... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

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latequartet
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... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby latequartet » 25 Jan 2015, 4:46pm

- either on the continent / Britain / Ireland;
- where our family, with two children who can pedal unaided (but can hitch to our bikes when tired)) aged 3 and 5, can camp;
- where we can cycle along the coast to a minimum of one decent sandy beach without too much hill climbing.

We will use public transport to arrive (but are used to doing so, we took 18 trains around Britain last summer with the same set-up).

So far we have looked at
- Swansea bay;
- Amsterdam / Rotterdam;
- Largs in Ayrshire (which we know well).

Just guessed many of you may have spotted a section that fits our description (or such places only occur in Utopia).
A towing-daily-road cyclist (without a car) with children and a wife. Cycling close to and on the NCN 6 in Sheffield.

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DaveP
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby DaveP » 25 Jan 2015, 6:44pm

Well Utopia could be the Southern sections of this http://www.velodyssey.com but public transport could be problematic.

For now, well did you actually mean Swansea Bay or were you referring to the bit on the other side of the Gower, Llanelli to Pembrey?
The Millenium coastal path links Pembrey Country Park, which has its own traffic free trails (if you hear engine noise it'll be from a track on the old airfield) right along the top of the beach to the WWT Wetlands Centre past Llanelli. Along the way there are, well, beaches, and moored boats to look at. Cycling is officially permitted, its part of the NCN. I'd say its tailor made for you. I think there might be a road train as well.
I don't know about camping, but it's the Welsh coast - there must be some!

PS the Welsh coastal railway line passes close by, offering the possibilities of excursions as well as access.
Trying to retain enough fitness to grow old disgracefully...

pete75
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby pete75 » 25 Jan 2015, 6:55pm

High Sand Creek campsite in almost on the beach though you have to use paths across the salt-marsh to get to it. It's at Stiffkey in Norfolk. About 3 miles along the coast via the flat and traffic free Norfolk Coast path is Wells next the Sea which has a massive sandy beach.
NCN route 1 runs along the Northumbrian coast which has some of the best beaches in the country. The North Sea up there is a coolish but ok for swimming, paddling etc as long as you're not nesh.
A stay near Warkworth, Embleton Bay, Alnmouth etc might suit your needs well

latequartet
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby latequartet » 25 Jan 2015, 7:26pm

Thanks DaveP and pete75 for both your reflections.

pete75:
Stiffkey and the traffic free path to Wells next the Sea sounds so promising, we just couldn't tell whether you had to use the roads: if it's traffic free our two love cycling along 'un-hitched' to a beach of promise!

DaveP:
The Atlantic Cycling route / Velodyssey does look amazing, but like you say the time / complexities of arriving from South Yorkshire to the Bay of Biscay feel challenging and costly. We know and enjoy the Northumbrian coast and have camped along there, we just were doubting (from memory) the availability of a campsite, with traffic-free cycling that all connected up with beach-time.
All the info about Swansea / Gower is really helpful to us, since we just don't know that area, but had heard the cycling is traffic free and goes on and on, we just couldn't seen whether the beaches and the camping connected with the cycle path. From what you've said the cycle paths and beaches definitely do ... from our first trawl of UK Campsite it seemed the sites maybe didn't connect up, but now you've mentioned Pembrey, I see there is, I believe, camping there: http://www.discovercarmarthenshire.com/ ... mping.html

Thanks again.
A towing-daily-road cyclist (without a car) with children and a wife. Cycling close to and on the NCN 6 in Sheffield.

pete75
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby pete75 » 25 Jan 2015, 11:06pm

latequartet wrote:Thanks DaveP and pete75 for both your reflections.

pete75:
Stiffkey and the traffic free path to Wells next the Sea sounds so promising, we just couldn't tell whether you had to use the roads: if it's traffic free our two love cycling along 'un-hitched' to a beach of promise!

