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Top 5 Bike Tour Destinations in Italy

Renaissance glory days, art + frescoes, medieval fortresses, mosaics, museums, vineyards, romanesque jewel
Premier biking in Italy’s best destinations: Tuscany, Sardinia, a natural paradise; Puglia in southern Italy; Piedmont’s north wine region as well as our amazing cycling and cooking tours; and Sicily, whyever not?!

Remnants of medieval civilisations sit side by side with cosmopolitan hustle and bustle. Hidden gems and Renaissance glory days are the highlights of any trip – Italy is a destination for lovers of art, of food and wine, of life!

From medieval splendours to the finest Chiantis, from culinary delights to artisan markets, from the the sun bleached heel of Puglia, biking in Italy is a feast for the senses!

We offer unique cycling vacations that are Guided, Self guided or Private departures and we are proud of assisting you discover the best of Italy, pedaling on state-of-the–art top quality race and road bikes!

We look forward to having you join us for the trip of a lifetime! Contact us @ tours@cyclewest.com for more details.

West Coast Whisky Bike Tour

http://coldwatergardens.com/about-us/ West Coast Whisky Trail

Trip Highlights

Cycling the best of Scottish Islands: the Isle of Arran, Islay island and the whisky island of Jura,
Enjoy world class whisky
Explore the Mull of Kinture
Visit the third largest whirlpool in the world

An unforgettable cycling holiday.
Arran ~ Islay ~ Jura

7 days/ 6 nights Classic Guided Bike Tour
From £2,195 per person sharing


INTRODUCTION

Our West Coast Whisky Trail bike tour takes you through three of Scotland’s most beautiful islands: the isles of Arran, Islay and Jura. Enjoy a tutored whisky tasting including samples fresh from the cask. Experience a guided Rib trip to the world famous Corryvreckan Whirlpool. Throughout the week you will enjoy rides on the Isles of Arran, Jura and Islay. Included also is a crossing of the Mull of Kintyre. At the end of the tour you can enjoy time in Glasgow. At the end of each day, relax in hand chosen accommodations with wonderful. Enjoy local food, ales and whiskies, providing an authentic taste of the islands.

Day 1: Scotland in Miniature
Meet and greet in Glasgow for the start of your West Coast Whisky Trail. From which we depart to the west coast. Here we catch the ferry from Ardrossan to the Isle of Arran. Arran is often described as “Scotland in Miniature”. It has the Highland-Lowland dividing line running through the middle of the Island. This divides the wild, unspoiled, mountainous north, dominated by the peak of Goat Fell, and the forest, farmland and resorts of the south.

The crossing through the Firth of Clyde takes 55 minutes. Then we arrive into the main village of Brodick. On arrival we will make the short transfer to our accommodation for the next two nights. Following lunch we will spend some time fine tuning the bikes and ensuring everyone is set up for weeks riding. After a short ride, there will be time to enjoy the leisure facilities at the hotel. These include a swimming pool, sauna and steam room to help relax before a welcome dinner at the hotel. Overnight in Brodick on the Isle of Arran. (L,D)

Day2: Castles, Crags and Caves
Today’s bike route will take us around the southern half of Arran. The day is jam packed with island scapes and the coastline. In additiona, we will be treated to great views across to Kinytyre and back to the mainland. Commencing in Lamlash we head south through Whiting Bay, and on to the south side of the island. We stop at a local ‘Velo Cafe’ before turning North again. The island is full of points of interest, such as caves, ancient standing stones, castles and crags. Also, you will have stunning coastal vistas to the mainland. There will be time to explore the picturesque villages before arriving back to Brodick and back to Lamlash. This evening we will enjoy a well deserved dinner at the hotel. (B, L)

Daily Distance: 41 miles/65 km

Our West Coast Whisky Trail

Day 3: Island Hopping
This mornings ride skirts by Goat Fell, the highest peak on Arran standing at 874 metres (2,866 ft) to the village of Lochranza and its ruined castle. We have two short ferry crossings: a short ferry crossing takes us to Kintyre Peninsula. The second ferry from Kennacriag to Islay is a voyage of exploration. It takes 2 hours, whisking us past the Isle of Ghia and through the Sound of Jura, where we can look out for minkie whales, dolphins and basking sharks. On arrival in Port Askaig, we will hop back on the bikes and ride towards our accommodation and base for the next two nights. (B,L)
Daily Distance: 36.2 miles/52 km

Day 4: Wildlife and Whisky
This morning we transfer to the coastal village of Portnahaven, following the west coast of the island to Port Charlotte. A picturesque ride, with views of Orsay Island. Picnic lunch overlooking the sea. Back on the bikes we start to ride back to our accommodation at Brigend via Loch Gruinart, where we can stop off to visit the small RSPB Center where they relate the importance of Islay to many bird species such as migrating geese, corn rake, lapwing and hen harrier. (B,L)

