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 The Hebrides are known as the “long islands” as they stretch for over 100 miles!

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Outer Hebrides Road Cycling Tour

Trip Highlights

• An island safari experience through nine beautiful Hebridean islands, cycling through some of the most natural and unspoiled landscapes in Europe
• En route, enjoy the regales of local Gaelic culture and history of the Outer Hebrides
from your guide and visits to local sites
• Opportunities to see white tailed eagle, otter, and dolphins in this wildlife rich region
• This trip includes visits to impressive ancient sites such as the Callinish Standing Stones and the newly renovated Lews Castle.

Outer Hebrides Isles of Barra ~ Uist ~ Harris ~ and Lewis

Duration: 7 Days/ 6 Nights
Price: from £1,865 per person sharing

INTRODUCTION

This extraordinary journey will take you through nine amazing islands, covering a distance of 173 miles/280 kms along the entire Hebridean archipelago. Every day’s biking combines the stunning white sandy beaches, rocky mountains and wild glens with the rich cultural and natural history of the Hebrides. It will be a journey to remember.

From vast coastal fields of wild flowers to the mysterious standing stones of Callanish, we are sure you will be captivated by these special islands. Here, where Gaelic is still spoken, you will find a rich culture and history.

With warm hospitality, great accommodation and food completing the picture, join us for a memorable trip through the Hebrides!

Day 1: Inverness to South Uist

We meet in Inverness in the morning and drive west through the highlands. Crossing by ferry to the Isle of Skye, where your adventure begins.  Lots of opportunity to watch out for whales and other marine wildlife on the crossing, before we alight at the wonderful Outer Hebrides at Lochmaddy. Onward to the islands of North and South Uist. Welcome dinner and a cosy overnight stay (D).

Day 2 – Barra And Eriskay

This morning we ride to the Isle of Eriska, steeped in stories of local lore. It is here that Bonnie Prince Charlie and ‘the Seven Men of Moidart’ landed in 1745 to begin the Jacobite Rising. Onward by ferry to Barra where we take a loop bike ride of the island, taking in Kisimul Castle ~ the Castle in the Sea ~ at Castlebay. Further along the West Coast of Barra, we capture the beautiful views of the Atlantic. Later this afternoon we return by ferry to the Isle of Eriskay and South Uist, your home again for the night. (B,L,D) Distance 37 m / 59 km

Day 3 – South Uist, Benbecula & North Uist

This morning we follow the wild machair covered west coast, taking in all the sights and sounds as you weave past the wild flowers and white sandy beaches. The Machair is a wild, fertile habitat supporting an abundance of wildflowers in Spring and Summer. Here, you will also find sand dunes and fresh water lochans where an extensive array of wild birds thrive. Ease your way north along flat terrain and across the tiny island of Benbecula onto North Uist and Benerary. A short ferry crossing takes us to the Isle of Harris and a transfer to your harbourisde hotel.

(B,L,) Distance 47 m / 75 km 

Day 4 – The Golden Road and Luskenture

Today offers one of the best days biking on the Hebrides. We follow the “Golden Road” on winding roads to the east of Harris, known local as the Bays. The route offers amazing scenery and views across the Isle of Skye. Arriving into Rodel, we stop to visit the 15th century St. Clements church before lunch at Leverburgh. After lunch we follow the beautiful coastline to the beaches of Luskentyre and take a short beach walk. Optional transfer or follow the beach route to a final descent back to Tarbert, the islands ‘capital’ and your lovely hotel right by the harbour. (B,L) Distance 36 m / 59 km

Day 5 – Harris to The Isle of Lewis

After breakfast we visit the famous Harris Tweed weavers to see the worlds most famous weavers at work. Today will be your most challenging day as we climb through the hills but the striking scenery is a reward worth earning. As you traverse beneath the striking mountain of An Clisham – the highest pint of the Outer Hebrides. you should keep an eye out for golden Eagles.

