Cycling has always been a popular way to explore new places and get some exercise at the same time. With the Coronation of King Charles III this weekend, what better way to combine these two things than by cycling around some of the most stunning royal sites in the UK?
From Balmoral Castle in the Scottish Highlands to Windsor Castle, the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world, there are plenty of pleasant royal locations to explore on two wheels. Whether you’re a seasoned cyclist or just looking for a new way to explore the UK’s rich history and natural beauty, cycling around royal sites is an experience that’s not to be missed. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of the best royal sites to explore by bike and provide tips for planning your own cycling adventure.
The Deeside way to Balmoral castle:
If you’re looking for a scenic and leisurely cycling route in Scotland, the Deeside Way is a great choice. Stretching for 41 miles from Aberdeen to Balmoral, the Deeside Way takes cyclists through some of the most beautiful countryside in the northeast of Scotland.
Starting from Duthie Park in Aberdeen, the Deeside Way follows the course of the River Dee as it winds its way through picturesque towns and villages such as Peterculter, Banchory, and Ballater. Along the way, cyclists will be treated to stunning views of the Cairngorms National Park and the rolling hills and forests of Deeside.
One of the highlights of the Deeside Way is the opportunity to visit Balmoral Castle, the summer residence of the British royal family. The castle is open to visitors during the summer months and is well worth a visit for its magnificent gardens, architecture, and history.
The Deeside Way is a relatively easy and flat route, suitable for cyclists of all levels. The route is mostly traffic-free, with well-marked paths that are ideal for cycling. Along the way, there are plenty of rest stops, cafes, and pubs to refuel and take in the stunning scenery.
For those looking for a shorter ride, there are several access points along the Deeside Way where cyclists can start or finish their journey. For example, starting from Ballater provides a shorter, 17-mile ride that still includes beautiful scenery and views.
King alfred’s way:
For those looking for a more challenging ride, Cycling UK’s King Alfred’s Way, is a 350km multi-terrain route through some of the most scenic countryside in southern England. A predominantly off-road adventure route that covers 350km, the route takes you through 10,000 years of English history, connecting some of the country’s most iconic sites. Despite being easily accessible from southern cities, the route offers a sense of escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Think of white horses on chalk hillsides and breath taking views across the rolling countryside. Cyclists tend to use gravel bikes in drier months, and mountain bikes if the ground is wet.
The trail is named after Alfred the Great, who once ruled the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex. It begins and ends at the statue of King Alfred in Winchester, where he is buried. The trail uses parts of the Ridgeway and South Downs Way, making it perfect for gravel bikes. Although some riders such as Simon Richardson of GCN have managed the whole route in one sitting, we’d recommend planning a bike packing trip over a few days. The route also connects with the Thames Path and the North Downs Way, allowing riders to combine multiple routes into a longer ride.
Cycling along the Jubilee River to Windsor Castle is a wonderful way to explore the coutrysie around Windsor Castle. The Jubilee River is a man-made waterway that was created to help alleviate flooding in the Thames Valley, and it is now a beautiful spot for cycling and enjoying the natural beauty of the area.
Starting from the pretty town of Maidenhead, cyclists can follow the Jubilee River path for just short of 10 miles to reach Windsor Castle. Along the way, you’ll pass through tranquil countryside, beautiful wetlands, and historic towns, all while enjoying the fresh air and beautiful views.
As you approach Windsor Castle, you’ll be treated to stunning views of the castle’s iconic turrets and ramparts rising majestically above the River Thames. The castle is open to visitors throughout the year, and it’s well worth stopping to explore its historic halls and beautiful gardens.
Cycling along the Jubilee River to Windsor Castle is a relatively easy and flat ride, suitable for cyclists of all levels. The route is mostly traffic-free, with well-maintained paths that are ideal for cycling. There are plenty of cafes, pubs, and rest stops along the way, making it a great choice for a day trip or weekend adventure.
Located in Norfolk, Sandringham House has been the private home of the British royal family for over 150 years, and its stunning grounds are a joy to explore on two wheels.
Starting from the village of Sandringham, cyclists can follow a series of quiet country roads and off-road trails that wind their way through the estate’s beautiful gardens, woodlands, and parklands. Along the way, you’ll pass charming villages, historic landmarks, and lovely views of the surrounding countryside.
One of the highlights of cycling around Sandringham House is the opportunity to visit the estate’s beautiful church, which dates back to the 16th century. The church is open to visitors and is home to a stunning collection of stained glass windows, historic artifacts, and royal memorabilia.
Cycling around Sandringham House is a relatively easy and gentle ride, suitable for cyclists of all levels. The route is well signposted and there are plenty of places to stop and rest along the way, including cafes, pubs, and picnic spots.
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