Madrid is (not) a city for bikes
This page is intended to help our visitors and tourists to ride a bike in Madrid.
Here we include the most relevant information available in English (or billingual) about cycling in our city.
Madrid cyclists guides
(october, 2016 Edition)
(billingual PDF Spanish/English)
What will you find in this guide?:
- Segregated cycle routes: streets with separated lanes for cyclists.
- Recommended itineraries: suitable routes for riders, according to their features of comfort and safety.
- Cyclist Green Belt of Madrid: it is a segregated pedestrian and cycle route which surrounds Madrid City. It provides connections with other segregated cycle routes and recommended itineraries.
- APR (Residential Priority Areas): These are areas within the city with restricted access for motor vehicles, with low traffic density and limited speed, very suitable for bikers.
A printed copy of this guide can be found at the Centros de Educación Medioambiental (in Spanish).
- Bikecitizens – cities Madrid: What are you waiting for? Get on your bike and explore Madrid.
- Cycling in Madrid: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. The source that inspired this page.
ON THE STREET
- If you ride on road, use the centre of the lane. In case of more than one, use always the far right lane, without considering the bus lane if it exists, unless there are specific signals allowing you to circulate on it.
- Use the left lane only in case you want to turn left.
- Bicycles shall not drive on the bus lane.
- Do not run in parallel with other cyclists.
- You are on a vehicle, you have rights and obligations: respect signs, traffic lights and others.
- Never hold on to any other vehicle to be towed.
- Do not wear headphones.
- And never use your mobile while riding.
ON THE SIDEWALKS
- It is forbidden to drive on the sidewalks and pedestrian areas.
- If you need to use any sidewalk or other pedestrian area you must get off the bike and walk pushing your bike.
- Who has priority?
- On the side path lanes, pedestrians have priority over cyclists. Cyclists must give way to pedestrians, adapting speed to theirs.
- On cycle lanes, cyclists have priority. Pedestrians have to use the enabled crosswalks. In case of lack of crosswalks, pedestrians must avoid hindering cyclists when crossing.
- In cycle crossings without traffic lights, bikes have priority over other vehicles. Remember to cross with caution and at a moderate speed.
Make yourself visible:
- Remember to use duly approved reflective elements.
- Install a bell on your bike; it will serve to alert other users of your presence.
- If you drive at night or in bad weather conditions you need to have front light and rear reflector. You can put reflective elements in the spokes and pedals too.
- Reflective elements make you visible even in daylight.
- Bike mirrors increase your safety.
- Children under 16 must wear a helmet.
- Wearing a helmet is recommended but not mandatory for adults (16 or more) in urban areas.
- A helmet is required if you are cycling by roads outside a settlement/town.
- (Note that many web pages contains outdated information about this.)
Cycling in the city is not dangerous as far as you follow few basic rules:
- Drive maintaining a straight and predictable line, signalling clearly your turns with your arms.
- Fit the appropriate speed.
- Try to anticipate drivers’ maneuvers.
- Pay special attention at crossings. Many drivers do not signal their turns to the right, cutting off your way and putting you in danger.
- Do not relax and be ready to brake, especially when riding among cars. Note that in case of accident bikes and cyclists are the weakest player.
- Do not drive too close to parked cars to avoid opening doors.
- Adapt to the speed of the street where you ride in, and, if possible, choose streets suitable for riders.
- Watch to road: there may be bumps or slippery surfaces.
- When you ride on pedestrian priority areas, you must keep in mind their priority, adapting your speed at theirs.
- Safety is based on active protection measures: moderated speed, driving attention, bringing forward your movements and those coming from others, signalling your turns…
- Pay special attention when raining.
- Keep your bike in good condition to increase safety: brakes, transmission, axis, wheels and lights.
- Insurance is not mandatory but it covers any damage you might cause to others.
Biking is practical, fun and educational: children who are used to biking will be the cyclists of the future.
- Always use a certified child-safe, seat.
- Only kids up to 7 years old can be transported by an adult using an extra seat or trailer approved for the transport of persons.
