What has been happening?
Tour requests have been coming in steady now for 2023 and we are looking forward to working with our clients to book their fantastic cycling adventures. Our most popular tours continue to be up the east coast of the UK. We have three popular routes with the southernmost one beginning in the beautiful city of York and travelling up the coast to the amazing cathedral city of Durham. Our mid (and most popular routes) are the Coast and Castles leaving from Newcastle-upon-Tyne and finishing in either Berwick-upon-Tweed or in Edinburgh. The last section of the east coast route begins in Edinburgh and finishes in Aberdeen. It is possible to link two or all three tours together for an epic adventure. We continue to specialise in working individually with our clients to adjust the itineraries to suit their schedules and cycling desires. Contact Anne or I for further information. Tours in June are booking up, but we currently have plenty of availability the rest of the year.
It has been a relief to see somewhat of a return to normal travel after two fairly quiet summers. Our American and Canadian clients enjoyed some great tours in 2022. We also were happy to host Bike For Peace Norway on their tour through West Yorkshire and Lancashire in late August. As we look forward to 2023 our focus will be on working with our clients on their individual tours, including providing navigation to make finding their way worry free. We can use our current tour agendas as a starting point or come up with a fully customized plan. Just contact Anne or I to get the planning started.
We are excited to see that the world is beginning to open back up and as a result I am looking forward to welcoming international cyclists back to the UK. Several trips have already been booked for new and returning clients.
There is still time to book a cycle tour for 2022 but accommodations are filling up so reach out to us soon for the best selection of potential tours. Anne and I will be happy to work with you to put together a bespoke tour perfectly suited to your needs and desires.
The vaccines are being administered around the world as quickly as possible, I’ve recently had mine and looking forward to seeing cyclists touring again soon. It may be some time before international travel reaches the pre-pandemic levels, so it looks like another year of staycations. Wouldn’t a self-guided cycle tour in the UK be a great plan for this year? Come and see Northern England or Scotland (my specialty areas). If you haven't toured in this area before I highly recommend one of the Coast and Castles routes, http://xplorebritain.com/coast-and-castles/a16 or a tour in the southern Scotland area http://xplorebritain.com/edinburgh/a9
I'll provide the bikes and transport them, organize the accommodations and transfer your luggage each day. The routes posted on the website are just a starting point for planning a bespoke tour. If there is a location you'd like to visit, or add additional nights to have a better look around, cycle at a more leisurely or a faster pace, or try out a different activity like guided fly-fishing or countryside walks, we’ll work with you to plan an agenda that fits you perfectly. For our international clients Anne and I will be happy to discuss potential bookings for later in the season or even into 2022 and when/if restrictions ease we will be able to quickly move through the final booking process and get you over to see the fantastic cycling opportunities here in the UK. Richard
Now that the vaccines are being administered around the world there is finally some optimism that we will be able to welcome back our overseas friends. I am very much looking forward to planning our unique bespoke cycling trips in late 2021 and beyond. I do anticipate that damage has been done to the hospitality side of our industry, so by starting to plan your trip early (while we have the time) would give me a better chance to put together a great itinerary.
Best wishes for a happy holiday season and a healthy 2021!
Xplore Britain Blog Update November 2020
To say that 2020 has been a challenging year would be an understatement. With very few tourists, businesses like mine have struggled to stay afloat. But as I look forward to better times ahead, I remind myself that the tours that I offer are very conducive to the times we will likely be living through well into 2021. Social distancing, avoiding crowds, limiting your contacts, spending time outside are the hallmarks of self-guided cycle touring. 2021 is the year to have an active outdoor vacation and we have plenty of time now during the off-season to customize a tour specific to your needs and desires. Have a look at our tour agendas which are a great starting point, but only the starting point. Anne and I enjoy helping our clients and are excited to offer our insight and advice. Just reach out to us and let’s get the planning started.
Special cycling trips that comply with government COVID 19 requirements
As the UK begins to open up for limited travel, Xplore Britain will be happy to help plan a staycation in the UK this summer. We have access to some self-catering accommodations in a few locations in the UK from which a number of very nice circular day bike rides are possible. We can adapt to your needs, the number of people in your group as well as their abilities. We also can include quality hybrid touring bikes, maps, and route descriptions. For more information, please send us an email.
THERE ARE SOME SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS due to the threat of cancellation because of the Coronavirus worldwide outbreak.
NO NEW bookings will be confirmed or deposits taken before April 1st (though I am happy to discuss later bookings). I am being cautious on when it is safe to assume that all services I use (accommodations, taxis and rail transfer) can be provided without a cancellation at a later date.
