Rural and Roman Britain

 


 

On this UK leisure cycling holiday, you are cycling the coast to coast route, also known as the c2c (sea to sea), or the coast2coast and then cycling the Hadrians cycleway

The Rural & Roman Britain tour starts in Newcastle or Carlisle with a transfer to Whitehaven then follows one of Britain signature rides; the Coast to Coast. From the Georgian port of Whitehaven on the Irish Sea to the castle on the rock at Tynemouth facing the North Sea, this ride crosses some of the most dramatic landscapes in the land the silvery, shining levels and the high crags of the Lake District, the vast, eerily empty moorland on the Cumbrian Fells, and the Tyne Valley.

The towns you pass Keswick, Penrith, Alston, Allenheads, Stanhope and Consett are packed full of tea rooms, welcoming pubs and bags of northern charm but it’s the joy of riding through the wild and open countryside that will remain with you, and leave a lasting sense of achievement.

After a night in Newcastle your journey takes you into Roman Britain following the route of Hadrian’s Wall. This is one of the most important Roman monuments in Britain.

Stretching from The River Tyne to Solway Firth you follow the route on arrow straight military roads and cycle paths through wild and beautiful landscapes plunging back through history. Along the route stop at Roman forts, medieval fortified churches and castles and visit market towns such as Brampton, Haltwhistle, Corrbridge and Ovingham stopping of in a local tea room or for a pint in one of the friendly local pubs. Your journey ends in Solway Firth and a transfer and night in Newcastle or Carlisle.

Dates

This tour runs on any day from April to October subject to availability. Please contact the office to check availability and for a package price.

Price - £995

(Based on 2 people sharing a double or twin room)

Supplements

 

Single room supplement - £300

Single Traveller Supplement - £500

Bike hire - £125

E-Bike Hire - N/A

Additional nights - Price upon request

 

Other Info

 

Optional hire bikes provided are quality hybrid equipped with 21 gears, helmet, handlebar bag, water bottle and repair kit.

 

Trip Code

 

RRB13

Rob's Highlights

  • Riding the dismantled railway line through lovely woodlands, from Keswick to Threlkeld
  • The birdlife on the high moors of County Durham
  • The descent from Hartside Pass to Alston
  • Riding a traffic-free path along the Tyne River through the heart of Newcastle
  • Watching salmon leap over the weir in Hexham
  • Birdoswald Fort, part of Hadrian’s Wall, beautifully set above the River Irthing gorge
  • Birdlife on the Solway Firth
  • Standing on Hadrian’s Wall near Haltwhistle, surveying the wild and empty lands to the north

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Newcastle or Penrith

Arrive in Newcastle and check in to your accommodation. A member of the Bikecation team will meet you this evening or after breakfast tomorrow, to hand over your route notes and maps, plus your bike if you’re hiring one, answer those last minute questions and give you a few tips.

Day 2: Whitehaven to Penrith: approx 55 miles

You’ll be transferred to Whitehaven. Your epic ride begins on the quay. Quickly, you’re climbing away from the coast. At the foot of the Lakeland Fells, the landscape changes dramatically and the route continues down to Loweswater. You then follow the River Cocker north to Low Lorton up and over the Whinlatter pass. Once on top, the route is then down to Braithwaite. From here you head east along a dismantled railway line, following the River Greta through a thickly-wooded gorge. The landscape changes as you leave the iconic hills, scree slops and crags of the Lake District National Park behind you. You pass beneath the precipitous fell, Blencathra, then out via Mungrisdale on quiet lanes through farmland to the historic village of Greystoke and Penrith.

Day 3 Penrith to Stanhope: approx 45 miles

East of Penrith, you cross the River Eden at Langwathby and start to climb into the north western Pennines. There are a few section of downhill, but the trend is uphill, all the way to Hartside Pass (590m). There is a glorious descent to follow to Alston. There is a museum and heritage centre in Nenthead, the first town on the route. There’s a wonderful long, gentle descent off Allendale Moor into Allenheads. The road does rise and fall all day to Stanhope.

Day 4 Stanhope to Newcastle: approx 34 miles

The final day starts with a bit of uphill to reach the start of the Waskerley Way - it’s pretty much downhill or flat the whole way to Tynemouth. The old railway line curves gently round Waskerley and Smiddy Shaw reservoirs, over the magnificent Hownsgil viaduct and down into Consett. Beyond Consett, you continue along the traffic-free path through the heavily wooded Derwent Valley all the way to the outskirts of Newcastle, and the mighty Tyne River. Turning east, the route follows the Tyne through the heart of Newcastle to your hotel for the evening.

Day 5: Newcastle to Corbridge approx 30 miles

The mighty River Tyne is your companion for much of today. Thirty years ago, the river was heavily polluted by the industry further downstream. It’s now an internationally acclaimed fishing river. On lanes, and then on a lovely, long traffic-free path, you glide from the heart of Newcastle, underneath the ornate bridges which span the Tyne, continuing along to Corbridge . This is a thriving town steeped in history. It was prosperous through the Middle Ages and today, it’s full of boutique shops and charm.

Day 6: Corbridge to Gilsland: approx 31 miles

There are several excellent sites you can visit today to learn more about the Wall, and appreciate the remarkable civil engineering project it was: Vindolanda and Housesteads are the most impressive. In Hexham, pause on the bridge over the River Tyne to see salmon and sea trout leaping over the weir, in late summer and autumn. The route today crosses the highest section of Hadrian’s Cycleway: there are grand views north, over open farmland dotted with copses and isolated farmhouses, across moorland as far as the dense, black mass of Wark Forest.

Day 7: Gilsland to Bowness-on-Solway: approx 35 miles

Between Banks and Birdoswald Fort, the route closely follows the line of Hadrian’s Wall. There are the remains of turrets, neatly aligned sandstone blocks that comprise stretches of the wall and a fort. Stop at the Lanercost Priory then on to Brampton then onto Warwick Bridge. A path along the banks of the River Eden leads you through the centre and out into Cumbrian countryside. Speeding through the villages of Kirkandrews-on-Eden and Burgh by Sands you arrive in the outskirts of Carlisle. Follow the Solway Firth west, past sand dunes and across salt marsh. The area is rich in birdlife. Your last section is to Bowness-on-Solway, a sleepy village on the Solway Firth facing the hills of southern Scotland. This was once the most northern outpost of the Roman Empire: it’s the end your Hadrian’s Wall journey and the end of your cycle ride. You will be met by your Bikecation rep who will collect your bikes and transfer you back to Newcastle for the evening.

Day 8: Departure

After breakfast, bid farewell for your departure home.

What's Included 

 

What's Not Included 

24 hour emergency back up support

7 nights in small & intimate hotels or B&B's

Bed & Breakfast

Luggage transfers

Meet & Greet by Bikecation rep

Transfer from Newcastle to the start of the trip in Bowness

Trip planner with route notes and maps

 

Bike hire

Drinks

Holiday Insurance

Lunches & evening meals

 

 

 

 

What's Included

24 hour emergency back up support

7 nights in small & intimate hotels or B&B's

Bed & Breakfast

Luggage transfers

Meet & Greet by Bikecation rep

Transfer from Newcastle to the start of the trip in Bowness

Trip planner with route notes and maps

What's Not Included

Bike hire

Drinks

Holiday Insurance

Lunches & evening meals

Testimonial - Centre 

 

"We had a great time, thank you. A trip we will never forget." - F. Carlisle

 

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