 

Crossing the spectacular fjord of Loch Seaforth, we continue on to the Isle of Lewis, turning west towards the mysterious Callanish standing stones. These mysterious stones are over 5000 years old. The ancient site provides a fitting end to a memorable day of riding. For the next two nights your home will be a friendly 4 star Guest House located nearby. (B, L) Distance 39 m / 64 kms

Day 6 – Callanish to the Butt of Lewis

Your final day of cycling follows the west coast of Lewis and is full of historical and cultural interest. Heading north,  we pass the ancient Dun Carloway Broch and then the Blackhouse Village at Gearrannan which offers an insight into what island living was like not so many years ago.

 

Discover the Whalebone Arch, recovered from a huge whale washed up on a beach nearby. Perched on the Atlantic at the very edge of Europe, the Butt of Lewis is a spectacular place to end our journey through the Outer Hebrides. We return to Callanish for your final overnight stay and a celebratory dinner. (B, L,D) Distance 34 m / 56 km.

Day 7 – Callanish to Inverness

After a relaxed breakfast, you have time to take a final bike ride to the village of Stornoway. Alternatively, we can ride in the van to explore Lews Castle, recently renovated, with restaurants and museum. Lots to see and do here, including the excellent Gaelic cultural arts venue and nice cafes  where you can have lunch. Early afternoon we board the ferry for a scenic journey to Ullapool on the mainland. From Ullapool it is approximately 1.5 hour’s drive to Inverness, where we will arrive close to 6.30 pm. (B)

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Outer Hebrides: A Very Special Place

Review of our Outer Hebrides Bike Trip 2018 by Christine Gray, Sept 24th, 2018
The Outer Hebrides is a very special place. It isn’t just the scenery but the people were so friendly and so genuine. We rode from the southern islands to the north, with the idea of prevailing winds at our backs.
The southern islands are less populated and flatter so it is also a breaking in while riding on single lane roads, stopping to photograph sheep along the roadside and marveling over the landscape.
There are virtually no trees to speak of which is a very different reality for me but the scenery is so striking with the expansive moors and pothole lakes, sweeping white sand beaches along the western coast and the mountains along the east.
As we traveled north, it got a little more populated and a little more terrain but nothing unmanageable. Riding the constantly winding road promised for more spectacular views around every bend.
We followed the Outer Hebridean Way from the Isle of Barra in the south to the Butt of Lewis in the north so it was about 200 miles all told.
We had all types of weather – rain, wind, sunshine – I think this is to be expected for islands off the NW coast of Scotland!
The guides were true professionals and strived to ensure we loved the islands as much as they did. Bikes were well maintained and checked over every evening.
I had the misfortune of lost luggage upon my arrival and the office staff were so great helping me by keeping in contact with the airlines to get my suitcase sent out where we could intercept it and keeping me up to date on progress.
I truly had a great week and am already looking into another trip.
For more details about our 2019 Outer Hebrides Cycling Tour please see: http://www.cyclewest.com/itinerary/outer-hebrides/

Hebridean Trail Mountain Biking

This extraordinary mountain bike journey takes you through one of Europe’s last true wilderness regions, the Outer Hebrides

7 Day/ 6 Night Mountain Bike Guided Tour

Inverness~Uist~Isle of Lewis

More than just another bike ride, the Hebridean Trail offers the opportunity to experience life on this unique group of islands, where the landscapes are wild and untamed, golden eagles and red deer roam free and human history dates back over 5,000 years. Immerse yourself in the traditions of the Outer Hebrides. Hear Gaelic being spoken or sung, listen to traditional folk musicians play in pubs, and see famous Harris Tweed being weaved by skilled local crafters. From the sea and the land comes some delectable produce; think fresh langoustines, scallops, lobster, crab, lamb and beef – and don’t forget moreish Stornoway black pudding!

Day 1: Inverness to the island of South Uist

Meet at 08.30 at Inverness railway station for your journey through the Highlands. We take in Loch Ness and the dramatic Isle of Skye. The we take the ferry over to the Outer Hebrides and drive to the tour start point on South Uist.  You sail across the Minch to North Uist and drive south through spectacular island scenery and wildlife. We arrive in Lochboisdale, where you will find your accommodation and first overnight in a local hotel/inn.

