London-Land’s End Cycle Route

£29.95

Including Guidebook, GPS-tracks and postage

If you enjoy traffic calmed cycling and sightseeing from your bicycle, whether on your own or with your loved ones, this guidebook is for you. It features the best cycle routes of southern England, together forming a continuous route from London to Land’s End, taking in as many famous English landmarks as possible. Choose to cycle the route in short sections or cycle the whole route in one go! What makes the guidebook unique is that it offers a full pack of route directions, high-profile mapping, insider visitor information, and accommodation suggestions,  all over an incredible distance. The route is generally via well-paved paths or quiet roads and is completely continuous. Are you ready for #realjourneys?

Please note: orders are processed within three working days. Guidebooks are dispatched via First Class Royal Mail; expect five working days as total delivery time (United Kingdom), international deliveries will take longer, see also our Terms and Conditions.

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Description

The guidebook contains routes from both Dover and Harwich ferry ports to London. This makes it possible to cycle around the English Channel, when also using the Plymouth link. The Dover to London route takes you though the fruit orchards of Kent, historic Canterbury and the Medway estuary with its impressive castles. The Harwich to London route provides pleasant countryside cycling in Essex and takes you through Roman Colchester.

Cycling through the heart of London, our route manages to stay away from busy roads, the occasional busy junction crossing excepted. Most of the cycling takes place on towpaths along the River Thames with spectacular views to enjoy. You will cycle under the Tower Bridge and you’ll pass the London Eye, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace on the way. Greenwich Park, Hyde Park and Richmond Park all provide superb green traffic-free routes.

Heading west you’ll cycle by Windsor Park and Windsor Castle before making your way to the Avon & Kennet Canal, with the pleasant towns of Newbury, Hungerford and Marlborough to take in. In Sting’s “Fields of gold” of Wiltshire you have the choice to cycle either by famous Stonehenge or that other beautiful ancient stone circle, Avebury. Extraordinary engineering awaits you at the twenty-nine canal locks of Caen Hill and the canal aqueducts near Bradford on Avon. You’ll cycle through the hilly Cotswolds here, with a canal path providing a majestic flat route to magnificent Bath with its Roman Baths, Jane Austen Museum and Royal Crescent.

Via the Bristol & Bath Railway Path you’ll make your way to bustling Bristol and its spectacular Avon Gorge. If you only wish to cycle “Coast to Coast” from the North Sea or English Channel, you could stop at seaside Clevedon with its striking views over the British Channel. The route continues via the charming Strawberry Line to famous Cheddar with its cheese museum and gorge.

The Somerset Levels provide the last section of truly flat cycling, because from Taunton the big climb starts into Exmoor National Park. From here, the route is for determined cyclists only, as there is serious climbing to take in. To get to the ancient Tarr Steps you’ll have to take on two major climbs of about a mile long!

Fortunately, from Barnstaple the splendid Tarka Trail provides easy cycling on another former railway. You can choose to cycle to Plymouth from where you can cross the English Channel to France. This Devon Coast to Coast route takes you on high viaducts with fantastic views over Dartmoor National Park. The spectacular Plym Valley Way from historic Tavistock down into Plymouth could be a worthy climax to your journey!

Of course, you can also continue into Cornwall, but you have to be ready for more serious climbing here. The section between Bude and Tintagel Castle is particularly rugged. Atlantic Ocean views are the ultimate reward for all the climbing efforts made, as is cycling on the flat and beautiful Camel Trail. This trail leads you to Padstow with its exclusive fish restaurants and the famous surf beaches of Newquay.

The striking mining area of Redruth allows you to cycle briefly through “lunar landscapes”, before arriving at beautiful Penzance Bay with its striking St. Michael’s Mount. The grand finale of the route is a circular route via the spectacular headlands of Land’s End and Cape Cornwall. From Penzance, you can take your bike on the fast train service back to London.

What you’ll see 

Traffic-free cycle trails: Crab & Winkle Way, Thames Cycle Route, Avon & Kennet Canal towpath, Bristol & Bath Railway Path, Strawberry Line, Taunton and Bridgwater Canal towpath, Tarka Trail, Granite Way, Drake’s Trail, Plym Valley Cycle Way, Camel Trail, Mining Trail. The route also features the Devon Coast to Coast Cycle Route between Barnstaple and Plymouth.

National Parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty: Salisbury Plains, Mendip Hills, Somerset Levels, Exmoor National Park, North Devon Coast, Dartmoor National Park, Bodmin Moor, Cornwall Coast, Penwith Peninsula.

Scenic towns and cities: Canterbury, Faversham, Rochester, Colchester, Central London, Kensington, Kingston Upon Thames, Windsor, Marlborough, Bradford on Avon, Bath World Heritage, Bristol, Bridgwater, Taunton, Barnstaple, Bideford, Tavistock, Plymouth, Newquay, Truro, Penzance.

Beaches and coastal features: Langdon Cliffs, White Cliffs of Dover, Maldon Promenade Park, Clevedon Cliffs and Promenade, Westward Ho! Beach, Plymouth Hoe, Bude Beach, Widemouth Bay Beach, Crackington Haven, Trebarwith Strand, Padstow Harbour, Harlyn Bay Beach, Constantine Bay Beach, Treyarnon Bay Beach, Lusty Glaze Beach Nequay, Fistral Beach Newquay, Towans Beach Hayle, St Michaels Mount, Marazion Beach, Penzance Promenade, Newlyn Harbour, Mousehole Harbour, Sennen Cove, Cape Cornwall, Land’s End.