Daily Distance: 38.8 miles/62 km

Our West Coast Whisky Trail

Day 5: Island Hopping
Today will be a short day of riding on Islay’s quiet country roads. Setting off from Port Ellen, we reach the Coast once more and turn left, following the road along the Whisky Coast. We pass the island’s 3 famous distilleries of Laphroaig, Lagavulin and Ardbeg. Following on, we reach the Kildalton Cross, a monolithic Celtic Cross. From here, we ride back to Ardbeg fir lunch in the cafe before spending the afternoon enjoying a tutored whisky tasting. Afterward, we transfer back to Brigend. (B, L)

Distance: 45-65km/ 30-40 miles depending on which distilleries you choose to visit

Day 6: Jura and The Corryvreckan Whirlpool

This morning we transfer the short distance to Port Askaig, where we board the passenger ferry. We cross the fast flowing Sound of Islay and reaching the Jura in a little over five minutes. We follow the eastern coastline of the Island watching out for red deer and the many Iron Age Forts, ancient burial grounds and standing stones as we bike along the east coast of the Island towards the main village of Craighouse.

The highlight of the afternoon is when we load up the bikes and take a private boat trip to visit the Corryvreckan Whirlpool, the third largest whirlpool in the world. From here the boat takes us back to the mainland, where there is an option to cycle the last few miles back to our hotel, set in 17 acres of gardens and beach overlooking the coast. Farewell dinner tonight and perhaps a dram to celebrate a fantastic week of Island hopping. (B,L,D)

Daily Distance: 36 miles/57 km

Day 7: Return to Glasgow

Sadly, to day we bid you farewell. After a leisurely breakfast at our hotel there will be time for a short walk around the neighbouring Arduannie Gardens. The gardens are run and maintained by the National Trust for Scotland and benefit form the warming effect of the North Atlantic drift. Due to the proximity to the sea, this allows the cultivation of many rare and tender plants from around the world. Our journey back to Glasgow will take us around 2 hours 45 minutes, passing through Inverary and Loch Fyne, where we can stop at the Loch Fyne Oyster Bar and Deli for a bite to eat before returning to Glasgow. (B)

Contact us to book your tour: tours@cyclewest.com

Back to top
What’s Included?
7 days professional guiding with lead guide plus assistant guide/support driver
6 nights accommodation in 3* and 4* hotels/ inns/guest houses on a B&B basis
Meals stated in the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Vehicle transport throughout including ride support and luggage transfers
All ferry transport and local boat services
Entrance and admission fees as stated in the
itinerary
Ride snacks, home baking and drinks
Back to top
What’s not included?
Bike Hire:

Road Bikes: £175.00 per hire – Trek Checkpoint ALR5
Hybrid: Trek fx Sport 4: £175.00 per hire
e-Bike: Trek Verve + : £300.00
Bike rental includes bike computer, compact handlebar bag plus a saddle bag with spare tube and tools, helmets and water bottles are included. Helmets and water bottles are included.
Bike hire is not included in the cost of this tour. Most of our clients choose to hire bikes but you are more than welcome to bring your own.
The bikes we use are brand new each season and maintained to the highest standards.

You can choose from 3 different types of bike, each of which is available for anyone of our road cycling holidays and come in a full range of sizes to fit every rider.

Single Supplement

There is no supplement charged to solo travellers, however you will be required to share a room with another person of the same sex. If you require a single room please request this at the time of booking and we will check availability for you.

Dates and Pricing
PRICE: from £2195 per person sharing

Bike rental extra (see bike rates under ‘what is not included’ above)

2023 DATES

13th May – 19th May – 8 places remaining
17th June – 23rd June – 8 places remaining
8th July – 14th July – 8 places remaining
29th July – 4th August – 8 places remaining
2nd Sept – 8th Sept – 8 places remaining

Helpful Notes
EQUIPMENT
For this trip you will to need to bring suitable gear for a 6 day road cycling trip. A full equipment list will be sent to you on booking.

GETTING THERE AND AWAY
You will be met by your guide at 11:00 on Day 1 of the trip at Glasgow Queen Street train station. We will return to Glasgow Queen
Street train station around 14:00 on Day 6

OUR TRIP STYLE
Our approach to road cycling holidays balances the best of both worlds – great guiding and insights when you would like it, alongside the freedom to explore at your pace. At breakfast each day, you will receive a guide briefing and detailed route notes for the day’s ride. Depending upon your preference, you can choose to ride with your guide or simply
follow the route notes and re-group at designated points along the way.

Typically our clients really enjoy the insights our guides are
able to provide into the nature, history and culture of Scotland.

Throughout the day your second guide and support vehicle will always be close to hand to provide drinks, snacks and a friendly ride should you need it. The support vehicle will take care of all of your luggage transferring it from hotel to hotel each day.

