With spring just around the corner – and summer holidays fast approaching – many people will be thinking about where to go for a walking or cycling holiday. This year, why not combine one of Europe’s impressive festivals with a self-guided walk or cycling tour in the area?
June 7 to 9 is the weekend for the Rock Ness festival in Scotland. The event is an extravaganza of great music set amid the stunning landscape of Loch Ness in the Highlands. Why not combine a trip to this popular festival with a week-long self-guided walking holiday? The Loch Ness Trail trip takes you from Inverness south to Dores for your first night’s accommodation. You then continue on the trail to Foyers and Fort Augustus. Heading north again, but this time on the west shores of Loch Ness you’ll reach Invermoriston and then Drumnadrochit. Finally you continue walking northeast until return to Inverness.
Sorrento, on Italy’s fabulous Amalfi Coast, is famed for its sweets, cakes, gateaux and pastries, with local specialities often linked to key events in the religious calendar. This Easter, why not head to the beautiful town of Sorrento to sample the delicious casatiello and pastiera Easter cakes, before heading off on a self-guided Almalfi Coast Walking Holiday?
The capital of Portugal is the focus of a popular International Tango Festival from June 5 to 9, 2013. A world-class orchestra and expert Tango teachers will be on hand to give free milonga lessons every afternoon. You could combine your Tango Festival experience with one of a number of great walking tours in Portugal. Indeed, the fantastic Camino Portuguese walking trail begins in Lisbon and offers hundreds of kilometres of fabulous walking amid an amazing and ever-changing landscape. See Camino Portugues
Gerona in Spain’s Catalonia region celebrates in style in May with the splendid Temps de Flors Flower Show. A multitude of parks and gardens offer free admission during the festival, from May 11 to 19, and boast impressive floral displays. You’ll also see public buildings decorated with floral motifs. Why not combine a short break in Gerona with a cycling holiday in Catalonia? Uncover the wild and beautiful landscape of this north-east Spanish region on two wheels. You’ll follow traffic-free roads amid open countryside as you cycle through idyllic villages surrounded by olive groves and orchards.
France’s oldest city, Marseille, has been designated European Capital of Culture 2013. You’ll discover history, wonderful views and a vibrant atmosphere in this southern French university town. From Marseille, you might like to take the train to Avignon, where you can join a wonderfully scenic cycle tour through Provence’s beautiful villages and landscape.
Please do suggest other festival ideas that could be combined with a walking or cycling holiday.