Looking for the perfect family cycling-holiday escape this October half term? From surprisingly epic week-long UK breaks to unforgettable views, once in a lifetime trips and fun-filled activities abroad, we have found eight incredible cycling destinations for all the family to enjoy. Don't forget to pack your helmets!
South Downs, England
You don't have to leave home to enjoy an incredible week's cycling complete with breathtaking views and heaps of wildlife. Spanning 100 miles between England's first ever capital city, Winchester, to the white chalk cliffs of Eastbourne on the south coast; the South Downs Way is one of the most treasured cycling routes in the UK.
The 100 mile route is easily split into shorter more manageable sections with several cosy B&Bs located in the pretty little villages along the site. On the National Trails website you will find a distance calculator and an interactive map to help you plan each day's cycling and accommodation.
This is an ideal route for families that enjoy mountain biking who will get to appreciate the elevated riding position that affords unparalleled view across the country, out to sea and across to the Isle of Wight.
Passing five different National Nature Reserves, the South Downs Way is completely within the South Downs National Park and is entirely off-road. You can choose to plan your own trip using the tools provided by National Trails, or select a self-guided cycling package from Meon Valley Cycle Hire to have all of the planning done for you.
Dingle Peninsula, Ireland
Take your family over to Ireland for a few days of beautiful cycling around the Dingle Peninsula. Located in the south west of the Republic of Ireland, this little peninsula attracts hundreds of cyclists to its rocky coastal paths due to the incredible panoramas that it boasts.
One for slightly more experienced child cyclists, there are a few dramatic mountain climbs to look out for but cyclists can enjoy plenty of seemingly endless flat valleys to pedal through too.
Passing by many sites of ancient archeological ruins en route, there are plenty of pretty picnic stops along the way as well as a sheer abundance of photo opportunities.
For those flying over to Ireland, there are several bike rental stores scattered around the peninsula with a few, such as The Mountain Man Outdoor Shop, offering cycle tours as well as bike hire for adults and children complete with child seats for the little ones.
Experience the historic beauty of Puglia, in the heel of Italy's boot, with a seven day cycling holiday organised by Headwater.
This hotel-to-hotel trip is moderate enough for older children to enjoy but younger ones may struggle with the 20 miles of cycling each day. If you do think the daily amount of pedal time is too much for your family, this trip can easily be self-organised to include shorter days.
Puglia is one of the most picturesque regions in Italy and is home to UNESCO World Heritage Site, Alberobello - the home of the infamous trullo houses. During this seven-day trip you will get to spend two nights staying in one of these incredibly quaint little houses as well as visiting several wine towns, fishing villages and farming hamlets. A trip to Polignano a Mare is unmissable for the coastal views and a visit to the Grotte di Castellana is well worth squeezing in too.
During peak holiday season, Puglia is incredibly hot and full of Italian holidaymakers who journey down from the north to enjoy the beautiful views, white sand beaches and delectable cuisine. In October the weather has cooled down and the crowds have departed, making it an ideal time of year for a family cycling holiday.
For an easy-paced, relaxing cycling holiday with plenty to see and do, Provence in the south of France could be the perfect choice for you and your family.
Inntravel organise four, six and seven-night self-guided, non-group cycling holidays that allow each family to go at their own pace and stop wherever they like along the way. This is a hotel-to-hotel cycling holiday and all of your luggage is transported for you each day so you can cycle comfortably with just the bare essentials in your daypack.
Detailed maps and notes are provided to prevent you getting lost and high-quality rental bikes are included in the cost so that you don't have to lug your own bikes to Provence (of course you can take your own if you prefer).
Inntravel offers a choice of routes varying from easy to moderate cycling levels so you can choose the right one for you. Whichever route you opt for, you will be cycling through idyllic stone villages, colourful market towns, past ancient abbeys, through lavender-filled fields and past spectacular sunsets.
And once you've pedalled up an appetite, there will be delicious French cuisine waiting for you at your hotel.
Lanzarote, The Canary Islands
Lanzarote is a particular favourite for all types of British holidaymakers during the October half term, cyclists included. Due to its Mediterranean climate, the weather at this time of year tends to stay in the mid-twenties making it a perfect choice destination for cyclists.
Freewheel Holidays organises seven-day self-guided and guided cycling tours around the island of Lanzarote. Starting in Costa Teguise, the route passes through Haria, San Bartolome and Playa Blanca before finishing in Arrecife. The cycling is moderate in skill and anyone with a bit of cycling experience and a reasonable level of fitness should be able to complete the route without any problems.
All of your accommodation and nightly dinners are included in the package regardless of whether you opt for the guided or self-guided options and you will have a couple of rest days to give you time to explore everything else the island has to offer or to take a day-trip on the ferry to Fuerteventura (with or without your bike).
Whilst cycling around Lanzarote, you will be awarded stunning views of volcanoes, lava flows, beautiful sandy coastlines and the Parque Nacional de Timanfaya.
Another great destination for a bit of October sun, Sardinia is a little island off the western coast of Italy all too often overlooked as a holiday destination by Brits.
Responsible Travel offer a choice of two self-guided eight day family cycling holidays in the south of Sardinia. Both choices offer riders the chance to pedal along scenic undulating country lanes and down picturesque coastal roads. Passing by vineyards, olive groves and oak wooded valleys, the scenery en route is simply stunning and there are plenty of activities to enjoy along the way too.
Whether your idea of heaven is spending a day pedalling from winery to bakery, fishery to olive oil mill; or you prefer cycling between beaches to go snorkelling, jet-skiing and banana-boating - there is plenty to keep you entertained on these trips.
Yosemite National Park, USA
Although for most people California seems just that little bit too far for a week-long trip, if you manage to get your hands on a good deal the long flight could well be worth it for the spectacular cycling opportunities that Yosemite National Park has to offer.
Bikes can be rented from Yosemite Lodge at the Falls and a detailed map is available to help you plan the best routes for you and your family.
Yosemite National Park boasts eight miles of routes that are completely separate from the roads, as well as many more that intersect with quiet roads occasionally. The Briceburg Bike Loop is perfectly suited for all abilities of riders and is hugely popular. A 15-mile loop, the trail lies above the north side of the Merced River Canyon offering absolutely stunning panoramas across the national park.
Cape Town, South Africa
Another idyllic destination for families willing to travel that little bit further, Cape Town is the perfect spot for cycling with children of all ages.
Awol Tours can cater for children as young as six months on their self-guided and guided tours around Cape Town and its surrounding areas.
Families can choose to complete a three day self-guided, portered tour of the Cape Peninsula before enjoying the rest of the week bicycle free, or pick a mix 'n' match of full and half day cycle tours to fill up the rest of the week. These extra days include picturesque rides through the wine lands, a visit to Cape Point and a city tour of Cape Town itself.
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