The UK Was Made for Long Distance Cycling
Nowadays, barely a day goes past when the latest feat of mind-boggling cycling endurance pops up into my social media feed. 200 miles in a day – is that all? Across Europe in a week – no problem! Round the world in the summer school holidays – ok, that might be pushing it, but in 2017 Mark Beaumont did manage it in 78 days averaging a remarkable 240 miles (380km) each day.
However, for most of us, long-distance cycling is less concerned with über feats of endurance and more about the journey. Several days of simply riding your bike, where all your worries seem to slip away with each pedal stroke and the main concern is usually how far it is to the next cafe stop.
In the UK we are blessed to have an increasing number of fantastic long distance cycling routes. I originally had planned to limit the choice below to 5 but it seemed almost churlish to omit a couple of classics. Of course, whether they are the UK’s best is purely conjecture. However, what is not in doubt, is that all of them are great bike rides each offering something different in terms of challenge, duration, landscapes and culture.
For each ride, you’ll find details of the distance and recommended duration for those looking to ride 40-50 miles (70-80km) each day. I’ve also tried to select one route highlight which you simply cannot miss. It’s an impossible task but I thought I would have a go anyway!