Best Cycling Holidays in the UK
Roll down peaceful lanes, cheered on by crowds of grazing sheep as you soak in the rural atmosphere. The best part of our island is that ...Read more
Some of the best cycling tours in Europe for 2023 can be found in the glorious wine regions of France, Italy, Spain, Portugal and the UK. When you travel on a Softies holiday you can expect the finest five-star service, gourmet meals and luxurious hotels to rest your head in; punctuated by just as much or as little time in the saddle as you fancy.
We've hand-picked our selection of the best cycling holidays in Europe, across a choice of itineraries that are carefully curated to offer the ultimate Softies experience. From famous locations to hidden gems, our itineraries will show you the very best of the region you choose. With a focus on experiences that benefit the local communities, our tours are perfect for those looking to truly get to know the region. Here are our top 12 of the best cycling holidays we have to offer.
One of the best European cycling holidays, discover the colours and culture of Arles, and the glorious Provençal countryside that inspired Vincent van Gogh through some of the most fruitful years of his career. Our indulgent itinerary takes you from the hilltop fortress of Baux-de-Provence, to the winding riverside cycling routes of the Rhône river, culminating in a visit to the magnificent Camargue Nature Reserve. Here you can meet vibrant flamingos, wild white horses and a whole manner of plant life.
When you have had your fill pedalling some of the best cycling routes in Europe, reside in the opulent five-star Château des Alpilles. One of our favourite hotels in Provence, you can expect delicious traditional cuisine from the elegant restaurant, luxurious décor and an inviting swimming pool for a post-pedal dip.
Taste delicious local tipples along the Chianti wine territory, enjoy spectacular views of Lake Trasimeno and embark upon a cultural discovery at the famous Abbey of Sant’amino. Tuscany is simply one of our favourite destinations and home to some of the best cycling trips in Europe. Its rolling, lush green hills are peppered with sprawling fields of sun-drenched vines, medieval villages and the most scenic of wineries and eateries to stop-off at and enjoy gorgeous local Tuscan wines or a hearty Italian espresso. This all makes Tuscany one of the best European cycling holidays.
Glide up and down the hills with ease on one of our power-assisted E-Bikes, which are fitted with motors that will enable you to go further and take in endless views and discoveries in this magical region of Italy.
Some of the best cycling holidays in Europe lie on our doorstep. Our Sparkling Sussex E-Bike holiday takes you through peaceful lanes, charming countryside and dramatic coastal paths that give way to the spectacular scenery of the South Downs National Park. Sample the finest English sparkling wines and enjoy peaceful evenings relaxing and unwinding at one of our hand-picked selection of indulgent hotels, which boast beachfront locations and award-winning spa treatments.
Leisurely days will be passed pedalling through historic Chichester, taking in the sights and culture of Arundel Castle and stopping off for delicious ice creams by the sea. It will not take long to see that the best of British is an undoubted contender for offering some of the best cycle holidays in Europe.
One of our best cycling trips, the Châteaux of the Loire tour is a Softies' favourite. The verdant green hills of the Loire Valley have a history as rich as their soil. Discover medieval castles, endless stretches of vines and ancient riverside towns on your culture packed itinerary, which offers what is often regarded one of the best cycling trips in Europe for lovers of history and fine wines.
And, of course, it wouldn’t be a Softies cycling holiday without stop-offs to explore wondrous wine cellars, long lazy lunches in the dappled sun and stays at some of France’s finest luxury hotels such as the Château de Marçay. This wonderful 15th century fortress welcomes its guests with a menu of spa treatments, gourmet cuisine made from seasonal ingredients and a famous 12,000 bottle wine cellar. Is it any wonder it's one of the best European cycling holidays.
The wine powerhouse of Champagne is located in the northeast of France and is one of the best cycling holidays in Europe. On our Leisurely Cycling in Champagne tour, you'll discover a gorgeous region of lush vineyards and peaceful, flat cycle lanes.
Starting in Epernay, you'll cycle out into the wonderous Champagne countryside with its sun-drenched hills and picturesque vistas. Stops along the way include visits to famous wine-making sites such as the village of Aÿ and world-renowned Hautvillers. In ancient Reims, you'll have the chance to explore classic French Gothic architecture as well as taste some of the delicious regional delicacies.
Of course, what makes this one of the best cycling holidays in Europe is the wine tasting. As one of the most famous wine regions in the world, the wine houses of Champagne are as numerous as they are luxurious. When touring these, be sure to take a look around the Crayères (chalk wine cellars) as some are truly monumental in size.
Explore the glorious Cotswolds on two wheels with wine-tasting at local vineyards and hand-picked luxury spa hotels to relax in at the end of a day’s leisurely cycling.
Famed for its quaint villages, distinctive stone, antique shops and genteel living, Cycling for Softies’ e-bike tour takes in many of the region’s highlights on a four-night short break with accommodation shared across two luxurious, boutique hotels on one of the best European cycling holidays.
