Seven of the world’s great bike rides
As Britain celebrates National Bike Week, the campaign that encourages more people to get on their bikes, we turn our thoughts to imagining where we might go if we could cycle anywhere and for any length of time. Perhaps we might choose one of these fabulous and famous cycle routes.
The Great Divide Route
America and Canada
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Great Divide Basin, Wyoming. Pic credit: Mats Skölving on Flickr[/caption]
This is America’s leading cycling routes and extends 2,700 miles from New Mexico to Canada. The epic route requires some serious time off work but the rewards are there to see every single day of the ride as you head through some of America’s most spectacular scenery.
Munda Biddi Trail
This off-road route is 621 miles long from Mundaring to Albany. The name translates as "path through the forest" so you can expect great swathes of eucalyptus forests along the way. Koalas make the trees their home, which means you might also spot some of the country’s indigenous creatures.
Land's End to John O'Groats (the LEJOG)
England and Scotland
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Classic LEJOG bike route. Pic credit: Rob Faulkner on Flickr[/caption]
This classic bike route stretches across the British Isles. The distance depends on the route that you take but the total mileage is usually around 1,000 miles. The scenery is classically changeable as it heads from the south of England to the very north of Scotland including hills, mountains, coasts and rolling countryside. Some people also choose to ride south on the JOGLE.
National Highway 1
The 700-mile route connects the two big cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and heads along the length of the narrow coastal country. Cyclists will ride through remote rural villages and alongside the lush foliage of the coastline.
Great Ocean Road
Dramatic coasts and sandy beaches are fine scenic companions for this fabulous 172-mile route in southern Australia. The route heads from Torquay to Allansford, both in the state of Victoria.
Route des Grandes Alpes
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The mighty Alps route. Pic credit: Duncan Hull on Flickr[/caption]
Turning our thoughts to Europe, this classic Alps route starts at Lake Geneva and finishes at the French Riviera, taking in all the high passes of the Alps within France. The 425-mile route is regularly featured in the Tour de France and the Giro d'Italia (Tour of Italy cycling race).
Canal du Midi
A much more approachable cycle route for cyclists who fancy a long-distance adventure but without too many hills or much traffic. This 240-mile route starts in the cosmopolitan city of Montpellier and finishes in Toulouse. With 100,000 trees to mark the way the Canal du Midi was originally designed to link the Mediterranean and the Atlantic and now offers a superb cycle route.
If you could ride anywhere, where would you ride?