Cycle the Cotswolds

CYCLE THE COTSWOLDS ~ 6 DAY SELF-GUIDED ITINERARY,
From Euro 1095.00 pps

Our Cycle The Cotswolds bike tour offers the opportunity to immerse yourself in the best of the Cotswolds and pedal at your own pace. This is a magical mix of must see Cotswolds highlights and the hidden gems that dot this fabulous landscape. Your carefully chosen hotels are the best in the Cotswolds, providing wonderful cuisine and a relaxing environment to rest weary feet at the end of the day.

Day 1: North Cotswolds Introductory Ride
Guests arrive at lunchtime in Moreton in Marsh, a 90 minute direct journey from London Paddington. Our guides will meet you at the station and settle you into your hotel. We give you a full and detailed briefing on the tour and set you off on an introductory afternoon ride around the stunning North Cotswolds.
Mileage: 20 miles

Day 2: Golden Stoned Chipping Campden and Shakespeare’s Birthplace
Guests ride through the beautiful countryside, through Broad Campden, famous for its topiary, and onto to the historic market town of Chipping Campden, with its honey coloured medieval buildings and market hall, built on the back of the wool trade. Our route takes you through to the wonderful Hidcote Gardens and its eccentric series of American inspired ‘outdoor rooms’. For those wishing to cycle further, you can ride down a disused railway line right into the heart of Stratford itself, the birthplace of Shakespeare, and also where he is buried. The route then winds its way back through the Cotswolds to your hotel in Moreton in Marsh.
Mileage: 20-40 miles

Day 3: Broadway Tower, Cotswolds Villages, The Slaughters’ Mill
Guests ride out towards to Broadway Tower, a striking folly perched on the top of the Cotswold escarpment, from where you can see 16 counties and all the way to Wales. Today’s route takes guests through the glorious Cotswold countryside, winding its way through tiny picturesque villages, including the famous Lower Slaughter with its old Mill house and little bridge over the gently flowing river. The route circles back to guests’ hotel in Moreton in Marsh for the evening.
Mileage: 20-33 miles

Day 4: Blenheim Palace ~ Birthplace of Winston Churchill
From Moreton-in-Marsh you cycle out over rolling hills to the palatial country birthplace of Winston Churchill. Blenheim Palace, a World Heritage Site, is surrounded by a magnificent 2000 acre ‘Capability’ Brown landscaped estate, and you can cycle directly up to the Palace itself along its serpentine lakes and twisting paths. After an afternoon of exploring the palace, our route lead you to your new hotel in the pretty market town of Burford, Gateway to the Cotswolds.
Mileage: 23-38 miles

Day 5: The Windrush Valley, Bourton on the Water, Bibury and Arlington Row
Bike out along the Windrush Valley, commonly known at the “Happy Valley” through beautiful little towns and villages, including Bourton on the Water (the Venice of the Cotswolds), Northleach, Bibury (the village that Henry Ford loved so much he wanted to ship back to the USA!) and circle back to Burford for the evening.

Day 6: Cotswolds, Bampton Village, Oxford, Farewells and Ongoing Travel
Today is a half day on the bike. Guests head out on a wonderfully flat route through the Cotswolds to the beautiful Cotswold town of Bampton, home to the hit show Downton Abbey – the village where all the outside filming is completed! Sadly this afternoon we bid you farewll. Following the morning’s cycle we transfer you to Oxford to continue with their ongoing travel arrangements.
Mileage: 15 miles

Accommodations

The Dingle Peninsula Food Trail

Out of the Blue Dingle Out of the Blue Dingle

blas – taste

Did you know that our iconic Dingle Peninsula Bike tour offers the opportunity to experience the Dingle Peninsula Food Trail. While biking the Peninsula, you get to meet some of the amazing local food producers, and for instance, hear their stories and experience their passion. 

Click here for a complete itinerary of our Iconic Dingle Peninsula Bike Tour

It was once described by National Geographic as “the most beautiful place on earth”. It’s a place of spectacular seascapes and landscapes shaped by the elements. As a result, it offers a wild and rugged coastline of steep cliffs and wide sandy beaches.

Boats in Dingle Harbour

In the little fishing port of Dingle you will eat and breathe authentic Irish culture. Experience real food, real talk, real stories, and real ceoil agus craic. Here you’ll find the The Dingle Peninsula Food Trail and the real Ireland.  For instance, one that reveals the Peninsula’s thriving & unbroken traditions of language and music. In addition, folklore and storytelling, arts, crafts and artisan food.

Bia agus Deoch – food and drink

Dingle is a food haven for all connoisseurs. As such, it offers a repertoire of fabulous fresh fish delivered early in the morning from the boats. For meat eaters succulent prime Irish steak and West Kerry lamb are very popular and are a constant presence on all restaurant menus.

