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Recommended short fun touring ideas to get wife on bike...

Posted: 19 Jul 2008, 7:06pm
by wizardpugh
Hi everyone,

I'd like to take my wife on a touring trip that will change her mind about cycling. I've been on a few longer tours by myself, but would love to show her what the best of it is all about. We live in London and have done a few days together in Kent and Suffolk before.

Can anyone come up with ideas that fit these specs?

- Less than a week
- Gentle climbs, or none at all
- Camping ok, but alternatives if weather gets bad
- Maybe 30 - 40 miles a day: enough to make it a day's ride but not too far
- Quieter routes
- No aeroplanes (I know this limits things a lot, but that's for me as I'm a nervous flyer).

A few places I've thought about are... the Welsh marches, but I'm from there. Holland. Northern France - maybe D-Day beaches etc. I'd love to go to Western Scotland but if the weather is bad it might put her off for life. Coast to coast across Northern England?

Any suggestions would be much appreciated! Otherwise, it might mean leaving her at home in future... :wink:

Thank you,
Martin.

Posted: 19 Jul 2008, 7:39pm
by thirdcrank
Norfolk is very nice. I also like the Dumfries and Galloway region of Scotland. Both are reasonably flat with loads of quiet roads.

Posted: 19 Jul 2008, 7:56pm
by Manx Cat
Someone from this forum suggested Freedom Treks.

They have since sent me a catalogue. Beth, Rosie and I and MAYBE Chas my man are thinking very seriously of doing a cruise and bike holiday in Holland next summer.


I dont fly at all. (no wings :lol: - terrified to planes), so we are boating from IOM, then training to East Coast, then ferry to Holland, then bus/train to the destination.

All very do able.


Have a look, Google Freedom Treks and take a look. They have sent me a 2008 catalogue and there are shed loads of holidays we can choose from. I have now asked for a 2009 catalogue to sort something out after Christmas this year. (oh, the C word)


None of the cycle holidays are megga miles, but we all fancy a chill out type of hol next summer. (So long as we can organise carers for the relatives that is)


Take a look. I was very impressed.


Mary

Posted: 19 Jul 2008, 8:10pm
by Dee Jay
Can I give you an answer from the point of view of someone whose experience of touring to date stands at 13 miles?

I am also a woman: ie perversity is the default from your point of view.

:wink:

I would love the idea of cycling away from my house, all ready to go.

No packing the car/putting the cycles on the cycle-rack (this is the most traumatic part of cycling, in my book).

No driving to the airport/station/ferry/whatever.

No driving whatsoever.

Of course, I do realise that not everyone can do this. Or can they??

And obviously, it does kinda limit the places from which to choose..

And I do live in glorious mid-Devon, which is, of course, precisely where many might want to go on holiday.

And having said all that .... I am planning on thinking about doing the C2C!

Posted: 19 Jul 2008, 8:19pm
by wizardpugh
Thanks very much for all comments so far.

Manx Cat - I've looked at the Freedom Treks website and they've got some great tours, but we were planning on doing things independently. That said, I like the look of their St Malo ride and we could trace their itinerary.

Dee Jay - I would love to get on and go without travelling anywhere. But not everyone is lucky enough to live in Devon! It would take us a 1/2 day's riding just to clear London, and I'd rather go out of South-East England if possible. I'm looking for something with a wow factor...

Any other ideas much appreciated.

Posted: 19 Jul 2008, 10:30pm
by MartinBrice
look at romney marsh - totslly flat apart from the bits that are actually below sea level. good B&B, also campsites, and of course train from london. i've had good times there.

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 6:36am
by eileithyia
What are her hobbies, Is there anyway of planning the mini tour around other interests, bird watching, old churches, places filmed for TV programmes (ok scraping the barrel not my ideal choice...), an emroidery or art exhibition that can be incorporated.

Or look at British Cycle Quest, run by CTC use answering the questions in a chosen area as the basis for a mini tour.

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 6:53am
by Dee Jay
eileithyia wrote:What are her hobbies, Is there anyway of planning the mini tour around other interests, bird watching, old churches, places filmed for TV programmes (ok scraping the barrel not my ideal choice...), an emroidery or art exhibition that can be incorporated.



This idea has great potential, I think.

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 7:42am
by dkmwt
Dee Jay wrote: And I do live in glorious mid-Devon........


Where abouts in Mid Devon are you? It's nice to know where other members are. and that we might bump into each other (hopefully not literally) someday. Come to think of it, it would be nice for the forum members from the area get together one day and chat face to face rather than via a keyboard.

Re: Recommended short fun touring ideas to get wife on bike.

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 7:48am
by hubgearfreak
wizardpugh wrote:- Gentle climbs, or none at all


forget this one :lol:

wizardpugh wrote:- Coast to coast across Northern England?


either side of the humber bridge is nice

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 8:59am
by Dee Jay
dkmwt wrote:
Dee Jay wrote: And I do live in glorious mid-Devon........


Where abouts in Mid Devon are you?


I am near Cullompton. We've not lived here very long and we used to live just over the Tamar on the Rame Peninsula.
It's nice to know where other members are. and that we might bump into each other (hopefully not literally) someday. Come to think of it, it would be nice for the forum members from the area get together one day and chat face to face rather than via a keyboard.


And yes, you took the words from my fingertips! I was just thinking this yesterday. (And ditto not literally! I just took a gander at your photos, I'd recognise your bike anywhere!!)

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 9:15am
by yoyo
The Danube Trail from Passau to Vienna - 30 miles a day. It is so flat that you do not feel that you have had any exercise!

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 11:20am
by ncutler
We had a wonderful time one easter with a group of very 'amateur' cyclists on a collection of very ordinary bikes:

Portsmouth to Cherbourg ferry.
4 days approx 35 miles/day to Caen. Ferry from Caen back to Portsmouth. It would be very easy to take a bit longer, or extend the route by a couple of days.

Booked B&B's in advance, visited Bayeaux Tapestry, visited Peace Museum at Caen, got lost trying tyo find B&B after a sumptuous dinner ......... As I recall there is a bit of a hill out of Cherbourg, and after that it's pretty flat.

Easter was a bit windy chilly. We have also been cycling in Normandy in late October with lovely warm days and picnic lunches.

Nick

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 12:20pm
by KEELIEDW
Just did the Kennet & Avon canal sustrans route with a reluctant-ish wife, Bradford on Avon in Wiltshire to Reading, bed & breakfasting (but noticed plenty of campsites). Very peaceful, mostly flat , lots to see, mixture of quiet lanes & towpaths. We both enjoyed it.

Posted: 20 Jul 2008, 2:05pm
by Asdace
Manx Cat wrote:Someone from this forum suggested Freedom Treks.

None of the cycle holidays are megga miles, but we all fancy a chill out type of hol next summer. (So long as we can organise carers for the relatives that is)


Take a look. I was very impressed.


Mary
I like the idea of doing a tour in Holland and this website looks ok, but single room supplement is £85 :cry:

Guess I will be doing a slice Mick F's Grand Tour next year.