Cycling rules in Mallorca
Cycling rules and how to stay safe on the roads in Mallorca
Cycling rules in Mallorca are for the most part the same as those that apply to any other mode of traffic. A cyclist in Mallorca must respect all standard traffic rules and regulations as would a car, motorbike or van.
Bicycles must use the established cycle lanes. Should no cycle lane be available, then cyclists must ride along the road and in no case will they ride on the pavement.
If a cyclist wishes to be considered a pedestrian, as in, if you want to cross a zebra crossing for example, then the cyclist must dismount and walk across the road as would any other pedestrian.
...The pavements are for pedestrians only!
Bikes on the pavements are prohibited.
As regards pedestrian areas and parks, cyclists riding in these areas shall in no case exceed the speed of pedestrian traffic. Exceeding pedestrian traffic implies a sanction.
Above all, we wish to reject any confrontation between different road users, because car drivers are also pedestrians and cyclists are often also car drivers, and we are all the same users of the road, at times on wheels, at times not, and hence, there is absolutely no need for there to be any dispute as along as we all respect each other and follow the basic rules of the road.
THE 9 OFFICIAL RULES ON SAFE CYCLING IN MALLORCA
According to the Municipal Traffic Regulations, article 17, of the General Traffic Regulations and Recommendations of the Palma Town Hall, traffic rules for cyclists are as follows:
1. Wear reflective clothing
The official traffic and cycling rules in Mallorca stipulate that you wear reflective clothing which can be seen from at least 150 metres away. This is especially important if you are riding into the evening and very early in the morning when visibility is poor and if you are planning to take on the steep mountain routes of the Tramuntana where the sharp bends make it harder to spot cyclists until they are right there on top of you.
2. Wear a helmet
Use of standardised cycling helmets is mandatory outside the city. You do not have to wear a helmet in the city centre however, but it is nevertheless advisable to keep it on, for added safety. Helmets do save lives!
3. Transporting children
Children up to 7 years can be transported on the back of the bike. This won’t apply to most cyclists visiting Mallorca for cycle holidays.
However, for those wishing to transport children on the back of their bikes, they can do so with standardised fitted bike seats and with children up to 7 years of age. You cannot transport children on the back of your bike without a standardised bike seat
And older children must ride their own bikes.
4. Maximum 2 abreast
Ride as far to the right as possible on roads.
According to Article 54, bicycles can ride 2 abreast in exceptional circumstances only, staying as far to the right as possible, but must ride in single file in areas where visibility is poor and when they are holding up traffic.
On highroads cyclists must only ride in single file.
5. Turn from the right
One of those important and often ignored (forgotten?) cycling rules in Mallorca is that on inter-city roads you turn from the right. In the case that a road has more than one lane, cyclists must drive along the lane that is closest to the right hand side sidewalk. In the event that this lane that is closest to the sidewalk be a bus and taxi lane, then the cyclist must ride on the lane adjacent to the bus and taxi lane.
You will also need to remember that you cycle (and drive) on the right in Mallorca. Major roads have cycle lanes but minor roads do not and cyclists are often seen riding on the wrong side of the road, which annoying at best and dangerous
6. No cycling on the motorways
No cycling is allowed on motorways or highways. This is one of the most important cycling rules in Mallorca as it will keep you alive! The motorways are in no way suitable for cyclists and you will get a hefty fine for being on them.
On the bright side, there are many other smaller, safer secondary roads, often the original road before the motorway was built, and these are far better cycling routes around the island.
7. Stay hydrated
This may not seem like a proper traffic rule but it is!
Cyclists and visitors in general often underestimate the extremely high temperatures in Mallorca in the peak summer months of July and August. Most cyclists don’t cycle at this time of year in Mallorca, but if this is all the time you have or you are combining cycling with family beach holidays, you may find yourself up a hill, far from everywhere in midday 40º Centigrade ( that’s 104ºF) and it is no joke. Dehydration on your bike is not fun. It will ruin your cycling holiday!
Be very careful and pack sufficient water and hydration drinks to keep you going. Small snacks and energy tablets are also a good idea.
This what the Palma traffic authority says to take: ` High energy food such as chocolate, dried fruit and bananas are recommended. Water is very important, especially in summer.´
8. Use sun protection
Again, this may seem more like advice than a real traffic rule, but sun protection, in the form of a hat, back covering, shades and cream is pretty much compulsive if you are taking to the Mallorca roads in summer. You would be surprised at the amount of cyclists who get heat stroke, which can be quite dangerous, and even if it isn't will ruin you cycling holiday.
Be very careful with the sun at all times of year however. Cycling many hours in the sun can burn your skin, even in winter. Use the protective clothing.
9. No trespassing
Respect Mallorca and help keep it clean, respect its flora and fauna along the way, close the doors or gates you pass through behind you when you are cycling in the countryside and do not trespass on private land.
PLEASE DON'T THROW RUBBISH ON THE ROAD!
Cyclists are often seen littering, disposing of energy drinks and plastic water bottles as they go and it is a shame as it gives cyclists a bad name.
Above all, and between us all, we must protect and respect the island, so we can all continue to enjoy it.