Summer Cycles: Hotspots every cyclist should know about

T-shirt weather is approaching, and almost in sight is a time when we can all take to our bikes without worrying about whether a thermal layer will be too much. In Europe, the skiers and the snow itself are retreating, clearing the high passes for some superb Alpine routes. Closer to sea level the coastal winds are losing their edge and further afield the temperatures and rainfall counts are aligning to make perfect weather for a more exotic bike ride.

1. Spot on

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The coastal charms of Croatia by boat and by bike

Not just one hot spot, but many: Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast is a hop on, hop off affair with nippy ferry rides to the many islands dotted all along the shore. Taking to two wheels we explore the lavender-scented Hvar and the castle-topped Korcula islands, as well as tackling some of the mainland coast – a few short climbs are rewarded with sweeping, spectacular views across the bay and the emerald islands dotted in the sapphire sea. Bikes are the perfect means of transport along these quiet roads.

Cycling the Dalmatian Coast

2. Under the Tuscan Sun

typical tuscan landscape

Classic Tuscan scenery and Renaissance towns by bike

Imagine the scene: you slow, gently pulling back the brake on your Ridgeback hybrid as you roll into the courtyard of that night’s hotel. Behind you lie about 60 kilometres of rolling Tuscan hills, olive groves and long, striped vineyards that you’ve pedalled past over the course of the day. After freshening up you’re handed a ruby red glass of Chianti, and told it was grown in one of those very vineyards you’d passed earlier. If there’s a more perfect end to the day, our cycling team are yet to find it.

Tuscany: Cycle Siena & Chianti 

3. Hit the Raid, Jack

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Challenge yourself on an iconic route through the Pyrenees 

Eleven Pyrenean cols and 10,500 cumulative metres of ascent: this is not for the faint-hearted. This rewarding ride follows the famous raid from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean, but spaced over a week rather than squeezed into 100 hours, giving you plenty of time to enjoy one of Europe’s most spectacular mountain ranges.

Raid Pyrenean Coast to Coast ride

4.Volcanic Vista

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Cycle the bizarre, otherworldly landscapes of Iceland

Still an adolescent in geological terms, Iceland is one destination where cycling really makes a huge difference. Covering more distance than on foot means you’re closer to the dramatic changes in scenery, where even just a few kilometres can bring a completely new vista before you. This is a land shaped by volcanic activity, from yawning chasms to rocky outcrops, hissing fumaroles to placid pools. However, it’s a short season – the summer flies by here, before the notoriously windy island hunkers down for an icy winter – so make sure you don’t’ miss out.

Cycle Southern Iceland

5. Temples on Two Wheels

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Escape the crowds and join the locals on two wheels through South East Asia

Three countries on two wheels – whether meandering through the quiet paddy fields of the Mekong Delta or enjoying the rush of South East Asia’s busy cities, bikes are how many of locals get around here. We join them cycling in rural communities, and bypass larger tourist groups in the iconic sites like Angkor Wat, where two wheels is undeniably an advantage, as we nimbly navigate the 400 square kilometre UNESCO world heritage site of ornately carved, majestic temples.

Cycle Indochina & Angkor  

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