Day 2: Lochboisdale to Lochmaddy, Island of North Uist       

After breakfast we spend some time getting the bikes set up for the ride ahead. The start of the Hebridean Trail follows the west coast of South Uist through the delightful coastal flower meadows, called machair. A trail runs for approximately 30km right the way up the west coast of the island. This is defined by its beautiful white sand beaches and turquoise seas. From the north of the island head inland and follow the ‘main’ road across the causeways to the tiny island of Benbecula.  Onward to the island of North Uist. Your destination for the evening is Lochmaddy on North Uist’s east coast. Overnight hotel. (B,L) Ride distance: 71km/ 44m

Day 3: Lochmaddy to Tarbert, Isle of Harris 

Riding north from Lochmaddy, we follow the coast road to Berneray.  Here you will take the short ferry across the Sound of Harris to Leverburgh. Harris is arguably the jewel in the crown of the Outer Hebrides with its stunning beaches and rugged mountains. From Leverburgh, follow the west coast road with incredible views.  On clear days, the World Heritage Site of St Kilda can be seen 40 miles offshore. We now heading off-road. Taking a series of ancient ‘coffin roads’, you will spend the afternoon riding some fine single track through a landscape of a 1000 lochans. One final road descent takes you to the charming village of Tarbert where will we stay for two nights in a stylish 4* hotel. Distance 62km, 40m (B,L)

Day 4: Reinigeadal and the Islse of Scalpay

Depending on whether you want to tackle one of Scotland’s rarely ridden classic off-road routes  or take it easy exploring the Isle of Scalpay and the area around Tarbert there are options. For confident riders, the Reinigeadal Loop is superb, offering amazing mountain biking through wild and mountainous landscapes. We can also visit one of the island’s most remote coastal villages. It is also well worth extending the day by visiting the Isle of Scalpay with its strong fishing community and a historic lighthouse . Overnight hotel in Tarbert. (B,L) Distance: 35km/ 22m

Day 5: Tarbert to Callanish, Isle of Lewis

An unforgettable day of island adventure as we combine mountain bikes with a couple of short boat rides by RIB.  This opens up the otherwise inaccessible west coast of Harris and the Isle of Lewis. Once on the Isle of Lewis, follow a trail through a dramatic glen, flanked by spectacular peakson either side.We then descend back to the coast and rejoining the RIB for a final ride to the Standing Stones of Callanish. This mysterious stone circle is over 5000 years old and a remarkable place to visit. Your guest house accommodation is nearby. Distance 53km/ 33 m(B,L)

Day 6: Callanish to the Butt of Lewis
Your final day follows the west coast of Lewis and is full of historical and cultural interest. Heading north we pass the ancient Dun Carloway Broch. Onward to the Blackhouse Village at Gearrannan which offers an insight into what island living was like not so many years ago. An impossible to miss feature on your final push is the Whalebone Arch, recovered from a huge whale washed up on a beach nearby. Perched on the Atlantic at the very edge of Europe, the Butt of Lewis is a spectacular and fitting place to end your Hebridean Trail. After celebratory drinks, head back to your accommodation at Callanish for our final night on the islands. Distance 64km/ 39m (B,L)

Day 7: Return to Inverness via Ullapool and farewell!

Following breakfast will head into Stornoway – the largest town in the Outer Hebrides – for a free morning to explore, shop and relax. There is plenty of interest here including Scotland’s newest distillery, a Gaelic cultural and arts venue and nice cafes and bars. After lunch board the ferry back to Ullapool on the mainland. From Ullapool it is approximately 1.5 hour’s drive to Inverness. (B)

Isle of Skye and the Inner Hebrides

Island Hopping through Mull, Iona and Skye on this easy graded road cycling adventure. This self guided bike trip explores the islands on quiet country roads and brings lots of opportunity for cultural encounters, great landscape and stunning island scenery

Inner Hebrides ~ Isles of Skye ~ Mull ~ Iona

7 Days/ 6 Nights Self Guided Plus Bike Tour
From £995 per person sharing *

Trip Details

Our Skye and Inner Hebrides self guided bike tour is the ideal way to explore the iconic Scottish isles by bike.  Take time to soak in the atmosphere of these wild and dramatic landscapes.

