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Best cycling holidays

Cycling in ItalyMountain bikingMount Fuji

 By Annabelle Thorpe, Editor of 101 Short Breaks

Exploring on two wheels is an increasingly popular way to spend time on holiday, whether it’s a few miles’ glide between hotels, or long days of pounding up and down hills that would challenge a Tour de France pro. Specialist companies offer routes in locations as far-flung as South America and Africa, while there are plenty of gentler options closer to home, with the chance to explore some of Europe’s most beautiful regions on tranquil back roads. Choose from escorted group tours, or self-guided weeks or short-breaks, where your luggage is transported between hotels, leaving you truly free to explore.

Solo cycling

A cycling holiday can be a great option as a single traveller – whether you want to join a guided group, or set off under your own steam. Saddle Skedaddle offer trips for all level of cyclist, from weekends in the UK to full weeks in Europe and further afield, and operate a single-sex twin-share scheme, for those travelling alone who don’t mind sharing. For those who’d rather be completely independent, Headwater offers self-guided tours to regions such as Provence and Andalucia, with luggage transfers, and detailed route maps that pick out the highlights en route. If you’d like to combine cycling with other activities, Solos Holidays offers activity holidays around Europe that mix cycling with hiking, sailing or tennis, depending on the location.

Family holidays

With both hands on the handlebars, a cycling holiday is a great way to get the kids away from their phones and screens. Inntravel has a programme of family cycling holidays around Spain that offer a totally different experience to the crowded Costas; choose from Mallorca – the British Olympic cycling’s team training ground of choice – to the Catalan coast, or the more challenging Pyrenees. Or explore the castles and spectacular fortresses and abbeys that dot the countryside around the Danube – a pleasingly flat(ish) region, that means even younger children can tackle the route without becoming too tired.

Leisurely cycling

If the thought of reconnecting with a saddle for more than a couple of days feels like too much, a weekend break exploring the beautiful landscapes of the Lake District or North Wales might be just the ticket.   And there are plenty of cycling holidays that combine time on a bike with visits to vineyards and foodie stops; try Inntravel’s self-guided tour of the Loire, or the wonderfully-flat landscapes in Holland. And if you want to take it really easy, Headwater offers a range of E-Biking holidays – ideal for couples who don’t share quite the same levels of fitness.


If you’re the kind of cyclist that likes to pound up and down hills (or even mountains) and clock at least 30-40 miles a day, then the Healthy Holiday Company has some great options, including the Italian Dolomites and the chance to discover the spectacular scenery and unspoilt villages of Morocco’s Atlas Mountains. To combine adventuring on two wheels with other activities, Mark Warner offers inclusive mountain biking at some of its resorts in Greece and Sardinia, offering guests the chance to join guided, group tours or explore independently, on top-notch Cannondale Trail 4 bikes. For a real adventure further afield, choose the open roads and wide, unique landscapes of South Africa, on a trip based out of Cape Town, including the chance to ride the spectacular Chapman’s Peak drive, in the company of experienced guides and pro cyclers.

Last updated: 11 September 2017

Mountain bikingCycling in Provence

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