Sample Dingle Peninsula cheese flavoured with handpicked dilisk seaweed and matured in a 200 year old stone building.

 

The Dingle Peninsula Food Trail The Dingle Peninsula Food Trail. Photo Credits dingle-peninsula.ie

Take a tour of Dingle’s independent distillery and taste their award winning whiskey, gin and vodka. Or savour gourmet Dingle Ice Cream. It made the old fashioned way with free range eggs, fresh milk from the rare Kerry cow breed and organic cane sugar. Sample the unique flavours such as Dingle Sea Salt, caramelised brown bread and Dingle Gin.

teach tábhairne – public house

 

Traditional Irish Music Pub Session

Bars and pubs in Dingle peninsula are more than somewhere to drink. They are ancient places that carry memories and traditions. Reminders of a time when bars supplied most of a community’s needs. Household goods, hardware, groceries and even coffins were stocked behind the panelled wood and smoke stained veneer.

An teach tábhairne – The public house was just what it says on the tin –  a place for all to gather, do business, gather supplies and mark life’s passing. In more recent times the bar has become more hospitality based (a place of celebration) with good food, music, teas, coffees. Some offer overnight accommodation. Traditional music sessions lure the passing visitor into places offering warmth and soul and gentle conversation. Meet local people and chat with some interesting characters in their place of relaxation.

The Dingle Peninsula inspires, it connects, it “catches the heart off guard”, and it stays with you forever.  For more details of our Dingle Peninsula Bike tour please contact us at tours@cyclewest.com or go to: http://www.cyclewest.com/itinerary/dingle-peninsula-bike-tour/ 

Details for this blog post were sourced from www.dinglepeninsula.ie, Ireland’s Dingle Peninsula. 

10 Reasons to Bike the Ring of Kerry

 

Take in the coast and mountains on our epic Ring of Kerry self guided bike tour. Read the RING OF KERRY BIKE TOUR full itinerary here.

Enjoy the coastal contours of the Ring of Kerry, one of Ireland’s most famous scenic peninsulas. This is more than just a cycling route, it’s an incredible circuit of the Iveragh Peninsula with the warmest of welcomes, most picturesque villages and spectacular views.

1. Explore Killarney National Park

Explore Killarney National Park

 

Head to Killarney National Park for picturesque lakes, mountains and woodland that stretches across an astounding 10,000 acres. Explore the park’s abundant wildlife by foot, jaunting car or bike, and take a tour of Muckross House, a late 19th century mansion. Stroll through its landscaped gardens, have a picnic and visit Muckross Traditional Farms for an insight into what life was like way back when. Savour the breathtaking views in Killarney National Park.

 

Torc River and Waterfall

2. Take a break at Torc Waterfall

After Killarney National Park, make time for a break at Torc Waterfall, 7km from the town centre. Take the short stroll to the waterfall and bask in the sounds of nature tumbling from the falls. Explore the beautiful Lakes of Killarney on the Muckross Lake Loop for a fantastic adventure in the great outdoors.

Town of Kenmare Photo credit: @mdskyshots

 

3. Take a foodie tour in lovely Kenmare

Make your way to beautiful Kenmare where the colourful buildings and upbeat locals are full of character. The most rewarding way to experience this town is to book a place on a Kenmare Foodie Tour where you get a delightful insight into Kerry’s talented food producers. You won’t leave this tour on an empty stomach as local woman, Karen Coakley, brings you to the best foodie spots in town. Taste artisan treats, locally roasted coffee and homemade ice-cream.

 

Charming Sneem Photo credit: @tom_naiman

4. Charming Sneem

Visit the lovely village of Sneem, sometimes overlooked in favour of other towns but it’s worth stopping here to enjoy its local charm. Discover the Kerry Geopark in this pretty Irish village and learn about Ireland’s unique geology and ancient culture. Visit the sensory garden, take a stroll down the riverside wildlife trail, or check out the local farmer’s market. You could plan your visit around the Sneem Summer Festival, where you’ll experience live music, sheep dog trials and even crab fishing.

A View of Skellig Michael A View of Skellig Michael

5. Take a Tour to Skellig Michael

If you have time, we recommend you take a detour and pre-book a boat trip out to the UNESCO World Heritage site Sceilg Mhichíl (Skellig Michael) off the coast of County Kerry. Book early to schedule your journey around summertime when migrating puffins visit the island. Skellig Michael can be accessed by boat from Portmagee. Skellig Michael rises from the sea, reaching a height of 218 metres above sea level. On the summit of Skellig Michael there is a well-preserved 6th century monastic settlement. Skellig Michael gets its name from Saint Michael the Archangel

 

 

Visit Valentia Island

6. Visit Valentia Island

Accessible by bridge or by ferry, on Valentia Island to the south, explore the Bray Head Loop, a spectacular coastal trail. On a clear day, you’ll see out to the Skellig Islands and Dingle Peninsula. From there, head north-east to Valentia Island Lighthouse at Cromwell Point and take a tour of this intriguing place. A beacon of hope to guide incoming vessels, the lighthouse led many boats through the entrance of Valentia Harbour.