The city of Bordeaux, the sixth largest in France, offers a heady mix of a rich history, world-class architecture, excellent gastronomy and of course, fine wines. Our Vineyards of Bordeaux Tour offers the chance to explore this magnificent metropolis and to spend time amongst the vast vineyards of the Entre-Deux-Mers appellation.
This is one of the best cycling tour in Europe. From the city, cyclists will make a loop to the east, taking in famous wine towns like Saint-Émilion, Sauternes and Cadillac where of course there is also opportunity to stop for a tasting or two.
Head to one of the prettiest villages in France – picturesque Candes-St-Martin - and stay in a luxury apartment in the grounds of the Château de Candes. Pedal as far as you like with recommended routes ranging from 15km to 50km in a day, or challenge loved ones to a game of tennis, paddle a canoe on the Loire and Indre rivers. Explore the local area by foot or visit the famous Cadre Noir equestrian school at nearby Saumur. It really is one of the best cycling tours in Europe.
Head for the enticing landscapes and gastronomic delights of northern Italy on our Highlights of Puglia E-Bike Tour of Siena and San Gimignano. See the home of the Paleo in Siena’s famous piazza and explore the Roman ruins of Volterra, taking in all the splendours of Chianti country.
This is a true voyage of discovery, through the rich history of the Apulia region with its unique architecture (including the 1,000 Trulli houses at UNESCO World Heritage Site Alberobello) and multicultural heritage. The region has been governed by Greeks, Romans and Spaniards over the centuries. Refuel with flavoursome cuisine and bask in beautiful coastal scenery while e-bikes take the strain allowing guests to explore at their own pace.
If you love wine you’re in for a treat on this cycle tour. The route visits many local vineyards with their unique bottles you can try along the way. In addition, there are spectacular countryside views with many grapevines wherever you pedal. The route the tour uses is 131.5km long and is France’s oldest wine route. There are also great landmarks to visit such as the Gothic Notre Dame Cathedral, the Black Forest, the Bruche canals and the romantic town of Colmar.
The region has a unique cuisine with French and German influences. To start your meal you should try the traditional choucroute à L’Alsacienne dish. A local favourite is a delicious Flammekueche made with sour cream, mushrooms and locally sourced ham. As for the wine, you must try a variety of whites such as Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer, and Crémant d’Alsace.
Burgundy is one of the most famous wine regions in France with its many vineyards and wine bars to visit. You will follow the Route des Grand Crus which has breathtaking scenery, vineyard Chateaux and the delightful regional capital of Wine, Beaune. Another highlight is visiting Chateau de Savigny-Les-Beaune and its collection of vintage planes and cars. No wonder it's one of the best cycle holidays in Europe.
As well as the wine, there’s fantastic local cuisine to enjoy. Beef bourguignon braised in local red wine is Burgundy’s signature dish. Wine is used in many dishes and coq au vin is chicken braised in red Burgundy is another favourite. Another local favourite is escargots à la Bourgogne which is oven-cooked snails left in their shell and filled with butter, garlic and parsley. For dessert try blackcurrant sorbet, crème de cassis and the popular Kir cocktail.
The rival region of Tuscany, Umbria is a dream to explore. The Grand Tour of Umbria is one of the best cycling holidays for those looking to escape to the Italian countryside in luxury. Enjoy an adventure in the 'Green Heart' of Italy. Fed by the River Tiber, the region is a tapestry of fertile valleys and vibrant forests, hiding charming towns and Roman ruins.
In contrast to the metropolitan people and culture of Tuscany, Umbrians deeply value the serene atmosphere of nature, with a strong sense of local community that can be enjoyed in their cuisine. Many ingredients you come across will have been sourced no more than a valley away. Exquisite pasta flavoured with black truffle and acorn-fed pork are just some of the delicacies to expect on one of the best cycling holidays for foodies.
When looking for the best cycling holidays in Europe, Catalonia absolutely needs to be included in the lineup. With delicious food and a vibrant culture, it’s a dream to explore. Our holiday, Flavours of Catalonia, takes you on a journey of gastronomic delights, as you immerse yourself in the local culture and its cuisine. You cycle through picturesque landscapes of olive groves and ancient towns, making your way to the exciting and historic city of Girona. Here, the highlight of the tour is a guided food excursion through its old town.
You’ll be amazed at what you can learn about a place by its food, and in Catalonia you’ll have a thorough ‘education’. The regional cuisine is varied, so there’s never a shortage of options on the menu. Enjoy fresh fish from the Mediterranean and produce harvested from the nearby mountains.
One of the oldest wine regions in the world, the Douro Valley has been making delicious wines for over 2,000 years. Not only is the region filled with history, it’s also one of the most beautiful landscapes in Europe. That’s why The Historic Douro Valley tour is one of the best cycling holidays in Europe for budding photographers. Around every corner is a picture-worthy view, from cascading vineyard terraces to the cobbled streets of Porto.
Not only is the cycling filled with impressive sights, but you’ll also have the chance to stop off at Port Houses, where you can taste some of the sumptuous wines produced here. The region produces many white and red wines, but Port is definitely the most famous.
To find out more about the best cycling tours in Europe, get in touch with our team today by giving us a call or enquiring online.
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