Twelve Months of Cycling Inspiration

 


 

Imagine this. You are suddenly given a week off work and all your family commitments every month for a whole year. You have to take this week off, and you have to go riding. Wow! So where would you ride, and when? We've put some thoughts down for you, just in case....

 

January - Lanzarote

 

Located off the coast of West Africa, Lanzarote has an ideal climate for riding pretty much all year round. The climbs aren't too steep and the hills only rise to 600m, making this an ideal early season destination, particularly if you have been off the bike for a month or two. With average highs of 20°C and just two days of rain in January, it's hard to find a better place to ride in Europe at this time of year. 

February - Adriatic Coast

 

Go at the end of February and you will have the place to yourself, even though the weather is warming up by this time, and you'll be able to ride in jersey and shorts most days. Combine lovely quiet roads, with amazing food for a winning February destination. You may not lose any weight, but you will have a great time.

March - Mallorca

 

Mallorca is the classic early season destination. If you're lucky, you may even rub shoulders with some of the pro's. Go in March, and you'll be out in shorts and a jersey. The riding is varied, and you can make the days as easy or as hard as you like. Our top tip: On the rare days that there are clouds in the mountains, ride near the coast and you will stay dry! 

April - Lake Como and Lake Garda

 

The Italian lakes are spectacular at this time of year. Traditionally this is a low season for tourists, but the daily temperatures are ideal for cycling. Along with the warm weather, you get the backdrop of the snow covered mountains north of the lakes - picture-postcard stuff. 

May - UK

 

We love May in the UK. It is statistically one of the driest months when weather is noticeably on the up. Add in a couple of bank holidays and it adds up to a great month to explore home. We've ridden pretty much everywhere in the UK, but our picks are Yorkshire and The New Forest.

June - Sierra Nevada

 

In early June we'd head to the Sierra Nevada mountain range in Andalucia. The temperatures haven't reached the scorching peaks of mid-summer, the roads are clear of snow, and you can ride the peaks and passes without having to carry your body weight in spare clothes. The riding round here is under appreciated, and the Sierra Nevada national park is a beautiful area.

July - French Alps

 

A year of dream riding isn't complete without trying to bag some of the famous French cols. Alpe d'Huez, the Croix de Fer, the Glandon, the Col de Joux Plane and the Galibier would all be high on our list. In July, the weather is at it's most stable in the mountains, and all the resort facilities are open. The riding round here is majestic and the views stunning. Bring your climbing legs and live out your fantasies of being a Tour de France rider!

August - Swiss Alps

 

In August, we would head to the Swiss Alps. These mountains are generally quieter than the Italian and French Alps at this time of year, and there is less traffic on the roads. You can take advantage of great weather across the whole region in August and get some serious climbing in. Although the Swiss Alps are not as well known as the neighbouring ranges, the riding is both breathtaking challenging. 

September - Dolomites

In September, head for the Italian Dolomites. The weather at this time of year is perfect, and most of the German and Italian tourists who flood here in summer, are now back at work. This World UNESCO heritage site is home to some of the most iconic Italian cycling climbs, including the Passo Pordoi, Passo Fedaia, Passo Giau and Tre Cime di Lavaredo to name a few.

October - Ventoux

October is the perfect time to visit the mighty Mont Ventoux. The searing summer temperatures have dropped off and the winds are generally lower at this time of year. This means you can make more attempts to summit the mountain, as well as ride the surrounding gorges. 

November - Costa Brava

 

Catalunya is the place to go and ride your bike if you want to brush shoulders with the pro’s in November. The Cannondale/Dracpac/EF team, the Orica-GreenEDGE team and many other pro cyclists are all based here. If you pass someone in full team kit, chances are they ride for that team! The climate is good, the routes are excellent, and the riding is perfect for training. November is an ideal time - daily temperatures are in the low 20s and rainfall is minimal.

December - Tenerife

 

Tenerife is the largest of Spain's Canary Islands, situated 200 miles off the coast of Africa. The climate is ideal for cycling all year round. Tenerife is dominated by Mount Teide, 3718m above sea level and the third largest volcano in the world. The south side of the Island in the rain shadow of Mount Teide is dry and barren, while the north is more lush and green. This gives you a great variety of riding in one compact Island.

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