Watch the stunning views unfold as you journey from the Isle of Mull, through the wilds of the Ardnamurchan Peninsula and on to the fabled Isle of Skye.

This brand new bike trip offers the best rides from place to place, stopping to explore and appreciate places of natural beauty, cultural interest and wildlife sightings. Our carefully chosen accommodation will welcome you at the end of the day. As always you will enjoy the finest Scottish ingredients in your meals – especially the bounty of the sea on this island hopping trip.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1: Northwest Mull

We will meet at the Oban ferry, you will cross on the ferry to the Isle of Mull. Enjoy the views over the Sound of Mull. On the island, we will undertake a bike check to get everything set up correctly before your first day of riding. Today it is a shorter ride to get warmed up, following a gorgeous coastal road to our accommodation in the village of Dervaig. Here you will spend the next two nights at the oldest inn on Mull. Enjoy local fare of award winning cheese, local ales and island malts as well as home made desserts.

Distance: 24 miles / 38km  Ascent: 1183 ft

Day 2:  Cycling to Iona & the Isle of Mull

Today you transfer to Fionnphort where you board a ferry for the short trip across to Iona. Famed for its monastic history dating back to 563AD,  you get to explore the beautiful village and wonderful Iona Abbey, which has roots older than Scotland itself. Afterwards  transfer back to Mull for our cycle. We’ll follow the coast alongside Loch Scridain towards to the small village of Pennyghael , where we pick up a single track road under the shadow of Ben More, the highest mountain on the Island. After our ride we will have some time to explore some beautiful white shell sand beaches. (B)

Distance: 35 miles / 56 km  Ascent 1702 ft

 

Museum of Island Life, Skye

Day 3:  The Ardnamurchan Peninsula

Today you head to the colourful town of Tobermory and board the ferry across the Sound of Mull to Ardnamurchan – a wild peninsula of the mainland. Back on dry land, the only way is east. You will follow the peaceful and undulating single track roads through the peninsula, watching the views of hills, sea and lochs gradually unfold in this beautiful wilderness. Your destination tonight is the little hamlet of Acharacle, overlooking scenic Loch Shiel. (B)

Distance: 27.8 miles / 43 km  Ascent: 2322 ft

Day 4: The Isle of Skye Via the Road to the Isles

Your journey today follows a classic Scottish route past the Sound of Arisaig before joining The Road to The Isles. The road is winding, almost car-free and beautiful. Passing many gorgeous beaches, we suggest you stop at a local smokehouse to stock up on fish, meats and cheeses for your picnic lunch. After reaching Mallaig you embark on the ferry to cross to the Isle of Skye and transfer to our hotel in Portree. This will be your base for the next 3 nights. (B)

Distance: 35 miles / 56 km  Ascent: 2869 ft

Day 5: Isle of Raasay and Calum’s Road

This morning you ride to the village of Broadford and transfer to the village of Sconser, From here, it is a short hop to the Island of Raasay, located between Skye and the Applecross Peninsula.  Here you cycle on the quiet single track roads, passing through the famous “Calum’s Road”, built almost single-handedly by Calum MacLeod between the mid 1960s and the mid 1970s, with hand tools. In the afternoon you can explore the famous Trotternish peninsula and take in some of Skye’s most iconic sights such as the Old Man of Storr and the Quiraing. Two night stay on the Isle of Skye. (B)

Distance: 21 miles / 34km  Ascent: 2,788 ft

 

Glameig from the Isle of Raalsay Distillery (c) Isle of Raasay Distillery

Day Six – Dunvegan Castle and Western Skye

This morning we set out with a ride to ancient Dunvegan Castle on the west of Skye. Delve deep into Scottish history by taking a tour of this ancestral stronghold of the Clan McLeod. Have lunch at a local cafe and then ride the final stage of your trip. This will take you to Neist Point, the most westerly point on Skye. Stunning views of the Outer Hebrides. Transfer back to Portree to enjoy a final evening meal and a wee dram! (B)

Distance: 43 miles / 67 km  Ascent: 3,160 ft

Day 7: Return to Inverness

After breakfast we head back to Inverness, stopping for a photo opportunity at Eileen Donan Castle to break up the journey. (B)