Castles, cathedrals, abbeys and ancient monuments:
Dover Castle, Walmer Castle, Deal Castle, Richborough Castle, Canterbury Cathedral, Rochester Cathedral, Rochester Castle, Upnor Castle, Colchester Castle, Westminister Abbey, Hampton Court, Windsor Castle, Avebury stone circle World Heritage, Stonehenge stone circle World Heritage, Bath Abbey, Bristol Cathedral, Tarr Steps, Okehampton Castle, Lydford Castle, Brent Tor, Tintagel Castle, St. Michael’s Mount Castle.

Nature reserves, noticeable parks and beauty spots: Lowes Wood, Medway Riverside Country Park, Gravesend Promenade, Colchester Castle Park, Hainault Forest, Greenwich Park, Hyde Park, Richmond Park, The London Wetland Centre, Windsor Park, Sonning Lock, Savernake Forest, Fyfield Down, Avon Gorge, Gordano Valley, Cheddar Gorge, Abbeyford Woods, Meldon Reservoir, Crowdy Reservoir, Idless Wood.

Country houses and gardens: RHS Garden Hyde Hall, Cothay Manor Gardens, Saltram House, Prideaux Place, Trerice House.

Attractions: Canterbury canal boat tours, Discover Greenwich, Cutty Sark Greenwich, HMS Belfast London, London Dungeons, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, London Eye, Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Weybridge-Shepperton ferry, Legoland, Avon Valley Railway, SS Great Britain Bristol, Clevedon Pier, Original Cheddar Cheese Company, Cheddar caves, Exmoor National Park Centre, Bideford Kayak Hire, Dartington Crystal Torrington, National Marine Aquarium Plymouth, Smeaton’s Tower Plymouth, Citadel Plymouth, Bodmin & Wenford Steam Railway, Padstow Surf School.

Museums: Canterbury Heritage Museum, Roman Museum Canterbury, Westgate Towers Museum Canterbury, Chatham Historic Dockyard, Hollytrees Museum Colchester, Royal Observatory Greenwich, National Maritime Museum Greenwich, Queen’s House Greenwich, Brunel Museum, Tower of London, Tate Modern, Churchill War Rooms, Merchant’s House Marlborough, Keiller Museum Avebury, Roman Baths Bath, Jane Austen Museum Bath, No 1 Museum Bath, M Shed Bristol, Somerset Brick and Tile Museum Bridgwater, Museum of Somerset Taunton, John Betjeman Centre Wadebridge, Royal Cornwall Museum Truro, Cornish Mines and Engines Museum.

Special landmarks and infrastructure: Barbican Toll Gate Sandwich, Chatham Great Lines Heritage Park, Wivenhoe Quay, Balkerne Gate Colchester, Stock Windmill, Thames ferry and tunnel Woolwich, Thames Barrier, Thames Cable Car, O2 Arena/Millennium Dome, Greenwich Meridian, St. Saviour’s Dock, Tower Bridge, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Wellington Arch, Kensington Palace, Royal Albert Hall, Putney Bridge, Runnymede, Eton College Rowing Centre, Avon & Kennet Canal, Alton Barnes White Horse, Devizes White Horse, Caen Hill Locks, Avoncliff and Dundas Aqueducts, Pulteney Bridge Bath, Royal Crescent Bath, Staple Hill Tunnel, Bristol Floating Harbour, Aardman Studios Bristol, Clifton Suspension Bridge, Royal Portbury Docks, Shute Shelve Tunnel, Taunton and Bridgwater Canal, Fremington Quay, Meldon Viaduct, Lake Viaduct, Wallabrook Viaduct, Grenofen Tunnel, Gem Bridge, Gwennap Pit.

Route updates and more

Travelling from abroad: If you are visiting from the European continent, use either the ferry crossing between Hook of Holland and Harwich (www.stenaline.com) or the ferry crossing Dunkerque-Dover (www.dfdsseaways.co.uk) or Calais-Dover (multiple operators). If you choose for ending the route in Plymouth you can use various ferry connections to France for your onward journey (www.brittany-ferries.co.uk). Those flying to the UK can best travel to London Bridge station and start the route from there.

Travelling within the United Kingdom: The Great Western Railway service from Penzance to London Paddington allows you to take the bike on the train back to London at various points en-route. The shortest travel time between Penzance and London is 5 hrs and 30 mins, allowing you to travel back from Penzance to Dover/Harwich in one day. In London you can cycle with our London connection routes to stations heading for Dover and Harwich. Expect such long-distance connections to run about 10 times per day. Buy tickets in advance to keep the price acceptable and ensure to have a reserved space for your bike. Book online via www.gwr.com.

John ‘o Groats-Land’s End: For mileage-makers who are cycling from John ‘o Groats in Scotland to Land’s End in Cornwall, it is possible to use London-Land’s End in combination with our ‘England North-South Cycle Route’. By using both books you would be served with a fully described route for the English section of the journey between Berwick-on-Tweed and Land’s End in Cornwall. Change books at Alton Barnes, where the routes cross each other.

Facility Listings:

For your choice of accommodation on the way, please use our facility listings featuring hotels, B&Bs, guesthouses, hostels, bunkhouses, campsites and bike repair shops. We did a lot of research to provide you with the best choices relevant for the route. Only local businesses with professional standards are listed. All facilities are either directly on or close to the route. We have omitted venues that require membership (YHA excepted) or a stay of minimum two nights. Also, campsites not allowing tents are naturally not listed!

To avoid disappointments, we recommend making reservations at least 24 hours in advance for all accommodation, even for campsites! For some campsites, this is now compulsory. Please refer to the terms and conditions of the provider in advance and adhere to the rules of the provider!

Route updates: Things do change; routes do get improved or are closed down!  Venues come and go as well and our eyes can’t be anywhere. When cycling the route, have your eyes out for changes and report these to us. We keep a PDF available for you to download prior to cycling the route. You can here download the updates for this route: Download Route Updates London-Land’s End Cycle Route.