- Children under 16 must wear a helmet, whether riding on their own or as a passenger.
- Trailers are only allowed on bike paths.
WHERE TO PARK
Parking the bike properly:
- You must park your bike in a bike rack or other cycle parking.
- Do not use parking lots reserved for other vehicles like motorcycles or disabled people vehicles.
- If you do not find a bike rack, you can park your bike on the sidewalk only if it is more than 3 meters wide, and always parallel to the curb.
- Never bind a bike to a tree and always without hindering public transport, crosswalks, etc.
- Madrid offers you bike racks around the city, especially located next to the major trip generators such as schools, parks, cultural centres and sports facilities.
- For more information, check the bike parking section in the Oficina de la bici website (in Spanish).
- Park your bike in populated and well-lit places.
- Note your bike’ serial number: it will be easier to recover if it’ stolen.
- Lock the bike properly. U-shaped locks are recommended, but you can supplement it with others.
- POLICE: 092
- EMERGENCY: 112
Cycle ways infraestructure
The bikeways in the city can be classified into six types:
- Bike tracks
- Bike lanes
- Car-shared lanes
- Bike sidewalk-paths
- Shared-use paths
Every road has its rules:
Bike sharing & hiring
Bicycle-sharing public service: BiciMAD
Madrid makes electric bicycles available through the BiciMAD service. You will find them throughout the city centre and in some parts of the Arganzuela, Retiro, Moncloa-Aravaca and Chamberí districts. You will be issued a 1, 3 or 5 day pass by the terminal at the bike docking station, and you will be charged at the end of the selected period based on your use of the service. BiciMAD is perfect for everyday use and to explore the city. Find out more in BiciMAD web site (in Spanish).
- BiciMad is Madrid’ new public transport service.
- It is supplied by 100% electric bicycles: practical, simple and sustainable.
- BiciMad works 24 hours a day. 365 days a year.
- BiciMad’ objective is to provide all citizens with a healthy option for urban transportation, and to promote the use of bicycles in the city.
Useful resources in English about BiciMAD:
- BiciMAD – Offiicial Tourism Website
- BiciMAD – Leafset (billingual PDF Spanish/English)
- BiciMAP – Map of stations
Bicycle-sharing private services
- Donkey Republic: 24/7 Bike Rental. Find a bike near you and unlock with your phone.
- Mobike: a bike sharing service to fulfil urban short trips – anytime, to any legal parking destination – by combining innovation and today’s IoT (Internet of Things) technology. Mobike is green, reduces congestion, and continually strives to improve the quality of city life.
Other bike-rental services
- Bike Rental in Madrid (City of Madrid): The city has many privately run bike hires where you can rent a bicycle for a few hours or days.
- Bicycle rental system (Region of Madrid): Public bicycle systems operating in the Community of Madrid.
Disappeared bike sharing services
In the summer of 2018 these companies stopped providing their services in Madrid:
- Ofo: With ofo, you pick up a bike, get where you’ going, and leave it there. No docking stations, no walking the rest of the way. Because that’ what a bike share is supposed to be.
- oBike: oBike is a dockless bike-sharing company with a difference, combining technology and bicycles to transform transportation in ES cities and beyond!
Tourism in Madrid
- Nice places to ride a bike in Madrid
- Maps and Essential Guides of Madrid: Check out and download everything you to need to feel right at home in our city.
- esMADRID Magazine: Billingual magazine (Spanish/English) in PDF.
- Cycle Tourism: There are many routes for practice cycle-tourism through natural areas and municipalities of our Region. Besides the existing cycle paths, some routes are interesting to follow, such as the Vias Verdes (Green Routes), former abandoned railroads and the route of Madrid to Santiago de Compostela.
- Transportation: By aeroplane, train or road, your trip to Madrid will be nice and quick.
- Visit Madrid: Official tourism website.
- Tourism in the region of Madrid
- Tourist offices of the city of Madrid
- Tourist offices of the region of Madrid
- Madrid: From Spain info.
- Madrid: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
- Welcome to Bicicrítica: Use your bike everyday. Celebrate once a month.
