Mercat del Lleó, and the carrot cake from Buttercup.
The city wall walk is an annual tradition (although best avoided on weekends) and the Temps de Flor Festival in May sees the city taken over by blooming flower displays. Sometimes, riding can best be encouraged as the only plausible offset for the steaming bowls of Patatas Bravas and fresh-baked creme Catalan.
Girona is filled with hidden gems providing the best flavours of Spain in a bite. You need insider knowledge to make sure you find the best of everything in Girona.
Girona’s Top 5 Cycling Friendly Cafes
Best for baked goods. The menu is a new take on brunch, with Kefir pancakes and Kombucha soaked fruit bowls. Without a doubt, this is a big hit for hungry cyclists after a long day in the saddle.
Best for burgers. Serving up a menu to die. Their flat whites, scrambled eggs on toast and morning bacon burgers is an Aussie twist on breakfast, merged with Spanish culture and local ingredients.
Best for brunch. Owned by professional riders, this spot knows what hungry cyclists want. You won’t be able to pass by without venturing in for a taste.
Best for healthy foods and Kombucha. Good coffee, healthy food, and bike-friendly. What more can you want?
Best for açai bowls. Kick start your day the right way. Speciality coffee and kick-ass breakfast menu will fuel any rider for a day in the saddle.
Wake up and smell the coffee
To the south is the city. The north, the valley. West, the beach. And mountains to the east. Girona is and always will be one of the world’s top cycling centres.
Just remember, when the wind comes from the east, and the smell of coffee is in the air, it’s flowing from the Pyrenees, via the coffee factory into town.
When the Nespresso winds blow, always pack arm warmers.
By Laura Fletcher
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