Discover new landscapes, boost your fitness and enjoy the freedom of the free-wheel on one of the world’s best cycling trips…
Words Helen Brown
There’s no better way to discover new landscapes than on two wheels. And with the Tour de France in its final stages, we’re more inclined than ever to hop on our bikes. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up the world’s best cycling trips to make the most of this increasingly popular activity. These holidays include a range of terrains; from leisurely trails to adrenalin-inducing adventures, meaning there is something for every rider.
The peaks of Portes du Soleil provide endless opportunity for adrenaline and exhilaration. The area is home to an abundance of world class enduro, downhill, and cross-country trails, as well as more gentle terrain for beginners. It’s the perfect location for both experienced bikers and those curious to try it for the first time. More Mountain’s luxurious Chalet Robin makes for a welcome respite in central Morzine and is specially designed to accommodate bikers. The catered chalet offers secure bike storage and a large garage with tools and a bike wash, as well as off-road private parking. They’ll even provide a mid-week kit wash and drying facilities throughout the week, so no more smelly jerseys and shorts.
A WELSH ADVENTURE
Jump on two wheels to discover the rugged coastline, mountainous National Parks and distinctive culture of Wales. Aimed at the leisure cyclist, much of these trails are traffic-free, with gentle gradients and short distances each day. Routes have been carefully planned to start at altitude and run downhill. The itinerary covers the Brecon Beacons, the Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion coasts, valleys, rivers and the Cambrian Mountains. It’s a fantastic opportunity to discover the many landscapes of Wales, along with wildlife and its age-old traditions and architecture.
Intrepid offer an unforgettable north to south cycling tour of vibrant Vietnam. The tour provides opportunities to meet the locals and experience their culture in a way that wouldn’t otherwise be possible. You will travel from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, down country lanes and over spectacular mountain passes. And, of course, all the exercise gives you the perfect excuse to indulge in delicious Vietnamese cuisine.
Go beyond the guidebooks to discover the mesmerising landscapes of the Andean Lake District. This northern Patagonian journey ventures into both Chile and Argentina, following the paths ‘less trodden’. You will have a truly authentic experience in a part of the world that is only just opening up to tourism. Starting from the lakeside town of Villarrica, you’ll cycle on jeep tracks and quiet back roads amongst snow-capped volcanoes and dazzling lakes. There’s also the opportunity to take a break from the saddle, and make a memorable hike up to the impressive crater rim on Sollipulli Volcano. The tour ends with a well-deserved celebration in the Chilean Lake District’s adventure capital, Pucon.
CYCLE SOUTHERN ICELAND
Iceland is one of the most geologically active countries on earth; defined by vast black lava fields, towering glaciers, thundering waterfalls and erupting geysirs. The network of country roads provides an excellent framework for this two-wheeled journey. You’ll explore some of the most impressive places in the south of the island, including the infamous Eyafjallajokull Volcano, the colourful mountains of Landmannalaugar and the thundering Skogarfoss Waterfall. There are also welcome stops in thermal baths, to soak away those aches and pains.