You MUST check with your airline regularly and that you have a trip cancellation insurance policy OR fully accept that deposit and final payments already made are non-refundable. Your trip insurance should cover you if you request a change to your dates after confirmation (some airlines have already started cancelling or bumping to a different date after booking) or cancel due to any circumstances. When I start reserving rooms and booking taxis and luggage transfer for your tour I will have a contract with them to provide the service and for you.
Review our Terms & Conditions page.2019 was another great cycling year in the UK. We are happy that our clients' tours went well and would like to thank them for their great feedback. And it's not too early to contact us about a 2020 tour. We are working on updating our tours and adding a new tour across the Trans Pennine Trail. Please remember that although we present many self-guided tour options here on the website, we specialize in bespoke tours planned specifically for you and your cycling friends. Let us work with you to plan a wonderful, active holiday for 2020.
Posted July 14th, 2019
Bookings for Spring and Summer 2019 are steadily coming in. Some tours at certain times of the year are even selling out. So if you're thinking of booking a tour, don't hesitate to contact us. Remember we specialize in customizing our tours to suit your needs and desires, including adjusting starting dates, distances covered, and adding extra night stays along the way (which we highly recommend!).
Posted December 1, 2018
The end of a very good cycling season was helped by the driest weather I have ever known here in the UK, hopefully this will continue.
- It's not too early to start thinking about touring in 2019, bookings have already been coming in.
- I'm happy to report that changes are happening at XploreBritain including several updates to the website.
Seasonal Greetings from Richard (company owner).
May 2018: We would like to let you know how fantastic and thoroughly satisfied we were with this trip. The routes were fantastic, the accommodations were varied and suitable to our desires, the weather was AMAZING (which of course impacted the entire trip in a positive way), the bikes were perfect for the conditions, and your attention to detail and genuine care for our well being was outstanding. It was a great balance of good daily distances together with timely 2 night stays. You made us feel very important and valued customers/friends.
Mitch and Deanne (Canada)
Again, we can't thank you enough for such a memorable and amazing trip! Your service and attention to details were outstanding. The routing was well paced and your lodging choices were spot-on! And, as far as timing was concerned, I initiated the request to you to pick the best time to tour, and it was your advise to select from the 2nd week of May to the 2nd week of June. Thanks! Again, spot-on! Mindy and Dave Ferrell Montana USA.
LED Lights Help Improve Safety on the Road for Cyclists
Cycling is a fantastic way to exercise, share time with the family or run errands in a sustainable manner. However, staying safe while riding is an important concern because collisions and crashes do happen. This can negatively impact riders who, like pedestrians, are vulnerable while on the road.
One of the best ways to improve bike safety is to make use of LED technology. It has many applications that can help improve cyclist and bicycle visibility. Being seen by drivers and pedestrians while cycling can help to reduce accidents. Wearing LED clothing makes riders visible in low-light conditions such as dawn or dusk. Other ways LED can be used include fitting bicycles with front and rear LED lights. Also, street lights which are fitted with LEDs provide better illumination. Cyclists can also attach a helmet light to see better in the dark. Read how LEDs enhance safety for everyone on the road from cyclists and pedestrians to motorbike riders and motor vehicle drivers.
These are comments from recent clients.
Hi Richard, I just want to thank you for lending me a bike for the Ride the Night Charity Bike Ride. Your bike is brilliant! It is so comfortable, I couldn't believe it. Not only did it mean I completed the full 100kms, I actually enjoyed it! Here's a photo of me and my daughter completing the ride. Thank you so much for supporting this great cause. Our team raised nearly £2500!
Richard we were in Pitlochry overnight after two nights in Fort Augustus. If you had not recommend these places, we would not have had such a delightful and interesting experience during our final days in Scotland.
Thank you for all your help and suggestions. They were all greatly appreciated and made for a great trip to Great Britain.
Sent from my iPhone
Nathaniel And Dave
Just thought I should write and thank you for the lovely holiday we had
cycling coast to coast. It was an experience that both Kay and I really
enjoyed, we found it an excellent break and a super way to visit the
countryside we passed through. We were both delighted with the interesting
places you found for us to stay and they were all lovely. We will be
recommending your services to our friends as it really made life easy for us
and all the more enjoyable. Please make sure you keep booking the same weather
that we had it was fine all week and made the whole trip that much easier.
Once again thank you and please pass on our thanks to the accommodations that
you used for our visit. I should also mention that the company did a
great job with the luggage transfers.
Steve and Kay, Nottingham, UK.