5 of the Best: Cycling Staycation Spots For the Bank Holiday WeekendBy Angelica Malin
With the summer weather at a peak for 2018, there’s no need for last minute Med escapes this season; from island coves to blue water Welsh bays and cool, crisp lakes of the North, the UK offers last minute getaways to suit every agenda.
Make the most of a mini-break by taking to two wheels and exploring the region by eBike – allowing you to cover significantly more ground than on a conventional bicycle, but also experiencing more of your surroundings than you would in a car. Go further, ride longer and get out there; Bosch eBike Systems have put together the top five staycation getaways on two wheels for the summer:
1. The Peak District
Best for: The Peak District is one of the best places in the country for mountain biking. Fact.
The Run-Down: From the rolling hills and limestone dales of the White Peak to the high heather-clad moorlands of the Dark Peak, this is the ideal countryside to explore by eBike. The Peak District is home to fabulous off-road cycling routes, including Tissington and High Peak Trails which meet at Parsley Hay and the quieter Manifold Track in the south-western Peak running from Waterhouses along the old Leek and Manifold light railway line. Hire an eBike from centres near Ashbourne and Derwent and take to those trails.
Best for: Coastal paths and pasty stops.
The Run-Down: This county is a popular tourist destination for the summer months, so you need to know how to escape the crowds that flock to Cornwall as soon as sun comes out. Avoid the clogged coastal roads and jump on an eBike; the Camel Trail runs along a disused railway line between Wenfordbridge, Bodmin, Wadebridge and Padstow, so you can stop for a well-deserved beverage, or a portion of prawns at Rick Stein’s famous eatery in Padstow. Or, tackle The Saints’ Way Trail; crossing mid-Cornwall from coast to coast and covering approximately 30 miles/48 km. The surrounding countryside is dotted with rolling pastures of ancient farmland, pre-historic remains, ancient bridges, old tracks, quaint churches and pretty, riverside villages.
3. The Isle of Wight
Best for: Caribbean-blue bays and yacht spotting
The Run-Down: ‘Bicycle Island’ is the cycling brand of the Isle of Wight, celebrating a highly reputed status as one of the top cycling destinations in the world. The beauty of having an eBike on the island means that almost every corner is accessible – from the very tip of the Needles to the backstreets of Cowes. There are a host of new routes and trails, which can be broken into half-day rides or multi-day rides, depending on where the wind takes you! Fancy a cycling trip but feeling put off at the thought of carrying heavy baggage? There are bespoke baggage businesses that will be ready to collect your bags as you arrive with your eBike on the ferry so you can begin your Isle of Wight cycling adventure without the extra weight.
Photo Credit: Ronald Saunders
4. The Gower Peninsular
Best for: Breath-taking beaches and medieval ruins.
The Run-Down: Adventure seekers shouldn’t miss a trip to Afan Forest Park, recently listed as one of the world’s ‘Top 10 places to ride’ by Mountain Bike Rider (MBR) magazine and top 10 for UK biking holidays by Mountain Biking UK (MBUK) magazine. The park’s mountain biking trails all boast challenging singletrack descents, monster climbs and spectacular views over South Wales’ valleys. Back on terra firma, take an afternoon walk from Rhossili to Worm’s Head, but check the tide before braving the climb across – the Atlantic current is quicker than you think.
Photo Credit: S P L
5. Scottish Highlands
Best for: The most dramatic, awe-inspiring scenery
The Lowdown: Soak up some of the most majestic scenery in Britain – from the region’s quintessential lochs to dramatic mountain ranges and stretches of wild coastline. No, it’s not about getting that perfect Instagram picture but, incidentally, jaw-droppingly photogenic spots include the miles of white sand of Lossiemouth beach, Dunvegan Castle and the famous Fort William. There’s almost too much to cover for a short break but empowering exploration with an eMTB will ensure you cover as much ground, trail or path, as possible. At the end of the ride, if you’re looking to let loose (and not get back onto two wheels), there are ample distilleries where we recommend trying the locally made spirits.