Cyclist, Mark Krieger and his wife Roz set off on another of their many fascinating journeys throughout Europe, this time around Spain and Portugal's Iberian Peninsula.
Following the footsteps of the Tour de France and Spain's Vuelta a España through the Pyrénées, Mark recalls many of cycling's memorable moments; some inspirational, and some that the sport would rather forget.
Across the border into Spain, summer is approaching, a time when Catalonians are in festival mode. Travelling west, there is a treacherous 'goat track', near Oviedo, that Mark's determined to conquer after two failed attempts.
Arriving in Portugal, the pair are enthralled by the country's history; events like the 'Age of Discoveries', the 1755 earthquake, the Carnation Revolution and the humble beginnings of Fado. As for the present, there's nothing better than the food and the distinctive way it's presented.
Large cities are not normally on Mark's 'to do' list, especially when cycling is involved, but, drenched in history and abundantly alive in the present, Lisbon proves an awesome exception. Just as evocative in its own way is the small Spanish town of Trigueros. Once the sun goes down, its previously near-deserted streets come alive.
Continuing through the south of Spain, the travelers visit the Sierra Nevada range. It's here where Mark tries to fulfill another obsession; to cycle up its highest peak, Pico de Veleta. Much higher and harder than any mountain he's ever dreamed of tackling, its final kilometres of treacherous road make the thought of continuing seem foolish.
Fast approaching the town of Solsona, where his cycling trek began, Mark recalls some of the memories he and Roz have shared on their journey, while the thought of 'where to next' is never far away.
Author_Bio: An avid cyclist, Mark has travelled widely throughout Australia, the United Kingdom and Europe. Now a retired schoolteacher, these passions, as well as his life-long interest in history, have become the catalyst for his writing. His and his wife's journey around France in 2009 – portrayed in his book, Lycra, Lattes and the Long Way Round – was the first of many wonderful adventures in the years ahead. Today, Mark and Roz live happily on Victoria's Mornington Peninsula.
Keywords: cycling, travel, Vuelta a Espana, history, cinema, mountains, Portugal, Spain, Fado, Reconquista
|Publisher:||First Edition Design Publishing|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.40(d)|
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The front cover of the book told me that it was about cycling, which I love, but there was so much more to it than just a cyclist riding around 2 countries in Europe. Besides reading about some of the history of the 3 grand cycling tours, there were many references to Spain and Portugal’s turbulent past. What I enjoyed most was not just the author’s descriptions of his long-distance ride, but the other characters in the book: his wife Roz, his daughter Emma, and some of the people they met on their journey. Many of the places they visited whet my appetite for further travel, especially the Pyrenees, Lisbon and Andalusia in the south of Spain. I recommend the book, to not just cyclists, but people who love to travel and enjoy some humour along the way.
I got interested in this book because I love cycling and travelling the world. I’m also addicted to cycling tours in Europe, especially the Tour de France. Until I read the book, I didn’t know much about Spain’s Vuelta a Espana nor some of the its mountain climbs, like the Alto del Angliru. It was also interesting to learn about Spain and Portugal’s history, particularly the Spanish Civil War. As for Portugal, I’m looking to pay it a visit very soon.