Stunning Scenery in Cahersiveen. Photo credit: @garskajessica

7. Discover the Stories of Cahersiveen

Arriving in Caherciveen, look up at the outstanding views of Bentee Mountain and Valentia Harbour. Relax by the marina or book in with Cahersiveen Walking Tours and travel back in time as an expert guide shares the history of the town.

Hear about Monsignor Hugh O’ Flaherty, known as ‘The Scarlet Pimpernel of the Vatican’, poet and playwright Sigerson Clifford, politician Daniel O’Connell and many more local tales. Tours are available from May to September.

 

8. Kells Bay House and Gardens

About halfway between Glenbeigh and Cahersiveen is the fishing village of Kells, and we recommend you make time for the enchanting Kells Bay House and Gardens. This family-friendly attraction has one of the finest collection of plants in Europe, as well as cool carved dinosaurs that keep the kids occupied as you stroll through 17 hectares of woodland. Relax with a well-deserved break in the on-site café or restaurant and afterwards, take a quick spin to the sea at Kells Bay.

 

Biking the Ring of Kerry

 

9. Gorgeous Glenbeigh

Community spirit is strong in Glenbeigh as you’ll see at their annual festival, a fun mix of sports, live music, entertainment and culture. Plan your visit around the Glenbeigh Festival and Races which takes place during the summer on Rossbeigh Beach. Or simply meet the welcoming locals in a lively traditional pub.

Wild Goats on Molls Gap Wild Goats on Molls Gap

10. Moll’s Gap

Moll’s Gap is lies between Kenmare and Killarney, with views of the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks. The area is a panoramic spot visited by thousands of tourists each year. Moll’s Gap is named after Moll Kissane who ran a shebeen, a small pub, on a rocky breach during the construction of the original Kenmare Killarney road in the 1820s. She became popular for selling home brewed poitín, whiskey, to the hardy men who worked on the road. For cyclists this 6.3 mile climb reaches a summit of 860 feet where you can see the Black Valley and further down on the descent you will find Ladies View and the Killarney lakes. Visit Avoca Food market  and woollen store ~ but remember, what you buy, you must carry on your bike!!

 

Make your trip a memorable one and discover the magic of the Kingdom. Come Join us!  Book your Ring of Kerry Self Guided Bike Tour today!  Contact us at tours@cyclewest.com

This blog post is an adaption of a previous post courtesy of Discover Ireland.

THE ISLES OF SCOTLAND

When the time is right and hopefully in the not too distant future, consider joining us in Scotland for an unsurpassed bike tour.

Towering mountains, glittering lochs, dense woodlands and miles upon miles of golden beaches – the Scottish Isle landscapes really will take your breath away. Tour the rolling hills and lush farmland of the Lowlands, or drive through deep glens surrounded by mountains in the Highlands. Uncover magnificent coastal features in the west, and explore the atmospheric, royal settings of the east.

The Isle of Skye is calling you…

Skye is loved the world over for its dramatic scenery, windswept mountains and swirling seascapes. The intoxicating blend of rugged scenery mixed with fairytale legends and island charm makes the largest of the Inner Hebridean islands and one of our most cherished spots.

But there’s more to this enchanting island than you might imagine, and we’re going to let you in to a few of its secrets.  Our Self Guided Isle of Skye and Inner Hebrides bike tour is an amazing adventure and one just waiting for you.  7 Days, 6 nights, Self Guided Bike Tour, from £995.00. Contact CycleWest Ireland at tours@cyclewest.com for more details, dates and travel updates, 

 

Glameig from the Isle of Raasay Distillery (c) Raasay DistillerySO WHEN CAN I TRAVEL TO SCOTLAND?  Read here for more details on when you can travel to Scotland: Scotland Travel Advisory 

 

Beara Peninsula Bike Tour

Our Beara Peninsula bike tour in West Cork is possibly one of the most scenic tours in Ireland. Experience the unspoiled beauty of the sourrounding landscape and visit picturesque towns and villages, including Killarney, Kenmare, Castletownbere and Glengariff.