DaveP:
The Atlantic Cycling route / Velodyssey does look amazing, but like you say the time / complexities of arriving from South Yorkshire to the Bay of Biscay feel challenging and costly. We know and enjoy the Northumbrian coast and have camped along there, we just were doubting (from memory) the availability of a campsite, with traffic-free cycling that all connected up with beach-time.
All the info about Swansea / Gower is really helpful to us, since we just don't know that area, but had heard the cycling is traffic free and goes on and on, we just couldn't seen whether the beaches and the camping connected with the cycle path. From what you've said the cycle paths and beaches definitely do ... from our first trawl of UK Campsite it seemed the sites maybe didn't connect up, but now you've mentioned Pembrey, I see there is, I believe, camping there: http://www.discovercarmarthenshire.com/ ... mping.html

Thanks again.


There's a pathway - Norfolk Coast Path which follows the coastline. If you get Stiffkey up in google earth and find the campsite you'll see the coastal path. You'll also see the track which goes straight out from High Sand to the beach with bridges over the creeks. It's cycleable part of the way.

We had several family holidays and weekend trips to high sand when the kids were younger - last time in about 2004. It was a brilliant place for families with kids and most campers from Lincolnshire, East Midlands and non braying southerners. Doing a search on the web sees it recommended in both the Telegraph and the Guardian so it may be full of braying southerners now, just like much of the rest of the area. That's assuming they have the wit to pitch a tent of course.

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troutmask
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby troutmask » 26 Jan 2015, 6:55pm

Orkney. Flat, get there on train and ferry, lots of beaches where wild camping is tolerated if you are sensible. Beautiful islands with lots to see and do for the kids. A bit windy and weather can be mixed but the ideal place for kids to cycle.

latequartet
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby latequartet » 26 Jan 2015, 8:43pm

Thanks trout mask for the thoughts on Orkney and family holidaying / camping: I haven't been for 18 years and then I remember quiet-ish roads in places, but I was mainly getting from main town to main town. I remember the silence of Sanday and hear Westray / Papa Westerly are beautiful ... wondered what it's like in terms of countryside (fast) traffic and very young ones on the road, I'd assumed they didn't mix that well (compared with traffic-free paths)?
A towing-daily-road cyclist (without a car) with children and a wife. Cycling close to and on the NCN 6 in Sheffield.

sjs
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby sjs » 26 Jan 2015, 9:04pm

pete75 wrote:High Sand Creek campsite in almost on the beach though you have to use paths across the salt-marsh to get to it. It's at Stiffkey in Norfolk. About 3 miles along the coast via the flat and traffic free Norfolk Coast path is Wells next the Sea which has a massive sandy beach.
NCN route 1 runs along the Northumbrian coast which has some of the best beaches in the country. The North Sea up there is a coolish but ok for swimming, paddling etc as long as you're not nesh.
A stay near Warkworth, Embleton Bay, Alnmouth etc might suit your needs well


Or Pinewoods campsite in Wells Next the Sea itself. A bit mobile-home-dominated, but brilliant for children. Beach, fish and chips, crabbing, narrow gauge railway from campsite into town, reasonable pubs, good cycling.

pete75
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby pete75 » 27 Jan 2015, 7:47am

sjs wrote:
pete75 wrote:High Sand Creek campsite in almost on the beach though you have to use paths across the salt-marsh to get to it. It's at Stiffkey in Norfolk. About 3 miles along the coast via the flat and traffic free Norfolk Coast path is Wells next the Sea which has a massive sandy beach.
NCN route 1 runs along the Northumbrian coast which has some of the best beaches in the country. The North Sea up there is a coolish but ok for swimming, paddling etc as long as you're not nesh.
A stay near Warkworth, Embleton Bay, Alnmouth etc might suit your needs well


Or Pinewoods campsite in Wells Next the Sea itself. A bit mobile-home-dominated, but brilliant for children. Beach, fish and chips, crabbing, narrow gauge railway from campsite into town, reasonable pubs, good cycling.


Not stayed on that one but the camping bit looks ok - a field and not over regimented. V. handy for the beach.

neilob
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby neilob » 27 Jan 2015, 8:20am

You did say the continent too? The west coast of France between Arcachon and Biarritz is perfect. Miles and miles of sandy beaches, 80%+ of the route on dedicated cycle tracks through the forest, mostly flat, hundreds (thousands even!) of campsites, fun communities, and usually great weather. European Bike Bus is a great way to get there and back. When I last went, we got off at Saintes, and back on at Bayonne but there are many other options.
Using a car to take an adult on a three mile journey is the same as using an atomic bomb to kill a canary.

