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Cycling itself is a haven for many. The chance to coast and cruise on two wheels is a chance for people to escape the hustle and bustle of their daily lives and feel free. The late Robin Williams, cycling fanatic, famously said riding his bike was the closest he felt he’d ever get to flying.
"The chance to coast and cruise on two wheels is a chance for people to escape the hustle and bustle of their daily lives and feel free..."
But there are ways to use your two wheels to escape even further. With the market for luxury tourism ramping up by the day, locales and destinations deemed the most beautiful on earth are finally opening up to cyclists – places where it may have been too difficult to get the support for a cycling holiday previously.
But, keen cyclists as we are at Gentleman’s Journal, we’re happy to jump onto this particular bandwagon, and have rounded up five of the best luxurious cycling trips on earth – from the rough crags of Norway to the golden, perennial summer of Catalonia.
‘The Land of Enchantment’ is dubbed so by Rapha, the cycling giants who have just started offering two-wheeled tours through one of the USA’s most overlooked states. Offering high desert vistas and seemingly unlimited rolling hills and mountains, there is a laid back vibe here. So, if you’re keen to rack up the miles, or want to free wheel your way home – there’s no judgement.
Beginning at £4,100 per person, you will ride to over 10,000ft on deserted roads, and explore the deep Native American heritage and Mexican-influenced cuisine this state has to offer.
The low-down: 7 days, 140 km per day, 2000m daily elevation
New Mexico, United States
Sitting pretty in the Balearics, Mallorca is a Mediterranean gem. They say the sun always shines here, and they may be right – for this is where Cycology have created one of their signature trips. Think crystal clear azure waters, pristine sandy beaches and vast mountain ranges – and you’ll be on the right track.
The largest of the four Balearic Islands, true Mallorca is a far cry from the tacky Brit-style pubs that has come to typify it in many of our minds, and instead it offers stunning countryside, and roads winding and challenging enough for an incredible holiday. But beware of the temperature – Spring and Autumn are your best bets.
The low-down: 312km around the island, high temperature of 25 in Spring and Autumn
The Hotel Domestique is inspired by the world travels, tastes and active lifestyle of legendary cyclist George Hincapie. Tucked at the base of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, where better to unleash your two-wheels and go for the ride of a lifetime than across the vistas and panoramas of this extraordinary luxury landscape?
The routes that wind through these hills are beloved not only by local cyclists, but by Tour athletes. George Hincapie chose this region as his personal training arena for its resemblance to the Alpine climbs and rolling hills he grew to love in Europe. And you can rent a Canyon bike from the Hotel’s fleet – fit to your measurements.
The low-down: Complimentary nutrition bars, Guest Services team and finely-tuned bikes
South Carolina, United States
Another offering from cycling titans Rapha, this 5 day odyssey across Scandinavia will have you reeling. And it’s not hard to see why. The vast, rugged landscapes of Norway, with their brooding forests, forbidding mountains and deep sea fjords offer magical cycling experiences.
With thousands of miles of coastline and amazing, deserted roads – as well as more than a few gravel tracks! – Norway has so much to offer the road cyclist willing to explore a little off the beaten path. From £3,050 per person, you’ll stay in guesthouses dotted across this mysterious, magical country.
The low-down: 5 days, 145km average daily distance, 2,900m daily elevation
Time for some mainland Spain. This region of Catalonia has been dubbed ‘undiscovered Tuscany’, and is relatively unknown despite its gastronomic, vinicultural and olive oil producing heritage. Also, luckily, it has some great cycling routes.
The classic ‘Pirinexus’ cycling route offers you a peaceful way of enjoying the stunning landscapes and varied terrain of the region, and the variety of remote backroads has transformed it into the chosen training destination for over a quarter of pro-Tour cyclists. And if it’s good enough for them…
The low-down: 3 day trips with Bacchus on Bikes, electric bikes offered, price on request
Want to get kitted out for your holiday? Here are the 3 best cycling brands you need to know about…