That made me wonder about my own list. I decided this would involve longer routes that would make complete staycation holidays in their own right, and I would spread them wide around the UK. So here goes:
The Pennine Cycleway is a waymarked Sustrans cycle route all the way from Derby up the spine of England to Berwick-upon-Tweed.
It arrives in the Yorkshire Dales National Park near Gargrave and takes a fantastic route up the west side of the National Park to Appleby-in-Westmorland over in Cumbria – about 70 miles.
There are potential stops in Settle, Ingleton and Sedbergh on the way.
This is a beautiful and often very quiet territory to explore, and there are direct trains between Gargrave and Appleby for a return route on the famed Settle-Carlisle Railway.
The Pennine Bridleway
The Pennine Bridleway starts in Derbyshire and finishes in Northumberland, with some of the best riding in the Yorkshire Dales. This is off-road riding, some of it reasonably challenging unless you are used to it.
The Yorkshire Dales section starts in Long Preston and goes via Horton-in-Ribblesdale and Garsdale Head to Ravenstonedale and is around 51 miles.
It is best followed using Cicerone’s guide book, which has excellent maps and riding instructions, plus height graphs and what to see and do.
The Settle Loop is 10 miles long, of which 7.5 is off-road. It is quite a challenge with a great deal of climbing, but excellent views and very good downhills to finish. Graded: Medium.
Horton-in-Ribblesdale, Helwith Bridge, Sulber Nick – 12.5 miles, 0f which 6.75 miles off-road. Graded: Easy.
The locations of the loops are shown below:
Another excellent guide book, Yorkshire Dales Mountain Biking from Vertebrate, has 26 mountain bike routes all around the Dales, including around Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-ghent, Swaledale, the Howgills and the Swale Trail.
Routes include an “easy” 16Km from Austwick, an “epic” from Settle to Malham Cove, and “enduro” from the Ribblehead Viaduct and the Tour d’Ingleborough as a 40Km “killer”!
There is also the specific Wharfedale Biking Guide with six routes in the areas of Grassington, Appletreewick and Bolton Abbey.
Cycle-friendly Holiday Accommodation in the Yorkshire Dales
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