 

Dursey

Killarney ~ Allihes ~ Glengariff ~ Castletownbere
8 Days/ 7 Nights Self Led Bike Tour, from Euro 995.00 per person 

The Beara Peninula in Ireland’s West Cork, is an ancient, magical region where the power of the past is ever-present and the present just blooms with welcome for you the visitor. Laden with magnificent landscapes and history, the Beara peninsula is a special region and worthy of exploration.The rugged road that follows the coast along the Beara peninsula, on the SouthWestern coast,  is one of the most scenic in Ireland. The Beara Peninsula is quite remote and has remained perhaps the most unspoilt part of the south west region of Ireland, and like the peninsulas to the north, is a magical world of mountains and lakes surrounded by a picturesque coastlinet.  The Beara peninsula is possibly the least travelled but the most beautiful of the Kerry and Cork peninsulas.

Day 1: Welcome to Killarney!

Your tour starts in Killarney, Co. Kerry, one of Ireland’s most charming towns. A trip welcome pack, itinerary, route directions and maps will await you at your first nights accommodation.  Collect your bikes and, if time allows, take a short cycle around the town to get a “feel” for your surroundings. We recommend a visit to Muckross House and Killarney National Park. Tearooms are open. A CycleWest Ireland favourite spot! Overnight in Killarney. Daily Distance: 21km / 12 miles

Allihies-Header-Slide

Day 2: Killarney to Kenmare

Today you cycle out of Killarney following a cycle path through the Killarney National Park which brings you to a quite country road. This road brings you to the iconic Gap of Dunloe which is one of the highlights of your cycle tour. With jagged rock walls rising above you as you wind between glistening lakes this is a majestic place to experience. From here you descend into the Black Valley and have a marvellous ride through some remote countryside with nothing but sheep for company. You will climb up out of the valley before a nice descent into the beautiful town of Kenmare. Overnight in Kenmare. Distance: 47kms / 29 miles.

Day 3: Kenmare to Lauragh

Leaving Kenmare behind you, today’s cycle takes you on a lovely route to across what was Irelands first suspension bridge. Following the coast of Kenmare Bay you have beautiful views before you turn inland onto country lanes that winds into Gleninchaquinn valley where you have the option to visit the ancient Uragh Stone Circle which offers sensational views of the lakes which lie in the valley.
You continue along this road to reach Gleninchaquinn Nature Park where you can choose from a number of walking route in the park and view the cascading waters of the beautiful waterfall which is the centrepiece of the park. (there is a small entrance fee for the park). You leave the valley by the same road and take another winding coastal road which will lead you to the sleepy village of Lauragh where you will stay overnight. Distance: 44kms / 26 miles

Beara-Peninsula-Header-Slid

Day 4: Lauragh to Allihies

Today your bike ride follows the northern coast by Coulagh Bay, with views of Miskish Mountain to the south, through the picturesque village of Eyeries, famous for its colorful houses.  Along the route there is ample evidence of ancient habitation with numerous standing stones, cairns and ancient burial sites. A twisting route with wonderful scenery. From there you continue to the tiny village of Allihies, reputed, by folklore, to be the spot where the four ‘Children of Lír’ came ashore after spending 300 years adrift on the Atlantic. The area was once noted for its copper mines and evidence of the long-ceased activity still remains.  Overnight in Allihies. Distance: 44kms/ 27 miles.

Day 5: Allihes to Castletownbere and Dursey Island

Your route today takes you to the Dursey Sound where a trip to the glorious Dursey Island can be taken by cable car.  Remember to pack a picnic lunch! Spectacular sea views – looking out to the Bull Rock (and its Lighthouse), Cow and Calf Rocks , the Skelligs and the wild Atlantic Ocean. Bull Rock  is reputed to be the site of Teach Doinn (‘the house of Donn’ ~ Irish God of the underworld) and it is here that souls wait to enter his domain.   Back on the mainland – you continue cycling east to finish in the fishing port of Castletownbere.   Take a walk on the expansive wharf where you will find lots of things of interest, from fishing boats to net mending. Overnight in Castletownbere.  Distance: 38kms / 24 miles.

Day 6: Castletownbere to Glenarriff

Today you have the option to take your bike over to Bere Island for a cycle around this hidden beauty, adding 14kms onto your day. The area is the setting for Daphne du Maurier’s 1943 novel Hungry Hill named for the mountain of the same name which is the highest peak in the Caha Mountains. A ten-minute ferry trip from Castletownbere takes you to Bere Island with its great forts, Martello tower, Ardnakinna Lighthouse and a number of looped walks. Get the lay of the land in the Bere Island Heritage Centre

From Castletownbere you then cycle east through Adrigole – with an option here to go kayaking if you wish. Continue along the coast to Glengariff, which takes its named from the nearby Glengarriff Forest  (loosely translated as: rough glen) containing some of the oldest and most extensive oak and birch groves left in Ireland. Overnight in Glengarriff. Distance: 38kms / 24 miles.

Day 7: Glenarriff to Kenmare

Today’s stunning inland route brings you through rugged countryside which this region is know for. With view of mountains and valleys stretching in all directions you are never far from another impressive vista. You will meander along quite country roads with some good uphill sections before descending to the riverside route which will take you into the town of Kenmare.

