- Start & finish: Starts Saturdays and is circular from Canterbury
- Accommodation: A small hotel in the heart of Canterbury, village inns in Sandwich and Faversham and a farmhouse on the Classic version. High quality 3 and 4 star hotels in the heart of Canterbury and Sandwich, a Michelin starred restaurant with rooms in Faversham and a classic accommodation farmhouse on the Luxury version of this tour.
- Cycling mileage: 7 days of cycling. 29 - 42 miles (46 - 67 km) per day
- Grade out of 5 based on distance and elevation: 4
- Terrain: A few hills on most days
- Traffic free: Very little traffic.
Known as The Garden of England, this corner of Kent is a pretty and rural area dotted with orchards and small farms. But on this tour you will discover it offers so much more. From the chalk downs to the coast, medieval towns to trendy seaside spots, vineyards to art galleries and castles to gardens your route leads you through all the wonderful variety of this unhurried region.
Cycling along valleys, beside the sea, atop the downs and across ancient marshland, there's bundles to explore with characterful overnight stops brimming with local colour. We are great fans of this locale and we will be disappointed if you are not too once you've pedalled the area.
Day 1: Canterbury.
Arrive in Canterbury and check into your hotel in the heart of the city. There's so much to explore in this astounding heritage city with its magnificent cathedral, and many museums. Your bicycles will be waiting for you at the hotel so if you wish, you can enjoy the main sights by taking our city centre bike tour.
Day 2: Canterbury to Sandwich 32 miles (51km).
Your host will meet you after breakfast and run through your tour itinerary. Then you are off to cycle east to the coast. Ride through orchards and a rolling landscape of villages to reach the characterful old ports of Deal and Sandwich. Cycle adjacent to the shore, take in the castles, and explore the fascinating history of these Cinque port towns. Your stay for the next two nights is in an old inn in the heart of medieval Sandwich.
Day 3: Circular Ride from Sandwich Around the Coast 40 miles (64km).
Today's ride is a fantastic breeze around the coast cycling adjacent to the sea for most of the day. Although you pedal inland to begin with, breakwaters, beaches, cliffs and stunning views are the order of the day. Take in the new Turner gallery at Margate, delightful Broadstairs and the regency charm of Ramsgate before returning to Sandwich.
Day 4: Sandwich to Bridge 31 miles (50km).
Heading towards Canterbury, there's flat riding above the Stour marshes and dotted villages to enjoy. Visit a vineyard to taste the local product and swan around the gardens of Goodestone Park. As you approch the Kent Downs and some hills, the scene changes, ever rural and charming until you arrive at the farm where you will stay for the next two nights. Tuck into a hearty dinner at the farmhouse.
Day 5: Circular Ride from Bridge through South Downs Valleys 30 miles (48km)
Riding along two valleys within the South Downs you will experience another unique landscape. The rolling chalk downs house pretty villages and hamlets in their cosy valleys with Elham a striking market town providing a great venue for lunch. Crossing the Minnis, you get great views before heading home along a peaceful and idyllic dry valley.
Day 6: Bridge to Faversham 40 miles (64km)
Today is full of variety as you cycle along the willow filled meadows of the River Stour and skirt Canterbury. Then pedal along the old Crab and Winkle railway line which leads you to Whitstable where you can savour their catch of oysters and enjoy a craft shop or two. There's wonderful seaside cycling from there for a while before you pick up the old Saxon Shoreline to arrive in Faversham. With 500 listed buildings, a brewery and a fascinating creek at its heart, this is a historic town with much to explore.
Day 7: Circular Ride from Faversham 29 miles (46km)
Head west from Faversham and take in some desolate but beautiful tracks that wind along the coast. Orchards appear more frequently as you ride inland and the landscape is peppered with pretty villages and small farms. Country pubs, craft shops and an idyllic quiet scene are yours for the day.
Day 8: Faversham to Canterbury 14 or 32 miles (22 or 51 km)
There's a short ride back for those wanting to see more of Canterbury that includes a wonderful garden at Mount Ephraim and a few cosy pubs that may tempt you. If you take the longer ride you can add the stunning and historic village of Chilham and a rolling landscape that's often wooded and always beautiful. You will return to Canterbury having experienced all the wonderful variety that Kent has to offer.
Day 9: Depart Canterbury.
Minimum cost is for Classic version. Maximum cost is for Luxury version.
Also see tour packages in:
Europe England Outdoor: Land Rambler Bicycle Touring Cultural Journey
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