As lockdown continues to lift and life returns to our new normal, many of you may be itching to get away on holiday. While flying abroad is now a possibility, there are plenty of reasons why you might prefer to stay in the UK this year! Packing up your car, grabbing your bike and taking the family on a staycation is the perfect way to relax, without the worries that come with boarding a plane. In this blog post, we’ll discuss all things staycation including places to visit, cycling equipment you might need, and the benefits of staying closer to home this summer!

 

Where to go?

Aside from its occasionally unfortunate weather, there are lots of amazing places to visit in the UK that are often overlooked. Whether you’re longing for something by the coast, in a cosy forest or near the hustle and bustle of the city, there are many beautiful places close to home!

Grabbing your bikes and exploring a new location is guaranteed fun for all the family. Let’s run through a few of our favourite cycling destinations in the UK:

 

1. The Lakeland Loop, Lake District

© CHRIS FIFIELD-SMITH / FLICKR

The Lake District is notorious for its stunning scenery, so it’s no surprise that it makes our list. The Lakeland Loop is a 65km circuit for an advanced cyclist. Intense gradients and uneven terrain are surrounded by some of the most beautiful views on the edge of Lake Coniston. For any serious cyclist, this is one for the bucket list!

 

2. The Camel Trail, Cornwall

© GRAHAM BLAND / FLICKR

A family holiday to Cornwall has it all. Beautiful beaches, charming woodland and wonderful weather. The Camel Trail begins in Padstow and spans 19km of the charming Cornish countryside. It’s a route designed for beginners due to being largely flat and almost entirely traffic-free, so is perfect for all the family. Be sure to encourage the kids to look out for the wildlife often found in the area. They might spot otters, dormice, kingfishers, and bats!

 

3. Richmond Park, London

Well-known for its looped cycle path, Richmond Park in London is another great pick for the family. After all, what better place to cycle on a staycation in England than the capital? During your bike ride, make sure you keep an eye out for sights of the city landscape including a brilliant view of St. Pauls Cathedral. For more detail, the Richmond Park website has lots of information about the cycling paths that the park has to offer.

 

4. Cambridge City Centre

The city of Cambridge, also known as the UK’s cycling capital, is largely flat, making it an ideal place for a bike ride, no matter what your ability. As well as being home to lots of fantastic cycling destinations, Cambridge is packed full of restaurants, cafes, and shops. You’ll also find the river Cam which runs around the city centre and the beautiful buildings of some of the country’s most famous university colleges. For more information, here’s a guide on cycling in Cambridge.

 

5. Applecross, Scotland

© SIMON VARWELL / FLICKR

Voted as one of the world’s best roads, this 44-mile circuit is renowned for its beauty as a cycling spot. The route is home to the steepest ascent of any road in the UK meaning this is one for you hill trainers. If you’re planning to tackle this route, keep an eye on the weather. Try to find a day with a comfortable temperature, you don’t want to be caught out in the cold or sweltering in the heat!

 

As well as these amazing cycling destinations, there are plenty of great parks, canals, and woodland areas across the UK that you might like to try. You may not even have to venture too far from home! Here are some helpful links to find your staycation destination in the UK:

 

What to pack?

Once you’ve settled on your destination, it’s time to begin thinking about what you might need to pack. One of the benefits of travelling closer to home is that there are fewer restrictions on the things you can and can’t take. Travelling by car also means that you’re likely to have lots of extra space!

Of course, essential for any cycling holiday, you’ll need to pack your bike and all of the accessories to accompany. If you’re looking for a new bike, no matter what style, colour or price you’d prefer, we’ve got something for you. Visit our website to view our men’s, ladies’ and kids’ bikes!

Alongside your bike, packing helmets for all of the family is crucial. The last thing you want is any nasty injuries, so wearing a helmet will help protect you and the little ones if an accident occurs. For the littlest cyclists, you may even want to invest in some additional protection such as knee and elbow pads!

Another bike accessory that could come in handy is a repair tool kit, especially something to patch up any punctures! The “Maintenance” section of our website is packed full with handy tools and kits to keep you cycling throughout your break away.

You may be able to fit smaller bikes or trikes into the boot of your car however, adult bikes will likely need to attach to the outside. If you’re in the market for a car rack, we’ve got a great selection available at the moment to suit almost any car.

A holiday in the UK could mean slightly unpredictable weather, so we’d recommend that you pack a mixture of clothes! Check the weather forecast before you set off, but ensure you’ve packed something suitable come rain or shine. If it’s looking like you’ll be lucky, don’t forget your SPF and sunglasses. For more tips on cycling in hot weather, check out our blog post here.

 

Why staycations are great!  

Still not convinced that a staycation is the way forward this year? Let’s run through 5 reasons why we think they’re great.

 

1. Safer from Covid-19

As the pandemic locked most of us away for many months, it can be tempting to jump on the first plane abroad. However, this poses many risks that it’d be far safer to avoid! A staycation allows you to travel in your car and remain distanced from other households. You’ll also avoid any additional quarantine measures before or after travelling.

 

2. More affordable

In general, staying in the UK is far cheaper than flying abroad, especially if you take your car! With Covid-19 affecting many of us financially, a staycation could be a great substitute for your annual holiday abroad at a fraction of the cost.

 

3. Explore your own country & support local businesses

Holidaying in the UK gives you a rare opportunity to explore your own country! Often, we’re so keen to “get away” that we miss the amazing attractions, restaurants and scenery on our doorstep. Also, after the damage that the lockdown has caused for many of our local businesses, staying in the UK will be a great chance to support them during these tough months!

 

4. Bring your pets

When you’re travelling in the UK, your furry friends won’t have to stay at home and miss out on the fun! As long as your hotel, B&B or apartment allows it, travelling with your pets is far easier when you’re staying in your home country.

 

5. Less stress

Does checking you’ve packed your passport 15 times sound familiar? Travelling in the UK is far less stressful and the booking process tends to be much easier. Forget booking up holidays over a year in advance, when you’re staying closer to home, there’s far less planning involved.

 

Whether you opt for a staycation, travel abroad or simply stay at home, we hope you have fun and stay safe. If you’re looking for a new bike or any cycling essential, our stores are ready and waiting! To find your nearest Cycle King & Hawk Cycles, please visit our handy store locator.