Combining cycling and public transportation
The combined use of bike and public transportation allows you to travel long distances reducing pollution, increasing energy efficiency and enjoying many benefits:
- Increase the competitiveness of transport.
- It is a door to door means of transport, as bikes are easy to park.
- It is the greenest and more efficient intermodal combination, especially when combined with railroad.
This table summarizes the criteria for carrying bicycles, both folded as normal, in each mode of transport
Source: Madrid on a bicycle (CRMT): During the past years, the numerous transport operators integrated in the Consorcio Regional de Transportes (CRTM) have been modifying their legal frameworks to standardize the conditions for bicycle access to their facilities and vehicles. The RENFE Suburban rail, Metro, light rail and EMT have amended current legislation based always on the characteristics of their networks and vehicles. Currently, there is no standard or guidelines for the admission of bicycles, but the legislation is based on the respective regulation developed from the Transport Regulation Act.
Metro Madrid (“Subway”, “Tube”)
Information from the official web:
- Metro: Usage and Accessibility Guide: Bicycle access in the Metro network.
- Access to Metro Madrid with bicycles: Come with your bike (document in PDF).
- Metro map: Metro and Light Rail Network (document in PDF).
- Travel in the Metro: Recommended route: From…, Destination…
- Travel in the Metro: Metro Network: Metro lines and their connections between stations.
- Travel in the Metro: Facilities status and waiting times: Interactive map.
Other sources of information:
- Madrid Metro System: from MetroLineMap.
- Madrid Real Distance Metro Map: from CityRailTransit.
- Madrid Metro: from UrbanRail.
Cercanías RENFE (“Suburban Rail”)
EMT Madrid (“Urban Buses”)
Madrid Barajas Airport
Transport in Madrid: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The English edition of Wikipedia contains a Category:Transport in Madrid:
- Transport in Madrid
- Madrid Metro
- Cercanías Madrid
- Atocha Railway Station
- Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport
- English to Spanish cyclist dictionary
- Spanish to English cyclist dictionary
- Multilingual cyclist dictionary: Contains a table with 72 terms related to the bicycle in Spanish, German, Esperanto, French, English, Polish, Portuguese and Russian.
About us (Pedalibre & ConBici)
The Pedalibre Association of Bicycle Users is composed of a large group of people of different ages who practice urban cycling and bicycle touring. We demand the use of bicycles as alternative transportation system for the activities in the daily life. Our proposal is to enjoy cycling through various leisure activities, like ecological and cultural tourism, in addition to activities designed to vindicate the use of bicycles as a means of transport.Founded in 1982, Pedalibre is the oldest cycling association in Madrid.
Together with many others Spanish cycling associations, we form ConBici.
- Phone: 634 529 217
- E-Mail: email@example.com
ConBici is an association (federation) of 61 cycling advocacy and environmental organisations. ConBici is a non-profit organisation under the Spanish law.Purpose of the Organisation:
- Promote the use of the bicycle as a mean of transportation and leisure
- Promote urban, interurban cycling and cycling tourism
- Recognise the right of cycling in safe conditions and promote road safety
- Advocacy for building new and better infrastructure and the necessary measures to make cycling safer
- Promote intermodality between bicycle and other transport modes (train, bus, etc.) Defend the interest of the cyclists and consumers of service associated to cycling. Promotion of training, social integration specially of young people-.
In general, improve the quality of life, environment, socialcultural promotion, solidarity and the defence of social interests of people mobility. (Text from: ECF)
Plaza de San Ildefonso, 9
We meet here the second Tuesday of every month at 8:00 p.m. (GMT+1).Cyclists from all over the world are always welcome.
Madrid for a cycle path in Paseo de la Castellana. English subtitles.
Pedalibre supports the campaign by a bike lane in La Castellana, the main avenue of the city of Madrid.
Some of the contents of this guide have been extracted from PDF documents of the Ayuntamiento de Madrid and the Consorcio de Transportes de Madrid. The information was copied and rearranged into text in order to provide it directly in a web page.
The translations of the bikeways names into Engllsh are taken from the Wikipedia.