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Farawayvisions
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby Farawayvisions » 28 Jan 2015, 3:23pm

Have you considered Ireland's Greenway on the west coast?
http://www.greenway.ie/Greenway-01.html

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foxyrider
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby foxyrider » 28 Jan 2015, 5:57pm

get yourselves to Holland or Denmark!
Convention? what's that then?
Airnimal Chameleon touring, Orbit Pro hack, Orbit Photon audax, Focus Mares AX tour, Peugeot Carbon sportive, Owen Blower vintage race - all running Tulio's finest!

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BeeKeeper
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby BeeKeeper » 28 Jan 2015, 7:20pm

Ferry to Roscoff and then turn right. Not traffic free but the traffic is friendly. Plenty of beaches and campsites. Breton Bikes could help with a tour.

latequartet
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby latequartet » 28 Jan 2015, 7:46pm

Neilob: Archacan to Biarritz sounds inspiring, thanks for the tip. I think for our family of 4 train / boat suits us better than the bike bus (part because our children are 3 and 5 and partly because I don't fair well with coach travel). We're going to look at this a bit more carefully, thanks for the tip, the cycle route looks full of promise. Getting there, one thought was sleepy trains from the north coast, or the narrow gauge route from Bilbao to the border and then up to Biarritz!

Faraway Visions: we didn't know about the Great Western Green Way, what an amazing location and could well connect with other ideas we had for a few weeks in Ireland, thank you, this sounds most promising for us.

Foxyrider: Yes, Holland, especially going east from Hook van Holland and the section after the Hague looks like it could suit. We're lacking imagination about Denmark, since couldn't see a simple way of getting our four bikes and trailer via train to Denmark without quite a number of changes (no Harwich ferry now). Yes we used 18 trains last summer with the same set-up in the UK, but would like a simpler way to arrive? Thoughts anyone?

Beekeeper: we've looked at the Breton Bikes suggestions, we just cannot spot the traffic-free beach strip with camping at first glance and when you say 'turn right' do you mean, head west? We definitely want somewhere to stay, camping, where we can potter around with the children (3 and 5) pedalling without always having to be joined up to grown up bikes, or fixed into bike-seats, so I'm wondering what you're picturing and whether it matches that?
A towing-daily-road cyclist (without a car) with children and a wife. Cycling close to and on the NCN 6 in Sheffield.

MrsHJ
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Re: ... of beach camping with traffic free coast paths

Postby MrsHJ » 28 Jan 2015, 9:52pm

latequartet wrote:Neilob: Archacan to Biarritz sounds inspiring, thanks for the tip. I think for our family of 4 train / boat suits us better than the bike bus (part because our children are 3 and 5 and partly because I don't fair well with coach travel). We're going to look at this a bit more carefully, thanks for the tip, the cycle route looks full of promise. Getting there, one thought was sleepy trains from the north coast, or the narrow gauge route from Bilbao to the border and then up to Biarritz!

Faraway Visions: we didn't know about the Great Western Green Way, what an amazing location and could well connect with other ideas we had for a few weeks in Ireland, thank you, this sounds most promising for us.

Foxyrider: Yes, Holland, especially going east from Hook van Holland and the section after the Hague looks like it could suit. We're lacking imagination about Denmark, since couldn't see a simple way of getting our four bikes and trailer via train to Denmark without quite a number of changes (no Harwich ferry now). Yes we used 18 trains last summer with the same set-up in the UK, but would like a simpler way to arrive? Thoughts anyone?

Beekeeper: we've looked at the Breton Bikes suggestions, we just cannot spot the traffic-free beach strip with camping at first glance and when you say 'turn right' do you mean, head west? We definitely want somewhere to stay, camping, where we can potter around with the children (3 and 5) pedalling without always having to be joined up to grown up bikes, or fixed into bike-seats, so I'm wondering what you're picturing and whether it matches that?


We've stayed at camping des abers on that coast of Brittany which was lovely and 10/10 for the beach and semi islands etc- perfect but although I cycled I didn't notice that it was spectacularly good for smalls cycling. Look for voies verts ( old rail tracks) in that part of France. I also love the coast around arcachon and lacanau, really appealing althoughcheck where you are headed as some of the real surf beaches aren't great for little kids.