Day 8: End of tour

After a farewell Irish breakfast you are then free to take the bus back to Cork & continue your onward journey from there.

Contact us at tours@cyclewest.com for more details or to book this tour. 

Coast to Coast Scotland Bike Tour

Trip Highlights

  • A stunning Coast to Coast Scotland bike tour from Aberdeen to Applecross
  • Quiet roads, testing climbs and superb descents in stunning landscapes.
  • Scenic Cairngorms National Park.
  • Boat tour on the Iconic Loch Ness.
  • Amazing mountains of Torridon.
  • Fully supported

Aberdeen ~ Cairngorms National Park ~ Lough Ness ~ Applecross ~ Inverness

Duration: 7 Days/ 6 Nights
Price: from £1,965 per person sharing

Coast to Coast Scotland Bike Tour

ITINERARY

This stunning Coast to Coast Scotland bike tour is not for the faint-hearted. It is a biking adventure that will take you on a coast to coast journey, from Aberdeen to Applecross and Inverness.

A combination of challenging climbs, magnificent descents offering stunning scenery each day. Combine this with along with a variety of quintessential cultural experiences, ranging from castles and distilleries to a fantastic boat trip trip along Loch Ness, this is sure to be holiday to remember.

Day 1: Aberdeen to Ballater

Early morning meet and greet at Aberdeen Train Station this morning. We begin our journey across Scotland.  A transfer takes us to our start point, on the shores of the North Sea. We begin with a  group welcome, bike fit out and a briefing from your guide. This is followed by a bike ride along the quiet South Deeside roads, arriving at the scenic village of Banchory in time for a riverside lunch.  The riverside bike ride continues,  along the River Dee, leading us to the village of Ballater. A wlecome dinner awaits. (L, D)

Distance: 64km / 40 miles, Ascent: 670m / 2,189ft

Coast to Coast Scotland Bike Tour

Day 2: Biking in Cairngorms National Park

This morning, there are a few hills, including some challenging climbs rewarded with superb descents. Climbing over the Lecht pass you take a break Tomintoul village, the highest village in the Highlands. It’s also home to one of Scotland’s best whisky shops which is well worth a visit. This is followed with an easy end of day ride to the village of Grantown on Spey and your overnight stay. (B, L, D)

Distance: 93km/ 58 miles Ascent: 1342m/ 4,405ft

Day 3: Grantown-on-Spey to Fort Augustus

Today starts easily with a pleasant ride through the villages of Dulnain Bridge and Carrbridge.  Following a fantastic country road, we climb over the challenging Garbole where the views of the Highlands open up. A quick descent to the village of Farr, followed by quiet backroads alongside the iconic shores of Loch Ness. We love our 5 mile descent to end the day, dropping us down to the shores of Loch Ness. From here, we transfer to our accommodation in the village of Drumnadrochit.  A well earned dinner awaits. (B, L, D)

Distance: 88km/ 55 miles Ascent: 1009m/ 3,312 ft

Day 4:  Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle

This morning is a restful start. Mid-morning, we board a zodiac for a high speed trip on Loch Ness, passing historical Urquhart Castle, nestled on the shores of the loch. This is followed with a bike ride  along a lovely road alongside the River Glass.  We wind our way through the countryside to our accommodation secluded in the hills above Contin. (B, L, D)

Distance: 65km/ 41 miles Ascent: 594m/ 1,950 ft

Coast to Coast Scotland Bike Tour

Day 5: Into West Highlands

This morning we climb away from the shores of Loch a’Chroisg, rewarded with one of the finest views right down the length of the spectacular Loch Maree. This descent is an absolute blast on a perfect road surface arriving at Kinlochewe. Late afternoon we ride  through the dramatic Glen Torridon. Here, the scenery offeres us the majestic mountains of Liathach and Beinn Eighe. We gently climb across the watershed, we get our first glimpse of the west coast. We end the day in the village of Shieldaig, your overnight stay. (B, L, D)

Distance: 69km/ 43 miles Ascent: 596m/ 1,958 ft

Day 6: The Applecross Peninsula

This mornings ride is a coastal one from Torridon to Shieldaig. We continue south through the hills on a winding single track road reaching the start of our final, challenging climb: The Bealach na Ba. Alpine in nature, this route crosses the rugged peak of Beinn Bhàn. Starting from sea level and rising through a series of ramps, hairpins and switchbacks to the summit at 626m (2,054ft) over a 6 mile climb. From the summit the views are panoramic, stretching accross the sea downhill all the way to the coast and journey’s end. Your Coast to Coast journey ends with a celebratory lunch at the legendary Applecross Inn. With views over the sea to the Isle of Skye, it’s the perfect end to an amazing trip.  (B, L, D)

Distance: 40km/ 25 miles Ascent: 973m/ 3,193 ft

Coast to Coast Scotland Bike Tour

Day 7: Farewell

Sadly today we bid you farewll. This morning we will have a leisurely breakfast before transferring to Inverness. The journey takes us around 1.5 hours, arriving into the city around 12 noon. You continue with your onward journey from here. (B)

Contact us at tours@cyclewest.com for more details and booking information. 

