Mild temperatures even in autumn and winter. Rain on only a few days a year. Really, the climate of Malaga province could have been designed just for motorcyclists. What's more, the ability to snake between cars and not be affected by traffic jams is another benefit of travelling on two wheels.
These advantages are reflected in a recent survey of vehicle ownership in Malaga, which shows that it is the province of Spain with the highest number of motorcycles per inhabitant, ahead of Girona and Granada.
The Unespa and Anesdor insurance associations have just produced their latest report into two-wheeled vehicles in Spain, using data for large towns and cities up to 2020. It shows that Malaga has 10,958 motorcycles per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Girona with 10,947 and Granada with 10,780.
The study divides the two-wheeled vehicles in Malaga into motorbikes (there are 103,090), scooters (54,156) and mopeds (28,513). Mopeds are the ones that have a yellow registration plate and an engine capacity of up to 50cc. What differentiates motorbikes from scooters, apart from the engine power, is that the first have gears and the second just a gas pedal.
If the comparison had been made by real numbers instead of per head of the population, the province would still be high on the list, in fourth place. There are 184,759 two-wheeled vehicles in Malaga, and only Barcelona (510,650), Madrid (318,533) and Valencia (192,414) have more.
Between them, those four provinces account for 30 per cent of all motorcyles in Spain.
The report also looks at which districts have the most motorcycles in Spain - and Teatinos in Malaga is one of them. If we look at mopeds, Sanlúcar de Barrameda in Cadiz province is in first place. Anyone visiting Sanlúcar cannot fail to notice how many mopeds there are, like a swarm in continuous movement. They are the most affordable way of getting into the world of motorbike riding and they can also be the most practical as well, if the mobility is exclusively urban.
Before the driving licence system was reformed, 14-year-olds were able to drive these with what became known as a special moped licence. Now the minimum age is 15 and theory and practical tests have to be passed in order to qualify.
If we take mopeds out of the equation, and focus just on high-powered motorbikes, Pozuelo de Alarcón in Madrid is the town with the highest number, and in the section relating to towns with over 75,000 inhabitants, Mijas has the highest number of motorbikes in Malaga province.
In which province do people ride motorbikes most safely? That is another question looked at by the report.
In response, the insurance sector came up with an interesting piece of information: it looked at the statistical probability of a motorcyclist causing or being responsible for an accident.
Using the data for 2020, it can be seen that the safest in the country were from Soria, followed by Huesca and Zamora.
In order to be among the safest motorcyclists, it appears, someone has to travel in areas with low population density and make more long journeys than short ones.
Malaga is fourth from the bottom on the list in these respects. The probability of being involved in an accident in Soria is negative (-55.69%), while in Malaga it is positive (24.56%). Only Las Palmas, Ceuta and Melilla have a worse record than Malaga