Cathedrals cycle route from Durham to York
Single / Double
All year round
A five centre self-guided cycle tour from the city of Durham to York in Northern England. 6 nights bed and breakfast (en-suite wherever possible) luggage transfers, 4 days cycling with hire of a 21 speed all-terrain cycle. Plus train tickets from York back to Durham, route guide and maps.
The tour starts and finishes in Durham City home to one of England's best preserved Norman cathedrals. You will have 2 nights here to give you plenty of time to visit the many attractions in this beautiful city. The cycle route is very flat from the beginning following a traffic-free cycleway through County Durham to Teesside. From here there is a choice of route, a challenging section that skirts the Cleveland hills with fantastic views over the area. Alternatively is a very easy route though open farmland on miner roads leading to the North Yorkshire countryside. You will pass through many attractive market towns and villages nestled on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, including historical towns of Ripon and Harrogate. The final section of the ride is along the Vale of York to walled medieval city of York, famous for its splendid Minster and ancient narrow streets. The following day you catch a train back to Durham and stay another night there.
START and FINISH: Durham in the North East of England.
ARRIVAL DAY: At Durham you will be fitting out with your bike. Your first and last night's accommodation is in Durham City with its impressive cathedral, castle and riverside walks. Don’t worry if you do not see all you want to see here, as you will return here after the bike tour. This ancient city is dominated by the cathedral one of the finest preserved Norman buildings in the UK. It provided sanctuary to fugitives and was St Cuthbert’s final resting place, tonight it is your resting place (not the cathedral). There are many places to eat in the town centre from fish and chip shops to luxury restaurants (not included in the tour price). Overnight City of Durham, County Durham, England.
DAY TWO: Durham to Yarm. Distance approx 26 miles (42km). After breakfast you begin the ride through Durham with great views of the cathedral as you go, it is not long before you join a disused railway line know as the Castle Eden Way. This traffic free cycleway is very flat and easy going making for an extremely enjoyable days cycling. Reaching industrial Teesside there is the option of crossing the river Tees over the Infinity Bridge or the unique transporter bridge. Cycle lanes lead through the outskirts of Middlesbrough to your next overnight stop near Yarm. A traditional pub close to the guesthouse will provide your evening for this evening (meals not included). Overnight Yarm, North Yorkshire, England.
DAY THREE: Yarm to Thirsk. Distance approx 22 miles (35km). Today the route uses minor roads and includes the only hill climbs of the tour, but there is an easy option if you do not fancy the challenge. Rising onto the Cleveland hills your efforts are rewarded by the spectacular views over the Yorkshire Dales and the Vale of York. Set on the hillside is the pretty village of Osmotherley, a great opportunity for your lunch stop. It is easy going now along quite country lanes and cycle ways lead to the market town of Thirsk, from where you can see a White Horse carved out of the chalkstone. This busy market town will provide your next overnight stop, with a selection of cafés and traditional pubs an evening too (meals not included). Overnight Thirsk, North Yorkshire, England.
DAY FOUR: Thirsk to Harrogate. Distance approx 24 miles (38km). The beautiful North Yorkshire Dales are the big attraction on today’s ride, The route takes you along quite country roads lined by dry stone walls passing through lush green farmland. About half way on this section is a typical North Yorkshire market town, Ripon which would be an excellent place to stop for your lunch. Heading south out of Ripon with the beautiful Yorkshire countryside all around, you will also encounter many pretty little villages as you go. It is not long before you reach the large town of Harrogate. This busy conference town has many places to enjoy an evening dining out here (meals not included). Overnight Harrogate, North Yorkshire, England.
DAY FIVE: Harrogate to York. Distance approx. 23 miles (36km).. The route continues through the beautiful Yorkshire countryside on a mixture of quite roads and cycle lanes. A nice traffic-free section takes you through another market town Knaresborough giving you the opportunity for refreshments or lunch. The final approach to York passes Marston Moor the scene of one of the bloodiest battles of our Civil War. As you approach your destination of this tour York, you will see the domineering feature the impassive minster. The medieval City of York has England’s largest Gothic cathedral which overshadows the quaint streets with shop fronts that have hardly changed in centuries. Overnight York, North Yorkshire, England.
FINAL DAY: Return to Durham. Today you catch the train from York back to Durham. Your bikes will be picked up when you are finished with them, allowing you plenty of time to enjoy this impressive city with its many cafés, restaurants and pubs (meals not included). Overnight Durham, County Durham, England.
RAIL TRAVEL from LONDON to DURHAM: There are very frequent trains from London Kings Cross to Durham. Presently the 12:30pm from London arrives Durham at 15:56pm. There are earlier and later trains. An AnyTime Single ticket costs £133. There maybe Advance Single tickets available for £52.50 if booked on-line in advance.
RAIL TRAVEL from DURHAM to LONDON: There are very frequent trains from Durham to London Kings Cross. Presently the 10:45am from Durham arrives London at 13:44pm. There are earlier and later trains. An AnyTime Single ticket costs £133. There maybe Advance Single tickets available for £52.50 if booked on-line in advance.
ARRIVING and DEPARTING by EUROLINES or NATIONAL EXPRESS COACH: This is by far the cheapest option for long-distance travel in England, Scotland, and Wales. There are very convenient buses from each major airport. National Express carries over 16 million passengers to 1000 different places in the UK every year, and thousands more from destinations across Europe and Ireland. You can purchase an e-Ticket where you print your travel ticket online in a matter of minutes OR you can obtain an m-Ticket and have your travel ticket sent to your mobile phone - no paper ticket required. You then present this to the driver on arrival.
ARRIVING BY CAR: Please ask for details.
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GRADE D+ Cycling between 22 - 26 miles (35 - 42kms) a day. The route is principally a flat ride but has some steep climbs onto the Cleveland hills. We recommend that clients bring their own bicycle equipment helmets, shoes and clothing. We can arrange for the hire of this, if required. The cost would be about £50. You will start cycling about 10am and finish at approx. 4pm. These grades are for guidance only and will depend on weather conditions and your fitness.