See more Scotland Road Cycling Itineraries > READ MORE

 

Treasures of the Highlands

MULTI-ACTIVITY FAMILY ADVENTURE

Self Drive Tour with activities
7 days, 6 nights from £1,215 per person sharing

This activity filled family adventure promises to be a big hit for all of the family. Immerse the family is a land of myths and legends, ride the Harry Potter Train, enjoy sea kayaking, mountain biking, hiking and all with knowledgeable guides. All activities are suitable for beginners.

 

ITINERARY

DAY 1: ARRIVE FORT WILLIAM

Your adventure begins at Fort William, a great location to use as a base for exploring the West Highlands. As this is a self-drive itinerary, you make your way to Fort William in the West Highlands. If you are coming from Edinburgh or Glasgow, you can drive via the stunning Glencoe valley. Or, if you are starting from Inverness, you will drive along the banks of Loch Ness. Fort William, the largest town in the Highlands and is nestled  in the shadow of Ben Nevis. . Settle into your B&B accommodation and overnight.

DAY 2: THE HARRY POTTER STEAM TRAIN

A relaxing day to recover from your journey. After breakfast, don your wizard cloaks and grab your wands and jump aboard the Jacobite Steam Train – also known as the Hogwarts Express – the Harry Potter steam train –  to enjoy one of the most scenic train journeys in the world. Sit back and enjoy the immense and spectacular landscape as you cross the famous Glenfinnan viaduct on your way west. A lunch stop in the fishing port of Mallaig provides the perfect break  before you return to Fort William.
(B)

 

DAY 3: SEA KAYAKING TO DESERT ISLANDS

Your first adventure activity is today’s sea kayaking on the beautiful coastline, in the Sound of Arisaig.  Here we will find lots of tiny desert islands, quite possibly with hidden treasure buried somewhere! This beautiful stretch of water offers excellent sea kayaking in fairly sheltered waters. It is also an excellent place for seeing marine wildlife such as seals, otters or even dolphins. You will have lots of breaks during the day to ensure that no-one gets too tired. Late afternoon, return to Fort William. (B)

DAY 4: CANOEING IN THE GREAT GLEN

A fun day, starting and finishing near Fort William. Your first stop will be Neptune’s Staircase – the impressive series of 8 canal lock-gates where the Caledonian Canal meets the shore of Loch Eil. Here you collect your canoe equipment and start with a canal-side briefing on how to paddle canoes. Then jump in and paddle north up the canal, enjoying the easy paddling on the calm canal waters and the beautiful views of the  hills, including the north face of Ben Nevis – the highest peak in Scotland. On reaching Gairlochy you’ll be collected and transferred back to the start point. Fort William.

 

DAY 5: CAIRNGORMS NATIONAL PARK – MOUNTAIN BIKING

Driving east this morning to the Cairngorms National Park, 1 hour & 30 minutes away,  you have time to stop for a short walk or visit a whisky distillery. Grab lunch and then you meet your guide and pick up your bikes. We’ll take our mountain bikes on an off-road journey thorugh ancient Caledonian Pine Forests of Rothiemurchus Estate. through the ancient forests, seeking out the wildlife as we ride. The trails  are well-known for wildlife, including reindeer, golden eagles, red deer, squirrels and ospreys. All in all la great biking day through magnificent scenery.

DAY 6: HIKING AND TREASURE HUNTING

During the week you will have been collecting clues as part of your great treasure hunt! Today is teh day to find the treasure! So today is the day you try our geocaching – learning basic navigation skills and then using them, combined with the clues we have already gathered, to find the treasure. So today, we take you on a guided hike, geocaching and treasure hunting along the way. Tonight, enjoy your last night in the Cairngorms.

DAY 7: DEPARTURE… OR CONTINUE WITH AN EXTENSION

Sadly today we bid you all farewell. You begin your journey home. Or if you prefer to remain in the area and do some additional exploring, we are happy to be of assistance in planning your extended stay. Contact us at tours@cyclewest.com for more details and to book.

Outer Hebrides Road Cycling Tour

Trip Highlights

• An unforgettable bike tour and island safari of Scotland’s favourite islands.  Explore 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 £2.095 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 harbourside 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, the largest island of the Western Isles or Outer Hebrides archipelago. Turning west we bike towards the historical 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. This brings you to the end of an unforgettable bike tour and island safari of Scotland’s favourite islands. 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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                                      Email us for more details at tours@cyclewest.com