 

The Mountain Passes

Enjoy the trip with its spectacular scenery, challenging climbs and exciting descents through 5 different mountain ranges ~ this trip is for riders looking for the ultimate road cycling tour in Britain

Pertshire ~ Cairngorms Mountains ~ Isle of Skye
7 Day/ 6 Night Guided Tour
From £1,495 per person sharing

 

The Scottish Highlands and Islands are home to the UK’s most magnificent mountain scenery. Here you will find some spectacular mountain roads, winding through one of the last wilderness regions of Europe. From the Cairngorms National Park in the East to the spectacular coastal mountain ranges of the West, you can expect not only superb scenery but rich Scottish history and culture along the way including Royal Deeside and the iconic Island of Skye. At the end of each day’s riding recuperate in some great Highland accommodation with excellent local food, craft ales and a dram of one the region’s world-famous malt whiskies.

Day 1 – Riding in Perthshire

Meet your guide in Pitlcohry before transferring the short distance to Aberfeldy. After lunch on the banks of the River Tay, we prepare your bikes for your journey through the Ben Lawers mountain range and national nature reserve. Following a climb with stunning scenery, descend into Glen Lyon, Scotland’s longest glen. Take a break at an excellent cafe before returning to your accommodation. (L) Distance 46m/74km.

Day 2 – Perthshire to Royal Deeside

This morning leave Perthshire and head for Royal Deeside and the Cairngorms National Park. Your first stop today is at Scotland’s smallest distillery, Edradour Distillery. Reward yourself with a tour of the distillery and a whisky tasting before continuing on your journey. For lunchstop at a country pub in the picturesque village of Kirkmichael. Fully fueled up for the challenge.  climb 10km over Glenshee to the ski station. After a rest here for refreshments cruise downhill to the foot of the highest mountain range in the UK and the royal village of Braemar.(B) Distance 50m/80km

Day 3 – The Cairngorm Mountains

Explore the Cairngorm Mountain range following 18th century military roads passing Balmoral Castle and several others. Climb up the lecht pass to the highest village in the Highlands, Tomintoul. Take another climb after lunch then follow the River Spey before facing a  3km of ascent to the rewarding Cairngorm Mountain Summit finish. (B,L) Distance 64m/102km

Day 4 – From the East to the West Highlands

Today will be your easy day, in the morning take time to explore Aviemore before a transfer about 90 mintues east. Once you begin riding you will travel through 35 miles of stunning Highland scenery before arriving at your home for the next two nights near the quaint village of Lochcarron. (B) Distance 34m/56km 35m/56km

Day 5 – Kintail & The Isle of Skye

This morning make your way over to the iconic Eilean Donan castle. From here ride around the loch before climbing the hairpins of Mam Ratagan pass. Soak up the dramatic views at the top before descending into the village of Glenelg. After lunch board the ferry to Skye and climb the wonderful Udal pass. From here go downhill towards the north coast and across the famous bridge to the mainland continuing to the colourful village of Plockton. After enjoying some refreshments, ride back to your hotel near Lochcarron. (B,L) Distance 66m/105km.

Day 6 – Applecross & The Bealach na Ba

This morning will be more challenging but the breathtaking scenery across the rugged islands of Skye, Rum and Rassay will more than reward the effort. Starting by the sea from Loch Kishorn climb the highest and hardest mountain road climb in the UK, Bealach na Ba (Pass of the Cattle). A superb 10km descent brings you to Applecross Inn, which was recently voted the best seafood pub in Britain. After lunch follow the winding coastal road before turning back inland to finish the day in the village of Torridon. (B) Distance 51m/82km

Day 7 – Torridon to Inverness

For your final day we will start off with some easy rolling through the majestic Glen Torridon and the Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve. After a tea break in the glen face your final climb above the shores of Loch Maree. At the top  take in one of the best views of the trip before your descent to your lunchtime stop at a former hunting lodge. After lunch we will jump in the van and make the short journey back to Inverness. (B, L) Distance: 20m/33km, 343m ascent.