If hitting the road on two wheels is your idea of heaven, why not book a cycling holiday in 2017? There are some glorious routes in this wondrous world that will not only delight hardcore cycling fans but will also woo those that are new to the experience. So, without further ado, here are 10 of our favourite cycling holidays for 2017. The question is, can you really just choose one?
1. The Loire Valley, France
For a classic cycling route that has stood the test of time. Head to the beautiful Loire Valley where the Loire a velo – a trans-regional bike route that crosses two regions, six departments and six major urban areas; winds its way through postcard-perfect French countryside dotted with magnificent chateaux.
2. The Donauradweg, Passau to Vienna
Another favourite route amongst travelling cyclists. The easy journey between Passau and Vienna follows the cycle path along the mighty Danube, the second longest river in Europe. Whether you want to stick to your trusty bike or mix it up and travel some of the way by boat, you can take in some lovely summery scenery as you traverse the river on your way to one of the most culturally rich cities in Europe.
3. South Dalmatian Coast, Croatia
If dazzling turquoise waters and craggy coastlines with panoramic views are your sort of thing. Croatia’s South Dalmatian Coast won’t disappoint. Croatia’s dramatic topography makes it an excellent choice for those who want to push themselves with a hill ride; alternatively, bike hire organisations such as freedomtreks.co.uk offer e-bikes to give you a boost in power if that’s what you need.
4. Mekong Delta, South East Asia
Tourists and locals alike have been using bicycles to get from A to B in the region around the Mekong Delta for centuries. Follow in their footsteps as you explore Vietnam and Cambodia. Highlights include the majestic temple complex of Angkor Wat, the glassy tiers of rice paddy country, and the sombre ‘Killing Fields’ where you can learn about the region’s bloody history.
5. Atlas Mountains, Morocco
As well as glittering souks and an exotic culture, Morocco offers a diverse landscape with a variety of terrain for avid cyclists to take their pick. A number of tour groups, such as KE Adventure Travel, offer cycling tours of this enchanting part of North Africa, discovering the breath-taking peaks and drops of the Atlas Mountains in an adventure you won’t forget.
6. Cap de Formentor, Majorca
The island of Majorca might be well-known around the world for its beach resort. In cycling circles, it is also known as one of the top spots in the world to ride. It’s the leading training camp destination in Europe thanks to its varied routes, and the road to the lighthouse on the Cap de Formentor with its blissful views of the sparkling Mediterranean is one of the best loved by the cycling community.
7. Tuscany, Italy
Another destination for those who like to ride hard by day and dine hard by night. The spell-binding countryside of Tuscany is regarded to be some of the most beautiful in the world. The rolling hills of the region, blanketed in olive groves and vineyards, will keep those legs working; but you’ll find that each night you are richly rewarded with sumptuous Tuscan cuisine and as much fine wine as you can drink.
8. The Lofoten Islands, Norway
A pricey destination but one for those who need one-off experiences to satisfy their travelling soul. The Lofoten Islands in the northern reaches of Norway offer a variety of mostly flat routes with vistas worth writing home about. Crisp blue skies, traditional fishing hamlets and dramatic fjords are just some of the sights you can look forward to. Follow the Rallarvegen from Finse to Flam to see some of the best of the region.
9. The Wachau Valley, Austria
For those in search of a slice of history. The Wachau Valley in Austria provides gentle, bike-friendly pathways along the banks of the Danube, leading you through countryside rich in monasteries and castles. This route feels like a storybook, filled with fairytale architecture, apricot orchard, endless vineyards and dense forests.
10. The New Forest, England
Last but not least. Visit the wilds of New Forest National Park to let loose on miles of off-road tracks and low-speed limit roads. This part of the country showcases the best of the English countryside with ancient woodland, quaint villages, a 40-mile secret coast and thousands of cattle and ponies wandering free. You can hire bikes all year round; buy a New Forest card and you’ll even get 20% off at selected locations.
As you head off on your cycling holiday, don’t forget to purchase the correct travel insurance for your trip. NOW travel insurance has some great deals for every budget.