As the New Year begins in earnest, Freedom Treks’ revamped website is waiting to tempt the growing leisure cycling market out in the fresh air and on to two wheels this summer. Following on from the November press release announcing the introduction of 18 new Cruise and Cycle tours, the programme now also features a total of 39 brand new Hotel and Cycle tours for 2013. This brings the total to over 200 cycling holidays across 24 European countries featured in the Freedom Treks portfolio.
As popularity for cycling shows no sign of abating, neither does the growing demand for inspirational holiday ideas. The type of cycling holidays, offered by Freedom Treks, hits the mark attracting widespread appeal regardless of age, ability or agility. With self-guided Hotel and Cycle tours you can set the pace, deciding when you want to take a break and admire the view. The flexibility of a cycling holiday means it can be anything you want it to be and you can start the day safe in the knowledge that your luggage will be transferred on to the next destination. Many tours are also available as guided tours where a knowledgeable, experienced cycle guide leads the way, allowing you to relax and enjoy the scenery as well as the company of fellow cyclists. It’s not easy to find a holiday that can surpass that sheer sense of exploration you can experience from a bicycle saddle. These holidays run from April through to October and are graded according to the level of ability required to enjoy them.
Andy Harmer, Manager of Freedom Treks, explains: “Following on from strong early bookings, the interest and demand for cycling tours in 2013 is continuing to increase, with the top three most popular country destinations being Germany, Italy and France. To date, the most popular destination for 2013 is Lake Constance. The Lake offers fantastic cycling, much of it on dedicated cycle paths and there are a range of tours for varying abilities to choose from. Tours start from £319 for 6 nights. In addition, the new Freedom Treks website makes it even easier to look and book online with useful options like ‘Choose Your Adventure’ to create a shortlist of suitable tours.”
NEW HOTEL AND CYCLE TOURS FOR 2013
France: Burgundy – Leisurely Wine Trails – This self-guided, 6 night tour delivers ideal starter territory through this historic and highly respected wine-producing region. From Mâcon, join the dedicated cycle track ‘Voie Verte’ to Givry, before continuing along beautiful landscapes and vineyards to Beaune. Grade: Easy*. Starts from £549 per person, any day departure from May to September.
France: Family Glamping in Burgundy – Going glamping with the family means you can strike a balance combining the fun of camping with little luxuries and added amenities. This family focused 4 night, self-guided tour brings together the best of the great outdoors, mixing gentle cycling amidst beautiful landscapes with visiting historic towns, castles and not forgetting the vineyards. Grade: Easy. Starts from £294 per person including bike hire, any day departure from May to September.
France/UK: Paris to London – Combining two of the world’s most famous cities, this tour can commence in either direction. The 7 night tour covers 192 miles and incorporates the new Avenue Verte (Greenway), a virtually traffic free and mainly signposted cycle route linking Paris to London via Dieppe and Newhaven. This tour is available as a guided as well as self-guided tour. Grade: Easy/Moderate. Starts from £595 per person on selected dates in July and August.
Germany: Berlin – Absorb yourself in Berlin’s intriguing past during a 4 or 7 night, self-guided cycle tour and retrace Berlin’s colourful history. Start at the Brandenburg Gate, which stood for three decades in no-man’s land between a special double stretch of the Wall and became one of the lasting images of that November night in 1989. Cycle to Potsdamer Platz, once a strip of heavily patrolled unoccupied land, which has now evolved with ultra-modern glass buildings and landscaped streets, before moving on to the former border control Checkpoint Charlie and the East Side Gallery. The tour takes in the best of the surrounding areas of Potsdam, Wannsee and Spandau. Grade: Easy. Starts from £329 per person for 4 nights on any Sunday from May to September.
Germany: Lake Constance – Leisurely – This gentle 6 night, self-guided tour explores a variety of attractions along the eastern shores of Lake Constance, including the historic town of Constance, the romantic Meersburg with its castle and vineyards, the quaint village of Lindau with its cobbled streets and harbour and the stunning Island of Flowers at Mainau with its extraordinary diversity of Mediterranen flowers, trees and shrubs. Grade: Easy Starts from £319 per person, any day departure from April to October.
Italy: Piedmont – Explore the variety and beauty of Italy’s Piedmont region, whilst embracing culinary traditions using local produce, all perfectly complemented by wines from the region. This 7 night self-guided tour covers 175 miles and starts and finishes in Alessandria, with the loop taking you along ancient roads, across smooth hills and through small villages. Grade: Easy/Moderate. Starts from £581 per person on any Saturday from April to October.
Italy: Sardinia – Leisurely – Set your sights on Sardinia for a truly leisurely cycling holiday and be at one with nature beneath the blue skies and beside the blue seas. The romantic beauty of south western Sardinia will capture your heart and this 10 night, self-guided tour allows you to explore at your own pace. Grade: Easy. Starts from £692 per person, any Saturday year round.
Portugal: Algarve – This year-round 7 night, self-guided tour allows you to really immerse yourself in the destination, along the dedicated cycle route, ‘Ecovia do Litoral’ linking Cape St Vincent, Sagres, in the west to Vila Real de San António close to the Spanish border. The route combines exploring coastal countryside and old fishing villages with trails in nature protection areas and long traffic free stretches. Grade: Easy/Moderate. Starts from £724 per person including bike hire, daily departures, year round.
Spain: Extremadura – Conquistadors and Paradors – This 6 night, self-guided tour is unique and gets to the heart of the real Spain, as you overnight in wonderful paradors, luxury hotels located in historic buildings such as restored palaces, monasteries or castles. This tour explores Extremadura, the land of the Spanish Conquistadors, in western Spain. Grade: Easy/Moderate. Starts from £786 per person, any day from March-June and from September-November.
Spain: Majorca – Far removed from the conventional image of Majorca, this 7 night, self-guided tour covers the authentic and untouched side of the island. Over 175 miles discover quiet deserted bays, picturesque fishing villages and pristine beaches, ideal for post-ride swims. Grade: Moderate. Starts from £619 per person, any Friday from March-June and from September-October.
UK: Shropshire – Shortbreak Introducing Freedom Treks’ first UK tour, this self-guided, short break in one of England’s most rural counties covers almost 40 miles over two days. The undemanding route starts in the medieval town of Ludlow taking you to the charming village of Clun. Along the unspoilt river valleys of the Teme, Clun and Redlake there are plenty of traditional tea houses, riverside inns and country pubs to take a break. Grade: Easy. Starts from £286 per person including bike hire, any departure day from May to October.
For more information call Freedom Treks on 01273 224066 or visit www.freedomtreks.co.uk